Cloud Tea Monkeys by Mal Peet

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Synopsis

Carnegie Medalist Mal Peet and his wife, Elspeth Graham, team up for a captivating, lushly illustrated tale evoking a Chinese legend.

A Junior Library Guild Selection

Tashi lives in a tiny village at the foot of the mountains, below the tea plantations where her mother works. When her mother falls ill, Tashi goes alone to the plantation, hoping to earn money for the doctor. But she is far too small to harvest the tender shoots, and her clumsy efforts anger the cruel Overseer. She is desolate, until — chack-chack-chack! — something extraordinary happens. Inspired by a centuries-old legend of tea-picking monkeys, here is a richly told tale full of vivid characters: the heartless Overseer, the enigmatic Royal Tea Taster, and — far away — an empress with a penchant for tea.
 

About Mal Peet

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Mal Peet and Elspeth Graham live in Devon, England, in a house not too far from the sea. Elspeth writes on the ground floor, and Mal writes in the attic. Sometimes they meet in the middle to write books like this one. Elspeth Graham found the seed for the story while writing a book about tea. Mal Peet is the author of such YA novels as KEEPER, THE PENALTY, EXPOSURE, and the Carnegie Medal-winning TAMAR. Juan Wijngaard has illustrated more than thirty books for children, including SHAKESPEARE'S GLOBE: AN INTERACTICE POP-UP THEATRE and the Kate Greenaway Medal-winning SIR GAWAIN AND THE LOATHLY LADY. He lives in New Mexico.
 
Published February 23, 2010 by Candlewick. 56 pages
Genres: Nature & Wildlife, Travel, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Cloud Tea Monkeys

Kirkus Reviews

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Tea, labor-intensive to harvest, is a precious commodity, but wild-growing cloud tea, found only in the highest, dangerous-to-reach mountaintops, is the most prized of all in this lyrical story based on a Chinese folktale.

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The Bookbag

There is also a nice four panel picture, just in pencil, of when Tashi meets the royal tea taster and in the picture he is swilling the Cloud Tea around in his mouth, sucking in air like a wine taster, but my favourite picture I think is of Tashi and her mother enjoying their own cups of Cloud Te...

Feb 23 2010 | Read Full Review of Cloud Tea Monkeys

Common Sense Media

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.Find out more Parents need to know that this folk tale, which includes a sickly mother, a brave little girl, a heartless overseer, and a royal tea taster who knows value when he tastes it, came from an ancient legend about tea-pi...

Feb 23 2010 | Read Full Review of Cloud Tea Monkeys

Chicago Tribune

Readers are shown realistically how workers are treated, but there's also a bit of what Frances Hodgson Burnett ("The Secret Garden"), would have called "the Magic" to bring a happy ending for Tashi and her mother.

Feb 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Cloud Tea Monkeys

Chicago Tribune

The Overseer, for example, is “a bad-tempered man with a beaky nose and eyes like sharp little stones.” Readers are shown realistically how workers are treated, but there’s also a bit of what Frances Hodgson Burnett (“The Secret Garden”), would have called “the Magic,” to bring a happy ending for...

Feb 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Cloud Tea Monkeys

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