It's interesting to know that other than Chinese, different cultures celebrate the autumn full moon! In Japan it's called 月見 Tsukimi, and in Korea it's called 추석 Chuseok.
It may be strange to recommend a Korean mid-autumn festival book instead of a Chinese one, but I find it a delightful read. We had fun drawing parallels between cultures and reflecting. We may have different traditional costumes, heritage food dishes and ways of celebrating the festival, but we all share the same moon and mid-autumn is about celebrating kinship.
I love this story of how Sori's city-dwelling family goes back to the countryside to stay with Granny and celebrate Chuseok with their relatives. The beautiful illustrations within offer an eye-opening peek into the culture and practices of Koreans.
The words aren't many, but there are so many stories to be found.
One of my favourite pages are that of Sori and her family almost reaching granny's home! With excited Sori right in front, Papa carrying a big bag and paper bags that perhaps hold gifts for Granny, and Mama behind, babywearing the littlest! Grandma, another boy and a dog seems to have seen them from afar and comes out to welcome them. It's a heartwarming scene! Papa and mama must have walked that path many times through the years, and each time at a slightly different life stage.
The last page of Sori's family arriving home in the city after the Chuseok celebrations is deeply etched in my mind too. The kids have fallen asleep on thick blankets called 요 yo, as they reached home late at night. Mama hangs her hanbok 한복 which is their traditional costume. Papa's on the phone, perhaps letting Granny know that they've reached home safely. At the corner of the room sits new rice grain, likely from autumn harvest, bottles of sesame oil, fresh fruit and a large pumpkin from the countryside.
Many details within, waiting to be discovered! Definitely a book to read and re-read through the year!
Recommended for Ages: 4-12
Language: Simplified Chinese
Author / Illustrator: 小莉的中秋