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.
Park's story is alive with fascinating information about life and art in ancient Korea.
A broken piece of pottery sets events in motion as an orphan struggles to pay off his debt to a master potter. This finely crafted novel brings 12th-century Korea and these indelible characters to life.
'\" Intrigues, danger and the same strong focus on doing what is right turn a simple story into a compelling read. . . Tree-ear\'s story conveys a time and place far away and long ago, but with a simplicity and immediacy that is both graceful and unpretentious. A timeless jewel.\"'
" Intrigues, danger and the same strong focus on doing what is right turn a simple story into a compelling read. . . Tree-ear's story conveys a time and place far away and long ago, but with a simplicity and immediacy that is both graceful and unpretentious. A timeless jewel."
'Park (Seesaw Girl) molds a moving tribute to perseverance and creativity in this finely etched novel set in mid-to-late 12th century Korea. . . Readers will not soon forget these characters or their sacrifices.'
Park (Seesaw Girl) molds a moving tribute to perseverance and creativity in this finely etched novel set in mid-to-late 12th century Korea. . . Readers will not soon forget these characters or their sacrifices. —Publishers Weekly, Starred
"Intrigues, danger and the same strong focus on doing what is right turn a simple story into a compelling read. . . Tree-ear's story conveys a time and place far away and long ago, but with a simplicity and immediacy that is both graceful and unpretentious. A timeless jewel." —Kirkus Reviews with Pointers
Like Park's Seesaw Girl and the Kite Fighters, this book not only gives readers insight an unfamilar time and place, but it is also a great story. —School Library Journal, Starred
This quiet, but involving story draws readers into a very different time and place. Though the society has its own conventions, the hearts and minds and stomachs of the characters are not so far removed from those of people today. Readers will feel the hunger and cold that Tree-ear experiences, as well as his shame, fear, gratitude, and love. A well-crafted novel with an unusual setting. —Booklist, ALA, Starred Review
Park's story is alive with fascinating information about life and art in ancient Korea. —Horn Book Guide
A broken piece of pottery sets events in motion as an orphan struggles to pay off his debt to a master potter. This finely crafted novel brings 12th-century Korea and these indelible characters to life. —SLJ Best Books of the Year
Children's Books: 100 Titles NYPL
Booklist, Editor's Choice
"A compelling coming-of-age road trip."
"Set in Elizabethan England, the novel is built upon Cushman's thorough research and solid understanding of the period."
"[Cushman] manages the tricky balance of keeping her characters engaging and understandable for her audience while still making them very much of their time."
"Fascinating, sometimes seemingly preposterous, details are solidly corroborated in the informative author's note that reflects Cushman's extensive research."
—School Library Journal
"Offering action, humor, and heart in equal doses, Cushman's story is, at its core, about creating and claiming a family of one's own."
—Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Lively and amusing . . . . [Cushman's] details have the surprising aptness of an Elizabeth Enright story—or, to step outside children's books, a Raymond Chandler novel."
—The New York Times Book Review
“Karen Cushman is a master of portraying personal transformation. . . . A warmhearted portrait of a boy coming to terms with himself and the world.”
—Historical Novels Society
"As usual, Cushman is adept at bringing the past to vivid life, with evocative details from daily Elizabethan life and authentic, often humorous dialogue."
"In her debut novel, La Valley paints a memorable picture of this faraway people. . . . A haunting tale of artistic vision triumphing over adversity."
"For many readers, this book may be their first introduction to the Uyghur people, and La Valley strongly evokes the culture and struggles of an ethnic group whose future is less than certain."
"Engages and teaches."
"An absorbing read and an excellent choice for expanding global understanding."
—School Library Journal, starred review
"The carefully honed plot and palpable family tensions...will resonate with most youngsters."
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.
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.
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.
About the Author
'Linda Sue Park is the Newbery Medal-winning author of A SINGLE SHARD. Her other books for Clarion include the novels SEESAW GIRL, THE KITE FIGHTERS, WHEN MY NAME WAS KEOKO, and PROJECT MULBERRY, as well as three picture books, BEE-BIM BOP!, THE FIREKEEPER\'S SON, and WHAT DOES BUNNY SEE? Ms. Park lives with her family in Rochester, New York.'