The Year of the Dragon (Tales from the Chinese Zodiac Series)

The Year of the Dragon (Tales from the Chinese Zodiac Series)

by Oliver Chin
     
 

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The Year of the Dragon is on the San Francisco Public Library/SF Unified School District summer 2013 reading list, distributed to all K-5 public school students and recommended at all SFPL branches for their summer reading program.

"The Year of the Dragon, written by Oliver Chin and wonderfully illustrated by Jennifer Wood, is the perfect book to teach teamwork,

Overview


The Year of the Dragon is on the San Francisco Public Library/SF Unified School District summer 2013 reading list, distributed to all K-5 public school students and recommended at all SFPL branches for their summer reading program.

"The Year of the Dragon, written by Oliver Chin and wonderfully illustrated by Jennifer Wood, is the perfect book to teach teamwork, critical thinking, and friendship." - Tokyo Bunnie

"Recommended...The acrylic drawings are bright and enticing. The illustrator also cleverly includes all the other animals of the Chinese zodiac in her drawings—fun for the reader to locate them. This is a great lesson in perseverance and working together as a team to achieve a common goal." – Library Media Connection

2012 was the year of the dragon! Dominic's parents advise the kingdom's Emperor and have high expectations for this high-flying dragon. However, when the boy Bo and the other zodiac animals want to learn paddle boat racing, will Dom sink or swim with them? Find out in the seventh book in the Tales from the Chinese Zodiac series.

This latest adventure in the Tales from the Chinese Zodiac follows the Rabbit (2011), Tiger (2010), Ox (2009), Rat (2008), Pig (2007) and Dog (2006). Each book features a unique cast of a dozen creatures. In the Chinese lunar calendar, every year is represented by a special animal, who symbolizes special qualities and whose personality people identify with.

"If you’re looking for a way to further celebrate and explore the New Year, try finding books for your kids. A great kids’ book to help teach your kids about the lunar New Year is The Year of the Dragon Tales from the Chinese Zodiac. The story about Dominic and Bo is definitely one you will read to your kids year round." – QueensMamas.com

"a playful spin on the characteristics of a traditional Chinese zodiac animal. It is, in fact, utterly unconventional and that's probably why my girls like it so much." - Frog Mom

"The Year of the Dragon is a charming story with themes familiar to many children's books. The underlying message is one of cooperation, friendship, imagination and perseverance. These are by no means unique lessons in children's literature, but Jennifer Wood's whimsical illustrations set the story apart from the rest....You and your child will enjoy this charming story, and I am sure you will be looking for the other Zodiac animal books. The subject matter is not just entertaining, but is informs children about an important aspect of Asian culture. What better way to learn something new than by having fun while doing so?" – suite101

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Selecting some elements of Chinese culture, such as the Dragon Boat races that still take place today, the dragon's power over water, the dragon's legendary features as an amalgam of elements from the other real Zodiac animals and the pearl, a symbol of prosperity awarded at the end of the race, [Oliver] Chin weaves an original tale."—Kirkus Reviews
School Library Journal
Gr 1–3—A young dragon named Dominic wants to enter the village boat race after befriending a boy named Bo and some of the other zodiac animals. Practice isn't going well; they capsize their canoe, which they borrowed from the emperor. But then Dom comes up with an alternative plan: he will act as the boat himself as the others ride on his back. On the day of the race, Bo and the animals paddle furiously while Dom stretches out to his full length and speeds down the river. The team wins by a nose, and the story concludes with a rather heavy-handed message about sportsmanship and teamwork. Done in a cartoon style, the illustrations of the boat and pagodas are depicted in Chinese design. Oddly, however, the characters have Western features. Overall, a supplemental purchase.—Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA
Kirkus Reviews
"Strong and passionate…idealistic and independent…": These are some of the characteristics of Dragon-Year people in the Chinese Zodiac. The 12-year cycle is well-known in North America because of the ubiquitous Chinese-restaurant placemats. This series has appeared annually to provide a back story for each animal, highlighting the personality traits that are said to influence the people born in particular years. Selecting some elements of Chinese culture, such as the Dragon Boat races that still take place today, the dragon's power over water, the dragon's legendary features as an amalgam of elements from the other real Zodiac animals and the pearl, a symbol of prosperity awarded at the end of the race, Chin weaves an original tale. It extols the dragon Dom's talents and initiative as he helps the boy Bo and the other Zodiac figures work together and win the boat race, demonstrating that "dragons are energetic and shoulder responsibility well." Humorous, motion-filled color illustrations are full of large-eyed, obnoxiously cute animals and funny-looking people that appear as if they have stepped out of an animated TV cartoon (Wood's usual gig). None of the humans look particularly Chinese, and anachronistic elements such as a Polaroid-style photo of Dom pull the tale away from its traditional roots. For those who want a sugar-coated, didactic Chinese New Year story. (Picture book. 4-7)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781597020282
Publisher:
Immedium
Publication date:
01/03/2012
Series:
Tales from the Chinese Zodiac Series
Pages:
36
Sales rank:
596,663
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile:
AD620L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Read an Excerpt


For nearly 5,000 years, the Chinese culture has organized time in cycles of twelve years. This Eastern calendar is based upon the movement of the moon (as compared to the Western calendar which follows the sun’s path). The zodiac circle symbolizes how animals, which have unique qualities, represent each year. Therefore, if you are born in a particular year, then you share the personality of that animal. Now people worldwide celebrate this fifteen-day festival in the early spring and enjoy the start of another Chinese New Year.

Meet the Author


Oliver Chin has written the Tales from the Chinese Zodiac series, Welcome to Monster Isle, Julie Black Belt, Timmy and Tammy’s Train of Thought, The Adventures of WonderBaby, and other books. Called “an expert in Pacific Rim pop culture” by the San Jose Mercury News, he and his family lives in San Francisco, CA.

Jennifer Wood Wood is illustrating The Year of the Snake and is an animation designer at Nickelodeon. She has contributed to the shows T.U.F.F Puppy, The Fairly OddParents, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, Catscratch, Strawberry Shortcake, and Tak and the Power of Juju. She lives in Los Angeles, CA. See more at artofjwood.com.

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