Monday, January 23, 2006

Review: My Father's Shop

My Father's Shop is an entertaining, informative, and beautifully illustrated picture book.

Written and illustrated by Satomi Ichikawa, My Father's Shop tells the tale of Mustafa and the day he understood his father's advice ("you must learn some foreign languages") was not "boring."

Mustafa's father runs a carpet shop in Morocco. One day, Mustafa finds a beautiful carpet with a hole in it. He convinces his father to give it to him in exchange for a promise to learn languages. As soon as he receives the carpet, however, Mustafa runs out into the street to show off in the market.

An odd thing happens, though. A rooster begins to follow Mustafa and people stop to talk to the boy and his new friend. (In a nice touch, the rooster's coloring complements the rug.) Mustafa learns how roosters crow in French, Spanish, English, Japanese and can boast to his dad that he "can speak rooster in five languages."

Originally published in France, My Father's Shop is new in the States from Kane/Miller.

To hear the rooster crow in twenty different languages, take a look at bzzzpeek.