- Age Range: 10 - 12 years
- Grade Level: 5 - 7
- Paperback: 176 pages
- Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (January 10, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0547534264
- ISBN-13: 978-0547534268
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.4 x 7.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 357 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,749 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Single Shard Paperback – January 10, 2011
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Park (Seesaw Girl) molds a moving tribute to perseverance and creativity in this finely etched novel set in mid-to-late 12th century Korea. . . Readers will not soon forget these characters or their sacrifices. —Publishers Weekly, Starred
"Intrigues, danger and the same strong focus on doing what is right turn a simple story into a compelling read. . . Tree-ear's story conveys a time and place far away and long ago, but with a simplicity and immediacy that is both graceful and unpretentious. A timeless jewel." —Kirkus Reviews with Pointers
Like Park's Seesaw Girl and the Kite Fighters, this book not only gives readers insight an unfamilar time and place, but it is also a great story. —School Library Journal, Starred
This quiet, but involving story draws readers into a very different time and place. Though the society has its own conventions, the hearts and minds and stomachs of the characters are not so far removed from those of people today. Readers will feel the hunger and cold that Tree-ear experiences, as well as his shame, fear, gratitude, and love. A well-crafted novel with an unusual setting. —Booklist, ALA, Starred Review
Park's story is alive with fascinating information about life and art in ancient Korea. —Horn Book Guide
A broken piece of pottery sets events in motion as an orphan struggles to pay off his debt to a master potter. This finely crafted novel brings 12th-century Korea and these indelible characters to life. —SLJ Best Books of the Year
Children's Books: 100 Titles NYPL
Booklist, Editor's Choice
About the Author
Linda Sue Park is the author of the Newbery Medal book A Single Shard, many other novels, several picture books, and most recently a book of poetry: Tap Dancing on the Roof: Sijo (Poems). She lives in Rochester, New York, with her family, and is now a devoted fan of the New York Mets. For more infromation visit www.lspark.com.
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357 customer reviews
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1. It's an interesting twist on a very old theme (the bildungsroman)
2. It has a lot of topics for further discussion
a. The history of Korea (multiple invasions, provincialism, and such);
b. A lot of good sayings to analyze and for further discussion ("Scholars read the great words of the world. But you and I must learn to read the world itself.")
c. Some good words to help build a youngster's vocabulary (spoor, celadon, lugubrious, kiln, slip)
d. Morals about life (What lesson could a child draw from Tree-ear's bad experience with the thieves and then his later good experience with the commisioner? What could a child learn about the *way* that Tree-ear went about learning the craft of pottery? What about the way that he was aware of his surroundings?)
e. Introduction of the concept of "intellectual property."
3. There is a good afterword that explains the historical context of the book (that may have been more for adults, but it was only a couple of pages long and so it wouldn't kill a reasonably intelligent child to try to read it).
4. The characterizations/ character development are very good. They are good at a level that both children AND adults can understand.
The whole book only takes about 3 hours to read (I read the whole thing in one afternoon at work while being forced to hold office hours) and the writing is so interesting that it's hard to put down.
Verdict: Worth the time. Worth the Kindle purchase price. Highly recommended.