A Carp for Kimiko

Overview

A CARP FOR KIMIKO is the story of a young girl's struggle against the strong current of tradition. Every year on Children's Day in Japan a kite in the shape of a carp is flown for each boy in the family. Kimiko is a little girl who desperately wants an orange, black, and white calico carp kite of her own to fly on this holiday.

Kimiko's parents remind her that there is a holiday just for girls–Doll's Festival Day, but this does not stop Kimiko from dreaming about and wishing for...

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Overview

A CARP FOR KIMIKO is the story of a young girl's struggle against the strong current of tradition. Every year on Children's Day in Japan a kite in the shape of a carp is flown for each boy in the family. Kimiko is a little girl who desperately wants an orange, black, and white calico carp kite of her own to fly on this holiday.

Kimiko's parents remind her that there is a holiday just for girls–Doll's Festival Day, but this does not stop Kimiko from dreaming about and wishing for her very own carp. The magical ending achieves the impossible–Kimiko gets what she longs for without breaking tradition. Katherine Roundtree's beautiful illustrations evoke the wonder and excitement of childhood, which will charm readers of all cultures.

Although the tradition is to present carp kites only to boys on Children's Day, Kimiko's parents find a way to make the day special for her.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This delightful children's book offers insight into Japanese culture and the ways in which children learn to accept tradition. The protagonist of the story is a young Japanese girl, Kimiko, the only daughter of four children in her family. As the story begins, the festival of Children's Day (formerly called Boy's Day) approaches. Japanese families fly carp kites for each of their male sons during this festival. Kimiko envies her brothers' kites and desperately wants a carp of her own. As she struggles with accepting tradition, her mother helps her to see how she can bend traditions without breaking them. She compares young Kimiko to a carp, always swimming against the current. At the end of the story, Kimiko gets a real carp of her very own and accepts her family's traditions. Kroll and Roundtree used the text and illustrations to educate readers about Japanese culture and entertain them. The colorful illustrations depict Japanese cultural elements, such as holiday decorations, traditional dress, and mealtime traditions. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for an entertaining and educational reading experience. 1996 (orig. 1993), Talewinds/Charlesbridge,
— Cristy Keith <%ISBN%>0881064114
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-A straightforward story that focuses on a Japanese holiday. On the fifth day of the fifth month, Children's Day is celebrated, formerly called Boy's Day. Families fly a carp windsock for each son, and Kimiko longs to have one fly in her honor along with the three for her brothers. Her mother makes the obvious comparison-her daughter is like a carp struggling against the current. Traditional ways prevail, and a colorful windsock does not fly for Kimiko. But, the morning after the holiday, she is delighted to find a live calico carp in a fishbowl by her bed. The bright, realistic illustrations are filled with the details of Japanese life, including a corner rock garden, shoe rack, and table setting. In one overzealous attempt to provide information, the author gives the Japanese words for various family members in a phonetic manner instead of in the accepted method of transcription. This will prove confusing to anyone with some knowledge of Japanese.-Susan Middleton, LaJolla Country Day School, CA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780881064124
  • Publisher: Charlesbridge Publishing, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/1/1993
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.35 (w) x 8.29 (h) x 0.36 (d)

Meet the Author

Virginia Kroll has contributed more than 1500 items to juvenile magazines. She travels throughout the country speaking to children about writing multicultural books. She is the author of many children's books, including WOOD-HOOPOE WILLIE, A CARP FOR KIMIKO, SWEET MAGNOLIA, JAHA AND JAMIL WENT DOWN THE HILL, HATS OFF TO HAIR!, MASAI AND I (Four Winds Press), and BUTTERFLY BOY (Boyds Mill Press). Virginia lives in New York with her family.
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