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The Visible Sounds

Written by Yin Jainling

Illustrated by Yu Rong

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The Visible Sounds Review

Family / Home Stories Featured Books for 5+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers Personal Social Health Economic (PSHE)

The stirringly lyrical story of a girl who loses her hearing to discover a new world of joyous sensation

Inspired by the true story of a Chinese dancer, Yin Jianling’s The Visible Sounds is a unique, magical, affecting story of a little girl who finds a new world, and a remarkable new talent for dancing, after losing her hearing.


At two-years-old, MiLi’s world falls silent due to an illness doctors can’t fix, but it’s not long before she realises that sound can be felt, touched and seen through understanding and interpreting vibrations and movement in the world. This realisation is expressed through a lyrical cornucopia of the senses: “sound is a warm wind gently brushing against cheeks and softening one’s heart…Language is a river, flowing and flooding into MiLi’s body. The river turns into musical notes, like little tadpoles swimming into MiLi’s heart.”


Though pitched at young readers, the style has a piercing clarity that speaks just as well to older readers (and adults), and Yu Rong’s illustrations - blending stark, graphic style (the use of colour is exceptional) with detail - is the perfect partner for the text. Moreover, it’s sure to spread a glow of joy through children facing - and living with - disability, while also evoking empathy in those who are not.

Joanne Owen

Other Info

A piece of passion from Hazel Holmes, Publisher;  “From the moment I saw the glorious artwork, I knew that UCLan had to publish the book in the UK, The Visible Sounds is a much-welcomed addition to our growing picture book list. We're so lucky at UCLan to have a pool of talent on campus that we're able to give the Chinese Studies students the opportunity to translate Yin Jianling's powerful text. We're exceptionally proud to be publishing this book.”

Illustrator Yu Rong added; ''The Visible Sounds is about aiming high, reaching tall, seeing the world in different ways and being the very best we can be. It feels very appropriate that alongside its publication in China, UCLan Publishing will publish this special book in the UK, working with students to help bring it to market and allowing them to learn more about the industry, how it works and supporting them to be the best they can be.”

The Visible Sounds Synopsis

Based on the true story of Chinese dancer Lihua Tai, The Visible Sounds tells the uplifting tale of a young child dealing with the frustration and solitude of hearing loss. Alone in silence, the child's life is changed forever when a chance touch unlocks a vibrant new world, now blazing with rainbows of visible sounds.

The Visible Sounds brings a message of hope and joy to children living with a disability and is an inspirational reminder that dreams can become reality.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781912979790
Publication date: 02/09/2021
Publisher: UClan Publishing
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781912979790
Publication date: 2nd September 2021
Author: Yin Jainling
Illustrator: Yu Rong
Publisher: UClan Publishing
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 32 pages
Suitable for: 5+ readers, 7+ readers
Genres: Family / Home Stories, Personal Social Health Economic
Collections: Anti Bullying Week & World Kindness Day, 30 Books with Positive Images of Disability,

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