Ever since I can remember, my father had a thermos of hot tea with him. It sat on his desk when he was working, rolled around my feet in the car, and caused alarm when he tried to bring it through airport security after 9/11. (They made him pour it out. He was really unhappy about that. A six-hour flight without his tea!) Now I’m the one who drinks hot tea all day long — even when it’s 95 degrees outside.

So I’m thrilled to share the cover of my next picture book, LULI AND THE LANGUAGE OF TEA, which publishes on April 5, 2022 from Holiday House/Neal Porter Books. Here’s the description:

Though they may speak different languages, kids from all over the world come together to enjoy the shared pastime of tea in this delicious book for young readers.

While five-year-old Luli’s parents attend their new English as a Second Language class, the playroom where she goes is quiet. Luli can’t speak English, neither can anyone else. That’s when she has a brilliant idea to host a tea party and bring them all together.

Luli removes her teapot, thermos, and teacups from her bag and calls out “Chá!” in her native Chinese. One by one, her classmates pipe up in recognition: in Russian, Hindi, Turkish, Persian, Arabic, and Spanish, Portuguese, and Swahili. Tea is a tasty language they all know well, and it gives them a chance to share and enjoy each other’s company. When all the tea is gone and it’s time for dessert, Luli gets to use her favorite English word, cookie! After that, the playroom isn’t so quiet.

Informed by her own experience as the child of Chinese immigrant parents, Andrea Wang makes the point that when you’re looking to communicate with people, you look for a common bond. The word for “tea” is similar in many languages, and tea becomes the unifying metaphor that brings a diverse group of children together. Additional material at the back of the book explores the rich and ancient history of tea drinking across cultures all around the world and contains maps, statistics, and fascinating details that will delight young readers.

And here’s the cover, by acclaimed artist Hyewon Yum!

I know I’m a tiny bit biased, but isn’t it the sweetest? I love Luli’s friendly, inviting expression. And the rest of the children in the playroom (their parents are all attending English as a Second Language classes in the same community center) are just as charming. Wouldn’t you like to share some tea with them?

For more info and to pre-order, click here.

Andrea Wang

Andrea Wang is an acclaimed author of children’s books. Her book Watercress was awarded the Caldecott Medal, a Newbery Honor, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, and a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor. Her other books, The Many Meanings of Meilan, Magic Ramen, and The Nian Monster, have also received awards and starred reviews. Her work explores culture, creative thinking, and identity. Andrea holds an M.S. in Environmental Science and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing for Young People. She lives in Colorado with her family and pandemic pup, Tupelo.


  1. Yes, I’d love to share a cup of tea with them…and this book! 🙂

  2. Love it! So cute! Can’t wait for this book!

  3. Adorable!! I’d share tea and conversation with Luli!
    Congratulations on the book!

  4. I would LOVE to have tea with Luli!

    I can bring the Pepperidge Farm cookies if it is a Wellesley Reunion! ; )

  5. Debra Kempf Shumaker

    Oh my, I LOVE the sound of this book. Cannot wait for it to come out and what an adorable cover! Congrats!!!!

  6. I so want to host a tea sharing party

  7. This book looks delightful! Looking forward to reading it.

  8. Adorable! Luli is a smart cookie.

    I love a good cup of hot tea anytime.

  9. Such a warm and tender book!

  10. Really looking forward to this one, Andrea! Will be terrific for storytime!

  11. Hooray for tea!! So happy for you & this beautiful book. Hearty congrats, Andrea!!

  12. Tea seems like the perfect common denominator for friendship! Thanks for sharing your beautiful book!

  13. This looks so wonderful!

  14. What a precious story! The cover is darling. I can’t wait to read about Luli.

  15. Oh my goodness she is darling.

  16. Sue Lowell Gallion

    What an inviting cover, and the book sounds fantastic. Truly a book of the heart.

  17. Andrea, congratulations!!! I love Luli already and your original take on tea and cookies! I’ll be looking for this. What a delight!

  18. I would love to share tea with Luli and her new friends! ? Love the cover! Congratulations, Andrea!

  19. Love it, Andrea! I’ve always marveled, as a linguistics nerd and ESL teacher, how there are some words that are nearly the same in every language. Borrowing is one of those fascinating language topics!

  20. Oh, Andrea, I can’t wait to read this. I also have a tea manuscript I’m working on. Since my bout w/cancer, I’ve been drinking green tea every day 🙂

  21. What a lovely cover! Congratulations!

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