The Turtle Family Goes to the Sea

The Turtle Family Goes to the Sea

by Zhang Ning

Chinese, Hardcover, 48p, age 3+
Jieli Publishing House, Sept. 2016

Rights sold to:
Saudi Arabia

English translation available.

Handling territories:
World exclude China.

A beautiful and unique picture book with traditional fabrics, a warm and inspirational travel story.

The Turtle Family Goes to the Sea is a one-of-a-kind and original picture book with fabric art that took the author more than three years to complete. It is based on the story of a little turtle Keke. Keke’s family awoke from their slumber to learn about the sea’s history. Spring has arrived, and Keke have awakened from their hibernation, eager to see the sea. How far away is the sea? How does the sea feel? There are big fish with long wings, small paratroopers floating around, and shy sea monsters in the sea, according to what he’s heard…Keke bravely stepped forward, crossing the grass, the pond, and the mountain… He realized his dream of going to the sea step by step, accompanied by his parents and friends.

This book adopts cloth art expression techniques, extensively uses the cutting and sewing techniques of appliqué embroidery and cloth cutting embroidery in traditional Chinese craftsmanship, and carefully selects traditional batik, tie-dye, valerian, and other weaving and printing techniques. It combines the innocence and childishness of children’s paintings with the distant artistic vision of Chinese landscape paintings. It not only reflects the ancestors’ love of traditional handicrafts, but it also incorporates the characteristics of traditional Chinese ink painting, giving it a distinct aesthetic value.


  • Selected to the 2018 IBBY Honors List
  • The 5th Feng Zikai Children’s Picture Book Award for Excellent Work

About the Author

Zhang Ning graduated from China University of Petroleum, worked in a Sinopec subsidiary, and then worked as an art editor in “Hansheng” magazine, where he was working as an editor for multiple magazines and books. Meanwhile, he became acquainted with and enamored with various folk crafts. In 2009, he quit his job and returned home to concentrate on the birth of his child, and began to notice and create children’s picture books.