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Fish in the Air
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Fish in the Air

2.87  ·  Rating Details ·  63 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Hardcover, 28 pages
Published April 2nd 1948 by Viking Children's Books
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Children's Books about CHINA & Chinese Culture
37th out of 94 books — 17 voters
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Caldecott Honor Books
204th out of 251 books — 182 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Cassandra Gelvin
Nov 30, 2016 Cassandra Gelvin rated it liked it
Is it racist to say that Chinese people fly kites?

I'm not really sure whether this book is racist or not. It's kind of hard to tell. I guess I would need to be better informed about the kind of stereotypes that people had about the Chinese in America in 1948. I mean, it's true that there are lantern festivals and such in China. I assume they fly kites there. I've seen other books where they fly kites in China, but those were pretty dated too, so they could also be stereotypical. I don't know. Is
I managed to slip this short read into our bedtime story routine last night. The book won a 1949 Caldecott Honor. This is only my second Kurt Wiese book but he seems to predominantly write books about China, and the books are a little dated, as evidenced by the clothing in the story. This was a cute story about a young Chinese boy named Young Fish who wants to fly the biggest Fish kite. His father, Old Fish, buys it for him and on the way to flying it, Young Fish promptly gets swept away by a ...more
This is a fun story, and unlike You Can Write Chinese, Wiese pulled off a solid product here. Interestingly, the book starts with a young boy, Fish, writing his name in Chinese characters on large sheets of paper. But from then on, the entire story is plot-driven, filled with an unraveling plan and amusing encounters. The paintings have a dated feel, but they all capture the sense of village or town life. Some of the illustrations reminded me of Herge's Tin Tin books. I think young children will ...more
May 18, 2012 Lorna rated it it was ok
1949 Caldecott Honor

Favorite line: The boy in talking to his father after his adventure. "Honorable Fish, I want you to buy me the smallest Fish Kite there is."

Favorie illustration: When the boy, who has taken flight with his kite first goes out over the river.

Kid-appeal today: I wasn't too drawn to this on, but curiously my kids were. The illustrations are especially noteworthy because they used quite a variety of colors--violets, purples, blues, yellows which weren't well represented in other
Jun 29, 2012 Samantha rated it really liked it
A great story about a Chinese boy named Fish who has an adventure flying through the air attached to a large fish kite. Pictures are very brightly colored and the story is genuinely funny; this is perhaps my favorite kite story of those I've read so far. The Chinese people are depicted with yellow faces which may offend some readers, but overall it was an enjoyable read and would be a good read aloud.
While I enjoyed the story and the illustrations, the pictures were kind of caricatureish and I wondered about the author/illustrator and his knowledge of Chinese culture. How accurate was his depiction? How stereotypical? Of course, it wasn't a problem when this book was written, I'm sure. I did enjoy the illustrations with their vibrant colors and lots of action.
Apr 18, 2016 Molly rated it liked it
This is the story of a Chinese boy named Fish who is taken up into the air by his kite. While the story is funny, I found the illustrations of Chinese people rather stereotypical and kind of like a caricature. They literally have yellow skin and slants for eyes. I realize that people were not as PC in 1948, but good the be aware of it now.
Sammie Ortiz
Apr 24, 2012 Sammie Ortiz rated it liked it
This was an entertaining book to read! I love how the character had everything in the forms of fish. Also, the pictures were cool! This book was about a different culture, and the illustrations gave it more of that culture. I enjoyed the ending with the father, it was a funny way to end the book!
Oct 04, 2011 Megan_davis rated it really liked it
I read this to the kids for story boost and they loved it. They thought it was funny and wanted to try and fly with a kite like Fish did.
Katie Fitzgerald
Read for #nerdcott. Reviewed in Caldecott Challenge Post #33:
Jun 08, 2013 Brindi rated it it was ok
1949 Caldecott Honor
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