Li Na is My Name
Author: Lisa Wee
Pages: 32 pages
Publishing Date: March 2021
Dimensions: 21 x 21 cm
Category: Picture Book
Pages: 32 pages
Publishing Date: March 2022
Dimensions: 21 x 21 cm
Category: Picture Book
About the Author and the Illustrator:
Lisa Wee debuts as author/illustrator of Li-na Is My Name, to be published in 2022 by Dixi Books Publishing, UK. Her other published work is a comic story – Sokoro’s Dream for Mighty Kind magazine, Fall issue, 2021. Lisa has illustrated several picture books for prominent publishers and self-published authors. Her quaint, quirky and vibrant illustrations are inclusive, embracing diversity in celebrating the lives of children from all walks of life, whether they come from adopted families, same-gender families or blended families.
Kirkus Review –
“This engaging tale encourages resistance to gender stereotypes and highlights the power of discomfiting labels.”
paola camma –
A beautiful book, me and my child love it very much!
The vivid illustrations guide us in this journey about kindness and teasing and about personal strengths that make us unique and wonderful. It was an opportunity to talk about diversity and about the fact that everyone can have qualities that others may not see.
A perfect message not only for our children but for all of us!
Audrey Suau –
I wish I had this book as a kid. I always heard these kind of comments, younger, about my sister who hated dresses, about a short-hair girlfriend, about me being a girl and having obligations… I still hear these comments about little boy being weird when he prefer ballet instead of soccer. This story is great. She speaks to me, to my 2 girls thanks to the powerful message (4 and 7) and also to my little boy (2) thanks to the short sentences and the colorful illustrations.
Jebichi Maswan –
Li Na is my name is a nice little book that should be read by all generations. It clearly illustrates the damage that can be inflicted on children through stereotyping. Growing up, I was bullied and teased for playing ‘boy’ games and dreaming of pursuing a career that was considered ‘boyish’ by my culture. I recommend this book to children, parents, teachers and anyone that interacts with children
Shuyi Chua –
There’s a Li-Na in everyone of us, a side to us we may not show easily because we were once ridiculed or judged for it. How wonderful that “Li Na is My Name” conveys this message early in children’s lives that they can be who they are and they should accept others for who they are. The illustrations are beautiful. And you finish the book lifting your head a little higher. I am who I am. Shuyi is my name!
Emily-Jane Hills Orford – Readers’ favourite book reviews and award –
It’s hard growing up. Children (and even adults) always find something wrong with a child and many love to tease and torment. You might be a geek or a brainy kid or even a bookworm. You might like to play rough outside with both boys and girls. But there will always be someone who finds something wrong with what you do and how you do it. Li Na loves climbing trees and rollerblading fast down the lanes around her house. She’s labeled a tomboy and she’s told, “a tomboy is no beauty.” The comments hurt, but Li Na knows how to stand up for who she is and you should, too.
Lisa Wee’s picture book story, Li Na is My Name, is a sweet story about a little girl who likes to do different things. Nothing wrong with that. She confronts narrow-minded people, both adults and children, who think she doesn’t fit in because she’s a little different. Told in simple language and with colorful illustrations, the plot follows Li Na as she describes her activities and what people say about her. The climax is beautiful as the girl stands up for who and what she is: “I am no tomboy. I am not like a boy. I have a name. …My name is Li Na.” And she boldly proclaims her self-identity on stage in front of an audience of adults and children. Powerful message about standing up for yourself, showing self-confidence, and being proud of who you are and what you enjoy doing.
D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review –
Li Na Is My Name is directed to young audiences who deal with not outright bullying, but teasing. Yes, there is a difference, as Lisa Wee outlines in a picture book that depicts both adult and child teasing.
Li Na is somewhat of a tomboy, as many adults disarmingly comment. She likes soccer, rollerblading, and activities which earn her the title ‘tomboy’, even though she has long black hair.
“Dad says kindness makes us beautiful,” Li Na notes, but ongoing prejudice from others about her tomboy ways seem to refute the idea that kindness is being applied to her endeavors in life.
She muses that it simply doesn’t make sense when people make comments that imply that a boy is somehow better than a girl, or that their interests should be very different.
As Li Na explores what it means to be a boy or a girl and why these elements don’t make one superior to the other, she refutes the tomboy label that has been applied to her activities, and emphasizes that she has a name and special abilities that should both be celebrated.
Kids receive a strong message not just about kindness and teasing, but about personal strengths that operate beyond gender identity alone.
While adults looking for empowerment stories to counter bullying and teasing will find that Li Na Is My Name more than fits the bill for this purpose, those who want to open discussions about girls and their abilities and possibilities would also do well to include this story on reading lists.
Li Na Is My Name is a fine introduction to personal empowerment that is lively, thought-provoking, and fun, all in one.
Polly Shafer –
This is a cute book that helps everyone to see that labeling a person can sometimes be hurtful.
Tay Yit Ping (Ika Picture Story House) –
I fell in love with this book the moment I laid eyes on its cover where the little girl was hanging upside down confidently.
The message of this story is an important one, which is that we do not live according to other people’s opinions. I personally identified with Li-Na as I was often labelled a tomboy when I was growing up. In fact, I was jeered for laughing too loud, and I may or may not have punched that boy who bullied me for that. This book should have been there during my childhood, to tell me that it is perfectly alright for me to be myself.
Now, I am so happy for all the Li-Nas, Betsy(s), Georgies, Bens, Toms, and Kevins around the world. From this book, they can learn that stereotyping does not shape us, but love does.
Linda Lingard –
What is your name and who are you? In Li Na is My Name, author Lisa Wee shows that a girl and a boy is so much more than one facet of character.
This book should be a comfort to a girl or boy who has felt pigeon-holed and also gives a word of advice to grown-ups to allow a child to bloom.
Dr Daksha Hirani –
“Childhood is a magical time in one’s life as we all explore the new world we have come into and our relationship with it. It is a time full of wonder, curiosity and adventure. Teasing and ridiculing a child can destroy this magic. Accept children as they are without the need to put them down or entertain ourselves at their expense. The damage and trauma from this can be debilitating and simply adds more misery in the world. Keep the magic going, accept and uplift children for who they are, after all are our future too. Li Na is my name is a book that is as relevant then as it is now. Wishing Li Na’s spirit, grit and resilience to all children. Love the way she stays true to herself. Let’s spread this so all children love themselves for just who they are.”