Book Highlight: Bye! Bye! Dinosaur Circus • Bye Bye! 恐龍馬戲團
I picked this one up cause the cover had colourful dinosaurs, and my son loves dinosaurs.
I figured even if it was just some cute story about dinos, it'd be worth it. But surprisingly, there was actually a lot more to take away from the story. The book touches on some social issues (in a light and kid-friendly way) that can lead to interesting discussions with your kids.
Here's the premise: Some rich monkey boss opens a dinosaur circus in Monkey Town. It draws many kids (and adults) to go see it.
But once the curtains drop and the kids look behind the scenes, they realize the caged dinosaurs were not happy at all. They were trapped and forced to perform, simply because folks at Monkey Town wanted to be entertained.
The kids protest, but they're given the standard PR excuses of how the dinosaurs are better off "employed" at the circus than wherever they were before.
The kids don't give up however. They rally their friends and teachers to boycott the circus completely, and their efforts paid off! The circus finally shut down and the dinosaurs were released back into the wild ♥️
There's a LOT to unpack here: the notion that all lives are valuable and thus deserve equal rights, to standing up for social issues you care about, to learning that small grassroots efforts can be effective...
Plus, I believe this is written by a Taiwanese author, so the prose is very natural (can't say the same for all translated books).
It's also nice that, while the topic is deep, it's not very wordy. You can see in the photos that there are usually at most one or two sentences per spread. That, along with the beautiful and colourful illustrations, makes this book pretty accessible at a young age.
Get your copy here: Bye! Bye! Dinosaur Circus • Bye Bye! 恐龍馬戲團