Last fall I was in a bookstore in Hong Kong and came across Ellen WY Leou’s children’s picture book, Lulu the Hong Kong Cat. I even remember my friends telling me that it’s a fun book my kids would love. But I was running late for lunch with other friends and was going to two other bookstores in next 24 hours, so figured I would pick one up there.
As goes the golden rule of travel, when you see something you want it’s best to buy it then. You never know if you’ll see it elsewhere after that. And that’s what happened on that trip. The other bookstores didn’t sell this book.
I’ve been thinking of it ever since and even asked a friend if she could pick one up for me before her trip to Chicago. But she couldn’t find a copy either. So when my mom went to Hong Kong last month, I thought I’d give it one more try.
And voila! My mom walked into a Hong Kong bookstore and asked for it. She gave it to my kids yesterday, on Mother’s Day, and my 8 year-old daughter read it to my 5 year-old son on the car trip back to our house.
It was definitely worth the wait!
The story is fun and involves different parts and personalities of Hong Kong. Lulu lives in a high rise on Hong Kong Island. One day she walks down many flights of stairs in search of a dim sum restaurant. But soon she finds that she’s lost her way.
As she tries to find her way back home, she encounters other cats, but also a rat and a gang of roaches. One cat is a diligent worker; two other cats are fashionistas; the roaches and rat probably need no explanation.
Lulu is out for the whole day and sees different parts of Hong Kong Island. When she finally recognizes her surroundings, she realizes that going on a big adventure isn’t as precious as just being home with her friends and family.
My kids told me all about the book before I got a chance to read it myself. “Lulu gets into lots of trouble,” one said. “Lulu goes all over Hong Kong,” the other told me.
I’m so glad I asked my mom to see if she could find a copy of the book. Ellen Leou has a couple other books out, including a counting book about traditional Chinese toys. I think that will be my next book quest!