December 2007 Archives
What does this have to do with multicultural books? Not too much, but there are quite a number of multicultural titles in their listing so far, and you can browse by geographic area. They have many books that we carry in our catalog, which is nice to see (no Shen's Books yet-- you can bet I'll be working on that).
Best of all, you can embed a bit of code to put on your own website our blog, and your readers can look through a book right there. Click on the book below, and click to "turn" the pages. How cool is that?!
• The Américas
• Middle East
(Thanks to Mother Reader for the link)
Today's Book: Lowji Discovers America by Candace Fleming
Today' Question: Was the writing well-paced?
Yes, definitely! Especially with humorous books, the timing needs to be excellent to achieve true hilarity. I thought Candace Fleming did an excellent job in portraying Lowji as a truly funny, yet thoughtful, boy. Each short chapter in this easy middle reader forwards several aspects of the story at once: Lowji's adapting to a his new country (moving from Bombay, India to a small town in Illinois would cause anyone pause!), his summer boredom without any friends, his hope for a a pet, and the mystery of the five-toed footprints. Throw in a crotchety old neighbor, wonderful parents who understand the balance of Indian tradition with American culture, and a whole bunch of funny animals, and Fleming gets it just right.
Even on a sentence-by-sentence level, I love the pace of the humor.
Lowji is such a cutie. And the book is more about being new, finding friends, and making the best of your situation (in his case, no pets!) than about being an immigrant. But Lowji's Indian culture, language, and way of thinking pervades the book without you noticing, making the book a wonderful combination of the two.
"Landlady Crisp," I say.
"Are you still here?" she asks. Her words snap like the firecrackers Bape and I light every Indian independence day. "What do you want?"
I take a deep breath. "A pet," I say. "A dog."
"No pets!" says Landlady Crisp. She scrubs the floor.
"A cat?" I say. "A cat would be nice."
"No pets!" she says. She scrubs harder.
I pause. I do not think I should ask for a horse, so instead I say, "A hamster? A gerbil? A teeny, tiny mouse?"
Here's a challenge: can you name all twelve artists represented?
Emily Jiang is a writer of children's and YA literature. She also blogs at TLeaf Readings.
Shen’s Books is a publisher of multicultural children’s literature that emphasizes cultural diversity and tolerance, with a focus on introducing children to the cultures of Asia.
Through books, we can share a world a stories, building greater understanding and tolerance within our increasingly diverse communities as well as throughout our continuously shrinking globe.
Multicultural Author/Illustrator Websites and Blogs
Other KidLit-Related Places to Visit