Monday 23 January 2012

23. Crouching Tiger by Ying Chang Compestine and Yan Nascimbene

Crouching Tiger by Ying Chang Compestine and Yan Nascimbene

Published January 2012 Walker

From the publisher:

A Chinese-American boy gains a new understanding of his Chinese grandfather in this celebratory story of family, martial arts, and the Chinese New Year.
Vinson is an American boy, who is also Chinese, although his connection with Chinese traditions is not strong, that is until his Grandfather visits. The most interesting Chinese tradition to Vinson is Kung Fu, and when he sees his Grandfather practicing 'slow dancing' (tai chi) in the backyard, he thinks maybe he can learn something from his Grandfather after all. Tai chi was, unfortunately, a little lacking in the excitement department for Vinson.
I think the book captures the mix of feelings that come with being part of two cultures when you are young, and the last thing you want to be is different.  Vinson is embarrassed by his Grandfather and  by the red silk jacket he is expected to wear at Chinese New Year. Experiencing the New Year parade, and using his new found skills to be part of the lion dance, changes things for Vinson, and he sees that being Chinese might be something to be proud of.
The image below is a bit small, but I wanted to include it to show that under the text on each page there is a picture of Vinson in one of the tai chi poses, so readers can try out the poses too.  There is also an Author's Note in the back of the book that gives more information on the history of tai chi and kung fu, as well as Chinese New Year.

Who will like this book: Boys Age 6+
Read it if you like: Fang Fang's Chinese New Year by Sally Rippin

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on accomplishing your goal of reading and writing about 366 books.

    I particularly liked the treatment of the relationship between grandson and grandfather. From my perspective, this layer to the story will broaden the appeal and is sure to encourage discussion of family relationships - especially in cases where grandparents live far away and only see their grandchildren occasionally.