What's the hook?A fascinating and moving autobiographical novel. What are the themes?Different cultures, families/generations, friendship, school life and the individual vs society. Teaching points?Excellent for multicultural work, as it is set against a background of life in Japanese occupied China. Ideal for exploring narrative structure as it is told simply as a series of snapshots. Comparative work opportunities as it includes the original story of Cinderella that originated in the Tang dynasty (AD 618-908).