小紅嘴鳥的奇幻飛行 Book Review

Like my reviews? Want more tips and advice on how to teach your kids Chinese? Want someone to just give you an Action Plan that you can follow? Check out my book (affiliate link), So You Want Your Kid to Learn Chinese.

Title: 小紅嘴鳥的奇幻飛行 (xiao3 hong2 zui3 niao3 de5 qi2 huan4 fei hang2)/The Red Beak Bird’s Imaginary Flight

ISBN: 9789869292061

Author/Illustrator: Agathe Demois/Vincent Godeau

Publisher: 親子天下

Level: Beginning Reader, Zhuyin, Fiction, Picture book

Summary: Translated from the French original.

Every year, all the birds in the world gather at a special tree to meet. This story follows a bird with a red beak as it flies half way around the world to get to the meeting place. Each page talks about what the bird sees on the way there.

Sample Pages: 

If you notice where the magnifying glass is, the man is naked underneath his clothes and the picture reveals his penis.

This picture reveals the butt of the monkey.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

5 Minute Book Review: Such a fantastic and super cool book. Glow Worm (4) loved it immediately and would look at it daily when we bought it last year in Taiwan. My older two kids, ~8 and ~6, also find the book fascinating and love looking at the incredibly detailed illustrations.

The reason it’s so cool is because it comes with a red “magnifying” glass. It doesn’t really magnify anything, but it does color everything red. Because all the illustrations are in red or blue ink, when you put the magnifying glass over the drawings, since the magnifying glass is red, the red illustrations disappear, revealing the blue ones.

In fact, this feature of the book is so fun and exciting that I didn’t even read the book to the kids until recently. They never wanted to hear the story – just wanted to look at the illustrations and see what the magnifying glass uncovered.

Be forewarned, there are two semi-questionable pictures in the book. One is that there is an illustration of a penis (I included it in the sample pages) and the other is an illustration of a monkey’s butt. I don’t particularly care about either of them, but my kids are particularly fascinated by them.

Also, it’s really hard for me to read the blue print. You could say, read them through the red magnifying glass. And then I would laugh at you because there is no way I’d be able to pry it out of Glow Worm’s hands.

Highly recommend.

Here’s is a video of Glow Worm and I flipping through the book.

Did you guys know I wrote a book about how to teach your kids Chinese? It’s chock full of useful tips, an action plan, and more snark than your typical how-to. (affiliate link) Please check it out, share, and buy.

四季好蔬菜: Book Review


Title: 四季好蔬菜 (si4 ji4 hai3 su cai4)/Vegetables of the Four Seasons

ISBN: 9789861615233

Authors/Photographs: 文/信誼基金出版社,照片/永豐餘生技丶達志影像

Publisher: 信宜

Level: Beginning Reader, Zhuyin, Picture Book, Non-Fiction, Science

Summary: Introduces some vegetables that grow in every season. Has lots of pictures.

Sample Pages:

Rating: 3/5 stars

5 Minute Review: Well, it is about vegetables. So I wouldn’t say it was very interesting except in an, “Oh, hey. Vegetables,” kind of way.

It certainly is informative. And I suppose Cookie Monster (7) didn’t mind learning and seeing pictures of vegetables he has eaten (and many more he has not).

These are definitely Taiwanese and Chinese vegetables so I guess it is also cultural learning. But again: vegetables. In all four seasons.

To be fair, the book does offer random facts and Cookie Monster enjoyed those. But for the most part, he struggled over the vegetable names because he wasn’t familiar with them and he was very wiggly and antsy.

I am pretty sure this one book took over a week to read because we kept getting distracted and we were both sooooo bored.

No video because I think we both would rather suck on a fork than read this again. But, um, it was useful to learn and go through.

我要吃小孩: Book Review


Title: 我愛吃小孩 (wo3 yao4 chi xiao3 hai2)/I Want to Eat a Child

ISBN: 9789865876135

Authors/Illustrations: 文/希薇安丶東尼歐,圖/多蘿特丶蒙弗列特,譯/蘇㦤禎 (translated from French)

Publisher: 阿布拉教育文化

Level: Beginning Reader, Zhuyin, Picture Book, Fiction

Summary: Archie, the alligator, doesn’t want to eat any more bananas. He wants to eat a child. Archie’s parents are really worried and try to tempt him with yummy foods but he refuses them all. He finally notices a child but is unable to eat her. He goes home, determined to try again.

Sample Pages:



Rating: 5/5 stars

5 Minute Review: From when I first saw this book at Eslite, I had to buy it. It’s ridiculous and cute and has fun illustrations and a silly story. All my kids enjoyed the book from the get go and I was able to read it because it had zhuyin.

Gamera (5) recently chose to read this book out loud to me and did pretty good for the most part. Some characters she didn’t recognize so she used zhuyin. She can be lazy and forgets to use the zhuyin when she doesn’t know a character. Or she starts reading zhuyin and forgets to read the actual characters. I know this will stop once I start having her read more consistently (but I suffer from constant laziness).

Anyhow, Gamera had a relatively easy time reading the story save a few stumbles. The vocabulary is simple and easy to understand. The pictures are bright and fun. It took Gamera about 20 minutes to read all the way through.

Definitely recommend for adults to read to their children (as well as having children learn to read it themselves).

Here is a video of her reading an excerpt (with commentary from Cookie Monster).