Most helpful positive review
42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
Delightful for the eyes as well as the mind. . .
on January 25, 2001
The artwork in this book is among the most exquisite I've ever seen in a children's book--or for that matter, in ANY book. Whatever the artist was paid, it wasn't enough! Everything--from the 50 or so little boys and girls to their flowers to the kimonos they wore for the presentation to the Emperor--was done in such minute detail, and no duplication in any of it. Each child had a personality and style all their own. Even if your child is a newborn or an infant, this book is worth getting just so the two of you can be dazzled by the visuals.
And the story!--no matter what your religion, creed, or background, the message is timeless. Ping's family and friends all know what a green thumb he has, and you'd think he'd be a shoo-in for Emperor when the seeds are distributed. The flowers DO decide who the next Emperor is. . .but not in the way you might think. There are two very wise men who figure prominently in this story: the Emperor and Ping's father, who tells Ping, "your best is good enough to present to the Emperor." And the unspoken message there is, "I'm proud of you, son, and I believe in you." Three cheers for Ping!