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The Garden of Empress Cassia by Gabrielle Wang

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Mimi lives with her parents above her father's herbalist shop. She hates being Chinese and being teased at school. More than anything she loves to draw, so when her art teacher gives her a box of pastels Mimi is thrilled. These are no ordinary pastels for the inscription on the box warns that they are "A treasure for some, a curse for others". Mimi is able to draw amazing scenes on the footpath outside her father's shop and the pastels breathe life into the pictures for those able to see it. When Gemma, her tormentor at school, steals the pastels, Mimi knows she must get them back - not only to keep them safe and their magic intact, but to save Gemma from the pastel's curse.
Good Reads Summary

This novel is meant for young readers, the vocabulary is easily understandable to children and the concepts are simplified.  Mimi, the main character, doesn't like being and feeling different than the other children.  She just wants to fit in.  The author makes the reader believe that he/she is truly reading about an eleven-year-old child.  The plot is very different and the reader will enjoy reading about the pastels and the ups and downs of using them.  The story is very creative and is sure to capture a child's interest and keep his/her attention.  This novel is recommended for young children. 

4 Stars