Bronze and Sunflower

Simple, sweet and satisfying are the words I would use to describe this book. There are seven books in this series, and I haven’t found plans to translate the rest from Mandarin. I’m hoping this sells well and they appear. This story is set in the 1960’s- 70’s during the Cultural Revolution in China. Sunflower’s father is sent to live in the Cadre School (actually a work camp) by Mao and Sunflower goes with him and is the only child in camp. The adults at the camp work all day outdoors and attend political meetings each night. Sunflower spends a lot of time alone and likes the to watch the children in the nearby village. The people in the community have no idea why these city people moved out here and why they work such long hours.

Sunflower wanders around all day unsupervised and one-day a mute boy named Bronze saves her after she gets in a boat that accidently drifts down the river. The story is told so simply that although it should be a scary scene it isn’t. Sunflower stays calm even after she is not rescued by the first person to see that she is in trouble.

When her father tragically dies Sunflower is adopted by the poorest family in the village and Bronze becomes her brother. The rest reads like Little House on the Prairie set in China- including locusts eating their crops. You’ll laugh and cry reading this one aloud.  I don’t really want to share any more of the story in this review because it will be so much more satisfying as a reader to discover it page by page. I’m pretty sure this is going to be an award winner for 2017, and again we need to hear the rest of their story. Fingers crossed that the sequels get translated and printed quickly.

I read a DRC in exchange for an honest review. I’m buying it when it gets published.

Bronze and Sunflower

Hardcover – March 14, 2017

by Cao Wenxuan (Author), Meilo So (Illustrator), Helen Wang (Translator)

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