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by Ginnie Lo

illustrated by Beth Lo


School Library Journal:

/* Starred Review */ Gr 1–4— Ginnie Lo draws on her own memories to share a sunny tale about the value of family and community. After coming to America in the 1940s for their education, Lo’s parents and Aunt and Uncle Yang were unable to return to China due to war. Isolated and far from home, the two families visited often. The children looked forward to Chinese games, cooking, and language lessons on these visits, along with universal childhood past times like playing hide-and-seek. Out for a drive, the families are delighted to find an isolated soybean field—a food virtually unknown in the U.S. They ask to pick some of the vegetables and excitedly prepare a traditional Chinese  feast. The following year they do the same, but invite a few more families. This annual picnic grows until it becomes an important cultural event for Chinese-immigrant families in the Midwest. Adding fullness to the narrative, wonderfully appropriate to the content, and paying homage to China’s rich art history, Beth Lo’s series of hand-painted porcelain plates serve as the book ‘s illustrations. The soft, rounded compositions and earthy shades create feelings of easy comfort and warmth, and are a joy to behold. An author’s note, information about soybeans, family photos, and a glossary/pronunciation guide are included. This is a stellar title that will rest comfortably next to acclaimed picture-book  memoirs by Allen Say, Peter SÃ s, and Uri Shulevitz.—Anna Haase Krueger, Antigo Public Library, WI –Anna Haase Krueger (Reviewed June 1, 2012) (Library Journal, vol 58, issue 6, p88)


  • Booklist Editors’ Choice – Books for Youth – Young Readers Category: 2012


1st Grade, 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade, 4th Grade, Ages 0-8, Food and Drink, Identity