Opposing the exuberant energy found by this same Chinese-American family in Bringing in the New Year (2008), the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is a much more contemplative and quiet observance. The story begins on the title page, the family in their car driving toward the moon. There is a hush as they admire the moon in the sky. Then everyone does their part to help set up the nighttime picnic. The moon-honoring table is arranged, sweet mooncakes are eaten and rounded cups of tea are carefully poured. Children then parade with bright paper lanterns, and everyone sends a secret, unspoken wish up to the moon. Not all is solemnity: "Mei-Mei plays with the pale green pomelo peel," as Ma-Ma chuckles. A gentle text and Lin's rounded art style with her signature night-sky swirls lend themselves nicely to the moon symbolism that is so very important to this celebration. An endnote further describes the festival, emphasizing families coming together, just like the moon returning to its fullness. (Picture book. 4-8)Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
PreS-Gr 3--In the style of Bringing in the New Year (Knopf, 2009), Lin fashions a child-friendly introduction to the mid-autumn harvest moon festival with engagingly simple text and colorful, oversize gouache illustrations. A family travels to a moonlit meadow where each individual helps with preparations for a nighttime picnic. The full moon's shape symbolizes harmony and wholeness, and the family members unpack round-shaped fruit and paper lanterns. The young narrator pours round cups of tea, and everyone nibbles on soft, sweet mooncakes. As a glowing moon "peacefully watches over all of us," the family sends their secret wishes to it and relishes being together. The writing is concise and accessible, and an author's note adds further information on the holiday and its significance. The inviting nocturnal landscapes are vivid with interesting details, and readers will long to join in this peaceful celebration.--Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA[Page 130]. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.