This non-fiction book is a fantastic family read. It is full of pictures, maps, and fact inserts about Thailand, Buddhism, caving, diving, and more. My family read this book together and not only were we riveted by the story, but we were also being exposed to a beautiful culture very different from our own.
This miraculous story takes place in Eastern culture and within a tropical landscape; a world my children and I know very little about. My family has devout Puritan roots and lives in a hot, dry desert; however, Soontornvat uses this incredible story to introduce her readers to the Thai culture, Buddhist religion, wet landscape, Thai language, politics, and families through this incredible story.
Part of maturing is realizing that our perspective is defined and limited to our personal, cultural, and economic experiences – this book taught my family that: human experiences are diverse and largely influenced by where we are born. All Thirteen is a story about listening; a story about patience and hope. A story about people from all around the world who bring their expertise and experiences in order to work together for the survival of thirteen young boys.