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When Allison tries on the red kimono her grandmother has sent her, she is suddenly aware that she resembles her favorite doll more than she does her mother and father. When she learns that she is adopted, she becomes angry and withdrawn. Allison's doll becomes her only solace until she finds a stray cat in the garden and learns the true meaning of adoption and parental love.
Young Jiro is drawn to a small cottage when he and his father visit a rich man. There, inspired by a statue, Jiro relives the story told by his mother of the "Grateful Crane." The line between fantasy and reality blur for Jiro in this beautiful, mysterious telling.
A series of memories from this Caldecott Medalist's life begins in Japan and moves between the two cultures of which he is part. The revealing narration is interwoven with photographs, cartoons, sketches and more. Slightly older, more sophisticated readers may enjoy Say's slightly fictionalized autobiography, Ink-Keeper's Apprentice.
This remarkable story is based on the life of Billy Wong, a Chinese-American who travels to Europe, becomes fascinated with bullfighting, and decides to become a matador. Eventually, Billy's determination and recognition of what makes him unique helps him realize his dream. Luminous watercolors illustrate this sensitive picture book biography.
Young Emma feels that her art is inspired by the white rug that she's had since birth. When her mother washes the rug, Emma is — at least for a time — convinced that the source of her talent is gone, too. Emma's child-like illustrations contrast to photo-realistic watercolors.
Erika, an American child, was always fascinated by a painting at her grandmother's; that of a rustic home in Japan. As Erika grows, she studies Japan and its language then as an adult, gets a teaching position there and finally lives in her dreamed-of cottage. Erika's wish is fulfilled.
A young man travels from his native Japan to the vast country called America before returning to visit his home with his bride. The exquisite watercolors give the appearance of a family photo album as it relates this autobiographical but universal story of immigration.
Country of origin: Japan
A contemporary man traveling in a kayak finds himself in an earlier time in an internment camp filled with Japanese American children. Photorealistic illustrations distinguish this sophisticated allegorical story and are sure to generate discussion.
An elderly kamishibai man travels the route on which he once told stories using his paper theater. Though the city is now crowded and noisy, the children — now grown — remember and stop once more. A note about kamishibai and stunning illustrations create broad reader appeal.
At home, Masako speaks Japanese and sips green tea with her parents. But at her friends' houses near San Francisco, May speaks English and enjoys pancakes and tea with milk and sugar. When May's parents decide to return to Japan, she feels lost. May finally begins to find her way in the big city of Osaka, where she makes a special friend who also speaks English — and drinks his tea with milk and sugar. Allen Say brings tenderness and humor to his mother's unforgettable story in this beautiful tribute to his parents.
The narrator recalls his first Christmas in Japan and why his mother decorated a tree with a thousand paper cranes as she relives her holidays in California. Based on a family story, Say's illustrations evoke a holiday in two cultures.
Product Description: Spring had finally come and everyone in the village was happy, despite being poor — everyone except the miserly landlord. Mumbling and grumbling, he sat all alone eating a bowl of cherries and glaring as the villagers sang and danced in the meadow. Then, quite by accident, he swallowed a cherry pit. The pit began to sprout. Soon the landlord was the wonder of the village — a cherry tree was growing on top of his head! What happened to the cherry tree and to the wicked landlord is a favorite joke in Japan. Allen Say tells the story with wit and vitality, and his beautiful drawings complement this classic Japanese tale.
Books illustrated by Allen Say
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