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Using courage and resourcefulness, Hoang, a young Vietnamese boy, must bring good fortune back to his family after he breaks their lucky teapot.
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PreSchool-Grade 2-- Young Hoang's active imagination turns the steaming teapot behind his mother into a dragon to be vanquished. He shatters it with a ball, and in so doing shatters the good luck it held for his family in the new country. The day becomes cold and dark--are evil spirits now rushing through the house? To bring back better fortune, Hoang paints the patterns of the broken teapot onto an old chipped one. The next morning, his mother appears smiling in his doorway. The legend of a lucky teapot comes out of Vietnamese tradition; to use it today to explain a small child's reaction to the breaking of a treasured family possession is misleading. The pedestrian text contains several Vietnamese words; their pronunciation is found only within the two-column, page-long introduction. A curious combination of facts about customs and additional material about the people in the story, it also includes a detailed description of objects on the family altar, items that cannot be easily discerned in the pictures. Rendered, it appears, in pastels on tan textured paper, the illustrations are somewhat abstract and smudgy, and lack appeal. --Diane S. Marton, Arlington County Library, VA
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Imagining a dragon in the steam behind his mother (``Ma''), a young Vietnamese hurls a ball at it, accidentally breaking a precious heirloom teapot that his family believes embodies their good luck. Sadly, Ma gathers the pieces; ``Ba'' (father) thunders, ``Now our first winter in America will surely be a monster!'' Little Hoang tries to make amends; and since neither honey nor glue holds the broken pot together, he paints another, shabby teapot in imitation of the lost treasure, winning a smile from Ma. This earnest attempt to introduce Vietnamese culture is prefaced by a long note, addressed to adults or older children, about the animistic beliefs the story depicts. But though the narrative is gentle and appealing, the family's responses are inexplicable without this background, which is likely to be beyond the picture book audience. Moreover, the story is, at best, ambivalent about the depth and validity of the beliefs portrayed. Meanwhile, Frankel debuts with impressionistic illustrations that, while observed with sympathy and executed with skill, are too dark and vague to appeal to most children. A flawed effort. (Picture book. 4-8) -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Houghton Mifflin, 1992. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX039557031X
Book Description Houghton Mifflin, 1992. Condition: New. Adrian Frankel (illustrator). book. Seller Inventory # M039557031X