As a dweller in Spain, a learner of the language and a teacher of English I thought the idea of writer Genevieve Yusuf with her books in English with Spanish words throughout a great idea.
I’ve just read Philip & Felipe and Lucy & Lucia two of Jajaja´s bilingual books. Both stories tell of an English boy and an English girl who reluctantly go to Spain on holiday and end up making friends, having a great time and learning some Spanish.
The books are fun stories with the Spanish words well woven into the tale allowing kids to naturally pick up understanding of a different language while learning some vocabularly.
I enjoyed the stories but personally didn´t like the illustrations at all. They certainly wouldn´t entice me to buy the book if it wasn´t for the bilingual aspect. The idea of hiding or counting things within the story isn´t new but will add to the child´s enjoyment.
All in all a great little present, a fun read and a novel way to introduce Spanish to children and a brilliant niche. The one problem is as always that if a non-Spanish speaker is reading the book then the pronunciation won´t be authentic, although there is a pronunciation guide. I think adding an audio CD of the book with English and Spanish speakers would add tremendously to the linguistic value of the books.
Jajaja books are available from the Jajaja website.
These two books were sent to me for review purposes, I wasn´t paid or reimbursed in anyway for this review.
PS. Update. I´ve been told that audio guides are in the pipeline. Nice one Jajaja.