Water Buffalo’s Reward


When Select Publishing was brainstorming a suitable series to kick off a new imprint for children’s books, they decided to publish a triplet on Asian Values. Each book aims to provide a means of exposing children to various values that help make their own worlds better.

Water Buffalo’s Reward, the first book in the series, will be launched next Monday. It is the story of a water buffalo learning about the value of diligence.


A note from the author, Qin Yi, tells us that part of is his motivation for writing the book was to have a means of educating his own two boys. “I am a firm believer of inculcating values in children from young,” he adds. Part of the story aims to bring out the subtleties of the value of diligence. It is important to show the different aspects of diligence to children. It is not just about working hard – this is only a simplistic view of it, and would rightly be a turn-off for any child. In fact, diligence is actually about delayed gratification, about knowing when to sacrifice short-term pleasure for greater rewards in the long-term. The crucial thing is that children must like the story and the illustrations. If they enjoy reading the book, they will learn the underlying value. It is never the other way around.”


For Illustrator Li Dan, Water Buffalo’s Reward was a labor of love. “I wanted this book to showcase the techniques that I am capable of,” she explains. I used a range of techniques in the illustrations. All are hand-painted using a mixture of acrylics and water colors. Layering and paper cuttings were used to give the illustrations texture, variety and complexity.”

Water Buffalo’s Reward will be available from all major bookstores.



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