Seesaw Girl) molds a moving tribute to perseverance and creativity in this finely etched novel set in mid- to late 12th-century Korea. In Ch'ul'po, "/>

THE SINGLE SHARD

Linda Sue Park, Author THE SINGLE SHARDLinda Sue Par $15 (160p) ISBN 978-0-395-97827-6

Park (Seesaw Girl) molds a moving tribute to perseverance and creativity in this finely etched novel set in mid- to late 12th-century Korea. In Ch'ul'po, a potter's village, Crane-man (so called because of one shriveled leg) raises 10-year-old orphan Tree Ear (named for a mushroom that grows "without benefit of "parent-seed"). Though the pair reside under a bridge, surviving on cast-off rubbish and fallen grains of rice, they believe "stealing and begging... made a man no better than a dog." From afar, Tree Ear admires the work of the potters until he accidentally destroys a piece by Min, the most talented of the town's craftsmen, and pays his debt in servitude for nine days. Park convincingly conveys how a community of artists works (chopping wood for a communal kiln, cutting clay to be thrown, etc.) and effectively builds the relationships between characters through their actions (e.g., Tree Ear hides half his lunch each day for Crane-man, and Min's soft-hearted wife surreptitiously fills the bowl). She charts Tree Ear's transformation from apprentice to artist and portrays his selflessness during a pilgrimage to Songdo to show Min's work to the royal court—he faithfully continues even after robbers shatter the work and he has only a single shard to show. Readers will not soon forget these characters or their sacrifices. Ages 10-14. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 03/05/2001
Release date: 04/01/2001
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FORMATS
Paperback - 152 pages - 978-0-547-53426-8
Prebound-Glued - 156 pages - 978-1-60686-841-6
Hardcover - 192 pages - 978-0-7862-4305-1
Paperback - 152 pages - 978-0-440-41851-1
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-8072-0701-7
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-8072-0702-4
Prebound-Glued - 192 pages - 978-0-613-57327-6
Book - 978-1-4000-8495-1
Book - 1 pages - 978-0-7393-5993-8
Prebound-Glued - 978-0-7569-1379-3
Compact Disc - 978-0-7393-3177-4
Compact Disc - 978-0-8072-1607-1
Hardcover - 978-0-307-25833-5
Open Ebook - 160 pages - 978-0-547-35004-2
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-299-89210-1
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