Let me tell you a story. First of all, this is my adorable friend Rachel Noorda. (Formerly, the Miss Rachel Chase.) Once upon a time, Rachel and I knew each other in the first grade. You should see us then. We were adorable. One time, at lunch recess I tied Rachel’s coat to the fence (not maliciously, mind you) because we were playing house and she was being the naughty baby and so I determined that was the appropriate punishment. Unfortunately, when recess ended, I couldn’t untie her so I had to go tell my wonderful first grade teacher, Miss Leaver, that I had tied my friend to the fence. (Can you say mortifying?!) We stayed friends until I moved in the fourth grade.
Well, as it turns out, Rachel and I studied the same thing in college. And we rekindled our friendship on a lovely study abroad to the United Kingdom. Which, coincidentally, is where Rachel lives now with her lovely husband Rob.
Rachel is amazing. She is 25 years old and working on completing her PhD in Publishing. In fact, Rachel and Rob have recently started a publishing company! It’s called Thunderstone Books. They specialize in picture books that help children to develop bilingually. Isn’t that the coolest?
Rob speaks Mandarin Chinese because of (I think) his LDS Mission. (Fun fact: His speaking of Chinese was the reason he and Rach met. He was her TA at BYU!) So, Mandarin/English books are their main focus.
Currently, the have 2 books available: Picturing Chinese and Monkey Gains his Powers. And you guys, they are cool!
Picturing Chinese is a basic introduction to some Chinese characters. The illustrations are wonderful–they show how each character is similar in shape and form to the word it represents.
In Monkey Gains his Powers, they’ve taken an old Chinese legend–a monkey named Sun Wukong–and added graphic novelesque illustrations, as well as a simplified version of the story. And the best part is this: THE STORY IS IN ENGLISH AND MANDARIN!
So, my friends, you should really check these out! Especially since it’s CHINESE NEW YEAR! WHAT BETTER WAY TO CELEBRATE????? I can’t think of one. Well, maybe you could eat some Chinese food too, but this way is probably better for your brain. Happy language learning and Chinese New Year!