Deborah Lau was born in Hong Kong but grew up in Australia. As a child, she loved to read but hated Chinese school: there was too much rote memorisation and not enough fun.
When her daughter turned 3, Deborah searched for Chinese/bilingual books like her beloved English children’s classics: captivating stories with vivid characters told in everyday language…but she struggled. Most are written for Mandarin speakers or assume the adult reader is fluent–and she can’t even read the Chinese menu in a restaurant.
It was hard to keep her daughter interested when she always had to stop reading to look up or explain the Chinese characters and phrases (especially since standard written Chinese is very different to spoken Cantonese). So she wrote a book they could read together…without a dictionary!