Friday, January 1, 2010

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

Every night Minli's father tells her stories full of fabulous adventures and mythical characters like the Old Man of the Moon, who reads the book of destiny and ties people's fates together with red string.  One day Minli decides to set off on her own adventure to find the Old Man of the Moon and ask him how to change her family's fortune.  Along the way she meets a dragon, a king, and the fearsome Green Tiger.  Everyone she meets has a story to tell, and each story leads her closer to her goal.  Minli's quick wit gets her out of many tough situations, but it gets her into many as well.

When Grace Lin rejected her Asian heritage as a child her mother left a few books of Chinese folklore to tempt her on the shelves.  Lin loved the tales despite their often sparse translations and wound up filling in the details in her head.  That experience along with her travels in Hong Kong, China, and Taiwan inspired this novel.  Her love of the material is evident throughout and I love the way she wove stories into the narrative, setting them aside in a different font and bold, bright headings.  I also love the illustrations Lin peppers throughout.  There's nothing terribly deep to consider and it's definitely juvenile fiction but the stories and illustrations are so charming that I thoroughly enjoyed it anyways.  This would definitely be a great book to read aloud.

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin ISBN: 9780316114271

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