My friend Jeanne from Mama Baby Mandarin gave me more homework and wanted me to create a list of books that I like for introducing or learning about Taiwan. There are a couple that I like but none are baby books (sorry). Many of them are more about food, life and culture with beautiful images because I find it best to learn about a place through its photos! In addition, everything we read in Mandarin are from Taiwan so many of the traditions, etc., is already embedded in our books. Having said that, there are three categories I can introduce: books with maps for pre-travel studies, cultural stories, and also history books!
Pretty books with maps!
Purchase Link: 台灣最美的地方
Shows you the pretty places in Taiwan like parks, etc.
Purchase Link: 台灣早餐地圖
I love this one because it shows all the yummy foods around Taiwan and what types of foods is popular where!
Purchase Link: 台灣風情地圖
This one combined many artists and their rendition of the places, geography, animals, and everything about Taiwan. It has a little bit of everything.
Purchase Link: 台灣地圖
This one is so cute. It includes all the major cities in Taiwan and what they’re known for. If you’re doing a two or three week trip around Taiwan, this is probably the book that’ll show you what you need to see.
Purchase Link: 台灣歷史故事
This is an easier read since it’s with Zhuyin. They’re short stories about Taiwan history. Is it the most flavorful? No. Is it exciting? No, but it gets the job done in a not so painful way and if you wanted short chapters of things to read, this may be it.
Purchase Link: 台灣歷史全知道
This one is kind of like the above but harder, smaller words, but still with Zhuyin. They do cover some overlapping stories but this one is more detailed.
Purchase Link: 阿亮老師趣說臺灣歷史
This one is middle school level but with nice big words, no Zhuyin and lots of colorful pictures. If your child is okay without Zhuyin, you can try this set!
Purchase Link: 故事臺灣史
This one is like a thick magazine type of set. It has lots of pictures and information is dense but random so it’s kind of a fun read. Great coffee table books or when you want a short article of stuff. It has no Zhuyin and the level is again probably middle school and up.
Purchase Link: 可能小學 愛台灣任務
I love this set because it doesn’t read like a history book. Instead they tell stories and involve Taiwan history in it. Has Zhuyin and good for 4th to 6th grade.
Purchase Link: 說給兒童的臺灣歷史
This is like the staple in everyone’s home. It goes over all the history step by step period by period. It doesn’t have zhuyin but it has accompanying audio that may not follow the text (so it’s kind of sometimes useless for following the words on the page). You could use the audio for long car rides though!
Cultural Story Books
The following are probably what I enjoy more. Everyone loves mythology or the passed down weird creepy stories. I love the ones from Taiwan as well and we have so many versions at home. Here are some that are chapter book style.
Purchase link: 臺灣民間故事嬉遊記全系列
Longer chapter book. Probably fit for third grade reading level and up.
Purchase Link: 臺灣囡仔古
Part of a collection of three books on different countries but this one is about Taiwan. Stories are nicely written. Again, for third grade and up in reading level.
Purchase Link: 妖怪台灣地圖
I love this one. The drawings are to die for inside. However, it’s a hard book. It’s middle school level read and has no Zhuyin support. We love it though! Goes over the monsters that are part of the Taiwan culture!
This is a very small list of what to read to know more about Taiwan. We mostly like monster books at home (because my kids like scary things and they themselves are scary people).
I hope you guys find these helpful!