August 2011 ISBN: 1933718544
Pre-teen up / Historical fiction / China
by Willie Elliott
her own trip down the Silk Road, Hildi Kang has written a book in
Chengli and the Silk Road Caravan that offers mystery and bravery,
things that attract the targeted age group (ages 8 and up).
an orphan who lives in Chang'an, China in 630 A.D. His mother has
died from illness, and his father is presumed dead after disappearing
in the desert. At the age of thirteen Chengli is called to the desert
by the howling wind. Chengli hopes to learn about his father—who
he was and how he died.
a caravan to travel the Silk Road. The author places her character
where he is able to do the daring and honorable. The reader gets
a sense of what it must have been like to travel the desert route
in those days.
The novel takes
on an added tension when a princess joins the caravan. A great deal
of the action revolves around the relationship between Chengli and
the princess. Some readers, no doubt, would have liked a different
outcome of this relationship, but she was a princess and he was
of a friend who is a thief and betrayer is added in order for the
author to point out how much honesty meant to Chengli —a trait
he inherited from his father. This is an excellent book for the
age group for which this book is intended.