Sunday, March 1, 2015

Boxers by Gene Luen Yang

"What is China but a people and their stories."

These two graphic novels are paired together and take place in China during the end of the nineteenth century.  The first novel, Boxers, tells the story of Little Bao, whose village is being disrupted by the “foreign devils” (the Europeans missionaries and soldiers).  Following in the footsteps of his older brothers, Little Bao trains in kung-fu and becomes a leader in the Boxer Rebellion. 

I really enjoyed both of these books.  The graphic novel format was a great way to tell the story of the Boxer Rebellion.  It allowed for a lot of historical detail to be incorporated into the storyline in a fascinating way.  I loved the author used two separate volumes to tell opposite sides of the conflict.  I thought this was a great way to get young adults to think critically about different views of past periods in history and relate it to the present.  I also thought that the usage of mystical elements added a unique perspective on the events.  I would highly recommend this book to others.

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