All the Broken Pieces, I knew it would be an excellent 'boy book' to compliment Inside Out and Back Again. Both books are written in free verse and document the experiences of a Vietnamese child that moves to the US in the 1970s.
All the Broken Pieces is far darker, though. It focuses on Matt, a talented pianist and baseball player, who is adopted. His family has a younger biological son and Matt feels tentative, as if maybe his family would return him. Much of the novel occurs internally, as Matt processes the trauma he's survived. He carries a lot of guilt about the mother and brother he left behind. He also deals with bullying from classmates whose brothers were killed in the war.
My heart grieved for Matt, who just wants to keep everyone happy, while he is eaten up inside. Ann Burg's novel was affecting and could lead to profound class discussions about how Muslims are treated in the US today. Since both All the Broken Pieces and Inside Out and Back Again are such quick reads, I would have students read both books, to give a more well-rounded view of young Vietnamese immigrants.