The Illustrated Book Of Sayings: Review


It is what it is, literally, The Illustrated Book Of Sayings, a fun and whimsical take on learning about other cultures and expressions that are nuggets of wisdom with some pop culture. The sayings are from countries around the world in their native languages where if literally translated word for word in English would not make sense unless someone explains their equivalent which is where this book comes in.

What’s personally appealing to me are the cute illustrations done by the author herself that depict each saying. I would assume her target audience would be adults as most of the sayings are idioms and proverbs which children wouldn’t normally dream of using in their daily verbal interactions and yet the book has a youthful/childlike spin to it.


The translated expression is self-explanatory but the book says it means “someone knows jack squat,” so if you hear someone say this about you, I think it would be better to just walk away or you could decide to just roll it off your back.


The meaning of this is equivalent and falls somewhere along the lines of “a wolf in sheep’s clothing.” It reminds me of Prosperity Gospel televangelists. This automatically became one of my favorites among the expressions in this book along with the other two below.


This is another one which aligns to the biblical expression of giving pearls to swine. Why bother giving your two cents to someone who will not appreciate it?


This one means “we begin to resemble the company we keep.” This is comparable to Proverbs 13:20, “He who walks with wise men will be wise, But the companion of fools will suffer harm.

I went through the pages with my daughter (something that I do with her also with recipe books) and she is just as appreciative of the artwork. Frankly, there is something endearing and playful about it which possibly has a lot to do with the vivid colors and the full page depictions. Her art especially reminds me of my daughter’s and this book has actually given me an idea to encourage my little one to make a series of drawings and put it into a collection. Maybe someday, she can have her own book of sayings.

It is a quick and engaging read since literally half of it are illustrations. It is the very expression of the author’s personality (her wit and art) into a medium that is enjoyable for people of all ages and would make a perfect “just-because” gift to the armchair traveler and to anyone with interest in linguistics and idiomatic expressions.

[This is my unadulterated review for a complimentary copy of the aforementioned book which I received from Blogging For Books]

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