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book review

Book Review – Teaching children about how unique they are


Hi there! Queenie Tan here, Asia’s Premier Parenting Coach.

And today I’m gonna review another book. This is like my favorite. I can’t really say it’s my favorite because I got a lot of favorites, so this is one of my absolute favorites. I think I just witched the English language, but yes, it’s called Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal.

Okay, so I’m gonna read this book to you, and you can decide if you like it, but I think that every child should be read this book because it helps them understand why the names are… why they are given the names that they’re given. So this is really special, so just hang in there for a bit, okay?

Look at what happens when she tries to write her name.

I’m gonna read this. It’s a note from Juana, the author of this book. She said…

So a lot of people don’t know this but my name isn’t really Queenie. It’s Tan Foong Kwin. So Tan is my family name, and Foong Kwin is a very very typical Chinese name. Foong in Chinese means Phoenix, and Kwin in Chinese means bougainvillea, it’s a type of flower.

I’m not sure who gave me my name but whoever who thought about it, wanted me to have a name that was very powerful and feminine, which is basically what the Phoenix portrays as a mythical creature. And I know for a fact that my grandma has green fingers, and she took care of me when I was young. So it’s very likely that she chose a name, a flower name for me. And that is, to me, it’s really special because I grew up loving flowers, and I didn’t realize my name had flowers in it. Too much later but it’s kind of interesting that I grew up loving, having this really strange obsession for flowers.


And when I look back in my life, and look at all the harsh things that I had to go through with childhood poverty and abuse, and later on having to navigate a lot of adult life pretty much on my own, I realized now that I think maybe the person who gave me my name saw that I was going to do this, that I was meant for difficult things, that I was going to be able to make difficult situations and handle challenging situations really well, and to come out of it stronger and a better person.


So I’m not sure who gave me my name but I’m just really happy that I have my name and that has an amazing story attached to it. And I’m not sure if I grew into my name or if my name just… It was a premonition of who I would be, I don’t know which is which, but I am really happy with my name. And I love the story that I often tell people when I explain my name.


So this is an amazing book. I love this book. And it reminds me to be proud of who I am, to be proud of the name that I have that I carry with me. And I hope that every child out there knows how special their name is.


Okay, so thank you very much, and I hope you enjoyed this book review. And I’ll be reviewing a few more books so stay tuned. Bye.


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