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Orange Peel’s Pocket

By Rose Lewis; illustrated by Grace Zong $16.95; Abrams Books for Young Readers; ages 4-8



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The bestselling author of I Love You Like Crazy Cakes charms us again with her latest book about a girl, nicknamed Orange Peel, born in China and now living in America with her family.

When Orange Peel’s kindergarten classmates ask her about China, she blushes and whispers, “I don’t know, but I’ll find out.” After school, she and her mom set out, seeking answers from Chinese grownups in their neighborhood. They visit a tailor and a poet, a flower shop, a noodle shop, and an ice-cream store. Orange Peel discovers China’s treasures: silkworms, beautiful mountains, bright peonies, yummy noodles, and red silk knots of good luck. Along the way, each grownup she meets slips something into Orange Peel’s pocket.

With an endearing main character—and a pocketful of mystery—this is a story about being born in one place and blooming in another, like the lilies that were brought from China long ago. As Orange Peel’s pocket fills, she gathers pride. “Wait until the kids hear that!” she says. A delightful read, Orange Peel’s Pocket connects children adopted from China to their birth country’s special qualities, and to their own.

Reviewed by STACY CLARK, a writer and mother of two daughters, one adopted from China. She blogs about life after adoption at thissideoftheskies.blogspot.com and in The Yin and the Yang, at adoptivefamiliescircle.com/blogs.

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