#1072 – Year of the Rooster by Oliver Chin and Juan Calle

9781597021258_lg The Year of the Rooster
Series: Tales from the Chinese Zodiac, Book 12
Written by Oliver Chin
Illustrated by Juan Calle
Immedium   12/02/2016
36 pages    Ages 4—8

“For nearly 5,000 years, the Chinses culture has organized time in cycles of twelve years. This Eastern calendar is based upon the movement of the moon (as compared to the Western which follows the sun), and is symbolized by the zodiac circle. An animal that has unique qualities represents each year. Therefore, if you are born in a particular year, then you share the personality of that animal. Now people worldwide celebrate this two-week long festival in the early spring and enjoy the start of another Chinese New Year.

“Ray is a plucky chick who befriends the girl Ying. Together they embark on a fantastic quest to find the fabled phoenix. But will Ray see the light? Ray’s journey to discover his unique personality will delight kids of all ages. Twelfth in the annual Tales from the Chinese Zodiac series. The Year of the Rooster shows all the charming characters of the Chinese lunar calendar and how everyone has a place in the sun.” [INSIDE JACKET]

[WC 413]
A happy chick skipped around his home, soaking up the sun. His name is Ray and he will soon attempt the quest of a lifetime. The phoenix has arrived in the community, exciting everyone, especially a pig who has a red feather, which looks like Ray’s. With his friend Ying, Ray takes off to find the legendary bird.

yoroswebboard0Along the way, Ray runs into each animal from the 12 Chinese Zodiacs. The rat sends Ray and Ying to an Ox, who has another phoenix feather, a white and one of the five colors worn by the phoenix. To each creature Ray meets, he asks if it is the phoenix because it can take the shape of five animals. None are the phoenix, so Ray and Ying continue. From the Ox to tiger, rabbit to dragon and horse to snake, Ray looks to the phoenix, but none of the animals can lay this claim. Though discouraged, Ray continues on to the sheep and finally a clever monkey. “Seeing the phoenix is good luck.”

yoroswebboard3-1The Year of the Rooster is a cheerful start to anyone’s year. With happy, spirit filled animals, The Year of the Rooster will delight kids with the dynamic images on each spread. Teachers and parents will like the positive messages, the educational value, and the inclusive story. Told in both English and Chinese, this bilingual story can help new immigrants learn a new language. Chin’s story is fast-paced, with messages of community, working together, and being the best you can be, while following the phoenix’s virtues and goals.F

yoroswebboard1I do wish Chin had added some back matter. He mentions the phoenix having five colored feathers each representing a valuable substance (gold, ivory, onyx, emerald, and ruby), five virtues, can become five animals, and a few more. A chart would have helped, especially since not all five of each quality of the phoenix is in the story. I love that each of the previous years are included in Ray’s quest and I love his sense of humor. Here is one of the best lines:

“‘The phoenix wears five colors,’ stated the ox. ‘White symbolizes the tiger.’ She [Ying] gazed toward the jungle beyond. [they need to enter the jungle.] Now Ying hesitated to leave the city. But the cocky chicken crossed the road to get to the other side.

While not a chicken, or cocky, I would cross the road to get The Year of the Rooster (Tales from the Chinese Zodiac #12).

THE YEAR OF THE ROOSTER (TALES FROM THE CHINESE ZODIAC #12). Text copyright © 2016 by Oliver Chin. Illustrations copyright © 2016 by Juan Calle. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Immedium, San Francisco, CA.

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Add The Year of the Rooster to Your Goodreads Shelf HERE.

Reprinted with permission from THE YEAR OF THE ROOSTER (TALES FROM THE CHINESE ZODIAC #12) © 2016 by Oliver Chin, Immedium. Illustrations © 2016 by Juan Calle.

Copyright © 2017 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved

The Year of the Rooster
Series: Tales from the Chinese Zodiac, Book 12
Written by Oliver Chin
Illustrated by Juan Calle
Immedium 12/02/2016



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