Bound by Donna Jo Napoli

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Synopsis

YOUNG XING XING IS BOUND.
Bound to her father's second wife and daughter after Xing Xing's father has passed away. Bound to a life of servitude as a young girl in ancient China, where the life of a woman is valued less than that of livestock. Bound to be alone and unmarried, with no parents to arrange for a suitable husband. Dubbed "Lazy One" by her stepmother, Xing Xing spends her days taking care of her half sister, Wei Ping, who cannot walk because of her foot bindings, the painful but compulsory tradition for girls who are fit to be married. Even so, Xing Xing is content, for now, to practice her gift for poetry and calligraphy, to tend to the mysterious but beautiful carp in her garden, and to dream of a life unbound by the laws of family and society.
But all of this is about to change as the time for the village's annual festival draws near, and Stepmother, who has spent nearly all of the family's money, grows desperate to find a husband for Wei Ping. Xing Xing soon realizes that this greed and desperation may threaten not only her memories of the past, but also her dreams for the future.
In this searing story, Donna Jo Napoli, acclaimed author of Beast and Breath, delves into the roots of the Cinderella myth and unearths a tale as powerful as it is familiar.
 

About Donna Jo Napoli

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Donna Jo Napoli is the award-winning author of many distinguished books for young readers, among them The King of Mulberry Street and Daughter of Venice. She lives with her family in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, where she is a professor of linguistics at Swarthmore College
 
Published June 20, 2008 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers. 192 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Travel, Science Fiction & Fantasy. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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A venture out into the world to sell unripe figs and seek a doctor for Wei Ping’s infected feet emboldens Xing Xing.

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BC Books

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Her stepmother kills the beautiful white carp and Xing Xing is devastated.

Mar 13 2007 | Read Full Review of Bound

Teen Reads

What may be surprising is why Xing Xing seeks to marry the prince --- rather than romance, prestige, or the love of fine things, Xing Xing seeks a royal marriage because it may be her only chance to grow into a strong, accomplished, and independent woman.

Nov 02 2004 | Read Full Review of Bound

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