This Next New Year

by Janet S. Wong and Yangsook Choi

This exuberant picture story explores the Lunar New Year, the day of the first new... read more

This exuberant picture story explores the Lunar New Year, the day of the first new moon, which is “not the regular new year; January 1, when we watch the Rose Parade and football games and make crazy New Year’s resolutions.” The narrator is a young boy who, like the author, describes himself as half Chinese and half Korean. He says that his best friend, Glenn, who has a mixed European heritage, and his other best friend, Evelyn, who is part Hopi and part Mexican, also have Lunar New Year traditions. In some homes, a thorough housecleaning or the preparation of special foods precedes the day. Some children will receive red envelopes containing money, most families will watch the annual parade, and probably all in the neighborhood will hear the midnight firecrackers. “And all day tomorrow, Lunar New Year’s Day, I will not say one awful thing,” claims the young narrator, “because this is it, a fresh start, my second chance, and I have so many dreams.” Wong’s personal note at the end mentions her childhood memories. Paintings by the Korean-born illustrator express, rather than recreate, specific family activities. (Ages 4-7)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2001

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