Inspired by the 1863 Egg War and the mad rush for murre eggs on the Farallon Islands near San Francisco, Yao Bai and the Egg Pirates is a high-seas adventure story celebrating the courage and history of Chinese immigrants in America through a fascinating yet little-known event during the California Gold Rush era.
Yao Bai is finally old enough to sail with his father and uncle to the Farallon Islands, to gather the precious eggs seabirds lay there. But on their way home they encounter trouble on the sea—pirates! Just when Yao’s father and uncle believe their hard day’s work would all be gone, Yao comes up with a clever plan. But will it be enough to save all the eggs?
About the Author
Bonnie Pang is an award-winning illustrator and comic artist from Hong Kong. She holds a degree in Geography from the Chinese Universityof Hong Kong and a Master’s in Fine Arts from the Academy of Arts University. Bonnie loves drawing animals and spreading positive vibes through her art, and can be found playing with her dog, cooking new dishes, and taking walks in nature.
"Without knowing it, I began writing this story when my family and I took a cruise to the Farallon Islands west of San Francisco. For much of the year these great rocks are pounded by surf, blasted by winds, or lost in smothering fog. But we went on a sunny autumn day. And not only did we circle those strange, moonscape islands, we also saw whales—breaching humpbacks and enormous blues—as well as thousands of seabirds. On that trip we also learned about egg gathering on the islands. When streams of would-be millionaires arrived during the Gold Rush, supplying food to them was a major problem. Farmers would sometimes attach the names of miners to the branches of pear trees, having sold each piece of fruit before it grew! The presence of so many eggs just off the coast naturally brought egg gatherers. At one point a gunfight even erupted, in which five men were wounded and one killed. And there really were egg pirates. That day was this book's birthday."