“Perfect Picture Book” – Friday


Minji’s Salon

MINJI'sBy:  Eun-hee Choung

Published by:  Kane/Miller Book Pub (March 1, 2008)

Age:  3 – 6 years

Theme:   girls, patience, imagination, multicultural

Opening Lines:  Good morning, madam.  What would you like today?

Synopsis:  When Minji’s  mother heads to the salon and has her hair shampooed, coloured, and curled, Minji a young Korean girl decides to open her own imaginary hair salon and uses the pet dog as her customer.   After  trying on a coloured head band she then slathers a colourful ice cream mixture on the unsuspecting pooch.  Using crayons as rollers and water colours she imitates the routine her mother is subject to at her salon.  With delightful illustrations and minimal text  on the right hand side of the page, shows Minji at work with her dog all the while mimicking the hairdresser working on her mother shown on the left hand pages.   Eun-hee’s clever side by side illustrations give way to sparse professional comments such as “Be patient – beauty takes time,”  “a little colour.”  Minij’s mother returns home to a surprise.

Why I like this:   Eun-hee is a master of sparse text if ever I saw one.  Mostly one line of text per two page spread of three to six words, illustrations are on white background and cute expressions of all characters.  I loved also the way the illustrations tell so much of what is not in the text.   On one page the text reads  The colour must be mixed carefully. (No tasting allowed.)  The illustration shows Minji licking her lips while stirring ice cream out of a tub with Ice block containers and cones lying on the bench.  Across on the left the hairdresser is pouring a tube of colour into a container.   Minij’s mother arrives home to more of a shock, rather than a surprise, but she seems not to worry about the mess and books an imaginary appointment with her daughter.  I loved this!  How cool that her mother should go along with the imagination.  What little girl would not relish the wonder of what goes on in a hair salon and play at make-believe they work in one.  In one of the back pages Minji is seen wearing her mother’s red shoes… so cute!

Eun-hee Choung graduated from the department of Eastern Paintings at the College of Art, Chungang University, and studied at the Hankuk Illustration School.  In 2005 awarded the grand prize in Korean Published Arts Contest.  Living in South Korea, her goal is to make “unique picture books” and is currently working on many.

Resources/Findings:     Korean gifts/crafts…   http://www.littleseouls.com/category_1/korean-traditional-gifts.htm

An e-book download…   http://en.netlog.com/violetasamons/blog/blogid=19677428

While there is no resources for this book I couldn’t help but think of allowing a group of children to imagine they were working or own their own business be it hair dressing salon or something else and making a list of what they need.  Play acting out a hair salon or barber-shop or some other shop.

Younger children would love looking up where South Korea is and learning the culture of this fascinating place.  http://www.timeforkids.com/destination/south-korea


Traditional games and sports ….  http://www.korea4expats.com/article-games-and-traditional-sports.html

Pop over  and visit the lovely author Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog and find the tab for Perfect Picture Books.    Her blog is full of resources links and activities associated with the books reviewed by many authors.

About Diane Tulloch

Known also as the Patientdreamer I am a writer who loves to dream, and is passionate about writing stories for the young so that they may join me in the wonders of adventure in countries and cultures afar, and in special moments to remember.
This entry was posted in Children's literature, Folklore / multicultural, Picture Book Review and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to “Perfect Picture Book” – Friday

  1. This could be a fun one to start a discussion about what you want to be when you grow up … ooo, thanks for planting a seed this morning. Adding Minji to my wish list!

  2. Eun-Hee Choung certainly accomplished her goal of unique picture books with this offering. I hope I can find it. What a clever premise! I love your suggestion to let kids experiment with running a business. Excellent.

  3. I hope I can get this – looks adorable!

  4. Joanna says:

    Cool, make-believe at its finest. Super choice, Diane!

  5. This looks like a fun book – will definitely look for it!

  6. I love this selection — it is so universal in its appeal to chidren. I used to do all of these make-believe things when I was young. I loved dressing in my mother’s clothing and mimicking the things she did. I even cut my cousins hair. Fun book!

  7. tinamcho says:

    Great review, Diane! I’ve heard of this book, but I haven’t read it.

  8. Mom in the book is much more patient than I would be if I found the dog covered in ice cream! The set-up of the book sounds adorable.

    • Yes, I don’t think my mom would have tolerated it either. I on the other hand would have been annoyed at first then silently giggle at the poor dog. It is adorable. Have a great weekend.

  9. This book sounds like lots of fun! But not for Minji’s dog!!! I’m glad I’m not her dog! Although licking up the ice cream might not be so bad! Thanks for the review. I’ll be checking this one out!

  10. A unique book to be sure! Thanks for sharing a cultural story. Very cute.

  11. CUTE! I love the idea, and the cover is pretty! 😀

  12. That sounds like fun — although I’m amazed the dog would put up with it. That would be a chilly treatment! Great activity suggestions.

  13. I can imagine this book being a big hit with a couple of girls I know. We actually played beauty salon on the iPad when I was watching them one evening. Too funny.

  14. Stacy S. Jensen says:

    My son would likely enjoy this one too. I know he could make a fun mess!

  15. Such a cute idea for a picture book. The illustrations sound so adorable!

  16. Sounds like a wonderful story, Diane! Great pick for International Day of the Girl…and I love that it is a multi-cultural one. Thanks for adding it to the PPBF list. 🙂

    • psst: I hadn’t realised it was International Day of the Girl when I posted this until I started checking out the others…lol. (Call it fluke or sixth sense…hehe.) I am a push-over for multi-cultural which I am sure you know by now 🙂 Your welcome!

  17. This sounds delightful, Diane! I love the whole idea and look forward to reading it! And how fortuitous that it was such a good choice for International Day of the Girl 🙂

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