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Little White Duck: A Childhood in China…

Little White Duck: A Childhood in China (Single Titles) (edition 2012)

by Na Liu, Andres Vera Martinez, Andres Vera Martinez (Illustrator)

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10811111,760 (3.88)2
Title:Little White Duck: A Childhood in China (Single Titles)
Authors:Na Liu
Other authors:Andres Vera Martinez, Andres Vera Martinez (Illustrator)
Info:Graphic Universe (2012), Paperback, 96 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:graphic novel

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White Duck: A Childhood in China (Single Titles) by Na Liu

  1. 00
    Mao's People: Sixteen Portraits of Life in Revolutionary China by B. Michael Frolic (lifeguardsleeping)
    lifeguardsleeping: while "white duck" might target youth/teen audiences, "mao's people" is an excellent companion piece given the scope of its oral histories/interviews and ease of reading. it's a compelling collection that speaks to the wide range of experiences in the cultural revolution. for teachers, stories can be easily excerpted.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
This brief graphic novel relates several episodes that occurred during the author's childhood in China in the 1970s, including the death of Mao Zedong and a visit to her father's poverty-stricken hometown. The stories are from a young child's perspective, but the book seems to be aimed at older children or young teens, who can better understand the deeper meanings of the book's events.

An important inside look at a period of history that few tweens learn about in school. Readers will probably have questions, some of which are answered in the glossary, timeline, and map in the back of the book. Brief bloodless depictions of rat- and bird-killing, bug-spearing, and one instance of a cook cutting the head off a (dead) duck may keep this book out of the hands of the squeamish.

Recommended, especially as a precursor or supplement to something like "American Born Chinese." ( )
  DeweyEver | Apr 17, 2013 |
Good art, moving story of a childhood in Chine. An interesting perspective for a graphic novel and very well done. ( )
  akmargie | Apr 4, 2013 |
An exceptional graphic memoir about growing up in China in the 1970s. Superbly written and illustrated. ( )
  Sullywriter | Apr 3, 2013 |
One of the fun things about Cybils is reading books you might otherwise not pick up - and finding gems. I, personally, dislike graphic memoirs. I find them generally depressing, boring, and completely lacking in actual appeal to child readers. Way too many adults decide to explore their childhood through art and think the result is of interest to kids. Waaaaaay too many.

So, I was completely surprised when I found myself not only liking this book as an adult reader, but able to think of kids who would be interested in it as well. Of course, it is Graphic Universe who does a pretty good line of graphic novels; almost always something fresh and different with strong child appeal.

There are eight chapters, each one a self-contained story. Some of them are odd, some sad, some strange, some funny. Na Liu remembers mourning the death of Chairman Mao, planning how to catch rats for school, celebrating the New Year, and visiting her frightening grandmother and impoverished cousins. The stories touch on some frightening and tragic elements; famine, poverty and death, but always through the eyes of a child, not an adult.

Na Liu never falls into the trap that so many graphic memoirs do, of remembering their childhood through the eyes of an adult. She remembers as a child, with all the hopes and fears of a child. There are notes and explanations throughout, explaining Chinese customs, translating, and providing background information, but never obtrusively and never changing the tenor of the story.

Martinez' illustrations capture the stories with simple, rough drawings of the backgrounds and people. The colors are almost all earth hues, brown, green, with sharp touches of red. The panels are neatly arranged, following each story's natural progression and drawing the reader into the author's childhood. Mixing into the gray, everyday world, are Na Liu's fantastic dreams with flying storks and mythological dragons.

Verdict: While this won't be an instantly popular title, like Guinea PI or The Elsewhere Chronicles, it's a well-written, fascinating account of a childhood very foreign to most of the children in my community. With a little booktalking, it will interest a lot of kids and show them a different world.

ISBN: 9780761381150; Published 2012 by Lerner Graphic Universe; Review copy provided by the publisher for Cybils; Added to the library
  JeanLittleLibrary | Jan 19, 2013 |
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We would like to dedicate this book to our family in China and daughter Mei Lan. - Andrés and Na
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Ni Hao!
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0761381155, Paperback)

The world is changing for two girls in China in the 1970s. Da Qin--Big Piano--and her younger sister, Xiao Qin--Little Piano--live in the city of Wuhan with their parents. For decades, China's government had kept the country separated from the rest of the world. When their country's leader, Chairman Mao, dies, new opportunities begin to emerge. Da Qin and Xiao Qin soon learn that their childhood will be much different than the upbringing their parents experienced.

Eight short stories--based on the author's own life--give readers a unique look at what it was like to grow up in China during this important time in history.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:02:52 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A young girl describes her experiences growing up in China, beginning with the death of Chairman Mao in 1976.

(summary from another edition)

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