Lui-Perkins has provided the young reader with a captivating book about archeology and Chinese burials of important people. The tomb of Lady Dai and other treasures of Mawangdui have amazed the archeologists who first uncovered them and those who still study the contents of Lady Dai’s tomb.
The most fascinating thing was that her body was so remarkably preserved. Her skin and internal organs had not decayed; therefore, the doctors were even able to perform an autopsy on her. i.e. The contents of her stomach indicated that she had been eating melon shortly before she died. Not only was the body in good condition for a 2,000 year-old-corpse, the tomb contained books and other written information that many had supposed to be destroyed by the Han dynasty. One of the later emperors of the Han dynasty had burned all the books on military, political and health that he could locate because he felt threatened by their contents. To find these in Lady Dai’s tomb and so well-preserved was a miracle.
The text is nicely illustrated with color photographs and drawings. The author has included a timeline, a glossary, a source list, a bibliography, and an index for the reader. Most pages have sidebars of information that help the reader understand more about China two thousand years ago. The books will be useful to anyone who is interested in China or who is interested in archeology in general. I highly recommend its purchase for the middle school through high school libraries.