Mei Mei has the six happiest hens in China. She gives them fresh hay and baths, and when she calls to them, Gu-gu-gu-gu-gu! they all run to her as fast as they can. But one of the hens, Daisy was not always so happy. She was the smallest and the other hens used to pick on her, flapping their wings, squawking and pecking. Then one night, Daisy was asleep in a basket when it drifted out onto the river. She woke up facing a barking dog, and suddenly Daisy was doing some pecking, squawking and wing-flapping of her own! And this was only the beginning!
Mei-Mei had the six happiest hens in China. She gave them treats and fresh hay baths, and when she called to them-gu gu gu gu gu!-they all ran to her as fast as they could. But one of the hens, Daisy, was not always so happy. The other hens picked on Daisy and pushed her off the perch every night. Then one day, Daisy is accidentally washed out onto the river in a basket and she soon learns to stand up for herself. When she finds her way home, this plucky little hen is no longer afraid as she bravely takes her place on the roost.
Jan Brett traveled to China to do research for the glorious illustrations in this heart-warming tale of self-esteem and self-confidence. Jan Brett and her husband, Joe, traveled with their daughter-in-law, Yun, and her husband, Sean, to China, the land where Yun was born. As they sailed down the Li River in the Guang Xi Province, Jan was reminded of a favorite story from childhood, The Story of Ping. There were the cormorants, and the fishermen.
But what made a lasting impression was the river itself, with mountains in unusual shapes towering above and small villages along the way with their colorful markets and brightly dressed children.
All of these memories became a backdrop for Daisy's adventures. Why a hen for her spunky heroine? Perhaps Daisy was inspired by Jan's hens at home: Pansy, Bluebell, and Dahlia.
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