School Library Journal's Top 100 Children Novels #72
Title: Where The Mountain Meets the Moon
Author: Grace Lin
Genre: Children's Fiction, Fantasy, Chinese Mythology
The Recipe: (Description from Goodreads) In the Valley of Fruitless Mountain, a young girl named Minli spends her days working hard in the fields and her nights listening to her father spin fantastic tales about the Jade Dragon and the Old Man of the Moon. Minli’s mother, tired of their poor life, chides him for filling her head with nonsense. But Minli believes these enchanting stories and embarks on an extraordinary journey to find the Old Man of the Moon and ask him how her family can change their fortune. She encounters an assorted cast of characters and magical creatures along the way, including a dragon who accompanies her on her quest.
The Frosting and Sprinkles: Minli is a great female character-strong-willed, brave and kind-hearted. I love how she contrasts with the female expectations of Chinese culture in the time-setting of this novel.
Where the Mountain Meets the Moon is a story based on a mixture of Chinese folklore and stories the author made up herself. It is parable-like with positive themes of compassion, valuing other living things, hard work, family love and support, selflessness, and faith in something outside one's self.
The novel is made up of a larger plot with occasional smaller stories told throughout. I really enjoyed seeing how all the characters in the bigger plot and individual stories were tied together.
The book is enjoyable and will help children and adults to appreciate Chinese culture in a new way. Plus, the illustrations are beautiful-all of which were drawn by the author!
The Hair That Fell Into the Batter: I felt the characters were not very developed throughout the story. Most of them remained the same, with the exception of the mother. I enjoyed reading this novel, but I do not prefer the smaller stories breaking up the moving of the larger plot. In the case of this novel, the stories are pertinent, but it is not my preference of style.
3 and a half Cupcakes out of 5!
(Which means I liked it a little more than just "like")