The Dragon's Tale: and Other Animal Fables of the Chinese Zodiac

by Demi

Hardcover, 1996



Call number

398.2 Dem

Call number

398.2 Dem



Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) (1996), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 32 pages


A collection of fables about the twelve animals of the Chinese zodiac.

Physical description

32 p.; 10.34 inches


0805034463 / 9780805034462



User reviews

LibraryThing member laf
This book has a collection of stories with a moral, one for each of the animals of the Chinese Zodiac.

For example, there is a story called The Dragon's Tale about a bunch of fish who live in a river. They think that the river is the biggest place in the world, until they get out into the sea. There, they meet a Dragon King who tells them that although all the rivers empty into the sea, even the sea is only a tiny part of the vastness of the universe.

The moral of this story is that: "The more you know, the more you know there is to know."

I don't agree with that moral. I think that even though all there is to know is a lot, covering the universe and all the dimensions, there is a limit to all that there is to know. So, you can know everything, but your head might explode.

Demi's illustrations are good, but not as beautiful as her paintings in The Magic Tapestry.

I recommend this book to young children because they have a lot to learn.
… (more)
LibraryThing member LisaBohman
This story is about a group of monkeys who think that the moon has fallen into a nearby well that they are playing by. The monkeys create a chain with their tails and the smallest monkey climbs down to retrieve the moon from the well. The smallest monkey grabs for the moon, but in touching the water he thinks that the moon is broken. The water calms and the monkey tries again, but fails to collect the moon. The smallest monkey peers up into the sky and sees the moon, rejoicing that there is a new moon in the sky. This book is a collection of stories about Chinese animals. Each animal teaches an individual lesson. I chose to focus on the monkey's tale. The story includes a group of monkeys. The monkeys are ignorant and do not know that water can create a reflection of an object. The moral of the story is that “ignorance is bliss.” The monkeys do not know that the cycle of the moons is really much more complicated that the old moon replacing the new moon. The monkeys also do not know that the moon really cannot fall out of the sky. The illustrations are simple in this story. The circles present throughout the book are appropriate for the celestial zodiac. The illustrations for the particular story about the Monkey's Tale are appropriate and reflect the ideas in the story. One does not learn from the pictures, but the picture do help to poetry what the story is about. The culture is not evidently portrayed through the illustrations. This would be an excellent book to teach about the Chinese zodiac.… (more)
LibraryThing member MaryAnnBurton
Fun to read, good lessons, and mixed with a little of the Chinese culture. The way the lessons were portrayed is a good way for kids to hear about right and wrong choices and their consequences.
LibraryThing member MManzo2
The Dragon’s Tale is a collection of folktales based on Chinese folktales about the Chinese zodiac signs. I liked this story because I find Chinese folktales interesting. One thing I liked about the story was the illustrations. The illustrations had very unique designs on every page and they correlated to the story on each page. For example, The Rabbit’s Tale had a lot of animals running in it, so the illustration was a lot of animals running. Another thing I liked about the story was that is had the moral of the story at the bottom of the page very clearly. For example, on the bottom of A Rabbit’s Tale the moral was, “if someone tells a falsehood, one hundred will repeat is as true” and the moral for The Snake’s Tale was, “beware of judging by appearance.” The stories themselves clearly had a meaning but it was insightful to have what the intended moral was written at the bottom. The main purpose of this book was to inform readers of tales of the Chinese zodiac, while also giving morals in each story for people to think about.… (more)
LibraryThing member Cheryl_in_CC_NV
The illustrations were fabulous - one can tell the Demi is a fan of higher mathematics. I don't know, though, that the fables were especially Chinese - nor how valuable the lessons of them are.




(5 ratings; 3.8)
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