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The Monkey King: A Superhero Tale of China (Ancient Fantasy Book 4) [Kindle Edition]

Aaron Shepard
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £4.00
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Book Description

If you think Superman or Spiderman has been around a long time, think about Monkey. He has been China's favorite superhero for at least five centuries. He's amazingly strong, he can fly, and he has a few tricks those other superheroes never heard of. And he's always ready to do battle with demons, dragons -- sometimes even the gods.
 
Monkey stars in The Journey to the West, an epic comic fantasy from the sixteenth century. The part retold here is about Monkey's origin and early career -- and the one time he didn't come out on top.
 
For ages 10 and up. Not illustrated!
 
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Aaron Shepard is the award-winning author of "The Baker's Dozen," "The Sea King's Daughter," "The Monkey King," and many more children's books. His stories have appeared often in Cricket magazine, while his Web site is known internationally as a prime resource for folktales, storytelling, and reader's theater. Once a professional storyteller, Aaron specializes in lively retellings of folktales and other traditional literature, which have won him honors from the American Library Association, the New York Public Library, the Bank Street College of Education, the National Council for the Social Studies, and the American Folklore Society.
 
Cover artist Xiaojun Li, a native of Inner Mongolia, was an award-winning children's book illustrator and art director in China before moving to the United States.
 
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"Shepard's Ancient Fantasy series retells portions of epic narratives sure to pique kids' interest. He cannily selects episodes likely to grab the attention of a wide range of middle-graders, [while] his storytelling voice varies to hint at the style of the original. These mini-novels would make fun classroom readalouds, too. No dumb-downs . . . Rated S for Snapped Up." -- S. C. Poe, Route 19 Writers (blog), Apr. 4, 2012
 
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SAMPLE
 
"Here I am, only four hundred years old," said the Monkey King, "and I've already reached the heights of greatness. What is left to hope and strive for? What can be higher than a king?"
 
"Your Majesty," said the gibbon carefully, "we have ever been grateful for that time four centuries ago when you hatched from the stone, wandered into our midst, and found for us this hidden cave behind the waterfall. We made you our king as the greatest honor we could bestow. Still, I must tell you that kings are not the highest of beings."
 
"They're not?" said the Monkey King.
 
"No, Your Majesty. Above them are gods, who dwell in Heaven and govern Earth. Then there are Immortals, who have gained great powers and live forever. And finally there are Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, who have conquered illusion and escaped rebirth."
 
"Wonderful!" cried the Monkey King. "Maybe I can become all three!" He considered a moment, then said, "I think I'll start with the Immortals. I'll search the earth till I've found one, then learn to become one myself!"

Books In This Series (4 Books)
Complete Series

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    Product Description

    About the Author

    --

    Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

    "Here I am, only four hundred years old," said the Monkey King,
    "and I've already reached the heights of greatness. What is left to hope
    and strive for? What can be higher than a king?"

    "Your Majesty," said the gibbon carefully, "we have ever been grateful for
    that time four centuries ago when you hatched from the stone, wandered into
    our midst, and found for us this hidden cave behind the waterfall. We made
    you our king as the greatest honor we could bestow. Still, I must tell you
    that kings are not the highest of beings."

    "They're not?" said the Monkey King.

    "No, Your Majesty. Above them are gods, who dwell in Heaven and govern
    Earth. Then there are Immortals, who have gained great powers and live
    forever. And finally there are Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, who have conquered
    illusion and escaped rebirth."

    "Wonderful!" cried the Monkey King. "Maybe I can become all three!" He
    considered a moment, then said, "I think I'll start with the Immortals.
    I'll search the earth till I've found one, then learn to become one
    myself!"


    Product details

    • Format: Kindle Edition
    • File Size: 691 KB
    • Print Length: 45 pages
    • Publisher: Skyhook Press (10 April 2014)
    • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B004I1KRUK
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Not Enabled
    • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
    • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
    • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #291,422 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
    •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


    More About the Author

    Aaron Shepard is the award-winning author of numerous children's books, as well as books on reader's theater, children's writing, and publishing. He lives with his wife and fellow author, Anne L. Watson, in Friday Harbor, Washington, USA.

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    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Storytelling at it's finest. 19 July 2012
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    I bought this to read with my five year old boy and was slightly worried at how well a text only book would interest him, as all previous books have been the typical young child variety with lots of pictures. I am amazed at how focused he remained as we read a chapter (sometimes 2) per night. Of course I think it helps if you've seen the TV show and are willing to try and mimic King Monkey's voice at the risk of feeling a bit silly ;)

    It was a lot thinner than I expected when it arrived but that's because there's very little "fluff" or bloat in the text of this version with just about everything that happens being interesting, or exciting, and I could tell it was food for his imagination. Great stuff. Of course now I've had to order the tv show box set as he wants to watch that and see Monkey in action! :)
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    5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read For All 10 Jun. 2008
    Format:Paperback
    This is a story about a monkey born from a magic boulder, that was bathed in the energies of Earth and Heaven, quickened by the light of Sun and Moon.

    He became known as the Monkey King when he wandered into the midst of other monkey's and found them a safe home in a cave behind a waterfall. The other monkeys made him their King, which is the highest honor they could bestow on him.

    It was on the Monkey Kings four hundred birthday that he sat complaining that he had reached the heights of greatness. "What is left to hope and strive for he asked?" The Monkey King was told above them were Gods, who dwell in Heaven and Earth. Then there are the Immortals, who have gained great power and live forever. And finally there are Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, who have conquered illusion and escaped rebirth.

    That information was enough for the Monkey King to set off on his own course to become not just a God, or Immortals, but to also become a Buddhas. He wanted it all.

    The Monkey King studied hard for years, but always managed to find himself in trouble. In the end he finds himself trapped and pinned between stones. His head and arms were out, but the rest of his body was hopelessly trapped.

    What trouble could he get into you may ask? Was he pinned forever? I can only say you must read this book for yourself to find the answers.

    Monkey is the most popular figure in all Chinese literature, loved for centuries by young people and adults alike. He is a superhero figure who is cherished even today.

    Excellent read for all.
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    5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly written 21 Nov. 2012
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I used to watch Monkey Magic on TV, when I was younger, not knowing it was based on a story. This book, as stated towards the end, is based on the longer story, and is like a epilogue revealing how the Monkey King came into being, how he got his staff, which again I fondly remember from the TV series, along as how he came to ride on a cloud. It's easy to read with numerous humorous tales. I would highly recommend this to anybody, even if you haven't experienced the TV show. A good and fun read
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    4.0 out of 5 stars A good tail! 24 May 2013
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I like this free download.

    I have found the text easy to read about this old Chinese tale. I remember the TV series of the 80s. I was looking for Oxford Reader type books to share with Spanish teenagers who wish to read in English. I think will fit the bill.

    PS:There is not a spelling mistake in the title, just a play on words, lol.
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    5.0 out of 5 stars Great intro to monkey 8 Dec. 2012
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    This is not the complete Journey to the west but a small bite size snip it that if you haven't read journey to the rest will help you decide if it is for you.

    In reality if you have already read journey to the west I would not bother with this version it only take out text from the originals and will feel incomplete to many fans.
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    4.0 out of 5 stars Nice 7 Jun. 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    This is the 'back story' of the monkey king, how he came to be the super hero of all his escapades. How would humanity survive without their superheros - barely, I suspect.
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    5.0 out of 5 stars Ideal for kids 29 Dec. 2012
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    Plot and action, with minimal descriptive bits to bore kids, so ideal as a bedtime story. Might need to track down the cartoon now!
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