Chinese / People's Republic of China
Guituzi (Liu, Jing) (illus.)
Beijing: Zhong xin chu ban she (CITIC Press Group), 2019. –  p.
(Series: Tong xin kan zhong guo yuan chuang hui ben)
Rural life | Modernity | Fishing | Boat | Identity | Self-image | Picture book
White Ravens issue: 2020
Reading age: 4+
A big fishing boat built with the purpose of improving living conditions for the people in a small fishing village witnesses the transformation of the village from a remote and poor place to a modern travel resort. Abandoned as useless, the boat nonetheless protects its people from the onset of a catastrophic typhoon and is later converted into the resort’s children’s funfair. Narrated partly through the boat’s perspective, this picture book is about the changes of life in many parts of China and also presents an anthropomorphic story of a silent boat searching for its self-identity. The combination of acrylic and watercolour conveys a unique effect of vibrant brightness, and is reminiscent of the gravity, tenacity, and pleasure of life itself. Huang Xiaoheng is a young children’s book writer. Guituzi is the illustrator of “Xue ren” (Snowman) and “Ma tou qin de gu shi” (The story of the horsehead fiddle). “Da chuan” received the Golden Prize of the 2019 Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition at the Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair. [FW, ZX]