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The Year Of The Dog :: Book Review

Courtesy Of Little, Brown And Company

Our summer reading recommendations continue with this book review of The Year Of The Dog by author and illustrator Grace Lin. This book is the first in a series of (so far) two. The sequel to The Year Of The Dog is called The Year Of The Rat, which Kidzworld plans to review for you soon.

The Story
This book stars a girl named Grace (yup, just like the author!), whose parents came from Taiwan, making Grace Taiwanese-American. She even has two names; people at school call her Grace while her family calls her Pacy. Taiwan's traditions are important to Grace's family, and one favorite holiday to celebrate is the Chinese New Year. This year they celebrate the Year of the Dog, which symbolizes friends, family and finding out about oneself. Grace vows that this year she will discover new talents and decide what she wants to be when she grows up.


The first surprise of the New Year is that another Taiwanese-American girl has joined Grace's class. Grace and Melody quickly become best friends; they have a lot in common with their cultures, but they find a number of differences as well. While Melody can speak Taiwanese, Grace can’t. Though they both eat Taiwanese foods, Melody's family indulges in healthier meals while Grace's family has more junk food.


Grace and Melody participate in lots of activities during the school year, including the science fair and school play. Grace hopes to find new talents to guide her in life, but so far it doesn't look promising. She does discover things that she doesn't want to do when she grows up, like being a chef or a doctor. But the Year of the Dog is quickly coming to an end. Will she find some answers before it's too late?


Sorry! You’ll have to read the book to find out!


The Author/Illustrator
As we said, the author and illustrator of this book is Grace Lin, who does an amazing job with The Year Of The Dog. She brings to life a different part of America that some kids may not be familiar with: the Taiwanese-American culture.


Lin's descriptions in the book really bring her characters' feelings of excitement, fear, disappointment and hope from the page straight into the heart. It’s a funny and touching story, that comes complete with cute cartoon-like illustrations. We’re sure you’ll be entertained by it – and you’ll probably learn a couple things along the way, too.


More Great Summer Reads:

  • Faces Of Nature
  • The Beef Princess Of Practical County
  • The Smithsonian: Wolves
  • Zooman Sam

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    TheTotallyAwesomeOne
    To be brutally honest, this is a question I get asked about all the time... Now being a person who has been into technology for 13 years now - I can see why so many people have gone over to the world of technology now (I mean, we even have Curved 4K TVs now - which look absolutely awesome btw, but that's for me to talk about at another time).  Now it's important to remember that books are still extremely important. Although you can find almost everything on the Internet now - it's still sometimes useful to look in a book (even if that's not very often). So I do still think they have there place, and for people who actually like the authenticity of a physical book and not some thing that is on iCloud or whatever your chosen Online Storage Solution is. With technology moving the way it is these days, it's so much easier to use something like an iPhone, an iPad, or a Laptop (such as a MacBook Pro) to find the information you need. If you was to create a paper book of everything that was available on the Internet - let's put it this way, you'd need a rather large school bag... And rather large muscles!  :devil However, with something like a MacBook Pro (even the 15" Model), it's much easier to carry around, especially as it's much lighter than a lot of books - you can also take notes on it and edit photos and video, and listen to music, and watch films, and use KidzWorld ;) So personally, I'd take my MacBook and iPod Touch 5G (soon to be replaced with a Moto G) around with me all the time, I've had my time of using books. But as I said, other people may have different opinions;3
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    hey
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    Naye12
    I Haven't Watch Fault In The Stars Yet. But Divergent Is A Pretty Good Movie. (:
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    floreti
    It's difficult to say because I love TFiOS, I think its a great book and film, but the Divergent series and film also looks good but I've never read/seen them, so I can't really make a refined judgement.
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    floreti
    They are right about that (:
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