PoPo's Lucky Chinese New Year
When her Chinese grandmother comes to visit, a young Chinese-American girl learns of and participates in the customs and beliefs celebrating an authentic Chinese New Year.
|Interest Level||Grade 1 - Grade 4|
|Reading Level||Grade 2|
|ATOS Reading Level|
|Guided Reading Level||L|
|Publisher||Sleeping Bear Press|
|Available Formats||Hardcover (9781585369782), PDF (9781634718868), Hosted ebook (9781634718875)|
|Number of Pages||32|
|Dimensions||11 x 9|
Kirkus Reviews - PoPo's Lucky Chinese New Year
PoPo helps her granddaughter learn Chinese New Year traditions in this intergenerational celebration of family and culture. When PoPo arrives from China, preparations for Chinese New Year, a holiday that’s like “Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day all bundled together,” begin. Everything, from what one cooks and wears to how one cleans and decorates, is important to this age-old custom. As PoPo explains the symbolism behind each gesture, her Chinese-American granddaughter reacts with an honesty and effort that will captivate readers. The child’s candid responses, both humorous and endearing, make the holiday’s rituals accessible—whether she’s sweeping her baby brother out with the bad luck (before bringing him back in and lovingly rubbing his “big Buddha belly”), greedily eating seconds for a long life, or acting like a cash register, yelling “Cha Ching!” when red envelopes with money are being distributed. Benoit’s pencil-and-watercolor illustrations are extremely appealing. They exude warmth—both in the way she draws her characters and with her palette selection and how she thoughtfully applies her colors. Everything has a softness to it, drawing readers in, until they too feel embraced by the girl who cuddles her baby brother and the grandmother who is passing her heritage on to her kin. With running commentary on common practices included on each spread and an art activity at the end, Loh-Hagen offers a comprehensive idea of what Chinese New Year is about, couched within an authentic Chinese-American experience. One of the best of its genre; attractive and informative, and a must for the growing Chinese New Year shelf. (Picture book. 4-8)
Author: Virginia Loh-Hagan
Dr. Virginia Loh-Hagan was born in the luckiest of all years, the Year of the Dragon. She’s an author, university professor, curriculum designer, and former elementary school teacher. She was inspired to write this story after doing author visits. Her young audiences wanted to know more about Chinese New Year! She lives in San Diego with one well-trained husband and two very naughty dogs.
Illustrator: Renné Benoit
Renné Benoit is the illustrator of numerous award winning picture books, including Proud as a Peacock and Brave as a Lion, winner of the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Award. Renné lives in Southern Ontario.
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