Friday, June 26, 2009

Recommended Children's Books with Asian Themes

These are four excellent books with Asian themes that we would like to recommend for parents looking for something special:

Fatimah's Kampung by Iain Buchanan. Unusual artworks and tales and parables drawn from the realities of industrialisation, economic development and traditional kampong ways of life are all bought together in this unusual elegaic story of a contemporary Malaysian family. Yes, it is presented as a story or children but any thoughtful person will be affected by the situations presented. It has been thoughtfully reviewed by Amir Muhammad and Sharon Baker.

Hachiko Waits by Newman Leslea. Inspired by the true story of Hachi, the faithful dog in Japan that would wait at the train station for its master long after the man had died. This is a profoundly touching story about loyalty and devotion, suitable for readers aged 8 years and older.

Buddha At Bedtime by Dharmachari Nagaraja. Buddha at Bedtime is a collection of read-aloud stories that will draw children into enchanting new worlds and enable them to discover a treasury of Buddha wisdom. This compendium of twenty stories, all re-telling of classic Buddhist tales, includes the tale of The Kind and Wise Stag with its message of forgiveness and the story of The Elephant and the Dog about the importance of friends.

Horse Songs: The Naadam Of Mongolia by Ted and Betsy Lewin. Every summer, Naadam festivals are held all around Mongolia to celebrate the country's most popular sports: wrestling, archery, and horse racing. The Naadam brings isolated nomads together to take part in events. It is a time for Mongolians to remember centuries of tradition and heritage. Mongolian nomads rely greatly on their horses. "Never shout at your horse," people say. "It is your best friend." In the horse racing events, boys and girls race half-wild horses across the steppe for honour and glory. This book relates the story of Tamir and other young jockeys as they prepare to take part in the Nadaam. Beautiful watercolour illustrations bring this eye-opening tale to life.

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