Posted in Book Review

When the Sea turned to Silver

By Grace Lin

This book came out on Tuesday! I am not that fast of a reader, but a book fairy let me read their copy early. I couldn’t put it down.

This is the third book in the series. You can see how it links in the end so read both Where the Mountain Meets the Moon and Starry River of the Sky.  The main character is Pinmei and she is trying to save her Amah (grandmother). She goes on a magical legend adventure.  It makes you think of Minli’s adventure in Where the Mountain Meets the Moon.

The sea and the sky are connected. Night is when the black tortoise of winter is swimming over us.

Definitely read this book. I read this book and Starry River all by myself. I may be in second grade but I read a little high (Bridget note: I need some book recommendations for a second grader reading at fourth or fifth grade level).

Grace Lin is one of my top three favorite authors. I hope to meet her one day and say thank you for helping me find my bigger reading voice. I didn’t know I could read a 250 page book by myself. And it usually only takes me a week and a half!

I loved how all three stories were connected. It was like a treasure hunt. Sometimes I would run out of my room to tell what parts of the stories were connected. My parents were confused as they hadn’t read the second or third book. Maybe they should.

Posted in Meet the authors

Meet the Author: Grace Lin

I am so excited to share this interview. I finally connected with Grace Lin. Now my goal is to meet in person!

Come back tomorrow to read my review of her newest book!

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Author website/social media: gracelin.com; gracelinblog.com; Facebook.com/authorgracelin

Tell me a little about yourself:
Let’s see, I’m an author/illustrator probably best known for doing books featuring Asian characters. It’s a niche that I’m proud of as I feel like I am a creating the childhood books that I needed but never had.

When you were my age, did you like to read?
Yes! I was always a big reader. My parents were immigrants and while they did not read aloud to us, going to the library was very important. For a while, we would go to the public library everyday after dinner and I read a lot.

What was your favorite story?
At the age 7, I remember reading and loving these very old series about triplets–“Snip, Snapp and Snurr” and “Flicka, Dicka, and Ricka,” which inspired my “Ling & Ting” books. I also read the “Betsy” and “Eddie” books by Carolyn Haywood and loved those. When I got a bit older, I loved “The Search for Delicious,” by Natalie Babbit and “Oz” books (not just “The Wizard of Oz,” the whole series; those are all books that have inspired my various novels. But my favorite book of all is probably, “Anne of Green Gables.”

How do you get your ideas?
Hmm, each book has a different inspiration. Sometimes it’s something I saw on a trip, sometimes (a lot of the times) it’s something I read, sometimes it’s something that happens. I guess my ideas just come from my life!

Is it hard to write a book?
Well, it’s not easy. It’s takes a lot of perseverance, focus, self-discipline and time. But writing is also a lot of dreaming and thinking, which is fun and a kind of magic in itself. So, it’s work, but it can be fun work.

Do you have a favorite among the books you have written/illustrated?
Right now, my favorite is “When the Sea Turned to Silver” probably because it is my newest. I really try to get better with each book, so I think it is my best! It’s another companion to “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” and it was the most challenging books of all the books I’ve written. I wanted to make sure it was an exciting story that stood on it’s own but still had threads that connected to “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” and “Starry River of the Sky.” It was real puzzle to figure out and took me six (!) years, but I did it and I’m kind of proud.

What author do you really like right now?
Well, I just finished an advanced reading copy of “Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire”, by Susan Tan–I think it will be her debut–and I liked it very much. I also really liked “Sophie Quire, the Last Storyguard” by Jonathan Auxier. But my right now, I am reading “Winnie the Pooh” with my four-year old daughter and I am rediscovering how beautifully written they are and am filled with admiration for AA Milne.

What advice do you have for a kid who wants to be an author?
I think every author will tell you the same thing–READ! Almost all my books have been partially influenced by the books I’ve read. Even books that I thought I didn’t like have inspired my most popular stories. So reading as much as possible is the first step to becoming an author–luckily it’s an easy and fun one!

Check out Grace’s TedxNatick Talk

Posted in Book Review

Starry River of the Sky

By Grace Lin

Starry River of the Sky is the second book after Where the Mountain meets the Moon.  The stories are connected but I am not going to tell you how. You have to find out. It is important you read Where the Mountain meets the Moon first.

In this story, the main character is named Rendi. He has run away from home and traveled to another town. He is a chore boy in the new town. All the other characters are people he meets at the inn. Rendi hears a moan and MOANNNNN every night. He is confused why others don’t hear it. To them it is faint, but to him, it is near.

I liked it because it can be forgiving because in the end, Rendi helps someone. I like how she puts legends into the story. Often, the legends turn out to be real.

I am really excited about the third book, When the Sea turns to Silver. It comes out tomorrow!

Posted in Book Review

Where the mountain meets the moon

By Grace Lin

My bff, Guy Raz, recommended I read this book. When Guy tells you to do something, you should.

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Everyone reads upside down, right?

This is the story of a girl who wants to change her family’s fortune. Her family is very poor and it makes her mom very sad. Her dad tells her stories to make her happy. Minli (the girl) goes on an adventure to find the Old Man of the Moon.  The adventure was really cool and there are legends and stories within the story.

I read this book in three days because I could not put it down, unlike the Nancy Drew that took me two weeks.

I highly recommend this book to everyone. Parents could read it to their kids or kids could read it to their parents. Just say Bridget and Guy told you to read it!

I just finished her second book  (I loved it) and can’t wait for the third to come out. I hope to interview her and know some of my readers know her. Help me meet Grace Lin? Please, pretty please with a cherry on top?