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Tet: The New Year

Tet: The New Year

by Kin-Lan Tran, Mai Vo-Dinh (Illustrator)

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Originally published for the Multicultural Celebrations program at the Children's Museum in Boston, these books merge lessons in cultural self-awareness with introductions of four ethnic holidays. (With the exception of Kwanzaa--which was created by African Americans and incorporates elements of a Swahili harvest festival--the celebrations in these stories are American re-creations of native holidays by families newly settled in the United States.) This resourceful device encourages the intended discussion on cultural diversity, especially because the protagonist in each is troubled by the appropriateness and/or validity of celebrating in a foreign country. Though the information-laden text must occasionally sacrifice style for so much substance--despite the authors' efforts to entertain as well as teach--this is a minor quibble. What distinguishes this series (in addition to its thoughtful concept) are the energetic, evocative illustrations--their distinctive styles consistent with each narrative and representative of the culture being portrayed. From the candlelit warmth of Kwanzaa and the quiet thankfulness of the Vietnamese New Year to the brightly colored, boisterous activity of the Latin American and Caribbean celebrations of Fiesta and Carnival, these holidays are sure, through these books, to win new and avid young practitioners. Glossaries and inset photos of the holidays as celebrated in their countries of origin add to the books' appeal. Ages 7-10. (Jan.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-- A slight story is the framework for a very cursory description of this Vietnamese celebration. When Ms. Kim realizes that her students in English language class don't remember what Tet was like in their homeland, she invites them to her apartment to celebrate the New Year. The typical foods purchased are listed, but their preparation is not discussed. Both the placement and the significance of objects on the family altar are described. Nowhere, however, is there mention of exactly when Tet is celebrated. For this and other details consult Diane Hoyt-Goldsmith's Hoang Anh (Holiday, 1992). Full-page, impressionistic, bright watercolor illustrations are attractive but sometimes obscure objects mentioned in the text. Several captioned color photos are included; their small size limits their usefulness. --Diane S. Marton, Arlington County Library, VA

Product Details

Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Publication date:
Age Range:
7 - 10 Years

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