Product Code: 14102
Binding Information: Hardcover
Ages: 4 - 7
Availability: Out of stock Backorder policy.
Little Mouse loves paper lanterns with their impossible delicate beauty, and the way Old Chen's hands seem to effortlessly cut, paste, and paint his masterful creations. Little Mouse watches and learns until, when Old Chen can no longer make the lanterns, he finds his inner strength and his hidden talent. But more important than Little Mouse's achievement is the bond of friendship between him and Old Chen. The traditions of a culture and the magic of an art form are carefully preserved as they are passed from one generation to the next.
Exquisite, bright illustrations, as delicately rendered as the Chinese paper lanterns themselves, draw readers of all ages into this simple story of the power of friendship, patience, and perseverance.
Kirkus Reviews - January 31, 2001Those time-tested attributes of a good student--listen quietly, watch carefully, practice persistently--get enforced cultivation in this tale, but it's the lanterns that steal the show. Old Chen is coming to the end of his working days, but as yet he has no one to whom he can pass on his cut-paper lantern-making shop. His apprentices simply don't have the magic in their fingers the way Old Chen has. When a young boy, Little Mouse, starts to visit the shop, enthralled by the lanterns, Old Chen sees the fire in his eyes as they rest upon the fine lanterns. Little Mouse follows the rules: he listens, he watches, he practices at home each night with scraps from the shop, where he has been taken on as a broom boy. Then comes the day when his skills are tested--a snowy day when Old Chen's hands are too cold and brittle to work, but a big dragon lantern is due for the annual festival. The apprentices don't have the right stuff, so Little Mouse pulls it off with flair, and the shop has found a new master. The lowkey patter of the text supports some highly stylized, candy-bright artwork, with each of the text pages graced with a painted example of handmade cut-paper lanternwork. Enlightening.
-- Kirkus Reviews, January 2001