Happy Belly, Happy Smile

Happy Belly, Happy Smile by Rachel Isadora

Every Friday night, Louie has dinner at his Grandpa Sam’s restaurant in Chinatown.  He watches the fish in the tank, visits with the chefs in the kitchen, and listens to the waiters calling to each other.  Then it is time to eat.  Louie and his grandfather use chopsticks to eat their rice, dumplings, egg rolls, and chow mein.  The dinner finishes with a fortune cookie.

Children of all races and ages will see some of their favorite things about eating out at a Chinese restaurant.  They will also be thrilled to glimpse the hidden, steamy world of the kitchen.  Isadora tells a simple story in only a few words on each page.  The book is very visual with her illustrations in collage and oils.  Her interesting use of lines and texture are most impressive when dinner is served.  The paper becomes mouthwateringly edible.

Recommended for story times on food, this book will have everyone sharing their own favorite Chinese meal.  Appropriate for ages 2-4.

Reviewed from library copy.

Also reviewed by TheHappyNappyBookseller.