2017 Honorable Mention – Children’s Literature
An’s Seed by Zaozao Wang, illustrated by Li Huang, translated by Helen Wang (Candied Plums; Bilingual edition)
A gentle fable about mindfulness, An’s Seed follows the actions of three young monks – Ben, Jing, and An – who are given the task of growing a lotus plant from a seed. One monk is too impetuous, one misguided, and one patient and wise. The illustrations have a simple charm befitting the story. The bilingual text may prove a bit awkward for non-Chinese readers, though. The central story is in Chinese; the English text is presented again at the end with smaller pictures. Nevertheless, its lesson on following the natural order and choosing thoughtful action is praiseworthy. A glossary of words and expressions is included for language learners.