Where to Buy Foreign Language Books

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Sept 2003

Hello- I have a friend who is expecting and she and her french native hubby will be raising their son to be bilingual. I would love to get them some toddler books/bedtime books that their little one could enjoy. Anyone know of any book stores in the east bay that sell french books for kids? I am not looking for text books, but something along the lines of ''Goodnight Moon.'' And I don't want to shop via computer as I don't trust on-line shopping yet. Barnes and Noble came up blank. Merci Beaucoup! Deniene

If you can't find anything locally (half price books may be able to help you out) there is always french amazon: http://www.amazon.fr/ susan
Try European Book Company, 925 Larkin St, btwn. Geary and Post in SF. They have a large selection of French kids books, the largest in the Bay Area. They also have a website--I can personally vouch for it's safety, because my husband manages it www.europeanbook.com

Some especially cute titles include, ''Viens me chercher maman!'' and ''Ou es-tu, Papa?'' (from the same series). They're nice board books for little ones. Bilingual mom, too

hi i have a couple of ideas for french books. our daughter went to a wonderful family day care in hayward when i worked there several years ago and the woman was from france. she's listed at 4Cs, the hayward-area childcare referral service, and she might have ideas since she cares for babies and toddlers. email me if you want me to call her and make contact. also might try The French School in berkeley. michele
my son is 4 and a half and is bilingual we have alot of books,, fabulous selection of tapes, books etc from the emeryville bookstore,, ie the public market,, i think it is codys,, in that public food market,, they have a huge selection aisha
You'll probably get plenty of answers here, but if you don't, try asking your question in another forum: the Frenchparents.org website. The site has now become usable in English as well as in French, and is a great resource for francophones and francophiles. To post your question, and read the replies, you may have to buy a subscription, but it isn't very expensive. You can access the English-language portion at: http://frenchparents.org/english_speakers.php Siobhan


Aug 2006

I am looking for recommendations for good (classic?) German books and/or DVDs for my son, who is just over 2 years old (preschool age). He is speaking German with his grandmother and we'd like to further enrich his German with some books and maybe videos. We are not very familiar with German children's literature, so we're looking for suggestions. He's into buses, trains, bears and cats, so books on these subjects would be particularly great, but any other book recommendations would be very welcome as well. Thanks, Ilil

Our two year old LOVES the books in the series called Wieso? Weshalb? Warum? Junior. My husband picked up a few when he was at a conference in Germany last year and they were such a hit, we ordered like 10 more from amazon.de. Shipping is outrageous for just a couple of books but was pretty reasonable for 10. His current favorites are Autos und Laster, Der Flughafen, and Die Eisenbahn, but they have them for tons of popular kid topics (farm, forest, etc.). There are flaps to lift up and they are very sturdy Love those books


I am Brazilian and 8 months pregnant of my first child. I would like to find some children's stories written in Portuguese (my native language) to read to my baby and as s/he grows. Any recommendations of bookstores in the Berkeley area and/or catalogs/websites that have these ? thanks ! Meika
It seems several people have been seeking sources for children's books in foreign languages. I would like to recommend bookswithoutborders.com as an excellent resource. I have ordered books in French and Italian and have been pleased with the choices, service and quality. I had to wait some weeks for a few books on back order, but they were worth it. Good luck! -Hilary
Try Gray Wolf Books (Grey?) in San Leandro. Used Books. Good prices. A large children's section and I know they have some kids books in other languages. Mary


Does anyone know where I could find books in Ukrainian for young children? Thanks Fran
There are several bookstores in SF on Geary from 16-25th Avenues that cater to the large Russian population there (they call it little Odessa). You may have some luck there. Or ask someone in the emigre dept. of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco (don't have the number handy, sorry). Lots of Ukranians in that community and somebody should have a good suggestion. Good luck.



My husband and I would like to read Vietnamese children's books to our son. Can anyone tell us where we might purchase Vietnamese children's books with pictures? Sandra

Coincidentally, I just happened to notice an English-Vietnamese children's picture book on the lower level of the children's sale cart at Pegasus Book shop on Solano. I don't know whether they have other such books, but as of Tuesday 11/14, they had at least one! I happened to notice the book because I'm always on the lookout for Tibetan language childrens' books, which seem to be nigh unto impossible to find! So if any of you can recommend any good resources, I'd be very grateful! Kristina
It is my understanding that the San Leandro Library (the new, retrofitted main branch closed until its grand reopening in mid-December) has a sizable Vietnamese collection. Patricia
Sorry I can't give you the specifics because all of my catalogs are at school, but there's a good children's book catalog called Shen with Vietnamese books, as well as books in many other languages. They have an 800 phone number. Their web site: http://www.shens.com/home.htm
You didn't mention what age your child is. Books for older kids are probagbly easy to find in Oakland Chinatown, where there are a lot of VN bookstores. You could also ask for info from the Vietnamese-American Community Center which is on 14th Ave in Oakland.. around 22nd St. but I'm not sure where exactly. For younger kids we have found lots and lots of good books for teaching basics from Xuhnasaba, in Saigon. They have the full set of books used in VN curriculum as well as early reading, videos of overly cute kids singing traditional folk songs (a very big hit for my son when he was a bit younger) and coloring books. Also really good looking posters of all kinds with both English and Vietnamese words, for example Fruits, Reptiles, Birds etc. The best would be if you have some family in Saigon or Hanoi, failing that you might see what you can order online at Xuhnansaba (Import-Export Publishing House): http://www.viet-nam.net/hieusach/ Of course if you ever go to Orange County there are lots of bookstores there too. Good luck, Dominic