Chopsticks have been best friends since, well, forever. They do everything together and no one can remember ever seeing them apart. Until the day when one of the duo breaks (gasp!) a leg. The other chopstick sticks with his buddy at first but one day the injured chopstick encourages him to go out on his own. A whole new world opens up for solo chopstick as he learns all sorts of cool new tricks. But not to worry, when the other chopstick is all healed up they become a team again. It’s a cute story with a sweet side and fun illustrations. We all giggled a lot at the “doctor” who fixes chopstick: a bottle of glue.
Auntie Yang’s Great Soybean Picnic is the story of a Chinese- American family in Indiana and their yearly visits to Chicago to visit relatives. One year during a family drive Auntie Yang discovers that a nearby farmer has planted a field of soybeans. She asks him for some as it’s a taste from home they have all been missing. And the great soybean picnic is born. The next year a few other Chinese-American families are invited. And the next year a few more. The annual event grows to include hundreds of Chinese-American immigrants and continues for forty years. The story, written by two sisters, is a true one and based on their memories of the real Auntie Yang’s picnics. It was especially interesting for our family as H. (who is Chinese-American) grew up in Indiana and regularly visited his aunt and uncle who lived outside Chicago. (Those same cousins are the ones we recently stayed with in Nashville on our trip south.)
Both Chopsticks and Auntie Yang’s Great Soybean Picnic have been nominated for Cybils in the fiction picture book category.