Friends Are Friends, Forever

by Dane Liu (Author) Lynn Scurfield (Illustrator)

Friends Are Friends, Forever
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade

A picture book based on the author's own immigration story, the infinite impact of friendship, and passing on love and kindness around the world.

On a snowy Lunar New Year's Eve in Northeastern China, it's Dandan's last night with Yueyue. Tomorrow, she moves to America. The two best friends have a favorite wintertime tradition: crafting paper-cut snowflakes, freezing them outside, and hanging them as ornaments. As they say goodbye, Yueyue presses red paper and a spool of thread into Dandan's hands so that she can carry on their tradition. But in her new home, Dandan has no one to enjoy the gift with--until a friend comes along.

Publishers Weekly

Based on Liu's personal experiences emigrating from Changchun, China, to North Carolina, this earnest, poetic narrative ("Nainai's stories chime in my ears./ Garlic and ginger tickle my nose./ I close my eyes to remember everything") follows Dandan, a Chinese child, and best friend and neighbor Yueyue. When Dandan must move after the Lunar New Year, the friends enjoy their paper-cutting ornament tradition for the last time, and Yueyue gives Dandan supplies for next year. But Dandan has difficulty making new friends--that is, until meeting pale-skinned, freckled Christina, who eventually partakes in the Lunar New Year festivities with Dandan's family. Scurfield's cartoonish art--drawings rendered in pencil, colored with ink, and digitally collaged--adds levity to a sensitive story. At once culturally nuanced and universally heartfelt, this picture book debut will resonate with anyone who has ever had to leave a friend behind--and managed to make a new one. Back matter includes an author's note, more information on Lunar New Year, and instructions on how to make a snowflake. Ages 4-8. (Dec.)

Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Dane Liu

Dane Liu was born in China and spent her teenage years in the U.S. and Canada. In 2018, We Need Diverse Books awarded her a year-long mentorship. Friends Are Friends, Forever is her first picture book, and she lives in Portland, Oregon.

Lynn Scurfield
is a mixed media illustrator based just outside of Toronto, Canada, who has worked on a variety of projects in newspapers, magazines, comics, and children's publishing. Her books include Friends Are Friends, Forever and Hold That Thought!

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
January 20, 2022
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books starred, 11/01/21

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