Newly published, just in time for Chinese New Year (January 28, 2017), The Nian Monster by Andrea Wang, with pictures by Alina Chau, features brave and clever heroine Xingling.

Defeated since long ago by the loud sounds, fire, and color red used in celebrating, the Nian Monster overcomes his weaknesses and returns to devour the city on Lunar New Year. To delay the monster, Xingling feeds him long-life noodles, so that he may conquer more cities, fish, for good fortune, and sticky rice cake, so that he cannot open his jaws to blow out the firecracker rocket taking him into the next year!

The author’s note elaborates on many of the cultural traditions mentioned in the text. The story is entertaining and brightly illustrated with depictions of a really very friendly-looking monster.

Recommended for age 4 to 8.