Books by Andrea Cheng

BEES IN THE CITY by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Nov. 7, 2017

"A profoundly disappointing posthumous outing from a beloved author. (Picture book. 5-8)"
A breezy look at urban beekeeping. Read full book review >
THE YEAR OF THE GARDEN by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 11, 2017

"A gentle, feel-good story about the transforming power of friendship and gardening. (Chinese pronunciation guide) (Fiction. 6-9)"
In this prequel to The Year of the Book (2012), Chinese-American Anna Wang explains how she met her friend Laura. Read full book review >
THE YEAR OF THE THREE SISTERS by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 7, 2015

"This unique sisterhood beats with a gentle heart. (pronunciation guide) (Fiction. 8-10)"
In this fourth novel of the Anna Wang series, seventh-grader Anna can hardly believe her waitress friend from China is coming to America. Read full book review >
THE YEAR OF THE FORTUNE COOKIE by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 6, 2014

"Similar in subject to the author's Shanghai Messenger (2005) but different in approach, this is just right for middle-grade Anna fans ready for new experiences. (Fiction. 7-11)"
A two-week trip to China allows sixth-grader Anna Wang to reflect on her Asian-American identity. Read full book review >
THE YEAR OF THE BABY by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 28, 2013

"Middle-grade readers will find many ways to connect with Anna and her friends in this warm family and school story. (Fiction. 7-10)"
Worried that her newly adopted baby sister isn't gaining weight, fifth-grader Anna Wang and her friends Camille and Laura make the toddler the subject of a successful science-fair project. Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 1, 2013

"At once intimate and universal; the riveting story of an unforgettable life lived during an unbelievable time. (Verse biography. 9 & up)"
Cheng follows on the Caldecott Honor-winning Dave the Potter, by Laban Carrick Hill and illustrated by Bryan Collier (2010), to further open up the fascinating life of the enslaved potter named Dave for children. Read full book review >
YEAR OF THE BOOK by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 22, 2012

"A gentle, affectionate take on familiar middle-grade issues and the joys of reading. (Fiction. 7-10)"
In what promises to be a reading year, 10-year-old Anna Wang finds real-life friends as well. Read full book review >
WHERE DO YOU STAY? by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2011

"While the rather abrupt ending leaves unanswered questions, especially about Damon and Mr. Willie, Jerome himself makes a fully realized, deeply sympathetic protagonist. (Fiction. 8-12)"
From the author of Where the Steps Were (2008) comes this story of loss and healing through friendship, family and music. Read full book review >
ONLY ONE YEAR by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 1, 2010

"Wong's graceful black-and-white sketches complement the text. (Fiction. 7-11)"
Cheng, known for exploring issues of diversity (Shanghai Messenger, illustrated by Ed Young, 2005, etc.), tackles a custom that many will find disorienting. Read full book review >
BRUSHING MOM’S HAIR by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 2009

"Worthy and moving. (Fiction. 10-13)"
Based on Cheng's experience, this candid story sensitively explores a teenager's emotions as she copes with her mother's illness and recovery during treatments for breast cancer. Read full book review >
THE BEAR MAKERS by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Nov. 1, 2008

"Bold chapter numbers are backed with strips of bear pattern-pieces with handwritten directions, a subtle motif that resembles the pieces of a crumbling family. (Historical fiction. 11-15)"
Many stories about World War II experiences are personalized via handed-down accounts from relatives, and Cheng's novel, set in postwar Budapest, is no exception, as her grandmother was the original bear maker. Read full book review >
WHERE THE STEPS WERE by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 1, 2008

"Quietly lovely. (Poetry. 9-12)"
A delicate verse cycle gives readers a series of snapshots of the lives of five children in an inner-city school. Read full book review >
TIRE MOUNTAIN by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 1, 2007

"The detailed illustrations are realistically depictive of the city and done in subtle chalky hues. (Picture book. 5-9)"
Aaron's dad owns a tire-service shop next door to their house. Read full book review >
ECLIPSE by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Oct. 1, 2006

"Short, episodic chapters and poetic prose make this a good choice for those of a literary bent. (Fiction. 9-14)"
Eight-year-old Peti doesn't mind giving up his room to his immigrant aunt, uncle and 12-year-old cousin Gabor. Read full book review >
THE LEMON SISTERS by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 1, 2006

"Nonetheless, Mai-Wyss's illustrations, a cheerful mix of watercolor, gouache and collaged paper, serve to leaven and brighten the scenes. (Picture book. 4-7)"
Three elderly sisters reunite, and revisit their youthful playfulness, by connecting with a trio of imaginative neighbor girls. Read full book review >
SHANGHAI MESSENGER by Andrea Cheng
ADVENTURE
Released: Sept. 1, 2005

"Wonderfully evocative. (Fiction/poetry. 8-14)"
Half-Chinese Xiao Mei (May in English) is 11, going alone from Ohio to visit her extended family in Shanghai. Read full book review >
THE LACE DOWRY by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 15, 2005

"The final resolution supplies both enlightenment and a small measure of reassurance in a deftly sketched historical setting. (author's note) (Fiction. 8-12)"
In 1933 Budapest, Juli is a tall, awkward 12-year-old who loves reading. Read full book review >
HONEYSUCKLE HOUSE by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 15, 2004

"Honesty and subtlety co-exist in Cheng's thoughtful, never-didactic writing. (Fiction. 9-12)"
This deft character-driven story about two ten-year-old girls rings with clarity. Read full book review >
THE KEY COLLECTION by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 1, 2003

"Readers going through similar changes will enjoy Jimmy's first-person, honest narrative that reveals his love for family and tradition, as well as his desire to grow and mature. (Fiction. 8-11)"
This quiet coming-of-age story focuses on Xiao Jimmy's relationship with Ni Ni, his beloved grandmother. Read full book review >
GOLDFISH AND CHRYSANTHEMUMS by Andrea Cheng
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2003

"The story might have been better served with pictures rendered in a lighter medium than oils, but this is still a good choice for older storytime audiences or collections in need of culturally different stories. (Picture book. 4-9)"
Nancy and Greg's Ni Ni (Grandmother) gets a letter from her brother, who still lives in China. Read full book review >
ANNA THE BOOKBINDER by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 15, 2003

"The author weaves in references to 'The Tortoise and the Hare' to point up differences between work done by hand and by quicker but less reliable machines—a theme that is still relevant, and adds resonance to this intimate family episode. (Picture book. 7-9)"
Cheng's (Marika, 2002, etc.) warm tale of a 19th-century bookbinder's daughter, who courageously tackles an important commission when her father is suddenly called away, gets serene, dignified illustrations from the veteran Rand (Country Kid, City Kid, 2002, etc.). Read full book review >
MARIKA by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 15, 2002

"Reading more like a series of vignettes than a novel, with a few distancing gaps in time and one distracting inconsistency (between the year and her age), Marika is a poignant emotional portrait. (Fiction. 10-14)"
A child's-eye view written in beautifully spare prose gives a special quality to this historical piece. Read full book review >
GRANDFATHER COUNTS by Andrea Cheng
CHILDREN'S
Released: Oct. 1, 2000

"Lushly colored artwork from Zhang is both elegant and captures the moods of tentativeness, surprise, and satisfaction. (Picture book. 4-6)"
Cheng's story of a Chinese-speaking grandfather who comes to live with his daughter's English-speaking family ably communicates the difficulties of the language barrier, and the unanticipated joys that come from working your way through that barrier. Read full book review >