Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Read, Read, Read, said the Baby: Squirrel Round and Round: A Bilingual Book of Seasons by Belle Yang

I don't think I've ever had a patron ask for any books in Mandarin, but this looked really cute so I wanted to take a look anyways.

Each page features a simple descriptive sentence of spring with the Mandarin phrase on the opposite side. The language is lovely and includes some more difficult vocabulary, "Spring turns to summer. Watermelons grow sweet on the vine." Some things that may be unfamiliar are included; camellias, yellow watermelons, cicadas, and persimmons, a great opportunity to teach kids some slightly more difficult words.

The paintings are created in gouache. They have thick outlines and rich colors. There is enough detail to hold a reader's interest, but the pictures are blocky and large enough to be easily seen by very young children. The squirrel is in each spread, making a fun seek and find activity.

The last spread has an explanation of tonal marks and the Chinese characters repeated with their pronunciation.

Verdict: Even if you don't have an audience for board books in Mandarin, this is a delightful seasonal board book with lovely art and text. Recommended.

ISBN: 9780763665975; Published 2015 by Candlewick; Borrowed from another library in my consortium

1 comment:

Annette Bay Pimentel said...

I'm fascinated by bilingual books. Thanks for highlighting this one!