Sarah's Stars

Mal Peet. Cloud Tea Monkeys
Candlewick Press $20.00 ISBN 978-0-7636-4453-6 52 pg.
Reviewed by Jenny, Age 12

The basket was almost full of small budding sprigs of tea, and Tashi knew right away that it was unusual. The leaves were the color of emeralds and spangled with tiny droplets of water so that the basket seemed full of green light and a rich sweet scent.

Tashi lives in a small village somewhere in the mountains. Every day Tashi and her mother walk down to the tea plantation where her mother works. While Tashi’s mother works, Tashi hangs out with a group of monkeys in their stone hide-a-way. Then Tashi’s mother falls ill. Tashi decides she will go and try to pick tea for her mother. But the person who runs the plantations won’t let her because she is too small! So Tashi decides to turn to her friends, the monkeys, for help!!

Cloud Tea Monkeys was a very interesting book! With lots of color and creativity, it made the perfect book to read aloud to somebody or just sit quietly by yourself and read. There was not too much writing on each page, and the font that it was written in made it a quick and easy read, but it still had a great story line. The illustrator, Juan Wijngaard, drew very cool pictures. They made the writing even more life-like and it looked like the characters could just come alive. I’ve always wondered whether the author writes the story first, or the illustrator draws the pictures first!!! But for Cloud Tea Monkeys it wouldn’t have mattered because they fit each other perfectly!

The cover of Cloud Tea Monkeys was very neat. It showed three almost ghost like monkeys coming from a cup of tea that Tashi was holding. I found that very clever on the illustrator’s part, as the title of the book is Cloud Tea Monkeys.

I think that the moral of this story is that you can find friends in the weirdest of people (or animals, in this case).

Four stars for Cloud Tea Monkeys!

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