Thief of Hearts (Golden Mountain Chronicles, 1995)

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9780064405911: Thief of Hearts (Golden Mountain Chronicles, 1995)

Caught in the Middle

Stacy Palmer almost never thinks about being Chinese American, As far as she's concerned, she's just like everyone else.

Then Hong Ch'un comes to Stacy's school from China. Stacy and Hong Ch'un don't exactly get along, but when Hong Ch'un is accused of stealing and runs away, Stacy bows she must try to find her.

With her family's help, Stacy searches the tiny back streets of San Francisco's Chinatown. There, she gets a glimpse of what it was like for her Chinese mother, growing up in a different culture. And for the first time in her life she realizes her true heritage-and finally understands what it means to be Chinese American.

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About the Author:

Laurence Yep is the acclaimed author of more than sixty books for young people and a winner of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award. His illustrious list of novels includes the Newbery Honor Books Dragonwings and Dragon's Gate; The Earth Dragon Awakes: The San Francisco Earthquake of 1906, a Texas Bluebonnet Award nominee; and The Dragon's Child: A Story of Angel Island, which he cowrote with his niece, Dr. Kathleen S. Yep, and was named a New York Public Library's "One Hundred Titles for Reading and Sharing" and a Bank Street College of Education Best Children's Book.

Mr. Yep grew up in San Francisco, where he was born. He attended Marquette University, graduated from the University of California at Santa Cruz, and received his PhD from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He lives in Pacific Grove, California, with his wife, the writer Joanne Ryder.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5-8?Yep's sequel to his superb Child of the Owl (HarperCollins, 1977) touches lightly, and with gentle humor, on issues of identity, communication among generations, racial stereotyping, and cross-cultural understanding. Stacy, who lives with her Caucasian father and Chinese mother and great-grandmother in a suburb of San Francisco, tells the story. Her mother, Casey, was the streetwise protagonist of the previous title, and the frail, ancient woman Stacy calls Tai-Paw was the grandmother who gave Casey a home and roots. Stacy has never thought of herself as anything but American?until the day her parents ask her to befriend a Chinese immigrant, Hong Ch'un. The two girls take an instant dislike to one another. When items stolen from people around the school are found in Hong Ch'un's backpack, a schoolmate calls Stacy "half-breed" for defending her. Disgraced, Hong Ch'un runs away, and Stacy, her mother, and Tai-Paw search through Chinatown for her. Their three-generation journey, intertwining memories and revelations with present action, forms the emotional heart of the narrative. Stacy's understanding of herself and others seems at times too facile, and explanations of history and cultural differences occasionally intrude on the plot. The new book is short and fast-moving, but lacks the sass and bite of its predecessor, and some of the writing is imprecise. Still, its warm depiction of a mixed-race child in a changing world, combined with a page-turning mystery, should guarantee a wide audience.?Margaret A. Chang, North Adams State College, MA
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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