New Year

Mei Zihan, trans. from the Chinese by Yan Yan, illus. by Qin Leng. Greystone Kids, $18.95 (56p) ISBN 978-1-77164-731-1

A Chinese father living in Beijing pens this heartfelt, gracefully sketched letter to his adult daughter, a translator living in France with her French husband, Sylvain. As the father reminisces on holidays spent with his daughter, recalling memories with her from infancy to childhood to adolescence, he hopes that she is celebrating the Lunar New Year well abroad: “It’s New Year’s Eve and I still miss you./ I wonder what you and Sylvain are eating at the moment.” Leng’s distinct, delicate ink-and-watercolor illustrations offer scenes from both China and France, with intricate details conjuring each location. Parents of adult children will resonate most with Mei’s wistful narrative—and will best appreciate its allusive text (“You are no longer that madeleine lover in search of lost time”). Ages 9–up. (Nov.)
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