Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 7 to 9
- Grade: 2 to 4
Before coming to Canada, while he was still an art teacher in Beijing, Song Nan Zhang traveled from Inner Mongolia east, south, and north to find and paint unusual scenes of Chinese family life.
Here are the children who grow up in the saddle with their nomadic parents or become as agile as the mountain goats they tend. A boy plays chess on the ground with his shepherd grandfather. A teenager tends her father’s pottery shop. At festivals a child plays hide-and-seek, behind yellow parasols, and stilt dancers wait to compete.
About the author
Song Nan Zhang was born in Shanghai. He received a Masters degree from the Beijing Central Institute of Fine Arts, and his paintings have been exhibited in galleries around the world. Song Nan Zhang lives in Montreal. His son, Hao Yu, was born in Beijing and arrived in Montreal with his parents in 1990. He has a journalism degree from Concordia University and has written for the Montreal Gazette. He now lives in London, England, and works for the BBC.
“His intricate details carefully portray the wide variety of lifestyles, and his beautiful faces glow with deep contentment.”
“A book that can be enjoyed by any age.…Complex in intent, simple in execution, exquisite in design, beautiful in effect…a forceful statement on the dignity and strength of the human spirit.”
–Quill & Quire