In the Meadow

Overview

In the Meadow is our first book in our Being in the World series, a collection of nature books from Japan. Each book will focus on what it feels like to be in a particular place. In this book, a little girl experiences what it’s like to be alone in a field where the grass is as tall as she is and there are many insects and sounds. The book ends on a peaceful note, with mommy and daughter together.

Yukiko Kato is a famous Japanese novelist....

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Overview

In the Meadow is our first book in our Being in the World series, a collection of nature books from Japan. Each book will focus on what it feels like to be in a particular place. In this book, a little girl experiences what it’s like to be alone in a field where the grass is as tall as she is and there are many insects and sounds. The book ends on a peaceful note, with mommy and daughter together.

Yukiko Kato is a famous Japanese novelist.

Komako Sakai is well known for Emily’s Balloon and The Snow Day, both of which received starred reviews and an enthusiastic reception.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
PreS—In this quiet book with little action, Yu-chan enjoys a day with her family exploring a meadow. She steps close enough to admire a butterfly, but it flits away, leaving the youngster ready to pursue the other creatures in this habitat. Soon she is surrounded by tall grasses that tickle her legs. While Kato uses few words, they are well chosen and express the wonders of nature. Onomatopoetic sounds, such as "Boing!" "Swish, swish," or "scrunch," as well as descriptive sentences ("the meadow sways like the waves of the sea"), will be like music to a young child's ears as they paint a picture of what Yu-chan is experiencing. Sakai's almost impressionistic acrylic paint and oil-pencil illustrations complement the story. Even the endpapers extend the lushness of the greenery in the text. While this book is supplemental for most libraries, there are those children who will appreciate the luscious language and simple sensations.—Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA
From the Publisher

"Sakai uses acrylic paint and oil pencils to create softly lyrical illustrations that surpass the appropriately minimal text in beauty and elegance. This immersive experience is the first in a proposed series of nature books; a welcome addition." - Kirkus

"The Japanese illustrator Komako Sakai has an uncanny ability to conjure the experiences of young children, those 3- and 4-year-olds for whom ordinary life is still a series of wonders and mysteries, of apprehensions and comforts." - Meghan Cox Gurdon, The Wall Street Journal

"With her fascination with nature and her first steps into independence and back again, Yu is a relatable, believable preschooler; and illustrator Sakai once again eloquently captures the facial expressions and postures of the very young." - Martha V. Parravano, The Horn Book

"Wonderful! Both narrative and illustration perfectly capture a young child's perspective of the world. Discover a grassy meadow with Yu-chan and experience it with your senses and imagination as she does. Parents will find the illustrations endearing and the interior monologue of Yu-chan "pitch perfect." Kiddos will relate because they will recognize her wonder and curiosity." -Lisa Barker, biblioreads.blogspot.com

"This gentle book from Japan captures a young child’s wonder about the natural world in a sweet, pitch-perfect manner. Nature scenes ranging from the oceans to the meadows, realistically rendered in acrylic and oil paints, are perfectly matched to this tender nature book." - Usha Rao, curled up with a good kid's book

"This picture book explores nature in a very personal way. All of the senses are involved in the description of the meadow, from the scent of the crushed grass under her feet, the way the grass feels on her skin, the way the grass looks as it sways, to the sounds of the meadow and its creatures. This immerses the reader in the experience of the meadow, both its beauty and the way you can lose yourself in it.

Kato’s words are simple, perfect for small children. They reveal the meadow slowly, building it into a full experience. [Sakai's] illustrations are done in acrylic paints and oil pencils. They are done in delicate lines, yet have a freedom, a naturalness. The vast green of the field, dances on the page, at times detailed and at other times simply an expanse.

This lovely book is ideal to use with toddlers and preschoolers who will see themselves in the meadow. It would be a great piece to use with an art project where children draw their own meadows, or even build collages from found grasses. But primarily, it is a fresh, wonderful look at nature from a small child’s point of view." - Tasha Saecker, Waking Brain Cells

"While Kato uses few words, they are well chosen and express the wonders of nature. Onomatopoetic sounds[...]as well as descriptive sentences will be like music to a young child's ears as they paint a picture of what Yu-Chan is experiencing. Sakai's almost impressionistic acrylic paint and oil-pencil illustrations complement the story. Even the endpapers extend the lushness of the greenery in the text." -Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System

"Delicate illustrations done with acrylic paints and oil pencils bring the grassy meadow Yu-Chan experiences to full life. "In the Meadow" is a beautiful book that will lead young children to the heart of the natural world." -The Midwest Book Review

Children's Literature - Carlee Hallman
Mom, dad, brother, and Yu-chan are by the river to play. Yu-chan follows a butterfly into the tall weeds of a meadow. "Long leaves, round leaves, and jagged leaves tickle my legs. Tickle, tickle, tickle." A grasshopper jumps on her arm and then away. The butterfly disappears. Yu-chan suddenly feels threatened by the weeds and closes her eyes. She is lost. Sounds are all around. Mom comes to the rescue. The colored pictures carry out the magic of discovery of nature. The picture of being lost conveys the mood by a black and white picture. This simple, sensitive story will resonate with little children and their parents. Parents can reassure their children that they are surrounded by love and care. Parents may also remind their little ones not to wander off. This is a good story for parents and children to discuss lost and scary feelings. Reviewer: Carlee Hallman
School Library Journal
PreS—In this quiet book with little action, Yu-chan enjoys a day with her family exploring a meadow. She steps close enough to admire a butterfly, but it flits away, leaving the youngster ready to pursue the other creatures in this habitat. Soon she is surrounded by tall grasses that tickle her legs. While Kato uses few words, they are well chosen and express the wonders of nature. Onomatopoetic sounds, such as "Boing!" "Swish, swish," or "scrunch," as well as descriptive sentences ("the meadow sways like the waves of the sea"), will be like music to a young child's ears as they paint a picture of what Yu-chan is experiencing. Sakai's almost impressionistic acrylic paint and oil-pencil illustrations complement the story. Even the endpapers extend the lushness of the greenery in the text. While this book is supplemental for most libraries, there are those children who will appreciate the luscious language and simple sensations.—Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA
Kirkus Reviews

A memorable day at the river with the whole family.

A little girl named Yu-Chan, barely older than a toddler, narrates the adventure with beautifully childlike ingenuousness. Spotting a bright orange butterfly perched on a stone, she tries to touch it, but of course it flies away. While Mommy unpacks the family's supplies on the beach and Daddy and Yu-Chan's brother wade in the shallow water, she follows the butterfly through a meadow of tall green grass and plants, the leaves on the ground tickling her ankles. The greenery is so tall that only Yu-Chan's white hat is visible above it. The wind blows, rustling the leaves, and the meadow sways like the waves of the sea. A grasshopper jumps onto her arm but doesn't stay long; he boings away. Yu-Chan has been away for what feels like a long time; she hears a cacophony of sounds, but they all seem very far away. Suddenly she's afraid and starts to cry; it's the perfect time for Mommy to appear. They walk back to the river, hand in hand. Sakai uses acrylic paints and oil pencils to create softly lyrical illustrations that surpass the appropriately minimal text in beauty and elegance.

This immersive experience is the first in a proposed series of nature books; a welcome addition. (Picture book. 3-6)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781592701087
  • Publisher: Enchanted Lion Books
  • Publication date: 6/1/2011
  • Series: Being in the World Series
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 2 - 5 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.23 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 0.38 (d)

Meet the Author


Yukiko Kato: Yukiko Kato was born in 1936 in Sapporo, Japan. A famous novelist, she has been the recipient of many awards. Alive to the natural world, Kato has loved nature, wild animals and insects since she was a child. While her passion is writing, she also loves studying animals and plants. She is a member of the Wild Bird Society of Japan.

Komako Sakai: Komako Sakai was born in Hyogo, Japan, in 1966. After graduating from Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, Sakai worked at a kimono textile design company. She is currently one of the most popular author/illustrators in Japan. Her books Emily's Balloon and The Snow Day have been published in the US and were received with starred reviews and much acclaim.

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