Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Chinese New Year

I did it. I went a whole day without blogging. I'm not coping. I wanted to write yesterday because Judith Viorst turned 80, but I had written about her on 2nd February last year, and didn't feel I had a lot more I wanted to say. Today is Chinese New Year, which I also wrote about last February, but I have just purchased two new books for the library that fit nicely with Chinese New Year and the Year of the Rabbit.

The first is Rabbit's Gift by American author, George Shannon and illustrator, Laura Dronzek. The subtitle tells the reader that this is a Chinese folk tale, but it is also a modern retelling of the "giving" fable. A community of animals re-gift a turnip. The forest creatures come to realise that their actions can impact on those that they come in contact with and that this in term can bring them happiness. In simple language and a conversational style, Shannon has created a rich allegory that is ideal for sharing.

The second is Rabbit's Year by Australian Melissa Keil and Jedda Robaard. Melissa is the managing editor at the publisher, Black Dog Books and Jedda is an illustrator and art teacher in Victoria. In this story Rabbit knows that it is his special year but he doesn't feel very special. He wants a friend, but he is shy and doesn't find it easy to make friends. There is information about the Chinese Zodiac at the back of this book.

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