Mrs. Harkness and the Panda
Publication Date: March 13, 2012
List Price: $16.99*
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In 1934, Ruth Harkness had never seen a panda bear. Not many people in the world had.
But soon the young Mrs. Harkness would inherit an expedition from her explorer husband: the hunt for a panda. She knew that bringing back a panda would be hard. Impossible, even. But she intended to try.
So she went to China, where she found a guide, built traps, gathered supplies, and had explorers' clothes made—unheard of for a woman in those days. Then she set out up the Yangtze River and into the wilderness. What she discovered would awe America: an adorable baby panda she named Su Lin, which means "a little bit of something very cute."
With breathtaking illustrations from Caldecott Honor artist Melissa Sweet, this little-known true story shares the tale of an adventurous woman who was bold and brave—and the unforgettable journey that helped shape American attitudes toward wildlife.
Melissa Sweet has illustrated more than eighty children's books, including the Caldecott Honor books "The Right Word "and "A River of Words: The Story of William Carlos Williams" both written by Jen Bryant. She also wrote and illustrated "Tupelo Rides the Rails"; "Carmine: A Little More Red", which was a "New York Times" Best Illustrated Children's Book; and "Balloons Over Broadway", a picture book biography that was named a 2011 "Publishers Weekly" Best Nonfiction Picture Book. When she is not in her studio, Melissa can be found taking an art class, hiking with her dogs, or riding her bicycle. She lives with her family in Rockport, Maine.
Starred Review, Booklist, February 15, 2012:
“An engaging, graceful narrative…. Sweet’s Asian style watercolor landscapes are breathtakingly beautiful.”
Starred Review, School Library Journal, February 1, 2012:
“This little gem will be perfect for one-on-one sharing and for those second-grade biography assignments. It’s simply stunning.”