I picked this up because it was a Newbery award winner, and because I'd rather enjoyed another book by Park, "When my Name was Keoko," which deals with more modern Korean history. This story is also set in Korea, but in the 12th century. It tells of an orphan boy, Tree-Ear, who gradually becomes assistant to a talented potter, and finds himself going on a journey to try to win the potter an Imperial commission. The characters are sensitively drawn and believable, and the small dramas of the tale momentous in feeling. Plus, the reader gets to learn a little bit about Korean pottery, which is very interesting!
This is book ahs an interesting twist on it. It was a good book about an orphan in the 12 century. He longs to work in pottery field, but is stuch with a man named Crane -man. They together, live under a brudge eating scraos of food. Will Tree-ear live to be the new pottery man? Read this book to find about the journy that Tree-ear makes to find out.
Tree-ear is an orphan boy in a twelfth century Korean potters' village. For a long time he is content with Crane-man under a bridge, barely surviving on scrapes of food. All of that changes when Tree-ear sees master potter Min making his beautiful pottery. tree-ear sneaks into Min's workplace and dreams of creating his own pots someday. When accidentally breaks a pit, he must work for the master to pay for the damage. Though the work is long and hard. Tree-ear is eager to learn. Then he is sent to the King's Court to show the master's pottery. Little does Tree-ear know that this difficult and dangerous journey will change his life forever.
This was a great book. I can see why it won the Newbery award. I am an adult who is reading these books to catch up on all the good literature I missed as a young adult. This book would be good for both readers.
The story of the orphaned boy was well written and a page turner. I ordered the book for my 9 year old nephew and decided to read it first. The content is great of various ages. I enjoyed the writer's telling of the story with such Eastern detail. The social customs are spot on target and makes the reasons for such behavior more palatable. Reading the context of the boys circumstances in his culture makes his achievements and travails more vivid. Good read! I can't wait for my nephew to read it so we can talk about it.
This is a Newbery Award-winning children's novel about a 12th-century Korean potter's village, through the eyes of a homeless orphan who works for a talented potter, and by the end of the story becomes his apprentice. I'm not sure it's really worthy of the highest U.S. literary award for a children's book, but it is well written and presents a story set in a time and place that has seldom been written about.
Set in Korea in the 12th century, this is the story of a poor orphan boy, Tree-ear, who lives with his crippled friend Crane-man under a bridge. Surviving on garbage scraps and whatever food they can scrounge, Tree-ear is nevertheless a happy boy. He loves to secretly watch the potters at work, particularly the master Min. When he accidentally breaks one of his pieces, Tree-ear must work for the potter for 9 days to pay for the damage. Thus begins an unorthodox apprenticeship, which slowly develops into a friendship with the gruff old potter and his kind wife. When the king's emissary comes to town, his master is given a chance to win a royal commission, and Tree-ear must travel to the King's Court to deliver samples of Min's work.
I loved the elegant simplicity of this book - it tells of the simple lives of simple people with a quiet grace and serenity that touched me deeply. It's the story of Tree-ear's growing up and coming of age, as well as of friendship and what constitutes family. Well-deserving of the Newbery medal!
"It's not my fault you lost your son, not my fault I'm an orphan! Why must it be father to son? If the pot is made well, does it matter whose son made it?"
A Single Shard is an engaging story about a 12th century Korean boy of twelve who is trying to find his way in life. The boy called Tree-ear does not have a comfortable home and lifestyle, and sheer survival is an issue he faces daily. Although an orphan, he is fortunate enough to have a father-son relationship with the elderly Crane-man, who has taken care of Tree-ear since he was a young child. I really liked the way Park depicted the relationship between these two down-and-outers.
Crane-man provides for Tree-ears basic needs such as food and shelter and gives him instruction and advice about life. Tree-ear obviously loves and respect the old man. In spite of the fact that Tree-ear and Crane-man live under a bridge and share any small amounts of food they are able to beg or gather, Tree-ear seems content with his life to a certain extent. They both have positive attitudes, support each other, and make each other laugh. Tree-ear does the best he can in his situation and has actually come to appreciate his lowly status. Tree-ear recognizes that Crane-man sacrifices a great deal for him and ponders to himself that it seemed his friend spent the entire day figuring out how to transform a handful of weeks and bones into something that resembled a meal. Crane-man is a great example of sacrificial love in the way he deals with Tree-ear. And Tree-ear longs to somehow give him something in return.
Although Tree-ear is a poor, homeless orphan, he is obviously bright and has the potential to accomplish much, if only given the opportunity. After secretly watching the villages most talented potter, Tree-ear develops a growing desire to learn the skill of pottery-making and wants to make a beautiful vase himself. He is by nature a motivated, determined, and clever boy, and he is able to persuade Min to teach him his art. Tree-ear works diligently, even when the potter neither encourages nor helps him. He is always respectful and submissive to authority, which is a reflection of the Korean culture. While Min isnt physically abusive, he never offers Tree-ear the positive feedback or patient instruction that a trainee needs from his master-teacher. But when Min is requested to make and bring samples of his fine pottery work to the court of the king, Tree-ear is assigned the task of making the journey to deliver the vases.
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Tree-ear is an orphan boy in a twelfth-century Korean potters'village.For a long time he is content to live with Crane-man under a bridge.
An adventage is ahead for Tree-ear that will change his life foreever.