Books by Mou-sien Tseng

WATER BUFFALO DAYS by Huynh Quang Nhuong
ANIMALS
Released: Nov. 30, 1997

"In Tank's passing, the author brings home the waste of war, in a book written from the heart. (Autobiography. 7-10)"
 The village social life and customs in the central highlands of Vietnam prior to the involvement of the US provide an affecting platform for the author's warm memories of a childhood enriched by close relationships with the animals vital to the family's economic survival. Read full book review >
A TREASURY OF MERMAIDS by Shirley Climo
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Oct. 30, 1997

"A section of story notes completes the collection. (Folklore. 6-10)"
 Mermaids haunt the waters of the world from the Lake of Zug in Switzerland to the reefs of Hawke Bay on the North Island of New Zealand. Read full book review >
THE KHAN'S DAUGHTER by Laurence Yep
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 1, 1997

"The jacket art is especially striking: A montage of acrylic on gold leaf shows Borte in a bejeweled headdress, Mîngke astride his sturdy pony at full gallop, and the wind-whipped banners and embroidered felt tents of the Khan's realm. (Picture book/folklore. 7-10)"
Yep (The Boy Who Swallowed Snakes, 1994, etc.) extends his series of picture-book retellings of Asian folktales with this Mongolian story of a poor young shepherd who wins the hand of the Khan's daughter through dumb luck and the smitten maiden's collusion. Read full book review >
MAPLES IN THE MIST by Minfong Ho
NONFICTION
Released: Sept. 1, 1996

"About the Poets'' section offers brief biographies. (Picture book/poetry. 6-9)"
 A collection of tiny poems set against watercolors painted in the Chinese tradition. Read full book review >
THE BOY WHO SWALLOWED SNAKES by Laurence Yep
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"The Tsengs' watercolors range from exotically colorful to murkily mysterious, with the characters' expressions and poses dramatically exaggerated. (Picture book. 6-9)"
Puzzlingly described as an "original folktale" (LC classifies it in 398.2), the bizarre story of Little Chou, a poor Chinese boy who finds, hidden in a basket of silver, an evil ku snake that kills people and takes their money to its master. Read full book review >
THE GHOST FOX by Laurence Yep
ANIMALS
Released: Jan. 1, 1994

"The Tsengs' pen-and-ink illustrations evocatively capture 17th-century Chinese dress and architecture, while Yep's narrative depicts the dauntless triumph of good over evil with eerie grace and humor. (Folktale. 7+)"
Familial relationships are exquisitely rendered in this supernatural story drawn from a 17th-century collection by Chinese scholar Pu Sung-ling. Read full book review >
SATO AND THE ELEPHANTS by Juanita Havill
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"The connection between Africa and Japan is of particular interest. (Picture book. 5-10)"
 Based on a true incident, the story of a Japanese ivory carver who, after devoting a lifetime to his art, gave it up when he found a bullet in the magnificent block of ivory he had hoped to make into his masterpiece. Read full book review >
WHY DUCKS SLEEP ON ONE LEG by Sherry Garland
ANIMALS
Released: Feb. 1, 1993

"Garland's narration is lively and clear; the Tsengs (The Seven Chinese Brothers, 1990, ALA Notable) provide vibrant watercolor double spreads in saturated purple and green, red and gold, outlined in broad, boldly telling black. (Folklore/Picture book. 4-9)"
 A long, somewhat convoluted Vietnamese pourquoi tale that begins, oddly enough, with three ducks with just one leg each. Read full book review >
TALES FROM THE BAMBOO GROVE by Yoko Kawashima Watkins
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Aug. 31, 1992

"Simply and gracefully narrated and handsomely embellished with full page b&w illustrations, an appealing addition to folklore collections. (Folklore. 7-12)"
 The author of an outstanding account of her family's experiences escaping from Korea to return to Japan at the end of WW II (So Far from the Bamboo Grove, 1986, ALA Notable) recounts six Japanese tales remembered from her childhood. Read full book review >
KENJI AND THE MAGIC GEESE by Ryerson Johnson
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 12, 1992

"A satisfying story that reads well aloud. (Picture book. 5-8)"
 Set in rural Japan, an original story resembling a folktale. Read full book review >
DRAGON KITE OF THE AUTUMN MOON by Valerie Reddix
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 15, 1992

"A lovely book—and unusually appealing story. (Picture book. 5-10)"
 In a tender story of love and sacrifice, loss is overcome by a sense of wonder. Read full book review >
THE RIVER DRAGON by Darcy Pattison
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Sept. 23, 1991

"Illustrated in dramatic watercolors that capture both the subtleties of the human interaction and the dragon's overwhelming presence; a satisfying, well-told debut. (Picture book. 5-9)"
 An original tale designed to display the characteristics of Chinese (as opposed to European) dragons. Read full book review >
THE SEVEN CHINESE BROTHERS by Margaret Mahy
Released: April 1, 1990

"Not a replacement for Bishop but a complement to it, for older children and with more authentic illustrations."
The folk tale made familiar in Bishop's The Five Chinese Brothers (1938) is here in a more expansive version linking it to the tyrannical emperor who planned the Great Wall. Read full book review >