Cixi

Cixi "The Dragon Empress"

Hardcover

$18.95
View All Available Formats & Editions
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for guaranteed delivery by Friday, November 22

Overview


The last empress of China, Cixi fought ruthlessly to isolate her country from the West, while cloistered inside her lavish Forbidden City, ignoring the needs of her people. But was the Dragon Empress evil or just out-of-touch?

Gorgeous illustrations and an intelligent, evocative story bring to life a real dastardly dame whose ignorance brought a centuries-old dynasty crashing down, ending the imperial system that had ruled China for millennia.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780983425656
Publisher: Goosebottom Books
Publication date: 09/01/2011
Series: Thinking Girl's Treasury of Dastardly Dames Series
Pages: 32
Product dimensions: 8.30(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.30(d)
Lexile: 1100L (what's this?)
Age Range: 9 - 13 Years

About the Author


Natasha Yim is a children’s author and an accomplished playwright. Her books include Otto's Rainy Day, published by Charlesbridge Publishing and selected as a Kids’ Pick of the Lists, Cixi “The Dragon Empress” in The Thinking Girl’s Treasury of Dastardly Dames, and Sacajawea of the Shoshone in the The Thinking Girl’s Treasury of Real Princesses. A new picture book, Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas, is due out from Charlesbridge in 2014. Natasha has also written plays that have been staged in the U.S. and abroad. She lives in Northern California with her family.

Peter Malone has illustrated over twenty children’s books for such publishers as Chronicle, Knopf, Putnam, Running Press, and Scholastic. In addition to creating gorgeous illustrations, he wrote the book, Close to the Wind, about the use of the Beaufort scale for measuring wind force at sea. School Library Journal called it “informative and utterly charming.” He lives in Bath, England, with his wife, a restorer of paintings, and their two grown daughters.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Cixi the Dragon Empress 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Homeschoolbookreview on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Did you know that the Chinese also had empresses as well as emperors? The last Chinese empress was Cixi, who was born on November 29, 1835, in Shanxi province, northern China, the daughter of a minor government official, and most likely spent her childhood in Anhui province. Not much is known about her early life. She was very secretive about her upbringing, saying only that she did not have a happy childhood. At age sixteen she was chosen by the Emperor Xianfeng as an imperial concubine and waited on the Empress Dowager Ci¿An. In 1856, she gave birth to the Emperor¿s only son, Zaichun and upon Xianfeng's death had her five-year-old son installed as Emperor Tongzhi. Cixi then ousted a group of regents appointed by the late emperor and assumed regency over her young son with Ci'An, consolidating control and establishing near-absolute rule over the Qing dynasty. When Cixi¿s son died of smallpox in 1875, she adopted her three-year-old nephew Zaitien and installed him as the Emperor Guangxu, maintaining her regency. She was a conservative ruler who refused to adopt Western models of government, rejecting reformist views and even placing Guangxu under house arrest in later years for supporting reformers. After the Boxer Rebellion, the Eight-Nation Alliance invaded China in 1900, and Cixi fled with her court to Xian. When she returned, much of Beijing was in ruins. The Emperor Guangxu died on November 14, 1908, and Cixi died a day later on November 15, 1908. The Qing Dynasty collapsed a few years after her death, and it is often said that her isolationist ways brought the imperial system of China to its end. Historians from both Nationalist and Communist backgrounds have generally portrayed her as a despot and villain, but in recent years other historians have suggested that she was a scapegoat for problems beyond her control. So, was she really ¿The Dragon Empress¿ as she was nicknamed, or just an out-of-touch ruler who was misunderstood? This book is one of ¿The Thinking Girl¿s Treasury of Dastardly Dames¿ series that includes volumes about Cleopatra, Agrippina, Mary Tudor, Catherine de Medici, and Marie Antoinette. Most world history books today include non-Western civilization, but when I was in school we didn¿t learn much about Chinese history, so I was not familiar with Cixi. It is sometimes suggested that she introduced the smallpox to her son when he started to rule on his own, poisoned his wife Alute and her own rival Ci¿An, and finally imprisoned Guangxu and later poisoned him. Others claim that there is no actual evidence for any of this and that Guangxu was not imprisoned in the palace but was recuperating from a serious illness. Both sides are presented, and the reader gets to choose which he thinks. Even if she didn¿t do all the things that she¿s been charged with, just based on what she did do, I would conclude that she was one ¿bad dudette.¿ Cixi: ¿The Dragon Empress¿ is a fascinating story. The only reservation that I have is that it is designed for children 9-13, and while the reading level may fit those ages, I don¿t know that nine and ten year olds need to be reading a lot about concubines, so I would suggest ages 12-16.
KristiBernard on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Cixi was born in 1835 to a minor government official. Although her childhood was secretive she always felt she was treated differently than her three sisters. When she was a teenager her mother registered her to work at the palace. She could either be a servant or concubine. Cixi chose the latter. She was impressed with how the emperor lived and embraced the opportunity to escape her miserable childhood. As time went on Cixi moved up to Imperial Consort. She was considered to be one of the emperors highest ranking wives. It wouldn't be long that she would bear him a son.When the emperor fell ill and hadn't yet named his heir, Cixi stepped in showing the emperor her son and demanded he be named. He did grant her request. The Chancellors didn't like it because they knew that since the child was under the age of 17 he would not be the actual ruler. Instead his mother would be able to dictate rules. Cixi took action to make sure her request stood fast. She banned one Chancellor and beheaded another. Cixi was strong willed, ambitious and easy to offend. She was a cruel woman and did whatever it took to rule.As a woman in charge, Cixi made living around her unbearable. She was unpredictable and even brought harm to her sons wife. She considered her to be too much of an influence. Peasant uprising and a war with the west caused Cixi and her court to flee. By the time Cixi returned to Peking the Palace had been ransacked and looted. She had wanted to keep the West out of China. In the end, despite her efforts, the west had forced its way in. Cixi managed to crumble an entire dynasty.Natasha Yim has done an excellent job of putting together this factual book. The history and behind the scenes look at a woman who crumbled an empire will have young readers turning the pages and looking up the history for themselves. Elegant illustrations depict what was worn, the hair styles and lifestyles of this time period. Throughout the book young readers will find facts and pictures that solidify Yims story of a dastardly dame.Natasha Yim is the author of Otto's Rainy Day, published in 2000 by Charlesbridge Publishing, and selected as a Kids' Pick of the Lists. Her non-fiction article, ¿Dragons Race on Water,¿ appeared in the June 2010 issue of Highlights for Children magazine. She lives in Northern California with her family.
HomeSchoolBookReview More than 1 year ago
Did you know that the Chinese also had empresses as well as emperors? The last Chinese empress was Cixi, who was born on November 29, 1835, in Shanxi province, northern China, the daughter of a minor government official, and most likely spent her childhood in Anhui province. Not much is known about her early life. She was very secretive about her upbringing, saying only that she did not have a happy childhood. At age sixteen she was chosen by the Emperor Xianfeng as an imperial concubine and waited on the Empress Dowager Ci¿An. In 1856, she gave birth to the Emperor¿s only son, Zaichun and upon Xianfeng's death had her five-year-old son installed as Emperor Tongzhi. Cixi then ousted a group of regents appointed by the late emperor and assumed regency over her young son with Ci'An, consolidating control and establishing near-absolute rule over the Qing dynasty. When Cixi¿s son died of smallpox in 1875, she adopted her three-year-old nephew Zaitien and installed him as the Emperor Guangxu, maintaining her regency. She was a conservative ruler who refused to adopt Western models of government, rejecting reformist views and even placing Guangxu under house arrest in later years for supporting reformers. After the Boxer Rebellion, the Eight-Nation Alliance invaded China in 1900, and Cixi fled with her court to Xian. When she returned, much of Beijing was in ruins. The Emperor Guangxu died on November 14, 1908, and Cixi died a day later on November 15, 1908. The Qing Dynasty collapsed a few years after her death, and it is often said that her isolationist ways brought the imperial system of China to its end. Historians from both Nationalist and Communist backgrounds have generally portrayed her as a despot and villain, but in recent years other historians have suggested that she was a scapegoat for problems beyond her control. So, was she really ¿The Dragon Empress¿ as she was nicknamed, or just an out-of-touch ruler who was misunderstood? This book is one of ¿The Thinking Girl¿s Treasury of Dastardly Dames¿ series that includes volumes about Cleopatra, Agrippina, Mary Tudor, Catherine de Medici, and Marie Antoinette. Most world history books today include non-Western civilization, but when I was in school we didn¿t learn much about Chinese history, so I was not familiar with Cixi. It is sometimes suggested that she introduced the smallpox to her son when he started to rule on his own, poisoned his wife Alute and her own rival Ci¿An, and finally imprisoned Guangxu and later poisoned him. Others claim that there is no actual evidence for any of this and that Guangxu was not imprisoned in the palace but was recuperating from a serious illness. Both sides are presented, and the reader gets to choose which he thinks. Even if she didn¿t do all the things that she¿s been charged with, just based on what she did do, I would conclude that she was one ¿bad dudette.¿ Cixi: ¿The Dragon Empress¿ is a fascinating story. The only reservation that I have is that it is designed for children 9-13, and while the reading level may fit those ages, I don¿t know that nine and ten year olds need to be reading a lot about concubines, so I would suggest ages 12-16.