Gift Guide

Thanking the Moon: Celebrating the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival [NOOK Book]


This simple, young, and satisfying story follows a Chinese American family as they celebrate the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival.

Each member of the family lends a hand as they prepare a moonlit picnic with mooncakes, pomelos, cups of tea, and colorful lanterns. And everyone sends thanks and a secret wish up to the moon.

Grace Lin's luminous and gloriously patterned artwork is ...
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This simple, young, and satisfying story follows a Chinese American family as they celebrate the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival.

Each member of the family lends a hand as they prepare a moonlit picnic with mooncakes, pomelos, cups of tea, and colorful lanterns. And everyone sends thanks and a secret wish up to the moon.

Grace Lin's luminous and gloriously patterned artwork is perfect for this holiday tale. Her story is simple-tailor-made for reading aloud to young children. And she includes an informative author's note with further details on the customs and traditions of the Moon Festival for parents and teachers. The Moon Festival is one of the most important holidays of the year along with the Lunar New Year, so this book makes an excellent companion to Grace Lin's Bringing In the New Year, which features the same family.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Miriam Chernick
In this story, we join the child narrator and her family on a picnic to celebrate the Chinese thanksgiving holiday called the Moon Festival (or Mid-Autumn Festival.) Each family member has a role in setting up the food, the "moon-honoring table," paper lanterns, and tea before indulging in round moon cakes, giving thanks, and making secret wishes to the moon. With spare language, Lin conveys a strong sense of community and reverence for the natural world. She uses gouache for the illustrations, which, rich in detail such as a background with muted swirls, evoke the vastness of the moonlit sky on a peaceful night. An extensive author's note explains the origins of the festival and the various round objects used to symbolize good fortune and peace. Useful in the fall, around Thanksgiving, or as part of a multi-cultural studies curriculum, this book will inspire children unfamiliar with this holiday to want to celebrate it too. Reviewer: Miriam Chernick
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
Kirkus Reviews

Opposing the exuberant energy found by this same Chinese-American family in Bringing in the New Year (2008), the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is a much more contemplative and quiet observance. The story begins on the title page, the family in their car driving toward the moon. There is a hush as they admire the moon in the sky. Then everyone does their part to help set up the nighttime picnic. The moon-honoring table is arranged, sweet mooncakes are eaten and rounded cups of tea are carefully poured. Children then parade with bright paper lanterns, and everyone sends a secret, unspoken wish up to the moon. Not all is solemnity: "Mei-Mei plays with the pale green pomelo peel," as Ma-Ma chuckles. A gentle text and Lin's rounded art style with her signature night-sky swirls lend themselves nicely to the moon symbolism that is so very important to this celebration. An endnote further describes the festival, emphasizing families coming together, just like the moon returning to its fullness. (Picture book. 4-8)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780449818152
  • Publisher: RH Childrens Books
  • Publication date: 9/26/2012
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: NOOK Kids
  • Sales rank: 504,068
  • File size: 15 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Grace Lin
Grace Lin grew up in upstate New York and attended the Rhode Island School of Design. She now lives in Massachusetts.

Grace has written and illustrated several picture books featuring the Chinese American family depicted in this book (based on her own childhood family!), which include Dim Sum for Everyone!, Kite Flying, Fortune Cookie Fortunes, and Bringing In the New Year. She has also written three novels for young readers: The Year of the Dog, The Year of the Rat, and Where the Mountain Meets the Moon.

You can learn more about Grace Lin’s work at

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