图像来源   Pixabay  网站的PublicDomainPictures

2021 是中国新年的牛年,从公历的 2月12号开始。牛是十二生肖的第2个动物。 传说所有的动物赛跑,前12个动物会成为12生肖。老鼠站在牛的耳朵上过了河,在到终点以前跳下,成为了第一名。牛就成了第二。在中国文化中, 牛有非常正面的意义的因为它在农业上的贡献和拥有很多好的性格,例如诚实和勤劳。作为部分中国新年庆祝活动,为了聚焦悠久而丰富的中国文化,图书馆特别选出得了一些广受好评的中国文学作品。我们也馆藏了大量的中文书籍 点击这里。祝春节和阅读愉快。

Click here for English version

Hong gao liang jia zu / Mo, Yan 红高粱/莫言

Deng dai / Jin, Ha 等待/哈金
一个专注又有野心的医生,孔林,爱上了一个有教育的现代女性 吴曼娜。但是在他年轻的时候, 他的家庭为他选了一个妻子。在决策的整个过程中,让人想起了人们渴望的需求与数百年来智慧的重压而抗争的地方。(译于英文书评)

Di qi tian / Yu, Hua 第七天/余华
杨飞生于一个火车。被他的母亲抛弃,后被一个瑞士年轻人收养,在简单有爱心的环境中长大,他完全没有预备好等待着他和他的国家的暴风雨般的巨变。作为一个年轻人,他寻找着在这个持续自我改造的国家中属于他的位置,却一直处于社会的边缘。在他41岁的时候, 他遇到了一个意外的没有仪式的死亡。他没有钱安葬,所以必须没有目的的无休游走在后世。在七天的过程以后,他遇到了他失去的人们的灵魂。点击阅读英文电子书(译于英文书评)

Ling shan. / Gao, Xingjian 灵山/高行健
诺贝尔奖2000文学奖获得者。‘灵山’是一个优雅难忘的小说,带你的心深深的进入现代中国。交织着无数故事和数不清的难忘人物 -从可敬的道家大师和尼姑, 到神话中的野人,致命的七步蛇, 和放屁的公车。这是主人公的凄美旅程和对自由的寻找。慢慢的,在记忆,想象和感觉的帮助下,他重建了他的个人过去。他哀叹着文化革命对人文和物理生态的对中国的影响。”(译于英文书评)

Balzac and the little Chinese seamstress / Sijie, Dai (英语)巴尔扎克和小裁缝/戴思杰

Jinling shi san chai : chang pian xiao shuo / Yan, Geling 金陵十三钗/严歌伶
“这部短篇小说是由南京大屠杀中的一个真实故事改编的。发生在1937年日军侵略中国的城市。它讲述了一个美国的传教士,发现在胆战心惊的几天中,自己在教会里正在保护一群中国女学生,妓女和受伤的中国士兵。”点击聆听中文有声读物 (译于英文书评)

Huo zhe / Yu, Hua 活着/余华
“在赌博窝点和妓院挥霍了家族的财富后,年青的富贵安顿下来,老实地做一个农民的工作。在国民党军队的逼迫下,他见证了内战的恐怖和匮乏,几年后又回到文革的蹂躏中,面对一连串的苦难。富贵以一头牛作为他最后几年的伴生,他成为了一个硬汉的真实的典范,在这种谦卑的力量的叙述中,他对生命的欣赏有鼓舞的力量。”(译自英文书评) 点击查看电影

San ti / Liu, Cixin  三体/刘慈欣
“获得雨果奖 最佳长篇奖。故事发生在文化大革命时期,一个秘密军事项目向宇宙发送信号以和外星人建立联系。一个濒临毁灭的外星人捕获了信号,并计划入侵 地球。同时在地球上形成了不同的阵营, 有的欢迎高级生物来掌控已经腐败的地球; 有的想抵抗侵略。”(译自英文书评)

The year of the Ox

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

2021 will be the year of the Ox and begins on the 12th February in the Western Calendar.

The Ox is second of the 12-year cycle of animals that appear in the Chinese zodiac. The legend is that there was a race between all the animals to reach the Heavenly Gate and the first twelve in the race would go into the Zodiac. Rat having crossed a river in the Ox’s ear jumped out at the last minute to become the first animal in the race with the Ox coming second. In Chinese culture, the Ox is seen in a very positive light because of its role in agriculture with having many positive attributes such as being honest and hardworking.

As part of our Chinese New Year celebrations and to highlight this rich and ancient culture we have highlighted just a few of the most critically acclaimed Chinese novels in English we have available to borrow. We also have an extensive collection of books in Chinese as well as loads of other Chinese resources and items. Enjoy and Happy New Year!


Red sorghum / Mo, Yan
“Red Sorghum is a novel of family, myth, and memory, set during the fratricidal barbarity of the 1930s, when the Chinese battled both Japanese invaders and each other. [It is] narrated by a young man at the end of the cultural revolution who tells the stories of his father, Douguan; his granddad, the most ruthless and infamous bandit and guerrilla commander in the region; and his grandma who fell in love with the commander when he raped her in the sorghum fields, only three days after her arranged marriage.”(Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

Waiting / Jin, Ha
“Lin Kong, a devoted and ambitious doctor, is in love with an educated, modern woman, Mannu Wu. But, his family chose a wife for him when he was young. Tracing these lives through their summer of decision, this work conjures the texture of daily life in a place where the demands of human longing must contend with the weight of centuries of wisdom.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The seventh day / Yu, Hua
“Yang Fei was born on a moving train. Lost by his mother, adopted by a young switchman, raised with simplicity and love, he is utterly unprepared for the tempestuous changes that await him and his country. As a young man, he searches for a place to belong in a nation that is ceaselessly reinventing itself, but he remains on the edges of society. At age forty-one, he meets an accidental and unceremonious death. Lacking the money for a burial plot, he must roam the afterworld aimlessly, without rest. Over the course of seven days, he encounters the souls of the people he’s lost.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

Soul mountain = Ling shan / Gao, Xingjian
“Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature 2000.  ‘Soul Mountain’ is an elegant, unforgettable novel that journeys deep into the heart of modern-day China.Interwoven with a myriad of stories and countless memorable characters – from venerable Daoist masters and Buddhist nuns to mythical Wild Men, deadly Qichun snakes, and farting buses – is the narrator’s poignant inner journey and search for freedom. Slowly, with the help of memory, imagination, and sensory experience, he reconstructs his personal past. He laments the impact of the Cultural Revolution on the ecology – both human and physical – of China.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Balzac and the little Chinese seamstress / Sijie, Dai
“At the height of Mao’s Cultural Revolution, two boys are exiled to the countryside for “reeducation.” But the boys have a violin to distract them – as well as, before long, a beautiful young tailor’s daughter and a stash of Western classics. Two boys, both sons of doctors, are sent to the top of a mountain for re-education in Mao’s China; an education that involves carting buckets of excrement up and down precipitous paths. They discover instead the discreet charm of bourgeois literature and the local tailor’s attractive daughter.” (Catalogue) Click here to borrow the film adaptation.

The flowers of war / Yan, Geling
“This short novel is based on true events that took place during the Nanking Massacre in 1937 when the Japanese invaded the Chinese city. It tells the story of an American missionary who, for a few terrifying days, finds himself sheltering a group of schoolgirls, prostitutes and wounded Chinese soldiers in the compound of his church.” (Catalogue) Click here to see the availability of the film adaptation.

Overdrive cover To Live, Yu Hua (ebook)
“After squandering his family’s fortune in gambling dens and brothels, the young, deeply penitent Fugui settles down to do the honest work of a farmer. Forced by the Nationalist Army to leave behind his family, he witnesses the horrors and privations of the Civil War, only to return years later to face a string of hardships brought on by the ravages of the Cultural Revolution. Left with an ox as the companion of his final years, Fugui stands as a model of flinty authenticity, buoyed by his appreciation for life in this narrative of humbling power.” (Adapted from Overdrive description) Click here to see the availability of the film adaptation.

The three-body problem / Liu, Cixin
“A Hugo-Award winning tour de force”  Set against the backdrop of China’s Cultural Revolution, a secret military project sends signals into space to establish contact with aliens. An alien civilization on the brink of destruction captures the signal and plans to invade Earth. Meanwhile, on Earth, different camps start forming, planning to either welcome the superior beings and help them take over a world seen as corrupt, or to fight against the invasion. ” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an Audiobook.

This Wednesday, a Chinese crafts event to celebrate the New Year at Johnsonville Library

johnsonville chinese new year event graphicJohnsonville Library is very lucky to be hosting three folk art masters belonging to the Chinese Intangible Cultural Heritage Inheritors. jovchinese-event2 These masters are from the north of China and work towards preserving China’s traditional culture.

They will be running a class in the library demonstrating the art of paper cutting which is used during celebrations particularly Chinese New Year to show joy, happiness and good intentions. They will also bedemonstrating dough modelling and knot art, other forms of traditional folk art.

This event will be held on Wednesday 1st February 10am – 12noon at Johnsonville Library, 5 Broderick Road, Johnsonville. This is a free event suitable for all ages.


庆马年, 做春节大餐. E-books for Chinese new year.

Chinese E-books

Happy Chinese new year! New ebooks have arrived for 2014 — including some delicious cookbooks! Have a browse.

Overdrive cover Chinese Heritage Cooking, by Christopher Tan (eBook)
“The Singapore Heritage Cookbook series documents and preserves the cultural and culinary heritage of the different ethnic groups in Singapore through recipes passed down from generation to generation.Each book is made up of two parts: An introduction that provides an overview of the history and culture of the community in Singapore and a selection of 55–65 recipes. This section will include traditional dishes, dishes that boast a distinct regional variation that makes them uniquely Singaporean as well dishes that have been adapted over time with lifestyle changes. A brief but informative headnote introduces each recipe and explains the history/significance of the dish and/or other interesting facts related to the dish or ingredients used.With its focus on the cultural and culinary heritage of the Chinese, Malays, Indians, Eurasians and Peranakans in Singapore, the Singapore Heritage Cookbook series will be the definitive reference for anyone looking to learn and understand more about the different ethnic groups in Singapore.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover 家常东北菜1000样(1000 China Northeastern Style Home Dishes), 通过  张奔腾 (eBook)
“本书图文并茂,以家常东北菜为主,既有传统名菜,又有新派创新菜。全书分为”凉菜篇””畜肉篇””水产篇””禽蛋篇””豆制品篇””蔬菜、食用菌篇””汤羹炖品篇””甜品篇””燕鲍参翅篇””主食篇”十大类。千余款菜品,投料准确,做法详实,让您足不出户,尽享地道的东北风味。  东北菜俗称”关东风味”,是由辽宁、吉林、黑龙江三省的地方菜点组成。东北菜在中国菜系发展中影响较大,是我国山海关外菜点风格的主要代表。  ”闯关东”的历史潮。将鲁菜带入东北,使关外煮、炖、蒸、烧、焖、烤为主的烹调技法有了新的转变。东北菜口味以咸鲜为主,甜为配,酸为辅,辣为助,酥烂醇香,鲜嫩爽口,具有菜品丰富、季节分明、口味浓郁、讲究造型的特点。优越的地理环境,丰富的物产资源,多民族的饮食习俗,形成了东北菜自己独特的风格。” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover 我的食尚主义:宝贝·爱吃 (Chinese Cooking:Baby Likes Eating), 通过 Zi Yu Ma Ma (eBook)
“看着孩子将碗里的饭餐吃光后打个饱嗝,想必是每个妈妈都盼望的事情吧。但是现实总是会给妈妈们出各种各样的难题,有了《我的食尚主义:宝贝·爱吃(让你的宝贝爱上吃饭)》就不用怕了。《我的食尚主义:宝贝·爱吃(让你的宝贝爱上吃饭)》作者子瑜妈妈拥有国家营养师资格证书,懂得食物的营养搭配,同时她两岁的宝宝又让她懂得如何烹制孩子喜欢的食物。如果你正为孩子的挑食而苦恼,如果你不知道如何搭配孩子的饮食才能营养全面,如果你不知道如何给生病的宝贝搭配膳食,如果你是新妈妈不知道如何烹制孩子的美食,如果你为如何做一道能兼顾小孩和大人的美食而烦恼,别担心,快来学习一下子瑜妈妈的美食经验吧。子瑜妈妈,19楼私房菜美食达人,美食自由撰稿人。《幼儿教育》美食专栏作者,慈耕有机生活营养顾问,国家高级营养师。19楼博客——子瑜妈妈爱米美食坊网络点击率已超过600万。她是一个活泼外向的80后女生,她是一个两岁宝宝的贤惠妈妈,她是一个人气颇旺的美食达人,如果你没有看到子瑜妈妈,你很难将这三者结合在一起。小小子瑜活泼好动,用子瑜妈妈的话说就是每天有用不完的精力。跟天下所有的妈妈一样,子瑜妈妈对子瑜的爱深入到生活的一点一滴,自然也包括了子瑜吃下的每一顿饭。在子瑜妈妈的手里,几样稀松平常的食材会变成色香味俱全又营养的食物,让宝贝轻松爱上吃饭。” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover 3000道从小爱吃的家常菜(3000 Home Dishes That We Like Since Childhood), by 金彪 (eBook)
“作者金彪国际烹饪艺术大师,中国烹饪大师,中国餐饮文化名师,国家高级烹饪技师,国家高级公共营养师,全国餐饮业国家级评委,中国饭店业金牌总厨,法国蓝带美食协会大中华区荣誉主席,吉林大学营养学会常务理事,吉林省烹饪协会副秘书长2008年8月获得世界御厨杨贯一先生之阿一鲍鱼高级研修班结业证书,并获大师亲笔题名”厨艺精湛”。 本书是中国烹饪大师金彪根据自己的成长经历,精心挑选、强力推荐的3000道从小爱吃的家常菜,每道菜肴本着取材简单、营养搭配合理的原则。 全书图文详解,着重介绍每种食材的口味变化,同样的食材多种不同的做法,让您轻松掌握大师的烹饪绝技。” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover 家常粤菜1000样(1000 Cantonese Home Dishes), by 张奔腾 (eBook)
“《家常粤菜1000样》图文并茂,以家常粤菜为主题,既有传统名菜,又有新派创新菜。全书分为”凉菜篇”、”畜肉篇”、”水产篇”、”禽蛋篇”、”豆制品篇”、”蔬菜、食用菌篇”、”汤羹炖品篇”、”甜品篇”、”燕鲍参翅篇”、”主食篇”十大类,千余款菜点,简单易学,让您足不出户,尽享地道的粤式美味。” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover 家庭营养糖水1688例(Chinese Cuisine: The Family Nutrition Sugar Water 1688 Cases), 通过  Xi WenTuShu (eBook)
“《家庭营养糖水1688例(高清版)》全面系统地介绍了各类糖水的做法,按其功效分为养颜糖水、清润糖水、消暑糖水、滋补糖水等,内容丰富,科学实用,图文并茂,装帧精美,字号较大,制作过程详细,语言通俗易懂,非常适合中老年读者参考使用。” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover 我的食尚主义:蜜腊·烘焙时光 (Chinese Cooking:Beeswax-Baking Time), 通过  Mi La (eBook)
“《我的食尚主义:蜜腊·烘焙时光》是一本针对烘焙新手的入门教程,相信初试烤箱的你,绝对能从这本书里找到烘焙的乐趣。《我的食尚主义:蜜腊·烘焙时光》分为四个篇章,在对烘焙的基本工具,基本技巧做了介绍之后,首先介绍了几款不需要烤箱,不需要烘焙基础的甜点的制作,建立烘焙的信心。接下来介绍了烘焙入门的几个基本的款式,打下烘焙的基础。最后根据不同的月份,作者设计了不同款式、不同难易度的烘焙甜品,简单又实用。蜜腊,19楼私房菜美食达人,擅长烘焙甜品制作,设有美食博客——sunny美食&美色。她是公司白领,有着一份繁忙的工作,因喜爱甜食而与烘焙结下不解之缘。她总是在外奔波出差,但网友却总能在半夜看到她博客的更新。在这个浮华的城市里,蜜腊保持着自己特有的生活轨迹,几年如一日地更新着自己的烘焙博客,将自己对于生活的热爱融入到烘焙的点点滴滴。” (Overdrive description)

Chinese new year

Our stories & traditions : Chinese Spring Festival!

Iimage: courtesy of Wikimedia CommonsThis wonderful addition to our Community Stories page was sent through by Jinyun. If you’d like to read more stories from our community, head over to our Community Stories & Traditions page — you can even contribute your own!

The Spring Festival is the most important festival for Chinese people and is the time all family members get together, just like Christmas. As the world’s largest mass migration, people from all over China travel home to celebrate the Spring Festival. This year will be The Year of the Snake.

The Spring Festival falls on the 1st day of the 1st lunar month, often late January or early February. However, in China, the Spring Festival actually starts on the 23rd day of the 12th lunar month and will last till the mid of the 1st lunar month of the next year. Now Chinese people have a seven day holiday for the Spring Festival.

The 23rd day of the 12th lunar month is called “Xiaonian”. On that day, people worship the Kitchen God. According to Chinese legend, the Jade Emperor sends a kitchen god to every family to supervise what the family members do in the whole year. Then the kitchen god will go back to report the good or evil of the family on “Xiaonian”. And then the Jade Emperor will decide whether to give rewards or punishments to the family. In order to get rewards and avoid punishments, when people are worshipping the kitchen god on “Xiaonian”, they usually set their best food before the portrait of the kitchen god and cover the mouth of the kitchen god with a special kind of sugar (Zhimatang), wishing the kitchen god to put in good words for the family. The 24th day of the 12th month is cleaning day. People clean the house from top to bottom inside and outside as well as their clothes, bedclothes and all their utensils to get rid off all the bad luck gathered from the previous year. It’s called “the day of seeing spring in”.

On the 27th day of the 12th lunar month, people shower or bath and go shopping.

Shops are busy as everybody goes out to buy what they need for the Spring Festival including food, decorations, new clothes and shoes for the children and gifts for the elderly.

Then people start decorating their clean houses. All the door panels will be pasted with Spring Festival couplets, highlighting Chinese calligraphy with characters on red paper. The content can be good wishes or good luck. Also, pictures of the god of doors and wealth will be posted on front doors.

The Chinese character “fu” (meaning blessing or happiness) is a must. The character put on paper can be pasted normally upside down, as in Chinese the “reversed fu” sound means “fu comes”. Some people raise two big red lanterns on both sides of the front door and some people paste red paper-cuttings on windows.

Then the important Spring Festival Eve dinner comes. The meal is more luxurious than usual. Fish and Toufu cannot be excluded, as in Chinese, their sound means abundance and richness. And people are not allowed to finish the whole fish, which means you always have enough for the future. After the dinner, the whole family will sit together and stay up to see the New Year in, which is called “Shousui”.

Getting up early on the New Year day, everybody dresses up. People greet their parents first. Then children will get money wrapped up in red paper. People in northern China will eat “jiaozi” (dumplings) for breakfast, as they think “jiaozi” sounds like “bidding farewell to the old and ushering in the new”. Also, the shape of the dumpling is like a gold ingot from ancient China. So people eat them and wish for money and treasure.

Southern Chinese eat “niangao” (New Year cake made of rice flour) on this occasion, because “niangao” sounds like “higher and higher, one year after another.”

Don’t clean for the first few days of the Spring Festival – if you do any sweeping during this time, you risk sweeping away your good luck.

Lighting fireworks was once the most typical custom on the Spring Festival. People thought the exploding sound could help drive away evil spirits. However, such an activity was banned in big cities once the government considered security, noise and pollution. As a replacement, some people buy CDs with firecracker sounds to listen to, some break little balloons to get the sound, while others buy firecracker handicrafts to hang in the living room.

A series of activities such as lion dancing, dragon dancing, and temple fairs will be held for days. The Spring Festival then comes to an end on the Lantern Festival which is the 15th day of the first lunar month.

No matter where they live, Chinese people all over the world celebrate the Spring Festival.

To see how Chinese people in Wellington celebrate the Spring Festival this year, go to the Chinese New Year website, or check out the Wellington City Council’s Summer City programme

February Festivities: Waitangi Day, Wellington’s Chinese New Year Festival, & Valentine’s Day

We’ve had a lot on already this month (history, culture and remembrance on Waitangi Day), and a lot still to come – with cultural fun and food at Wellington’s Chinese New Year Festival this weekend and romance in the air ahead of Valentine’s Day next week!

We’ve collected some facts about this month’s celebrations for you from our collection – have a read!

Waitangi Day – Monday 6th February 2012

Treaty of WaitangiWaitangi Day was observed this year on Monday 6th February. Public holidays are always enjoyable, but it’s important to remember that Waitangi Day is much more than a day off:

  • On the 6th of February 1840, representatives of the British Crown and over 500 Maori chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, what is considered to be New Zealand’s founding document.
  • Since then this has led to debate over exactly what was agreed to at Waitangi. Most Maori chiefs signed the Maori language version of the Treaty – and there are some important differences between the English and Maori versions of the Treaty
  • February 6th was first officially commemorated in 1934, and it has been a public holiday since 1974
  • Prior to 1934, most celebrations of New Zealand’s founding as a colony were marked on 29 January, the date on which William Hobson arrived in the Bay of Islands
  • This day was also known briefly as New Zealand Day

Read more about the Treaty:

Wellington’s Chinese New Year Festival – 11th & 12th February 2012

Chinese New Year LanternChinese New Year fell on January 23rd this year, and to celebrate Wellington will be having a Chinese New Year Festival on the 11th and 12th of February. The se celebrations are brought to you by the Asian Events Trust in partnership with Wellington City Council, and information about events happening over the weekend can be found at: chinesenewyear.co.nz

Some facts for you:

  • Chinese New Year is traditionally a Spring festival, and one of the most important festivities in the lunar calendar
  • Celebrations take place over 15 days
  • 2012 is the Year of the Dragon
  • The most common Chinese phrases for saying “Happy New Year” are “Gong Xi Fa Cai” (Mandarin) and “Gong He Faat Choy” (Cantonese)

Chinese New Year Dragon

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Valentine’s Day – Tuesday 14th February

CupidYes, we’re just about at that time of year when florists and candy stores try to persuade us to purchase gifts for loved ones. But is it all just a commercial gimmick? Every wondered what this lovey dovey day is actually all about? Well look no further, we have some answers. Valentine’s Day…

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Celebrating Chinese New Year

To celebrate the Chinese New Year, the Central Library put on some red colour into its displays on the first floor. The Chinese Embassy was very obliging and lent us some wonderful decorations and posters which perfectly completed our display.

Whether you are looking for books in Chinese, or on Chinese astrology, architecture, art, history and much more, check out our online catalogue or come to our libraries and browse our wide collection.

Happy New year of the Rabbit!

Chinese New Year Thumbnail