Purchase to Support Our Program

“A familiar story with a fresh twist grounded in Cantonese cooking . . . children will connect with Zia’s struggles and will be encouraged to share their family traditions with others.”
School Library Journal

Everyone Loves Lunchtime but Zia

Written by Jenny Liao
Illustrated by Dream Chen
Published by Random House Children's Books

Everyone loves lunchtime. Everyone, that is, but Zia.

At school, the other kids are eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cheese and crackers, and apples on the side. But Zia’s always nervous about opening her lunchbox. Her dumpling and noodle dishes look different and smell different. She dreads lunchtime.

Then, during her birthday week, her parents pack her a different Cantonese dish each day and explain what the food represents: a roast pork bun to bring treasure, soy sauce chicken to bring success, and more. At first, Zia doesn’t want to eat her lunch, but once she starts, she just may realize her food could bring her good fortune after all!

Primary ISBN: 9780593425428
Publication Date: February 2023
Available As: Hardcover, eBook
Picture Book , Age 03 or older

Community Represented:

Themes: , , , , ,

Setting: Unspecified

Character's Place in the Immigration Journey: Unknown Arrival

Book Creator(s) Connection to the Community Represented: Own Voices/Lived Experience

Click here for details about how we define our titles.

Engagement Projects & Resources:

Share your favorite resources for this book with info@imyourneighborbooks.org.

Book Trailer

Illustrator Process