Ho Yi the Archer and Other Classic Chinese Tales

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This collection of highly entertaining Chinese folklore is thoughtfully organized into three types of stories—tales of creation, morality tales and tales of love. Ho Yi, the archer who shot down eight suns, and the Monkey King on a quest for immortality, are just two of the figures whose stories have been handed down for generations. Though related in a simple and straightforward style, the meanings behind each story contain layers of metaphorical and historical significance. Thankfully, each tale is followed by the author's insightful interpretation of the text. These stories, steeped in Asian lore and gleaned from the author's research and her own childhood memories, nevertheless, will hold universal appeal. Adept explanations of the sometimes conflicting religious philosophies of Confucius, Taoism and Buddhism will interest older readers and scholars. Following each story is a Chinese proverb relating to the tale. Also included are a pronunciation guide, a list of characters, suggestions for further reading and source notes. 2001, Linnet Books, $22.50. Ages All. Reviewer: Christopher Moning
School Library Journal
Gr 4-8-Folktales and myths from China are richly imaginative as this collection of seven classics shows so well. Divided into "Tales of Creation," "Morality Tales," and "Tales of Love," the book contains some of China's most famous stories as well as some that are less well known. Among those included are the story of "Pan Gu and the Creation" and the tale of "Nu Wo, the Mother of Mankind" as well as the romantic story of "The Heavenly River," often called "The Cowherd and the Weaving Maiden." Many of these selections are also available in picture-book format, and in collections such as Tao T. Liu Sanders's Dragons, Gods and Spirits from Chinese Mythology (Peter Bedrick, 1994), whose vibrant art is far more appealing than that found here. However, Fu's retellings are quite complete, often including more detail than that found in other versions. For example, that most famous of Chinese tales, "Journey to the West," tells the entire story of Monkey King's journey though not every episode is related. The writing itself is straightforward and clean, but not particularly elegant or descriptive, resulting in stories in which Fu tells things that might better be shown. Excellent notes follow each tale, and a pronunciation guide and list of characters are appended. A very good list for further reading, with books for younger and older readers and for teachers, is included, as are multimedia resources, further adding to the book's usefulness.-Barbara Scotto, Michael Driscoll School, Brookline, MA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780208024794
  • Publisher: Shoe String Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 11/28/2000
  • Pages: 575
  • Age range: 8 years
  • Product dimensions: 6.35 (w) x 9.32 (h) x 1.51 (d)

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