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Louie, Ai-Ling
New York : Philomel Books, c1982.
IL 3-6, RL 4.0
ISBN 039920900X

(2 booktalks)

Click on the book to read Amazon reviews
Booktalk #1

This book is a Chinese version of Cinderella and is based on the T'angera(618-907 AD) manuscripts. I chose this book because it is great to use when comparing various versions of our favorite fairy tales.  The book displays some of the culture through the great illustrations and the character itself.
There is a stepmother and stepsister that are up to no good in the story like many of the versions we have read. In this story however the stepmother is jealous because she does not have a beautiful daughter but a daughter with beautiful charm (Yeh-Shen).   She does  wear a beautiful outfit and in this case golden shoes and does marry a prince. But the story has its own unique twists with the stepmother and daughter being crushed to death.   A story good for children of elementary age.  (Brandy Smith, college student,

Booktalk #2

This is a beautiful story that dates back to the T'ang dynasty and is believed to predate the European version of the Cinderella tale.  In this story a woman raised an orphan girl called Yeh- Shay and she was jealous of her beauty which surpassed the beauty of her own daughter.  Because of this the woman made Yeh- Shay do all of the hard labor and gave her very little to eat.  Yeh- Shay had a single friend which was a fish whom she raised and cared for.  The jealous woman learned about the fish and killed it but Yeh- Shay kept the bones which she learned were magical.
When the village had a festival, the spirit of the fish magically gave Yeh- Shay beautiful shoes and a dress to wear.  While at the festival Yeh- Shay lost a shoe as she ran away.  The king of the land soon received the shoe because it was magnificently made and he sought the owner.  After a long search the king finally found and married Yeh- Shay while the woman and her daughter were left behind and eventually suffered a terrible death because they had treated Yeh- Shay badly.  This is a wonderful story that offers another perspective of the popular tale of Cinderella.  It gives readers a glimpse into the rich Chinese culture through the words and the beautiful and mystical illustrations. (Kristin Meadows,, teacher)

SUBJECTS:     Folklore -- China.
                        Princes -- Folklore.
                        Stepchildren -- Folklore.
                        Fairy tales.

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