Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE JUNIOR THUNDER LORD by Laurence Yep

THE JUNIOR THUNDER LORD

By Laurence Yep (Author) , Robert Van Nutt (Illustrator)

Pub Date: Oct. 20th, 1994
ISBN: 0-8167-3454-2

A three-year drought is upon the land. The merchant Yue heads south to sell his goods. He encounters an ogre who stirs a memory for Yue: that once he was advised to help those in need. Yue buys the man a meal, then five more helpings. Needless to say, the ogre turns out to be a junior thunder lord and repays his debt to Yue in spades. Yep's (The Boy Who Swallowed Snakes, p. 76, etc.) tale is fun, the action swift, illustrated with a highly stylized, bold hand, but it stumbles on an important point: Without the ogre/lord's payback, the narrative would have little bite, so the idea of goodness for goodness' sake goes begging. Kept at the level of one good turn deserves another, however, things clip merrily along, and everyone's happy in the end. Van Nutt's wild paintings, breathless compositions that bring an alien landscape to life, give a welcome sense of humor to this moral tale. (Folklore/Picture book. All ages)