Review of Rainbow Shopping

Rainbow Shopping Rainbow Shopping
by Qing Zhuang; illus. by the author
Primary    Holiday    40 pp.
2/23    9780823449774    $18.99

A young girl’s family has recently moved from China to New York City, where things become very different for her. Everyone is busy: Mom is always working at the factory, Dad is out delivering food, and Grandma is nannying for another family. One rainy Saturday, when the girl feels “as gray as a pigeon,” Mom takes her to Chinatown to buy ingredients for their long-awaited family dinner. Together, they shop through “rows of vegetables in a hundred greens,” fruits “piled up like jewels inside a treasure chest,” and “aisles of noodles, sauces, spices, pickles, and tea.” When they get home, Dad shows off his “kitchen kung fu” and cooks a savory meal that everyone enjoys. The story ends as the girl goes to sleep, feeling relaxed and comforted. Zhuang’s accessible text touches on common themes of the immigrant experience, and her colored-pencil, crayon, and watercolor illustrations provide a visual representation of feelings of disconnection, disorientation, joy, and warmth. Inspired by the author’s own childhood experiences, the story beautifully reflects how it feels to relocate to a completely different country and still try to feel at home.

From the January/February 2023 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Weileen Wang
You-Ling (Weileen) Wang loves to write, read, and illustrate. She attended Vanderbilt University, where she studied child development and fell in love with children's literature. She holds a master's degree in arts in education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

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