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Thanking the Moon: Celebrating the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival Hardcover – September 14, 2010

4.9 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 3–In the style of Bringing in the New Year (Knopf, 2009), Lin fashions a child-friendly introduction to the mid-autumn harvest moon festival with engagingly simple text and colorful, oversize gouache illustrations. A family travels to a moonlit meadow where each individual helps with preparations for a nighttime picnic. The full moon's shape symbolizes harmony and wholeness, and the family members unpack round-shaped fruit and paper lanterns. The young narrator pours round cups of tea, and everyone nibbles on soft, sweet mooncakes. As a glowing moon "peacefully watches over all of us," the family sends their secret wishes to it and relishes being together. The writing is concise and accessible, and an author's note adds further information on the holiday and its significance. The inviting nocturnal landscapes are vivid with interesting details, and readers will long to join in this peaceful celebration.Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA
© Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Under a full harvest moon, a Chinese American family unpacks their car, sets out a drop cloth and lanterns, and enjoys fruit, moon cakes, and tea at a “nighttime picnic.” They honor the mid-autumn moon with moments of quiet thanks and private wishes as they celebrate the traditional Chinese holiday with other families. In an appended note, author Lin describes the thanksgiving tradition, citing moon stories and explaining the symbolism of round-shaped cups, fruit, and lanterns. For younger children, the slender narrative provides just enough of an introduction; for school-age children, the author’s note provides a cultural context. Objects mentioned in the narrative are easily identified in the vivid gouache illustrations. Luminous faces reflect the brightness of the full moon, casting light in the dark night. A beautiful, welcome choice for multicultural studies, this also adds diversity to autumnal thanksgiving themes. Preschool-Grade 3. --Linda Perkins
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers (September 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375861017
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375861017
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 0.3 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #294,255 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Hello! Thanks so much for your interest in me and my books!

I grew up in Upstate NY with my parents and 2 sisters, whom are featured in many of my books, including "Dim Sum For Everyone!" and my novels, "The Year of the Dog" and "The Year of the Rat." My mother and I were the star characters in my first book, "The Ugly Vegetables"--I cut both my sisters out of that story! They were quite upset with me and made me promise never to cut them out again. And since then, I haven't...yet.

While many of my books highlight my family, not all of them do. My Newbery Honor-winning novel "Where the Mountain Meets the Moon," is an Asian inspired fantasy that some people call a Chinese 'Wizard of Oz,' and my early reader "Ling & Ting" is inspired by the old 'Flicka, Dicka & Ricka' books I read when I was young.

I hope you enjoy my books. Please visit my website: www.gracelin.com for more info about them (behind the scene stories and pictures) as well as other amusing anecdotes!

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
In THANKING THE MOON, Grace Lin with festive details and luminous tone depicts a family of five CELEBRATING THE MID-AUTUMN MOON FESTIVAL, one of the major holidays observed by the Chinese people (next to Chinese New Year & Dragon Boat Festival). Reading through the lovely-illustrated pages, my daughter commented with a moonshine smile that "mom, this is how we celebrate it too!"

The content of this book truly reflects the customs of our own family celebration: we went out to a place where we could have the best view of the brightest moon, and we too, drank tea with soft and sweet mooncakes that came with delicious fillings from red bean paste, dates paste, pineapple to lotus seeds. Our mei-mei (little sister) also put the green pomelo peel on her head and she had a great time holding the lighted lantern to walk in the parade from the locally-held Chinese mid-autumn festival carnival. In ancient times, Moon Festival was for Chinese poets to get together, have a competition to write linked verse about moon-inspired poems. Today, I read the story of "Chang-O"(the legend about a goddess who swallowed the pills of immortality and flied to the moon) to my kids and also, I held a Chinese poetry book in my hand just like what is drawn inside the book. Moon is a symbol of harmony, spiritual truth and family union in Chinese culture and this book preserves the beauty of this festival for everyone to read and enjoy!

*Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month. In 2010, it fell on Sep 22nd and next year, it will be on Sep 12th, 2011.
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Format: Hardcover
What a lovely book about a Chinese holiday, the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival! This particular holiday is a major holiday in China and ranks alongside of the Chinese New Year and Dragon Boa Festival. The illustrations are lovely and the characters delightful.

People celebrate this holiday by going where they will see the moon shining at its brightest point. You drink Chinese herb tea and eat bean-curd based mooncakes and other Chinese treats.

The Mid-Autumn Moon Festival has a literary base. Poets in China would get together and compete with one another to write the best poem with a lunar theme. The moon is revered as the symbol of serenity (the word "serene" has a lunar lingustic origin), harmony and inner peace.

I love this book because it exemplifies the values of love and family unity which are held in especially high regard in Chinese culture. This is a book people of all ages will love and certainly learn from. It is a handshake/bow from China.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was teaching my children a song about the Chinese Moon Festival, and this story enhanced the lesson. The story is very simple and easy to read, but the last 2 pages provide great information about the Chinese Moon Festival that adults can read to children. The illustrations are also lovely.
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Format: Hardcover
In reading stories about 'fall' to toddlers and preschoolers at my local library storytimes, I came across this simple and lovely book. The faces of four Chinese-American moms in my audience lit up like the mid-autumn moon as my whitey-white-bread Delaware families and I delighted with them in the quiet beauty of a shared moonlit picnic. In elegant, approachable, almost poetically sparse and beautiful language, it provides a gentle introduction to traditions of the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. It made me and everyone else in my audience want to know more. Thanks again, Grace Lin!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a beautifully illustrated book with a simple story which is a great way to intoduce this holiday to kids in the U.S. I've used it to talk with our Families with Children From China group. I've also used it to share with my kid's classes at school. See my full review of Grace Lin's books on hubpages:
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A beautifully illustrated, easy to read text for young learners with plenty of scope for discussion of celebrations in students' and other cultures. The vocabulary pages at the beginning are cute and great for introducing key cultural artefacts relevant to this celebration.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've met Grace Lin and she is one of the best children's authors ever. She understands the culture and matching the child's reading ability. All her books are superb!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Highly recommended -- a book that speaks to Chinese culture but doesn't scream "diversity book." The delightful illustrations depict characters who look recognizably Asian without looking like caricatures (and also show people of many different ethnicities). Also, the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is quite important in Chinese culture but often overshadowed by New Year's.
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