Monday Book Review: Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin

I can’t believe I haven’t written about this book already! I found it several years ago, and it’s been a favorite to give as a gift to my nieces.

IMG_3794Title: Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

Author: Grace Lin

Genre: fantasy/folklore

Age group: middle grade

Summary: Minli lives in a small village in the shadow of “Fruitless Mountain” (so called for the little bit of “fruit” it bears). Like the rest of the villagers, she and her parents live in a poor hut and scrape together a simple existence. To pass the time, her father tells her many fantastical stories involving the Jade Dragon and the Old Man on the Moon, who is supposed to know the answers to all life’s questions. Minli decides to set off on an adventure to find the Old Man on the Moon in order to ask him how she can change her family’s fortune. Along the way, she meets an incredible cast of characters.

I love stories where the pieces all “fit” together in the end in a way that is totally unexpected. (Hmm, perhaps this is why I love mysteries so much.) One of the things I love about Grace Lin’s novel is that the stories Minli’s father tells (which are these wonderful Chinese folklore stories in and of themselves) fit perfectly into what happens during Minli’s adventure.

Also, the book is simply gorgeous. In addition to being a talented author, Grace Lin is also a wonderful illustrator. Her beautiful full-color drawings accompany her tale. (I am extremely jealous. 🙂 )

I highly recommend this one!

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2 Responses to Monday Book Review: Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin

  1. The Mayor says:

    AJ, is it uncommon for the author to be the illustrator also? Love the cover.

    • AJ Cattapan says:

      A lot of picture book writers do not do their own illustrations. And unless it’s a graphic novel or a “diary” book (like Diary of a Wimpy Kid), middle grade books usually do not have pictures. If they do have pictures, they might be small, black and white sketches near chapter headings (e.g. Harry Potter books). So this book is a little on the unusual side. It’s not a graphic novel, it’s not a diary, it’s not a picture book, yet it has some full-color, full-page illustrations.

      And if you like the cover, you’ll love the drawings inside. The book really is just beautiful to look at and read.

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