Erika-San by Allen Say

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Synopsis

Caldecott Medalist Allen Say creates a beautiful story about an American girl who seeks adventure in Japan and discovers more than she could have imagined.

In her grandmother’s house there is one Japanese print of a small house with lighted windows. Even as a small girl, Erika loved that picture.

It will pull her through childhood, across vast oceans and modern cities, then into towns—older, quieter places—she has only ever dreamed about.

But Erika cannot truly know what she will find there, among the rocky seacoasts, the rice paddies, the circle of mountains, and the class of children.

For Erika-san, can Japan be all that she has imagined?
 

About Allen Say

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Allen Say was born in Yokohama, Japan, in 1937. He dreamed of becoming a cartoonist from the age of six, and, at age twelve, apprenticed himself to his favorite cartoonist, Noro Shinpei. For the next four years, Say learned to draw and paint under the direction of Noro, who has remained Say's mentor. Say illustrated his first children's book -- published in 1972 -- in a photo studio between shooting assignments. For years, Say continued writing and illustrating children's books on a part-time basis. But in 1987, while illustrating THE BOY OF THE THREE-YEAR NAP (Caldecott Honor Medal), he recaptured the joy he had known as a boy working in his master's studio. It was then that Say decided to make a full commitment to doing what he loves best: writing and illustrating children's books. Since then, he has written and illustrated many books, including TREE OF CRANES and GRANDFATHER'S JOURNEY, winner of the 1994 Caldecott Medal. He is a full-time writer and illustrator living in Portland, Oregon.
 
Published January 26, 2009 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 32 pages
Genres: Travel, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Friend-cum-fiancé Aki inquires whether Erika’s grandfather was a soldier when in Japan, but Erika neither knows nor cares, making World War II seem less irrelevant than ignored.

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Common Sense Media

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.Find out more Parents need to know that this touching story with sensitive watercolors and a soft sense of home was created by Allen Say, who won the 1994 Caldecott for his book My Grandfather's Journey.

Jan 26 2009 | Read Full Review of Erika-San

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