Norman, Speak!Book - 2014
Norman, Speak! tells the comical yet thought-provoking story of a boy and his family who adopt a dog that just can't seem to learn the things other dogs do.
Overwhelmed by dogs in need at their local animal shelter, a young boy chooses Norman, the stray that's been there the longest. But, upon bringing him home, the family quickly learns that Norman won't respond to commands. He doesn't even know his own name.
During a chance encounter with another dog owner in the park, the family is very surprised to learn the reason for Norman's confusion; he "speaks" Chinese instead of English! And so the family enrolls in a language class, determined to understand their uniquely loveable pet.
The humorous text, from award-winning author Caroline Adderson, and Qin Leng's delightful illustrations combine to create a picture book that will be enjoyed by readers (and dogs) no matter what language they speak.
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This picture book features a stumpy-tailed, friendly little dog, “Norman”, who, after being adopted from a pet shelter (because he has been in the shelter longer than any other dog), is delighted with his new home and family.
The family quickly comes to love their new pet, but they soon notice that he doesn’t respond to any of their commands, even the simplest. They conclude that he although is very loveable, Norman simply isn’t a very intelligent dog.
One day, a trip to the park proves otherwise. The family see Norman responding quickly and enthusiastically to the commands of a stranger who is speaking in an unknown (to the family) language. Then the man tells the family, “Your dog understands Chinese. Did you know that?”
The family members then realize that their new pet is actually quite clever but simply doesn’t understand English - just as they do not understand Chinese.
Wishing to be able to communicate with Norman, they soon enroll in a Chinese language class.
Illustrated in ink by artist Qin Leng, this heartwarming story about making assumptions, language diversity and empathy is both thought-provoking and humorous.
Caroline Adderson is also the Canadian author of the popular Jasper John Dooley series of chapter books.
** Recommended for ages 4 to 8 years.
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