Cover image for Red is a dragon : a book of colors
Red is a dragon : a book of colors
Thong, Roseanne.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
San Francisco : Chronicle Books, 2001.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 24 cm
A Chinese American girl provides rhyming descriptions of the great variety of colors she sees around her, from the red of a dragon, firecrackers, and lychees to the brown of her teddy bear.
Reading Level:
NP Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 1.8 0.5 59153.

Reading Counts RC K-2 2.3 1 Quiz: 30582 Guided reading level: NR.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction A-B-C- 1-2-3 Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction A-B-C- 1-2-3 Books
PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



Discover shades of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and more as a little girl finds color in all sorts of everyday things. Many of the featured objects are Asian in origin, others universal: red is the dragon in the Chinese New Year parade, green is a bracelet made of jade, and yellow are the taxis she sees on her street. With rich, boisterous illustrations and colors that leap off the page, this concept picturebook will brighten every child's day!

Author Notes

Roseanne Thong is an English teacher who divides her time between Southern California and Hong Kong.

Grace Lin graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 4-7. The creators of Mooncake: A Book of Shapes (2000) offer a companion devoted to colors. Using rhymed verse, a young Chinese American girl introduces onlookers to some of the elements of her world. Many of the items mentioned are of Asian origin (for example, red dragons and firecrackers seen in Chinese New Year parades), but almost all the objects have a universal child appeal. Less familiar items, such as bottle gourds, chopsticks, and lychee fruits, are explained at the end of the book. Lin's simply drawn gouache illustrations, outlined in black, fairly explode with color, and Lin never lets a solid color serve where a pattern (many depicting Asian motifs) can be used. Although some spreads feature as many as 10 different patterns, they never appear cluttered, and the dominant hue is always clear. The endpapers, stripes of multihued dragon scales, are an attractive bonus. This is a must-have for libraries serving Chinese American populations, and it will be a welcome addition to preschool story hours for children of all backgrounds. --Kay Weisman

Publisher's Weekly Review

The gentle primer Red Is a Dragon by Roseanne Thong, illus. by Grace Lin, does for colors what their Round Is a Mooncake did for shapes, in a felicitous meeting between East and West. The girl who narrated the previous book here serves as tour guide through 10 hues, each of which dominates a spread redolent with the saturated colors and intricate patterns of Chinese textiles and paintings. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

PreS-K-A beautiful Chinese dragon in several shades of red writhes across a double-page spread, accompanied by children carrying drums, cymbals, and strings of firecrackers-a fitting start for a concept book about colors. Although many of the objects portrayed are Asian in origin, such as lychees, incense sticks in a pot, and a jade bracelet, most are universal. The attractive illustrations use large areas of vibrant colors overlaid by varied patterns in the same colors. The text in rhyming couplets is less successful; at times the need for a rhyme sometimes outweighs the regard for exact description. Quibbles aside, concept books are always needed and this one offers a peek at Chinese-American culture.-Marian Drabkin, formerly at Richmond Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.