Inspired by a true story!

A Fairy tale in English and Vietnamese

Phoenix is a young mermaid who wakes up on the land one day and discovers that she is unable to return to the sea. Even though she works hard to adapt to her new environment, the other kids make fun of her for being different. She teaches herself how to dance to bring joy to the land dwellers and show them her worth. In the process, she becomes an inspirational role model for others.

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"Based on a true story from the author’s experience, The Mermaid Who Learned to Dance is an inspiring, heart-warming fairy tale that teaches readers how to overcome challenges to be the best version of themselves...Throughout the story, sparkling illustrations in vibrant colors add magic, inviting readers into Phoenix’s world. The Mermaid Who Learned to Dance is a beautiful story— worthy of any fairytale collection."

"Kindness, a good heart, and perseverance pay off for a displaced young mermaid in the bilingual picture book The Mermaid Who Learned to Dance, which delivers an inclusive message about overcoming significant challenges."

About us

This is the first publication written by Aleks Spurmanis and Tâm Nguyễn. We were inspired to co-write The Mermaid who Learned to Dance after discovering the story of Băng Thị Bế, a woman who created a remarkable new life for herself after a tragic accident left her permanently disabled. We share this story to inspire kindness and help others overcome adversity.

Aleks Spurmanis
Tâm Nguyễn
Băng Thị Bế

Erin Cutler is a freelance illustrator, book publisher and owner of Inkling Publishing. Erin strives to communicate messages of hope, resilience, and acceptance through her artwork and books.

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