Synopses & Reviews
On Halloween, Stillwater the panda, who dons a spooky costume and mask, promises his friends Addy, Michael, and Karl a spine-tingling ghost story to be told by a mysterious storyteller.
The storyteller--who looks remarkably like Stillwater--tells the children an unforgettable ancient Zen story about a girl named Senjo who hopes to marry Ochu, the boy next door.
But Senjo's parents have different plans for her future. They want her to marry a more prosperous man than Ochu--someone who will care for the family and her ailing father. (contd.)
Heartbroken by the prospect of being separated, the two run off to a far away village and marry.
As the years pass, Senjo's regret for having left her family slowly eats away at her happiness, and she and Ocho return home to make amends.
But a surprise ending is in store. For Senjo's father swears his daughter has been sick and living at home with him the entire time. Yet Ocho knows differently, for he has been living with Senjo for many years. What is the truth? Who is the real senjo?
The story of Senjo was originally written down by a Chinese Buddhist Monk Master named Wu-men Hui-hai in the early 13th Century. This type of story, called a Koan, is used by students of Zen to attain enlightenment. It provokes thought and conversation--yet has no concrete answers.
With Zen Ghosts, Muth has once again presented an original, beautifully crafted story, perfect for Halloween--or any time.
"In the third of Muth's contemplative series, Stillwater the panda comes dressed as a ghost to join Addy, Michael, and Karl on Halloween. After trick or treating, they travel through the misty night to Stillwater's house. There, another panda (which one is Stillwater?) shares a ghost story, painted in black ink and based on a Zen koan, which questions the nature of identity. Haunting in multiple senses of the word, this tale should captivate thoughtful readers, as Muth's watercolors convey a world of infinite possibility and gentle enchantment. All ages. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
"Phelan takes Park's jaunty story about a panda with a complicated social life and develops it still further. . . . There's food for thought throughout."
and#8212;Publishers Weekly, starred review
"The upbeat, mostly rhyming text provides a surprising amount of information about animal families and species without tripping up the pace. . . . Perfect for young animal lovers and a great read-aloud for storytime."
and#8212;School Library Journal, starred review
"Liberal use of internal rhyme. . . makes Park's text sing as it relates how Xander tackles each new challenge."
and#8212;The Horn Book Magazine, starred review
"Phelan's ink and watercolor compositions offer the perfect counterpoint to the tightly wrought verses, with playfulness inherent in the fluid inky outlines encasing broadly applied brushstrokes."
and#8212;Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, starred review
"Newbery Medalist Park's playful rhyming text introduces young kids to different species of animals. . . Share this story about the importance of inclusion with birthday kids and those fond of a trip to the zoo."
The trees are ablaze in fiery reds. Excited children don colorful costumes. And there's mystery and fun around every corner!
When Addy, Michael, and Karl finish trick-or-treating, their bags are brimming with treats. But the fun isn't over yet. Their good friend Stillwater the panda has one more special surprise in store for them. A mysterious visitor is about to tell them a spine-tingling story -- one that will fill each and every reader with wonder.
It's Halloween. There's mystery and fun around every corner. When Addy, Michael, and Karl finish trick-or-treating, their fun isn't over yet. Their good friend Stillwater the panda has one more special surprise in store for them. Full color.
Party with a pandaand#8212;and all creatures tall and smalland#8212;in Newbery Medal author Linda Sue Park and brilliant illustrator Matt Phelan's endearing new picture book.
Xander planned a panda party. Yes, a dandy whoop-de-do!
But Xander was the only panda. Just one panda at the zoo.
The zooand#8217;s paucity of pandas doesnand#8217;t impede Xanderand#8217;s party planning for long. He decides to invite all the bears. But Koala protests. Sheand#8217;s not a bearand#8212;she's a marsupial! Does that mean she canand#8217;t come? Xander rethinks his decision to invite only bears, and and#8220;Calling all bearsand#8221; evolves into and#8220;Calling all creatures.and#8221; The Newbery Medal author Linda Sue Park introduces animal taxonomy in a wonderfully engaging way, and the celebrated artist Matt Phelanand#8217;s charming ink and watercolor paintings are the icing on the cake. A read-aloud whoop-de-do!
About the Author
Linda Sue Park
won the Newbery Medal for A Single Shard
. She lives with her husband in Rochester, New York. Visit her website at www.lspark.com.
Illustrator Matt Phelanand#8217;s books include Alice Schertleand#8217;s Very Hairy Bear and Jeanne Birdsalland#8217;s Floraand#8217;s Very Windy Day. He lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Visit his website at www.mattphelan.com.