THE STORY OF NOODLES by Ying Chang Compestine

THE STORY OF NOODLES

Age Range: 6 - 9

KIRKUS REVIEW

This story may leave your mouth watering for noodles and your chopsticks at the ready, as Compestine and Xuan (The Story of Chopsticks, 2001) cook up a tale explaining the origins of a favorite Chinese food. The three Kang brothers are back again, eager and creative, especially after they ruin mother’s dumpling dough. Instead of following Mama Kang’s instructions, the boys try to save time and wind up with strips of dough all over the house. Although the transition isn’t clear enough in the story, the boys have invented noodles, or mian tiao, flour strips. They also are prepared to demonstrate three different ways of eating the new dish at the cooking contest that Mama Kang hopes to win. The boys’ humorous exploits are brought to life in Xuan’s illustrations, created with vivid colors surrounded by the striking black lines of traditional paper cuts. The borders of textured flour paste are less successful. The author’s note confirms that the Kang brothers are not alone when they roll their noodles around chopsticks like a drumstick or make loud noises like “sucking a worm” or “cut the grass” with their teeth. These are all ways that today’s children (and grown-ups) eat their noodles. A recipe for long-life noodles is appended. An appetizingly funny story, but look elsewhere for the real story of how noodles came into the heart of Chinese cuisine. (Picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: Oct. 15th, 2002
ISBN: 0-8234-1600-3
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Holiday House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2002




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