Chinese Jewish connections go back a millennium, probably first during the Song dynasty when Persian Jewish traders traveled along the Silk Road and reached ancient Kaifeng, as Erica Lyons writes in her author’s note at the end of her new picture book, Zhen Yu and the Snake, illustrated by Reina Metallinou.
“Everybody has their own Hong Kong story,” begins the introduction to Don Mak’s Once Upon a Hong Kong. Over a series of 18 illustrations, Mak has the opportunity to tell his story. Mak takes readers on a journey through daily Hong Kong life—from Hong Kong Park to Temple Street to Lantau Island.
Chinese Art Since 1970: The M+ Sigg Collection and its sister volume, M+ Collections Highlights are the handsome (and befittingly large) catalogs for M+, Hong Kong’s Herzog & de Meuron-designed museum of modern and contemporary visual culture which opened to the public in November of 2021.
When the two immigrant parents in Zeno Sworder’s latest illustrated book go to the baker asking for a cake for their son, the baker asks for something different instead of money. “Five centimeters should do it,” says the baker. “Your height, of course.”
On first glance, one might see the title My Strange Shrinking Parents and the cover illustration of a child with blue school shorts, white knee-high socks and black polished shoes towering over his mother and father dressed in a blue-collared shirt and suspenders and think that Melbourne-based writer and artist Zeno Sworder is writing a fairytale (or a “tall tale” as the cover text describes).
Half a year on from the publication of India: A History in Objects, the British Museum and Thames & Hudson have released a new volume of the same vibrant format on Southeast Asia, an endeavor at least as ambitious as that for the Subcontinent: “it is hardly possible to be comprehensive,” as Alexandra Green modestly admits in her introduction.
With half of the world going back to school now, two new picture books address issues that kids can encounter in the classroom. Sheetal Sheth’s Making Happy is illustrated by Khao Le. Anoosha Syed has written and illustrated That’s Not My Name.