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A Single Shardby Linda Sue Park
Winner of the 2002 Newbery Medal
Synopses & Reviews
In his thirteenth year, Will Sparrow, liar and thief, becomes a runaway. On the road, he encounters a series of con artists—a pickpocket, a tooth puller, a pig trainer, a conjurer—and learns that others are more adept than he at lying and thieving. Then he reluctantly joins a traveling troupe of "oddities," including a dwarf and a cat-faced girl, holding himself apart from the "monsters" and resolving to be on guard against further deceptions. At last Will is forced to understand that appearances are misleading and that he has been his own worst deceiver. The rowdy world of market fairs in Elizabethan England is the colorful backdrop for Newbery medalist Cushman's new comic masterpiece.
In this Newbery Medal-winning book set in 12th century Korea, Tree-ear, a 13-year-old orphan, lives under a bridge in Chulpo, a potters' village famed for delicate celadon ware. He has become fascinated with the potters craft; he wants nothing more than to watch master potter Min at work, and he dreams of making a pot of his own someday. When Min takes Tree-ear on as his helper, Tree-ear is elated — until he finds obstacles in his path: the backbreaking labor of digging and hauling clay, Mins irascible temper, and his own ignorance. But Tree-ear is determined to prove himself — even if it means taking a long, solitary journey on foot to present Mins work in the hope of a royal commission . . . even if it means arriving at the royal court with nothing to show but a single celadon shard.
From Newbery medalist Karen Cushman, the adventures of a lovable rogue and vagabond—a perfect picaresque.
Mehrigul, 14, is a Uyghur, a tribal group scorned by the Chinese communist regime. Against obstacles that include her embittered father and her obligations to their farm, she has three weeks to make the baskets that will help her family and give her some hope for the future.
Things arent looking good for fourteen-year-old Mehrigul. She yearns to be in school, but shes needed on the family farm. The longer shes out of school, the more likely it is that shell be sent off to a Chinese factory . . . perhaps never to return. Her only hope is an American woman who buys one of her decorative vine baskets for a staggering sum and says she will return in three weeks for more. Mehrigul must brave terrible storms, torn-up hands from working the fields, and her fathers scorn to get the baskets done. The stakes are high, and time is passing. A powerful intergenerational story of a strong, creative young artist in a cruelly oppressive society.
Tree-ear is fascinated by the celedon ware created in the village of Chulpo. He is determined to prove himself to the master potter, Min—even if it means making a solitary journey to present Mins work in the hope of a royal commission . . . or arriving at the royal court with nothing but a single celadon shard.
About the Author
Linda Sue Park is the author of the Newbery Medal book A Single Shard, many other novels, several picture books, and most recently a book of poetry: Tap Dancing on the Roof: Sijo (Poems). She lives in Rochester, New York, with her family, and is now a devoted fan of the New York Mets. For more infromation visit www.lspark.com.
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