Goldfish and Chrysanthemums

By Pacific Reader

The story is a portrait of an increasing rarity in contemporary America: a multigenerational family under one roof. It’s also a sweet lesson in how family members show love for one another: Ni Ni through the meals she prepares and Nancy through her gift. The author and illustrator bring the characters to life with finely observed details of family life. But while Goldfish and Chrysanthemums is ultimately uplifting, it also has an undeniable undercurrent of sadness. In her portrait oan old woman looking on a part of her life in a faraway land, Cheng hints at a complexity of emotions not often found in children’s books.