To the east of Thimphu and west of Trongsa, somewhere among the mountains high, lived an old woman in a little house.
A gray cat, a yellow dog and a brown speckled hen lived with her and shared her hearth.
Synopsis: (from Amazon website)
“Neypo shong gna? Is there room for me?” a wandering monk asks the old lady who lives on the hill. The question is repeated again and again as more and more visitors arrive. The kind lady welcomes them in one by one. But how will they all fit in her tiny little house?
This charming tale contains an important teaching about openness and generosity of spirit.
Why I Like This Book:
A folktale that will delight and enlighten while opening the eyes and hearts of readers to Bhutanese life. In this tale, a charming old lady in a small one-room home offers hospitality to a monk, a messenger, a traveler and so on without even the slightest hesitation. She shares her meal with all of her guests even though it is not much “one got a single bit of turnip leaf, another a tiny piece of bone, another got a drop of soup” and the guests “savored their dinner and licked their bowls clean“. The appreciative guests wonder how the old lady could fit them all in, to which the monk answers with a wise saying which left this reader with a warm glow deep inside. The backmatter included some interesting facts about Bhutan. For instance, the GNH (Gross National Happiness) index that measures the nation’s prosperity is based on the citizens’ happiness.
The lyrical text paired with soft watercolors is a perfect combination for this tale of openness and love for all.
This review is part of Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Book series. Visit her site to see the other books recommended.
Disclosure: I received an electronic copy of this book from the publisher. This review nevertheless reflects my own and honest opinion about the book.