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Dragonwings (Golden Mountain Chronicles #5)

3.5 of 5 stars 3.50  ·  rating details  ·  2,010 ratings  ·  223 reviews
Moon Shadow is eight years old when he sails from China to join his father, Windrider, in America. Windrider lives in San Francisco and makes his living doing laundry. Father and son have never met.
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published April 6th 1977 by Turtleback Books (first published January 1st 1975)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Summary: This novel tells the story of Moon Shadow's decision to leave the Middle Kingdom and come live in turn-of-the-century San Francisco with his father. It chronicles his life in America, first in the Tang people's part of the city (what white people call Chinatown), and then living alone with his father among the "demons," as he considers white people.

Response: I have never read a Laurence Yep book, and I am so glad I finally did. I will definitely read more. Aside from how much I enjoyed...more
This is an enjoyable tale of a young Chinese boy who travels to the US to be with his father. His father longs to fly and begins a correspondence with the Wright Brothers. I'll spare the details of his quest to avoid spoilers, but honestly, that part of the plot seems to take a back seat to what I felt the true message of the story is.

The author calls Dragonwings an historical fantasy. It is loosely based on a Chinese man who did actually create a flying machine that stayed airborne for 20 minut...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kevin Kennedy-Spaien
A man and his son coming to understand each other, their adopted homeland and the power of flight in earthquake-ravaged 1903 San Francisco.

Read for work - Loved it!
Andrew M
I though dragonwings was a pretty good book I don't know what. I liked about the book and what I didn't but it was pretty decent book
EJ Johnson
A juvenile fiction book about 8 year old Moon Shadow from China who joins his father in San Francisco at the beginning of the 20th Century. His father, Windrider, kite maker extraordinaire, had been in America since before Moon Shadow was born because their own national government and society couldn't or wouldn't provide employment or means for families to survive. America was a land of promise for them and provided the means of supporting their families in China. Windrider worked in a laundry r...more
Timothy Grossano
Dragonwings was a fantastic book. It is a historical fiction, and based very loosely on the true life a Chinese inventor and aviator who lived in San Francisco in the early 1900s. Most is fictional as very little is known about the real Fung Joe Guey.

The book is filled with wonderful characters, dialog, and life lessons. Descriptions of events like the 1906 San Francisco earthquake are realistic and full of life. The story is told from the perspective of a young Chinese boy, who full of misunder...more
Jun 15, 2008 Meghan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People interested in Chinese culture, airplane history, San Francisco/Northern California history
Recommended to Meghan by: Barnes and Noble
I really enjoyed this book. It's listed as appropriate for 10+ year olds, which I think I would have to agree. But I really appreciated that it didn't talk down to the reader but rather, it felt like he was challenging the reader to think bigger than "normal".

As I am moving to China and learning more about the culture and traditions of these people, I was quite excited to read about the various festivals and holidays Moon Shadow celebrated throughout his story. It actually reminded me a lot of ...more
Moon Shadow, an 8-year-old Chinese boy, migrates to America to join his father Windrider. The father and son meet for the first time in their life because Windrider sails to Aemrica before Moon Shadow was born. Seeing his own father as a stranger at first, Moon Shadow learns to love and respect his father as time passes. They together make a living by doing laundry for the "white demons" as they called.

I was a little disappointed by this book because I was looking forward to learn more about the...more
I did not like this book. I thought it was super cheesy and there really wasn't a lot of depth. I had to read this for school, and it was torture. Everything was super obvious and spelled out for you. At the end of the book, the father is all" oh, i love my family and i choose my family over my dreams and yady dady da..." I just really did not enjoy reading it and I do not recommend this book at all.
Lars Guthrie
I'm given to dissing teachers who assign the same old book year after year, and this is the umpteenth time I've read 'Dragonwings' because it was assigned to a middle schooler with whom I was working. 'Dragonwings,' however, is just the greatest of novels on so many levels--as an historical novel, an adventure novel, a multicultural novel, a coming-of-age novel. I love it, and each time I read it, gain more from the reading. 'Dragonwings' encompasses everything from the 'I Ching' to E. Nesbit, o...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Another YA book I'm reading along with Carly. This book was selected as a 6th grade literature book at PMS. It's the story of a young Chinese immigrant who arrives in SF right around 1900. The book follows his journey in SF and the Oakland Area for about 8 years. While the book did hold my interest, I thought the beginning was kind of slow. It got better once the earthquake hit and I thought some of the post earthquake scenes were very engrossing.

However, parents should know that the beginning...more
Dragonwings is a book that will entice the hearts of many readers immediately with the courage of a young Chinese boy, Moon Shadow in the face of unexpected challenges. Not only does the story blends history and fantasy but also reveals tribulations and triumphs of immigrants in the United States of America.

This book revolves around a boy who immigrates to San Francisco in the early 20th century to reunite with his father. Upon arriving in America, caucasian kids jeer at Moon Shadow and sing mo...more
Laurence Yep
Scholastic Inc., 1975

Laurence Yep gives us Moon Shadow, a wonderfully written character who guides us through his journey to America at the turn of the twentieth century and the seven years after as he struggles to understand the ways of American. Dragonwings introduces to Moon Shadow when he still lives in China with his mother and grandmother while they wait for their father who has traveled to the “demon land” in order to earn money and send it back to...more
Scarlett Evergreen
I would have actually given this book a 3.5 star rating, but you can't do that here. I do think this story packed a powerful punch. It really reminded me of another book I read, Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. Both books discussed hard topics that most people wouldn't try to write about. You can see the struggles the Chinese-American, or Tang people, were put through. The beatings in this book seemed to be a reoccurring happening, both from the "white demons" and the Tang people. Though I didn't l...more
Karen GoatKeeper
Based on a true mention of a Chinese aviator in the early 1900s, this book follows a young Chinese boy immigrating to San Francisco.
The boy's father moved to San Francisco twelve years before. He does not remember him except in the descriptions his mother gave. He knows nothing except his father is a gifted kite maker. Yet, when his father sends for him, he agrees to leave his home, travel alone across the Pacific to a land known only by stories, many of them false, to meet this unknown father.
Sarah LaFleur
I read DRAGONWINGS by Laurence Yep with my seventh grade guided reading group. For those of you unfamiliar with this method of teaching, it means working with a small group of students (4-8 kids depending) and guiding them through an instructional level book by facilitating discussion, providing meaning, and pointing out details that may be missed by inexperienced readers. When we finished reading, I decided to take their comments and compile them to turn my review of the book into another learn...more
Blake Bolin
Feb 12, 2014 Blake Bolin rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who are learning about imagrating
I think that the book is great. The book is about a boy who comes to America and learn about native people.My favorite part is when Moon Shadow, the main character goes to a camp. The reason why is because he starts to learn how to live like Americans.Moon Shadow is a 8 year old chines person who needs to learn much before he can live like a american. This is a fiction book that takes place in the 1900's and looks like a nonfiction book. I would rank this a 4 star because it feels so close to a...more
So far it's pretty good!!!!!
Apr 29, 2014 Emily rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Historical fiction lovers
Dragon Wings is a novel by Laurence Yep that was set at the turn of the 20th century. It is about a boy, Moon Shadow, who lives with his mother in China, while his father is in America working toward a better future for his family. His father, Windrider, decides to have his son (whom he has never seen) come and live with him in America. At this point, the story becomes about the struggle for Moon Shadow to accept this new world and culture, even though his "kind" are not kindly looked upon.

Jonah Tarmu
Moon Shadow was eight years old when he left China to join his father, Windrider, in San Francisco's Chinatown. After a few years of living in the Chinese community, Moon Shadow and his father moved to a stable behind Miss Whitlaw's boarding house, where Windrider can build his flying machine and Moon Shadow will be safe from street violence. Moon Shadow quickly learns to read and write English and in turn teaches Miss Whitlaw and her niece about Chinese dragons and other Chinese traditions. Des...more
It is 1903, and Moon Shadow lives in China with his mother; a few months before Moon Shadow was born, his father, Windrider, left for America, the Land of the Golden Mountain, to earn money which he sends back to his family in China. Now Windrider has sent for the eight-year-old Moon Shadow to join him. When Moon Shadow meets his father, he finds out Windrider's true dream, to fly, and slowly he grows to believe in Windrider's dream, even though it's keeping them from sending for Moon Shadow's...more
This book is a boy named Moonshadow. He started off living in China while his father was living in America. He is working there to make money for his family and try to eventually bring them over to San Francisco. He goes and moves to America to live with his father and all his relatives. Moon shadow’s father had a dream that he use to be a dragon, ever since then he has always wanted to fly. Moon shadow and his father then moved to live with white people “demons”. They learned that they were no...more
Dragon Wings is a novel by Laurence Yep that was set at the turn of the 20th century. It is about a boy, Moon Shadow, who lives with his mother in China, while his father is in America working toward a better future for his family. His father, Windrider, decides to have his son (whom he has never seen) come and live with him in America. At this point, the story becomes about the struggle for Moon Shadow to accept this new world and culture, even though his "kind" are not kindly looked upon.

Kim Kanofsky
Although this book seemed to start rather slowly, I found it an interesting read. As I read more and more historical fiction (although the author states that this is more historical fantasy than historical fiction), I seem to enjoy them more. The complex relationship between a father and son is given excellent thought as well as the treatment of Chinese-Americans in the early 1900s.
Moon Shadow leaves his mother and grandmother behind in China to live with his father, Windrider. The difficult jo...more
Mar 09, 2010 trina rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who were dragons/tang in a former life
this is a really good book. this is what books for children should be! it's original, it's engaging, it's honest, it's didactic, there're likable characters, there's history... i enjoyed this book a lot. whereas certain books i remember reading for school, especially books written from the emigrant perspective, were good for the history but not necessarily the story, this book has both. you get a look at the hardships faced by chinese immigrants to san francisco in the early 20th century- the po...more
One in a series, Dragonwings can also stand on its own and stand on its own it most certainly does. Seeing America through the eyes of a young immigrant is a treasure enough, but being able to follow him through his journey to somehow combine his own culture with what is expected from those around him is a unique perspective and a must-do experience. As an educator it has helped me to better understand my international students and their families and I am certain that reading this book would eas...more
Being a reluctant reader I wasn't really thrilled with the idea of the book "Dragonwings" by Laurence YEP that my mom recommended for independent reading. She had it as required reading for a Children's Literature class she was taking while in college. I thought it was going to be mainly about kite flying but hey you can't judge a book by its cover. But as It turned out my mom was right, I liked this book a lot. "Dragonwings" is filled with adventure, the coming of age, culture, and history that...more
I read the book "Dragonwings" Moon Shadow Lee journeys across the Pacific to join his proud and clever father at the family-owned laundry in San Francisco. The boy recounts their problems with prejudice, as well as the kindness of uncles and cousins. Father and son must leave the protection of the family to move out of Chinatown, but they find refuge with a generous and friendly landlady. Once they have successfully established a repair business, they turn their attention to making a flying mach...more
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Dragonwings 1 4 Oct 28, 2013 02:13PM  
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Born June 14, 1948 in San Francisco, California, Yep was the son of Thomas Gim Yep and Franche Lee Yep. Franche Lee, her family's youngest child, was born in Ohio and raised in West Virginia where her family owned a Chinese laundry. Yep's father, Thomas, was born in China and came to America at the age of ten where he lived, not in Chinatown, but with an Irish friend in a white neighborhood. After...more
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“And all of a sudden I saw that if life seems awfully petty most of the time, every now and then there is something noble and beautiful and almost pure that lifts us suddenly out of the pettiness and lets us share in it a little.” 4 likes
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