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The Samurai's Daughter

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Tokoyo vows to join her father, a samurai nobleman, after he is exiled to a lonely island. But between daughter and father lies a journey fraught with both natural and supernatural dangers--a ship of ghosts, fierce bandits, and an evil sea demon. Johnson's lush paintings illuminate this tale of courage and endurance, retold from a medieval Japanese legend. Full color. Size D. 32 pp. 8,000 print.

A Japanese folk tale about the brave daughter of a samurai warrior and ...

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Overview

Tokoyo vows to join her father, a samurai nobleman, after he is exiled to a lonely island. But between daughter and father lies a journey fraught with both natural and supernatural dangers--a ship of ghosts, fierce bandits, and an evil sea demon. Johnson's lush paintings illuminate this tale of courage and endurance, retold from a medieval Japanese legend. Full color. Size D. 32 pp. 8,000 print.

A Japanese folk tale about the brave daughter of a samurai warrior and her journey to be reunited with her exiled father.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Illustrations of shimmering delicacy highlight this imagistic retelling of a Japanese legend. Tokoyo is the teenage daughter of a samurai in medieval Japan. When her beloved father is banished to a distant island by a deranged ruler, the resolute girl sets out to find him. San Souci's ( The Talking Eggs ) account of her arduous pilgrimage is told in the lilting, often haunting, style of ancient oral narrative and is filled with such potent images as the caged cricket that sustains Tokoyo in her travels and the ghostly warship that washes over her as she rows on the open sea. But the telling, which consists almost entirely of exposition, ultimately has a somewhat flat quality. In discrete scenes, the brave heroine climbs mountains, crosses the ocean and--in the tale's rather abrupt ending--battles a writhing sea serpent to save her father, but she nonetheless fails to become a deep or involving character. Johnson's pastel paintings, in jewel-like tones of sea green and violet, create considerable atmosphere. Readers watch Tokoyo come fully to life in her underwater world, whether she is swimming happily amid a school of iridescent fish or savaging the coiled white serpent, dagger poised, her lush black hair swirling around her. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Jan Lieberman
In this retelling of a Japanese legend, a noble samurai teaches his daughter, Tokoyo, the same virtues of courage, discipline and endurance that a son would learn. When her father is exiled by his 'insane' ruler, the girl decides to join him in exile. She must hide from bandits, fight off a ghost ship of warriors and battle a huge serpent. The paintings capture the excitement of the girl's adventures and the happy reunion reinforces our belief that women, too, are capable of courageous deeds.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4-- Tokoyo, daughter of a loyal samurai in 13th-century Japan, sets off on a perilous journey to be reunited with her unjustly exiled father. En route, she slays a sea serpent and, by sheer serendipity, lifts the curse that has caused the paranoia of the supreme ruler. Her father is restored to favor, suitably rewarded, and both return home to enjoy ``peace and prosperity for the rest of their lives.'' San Souci's retelling of this Kamakura Period folktale is smooth, lively, and makes a resonant read-aloud. Johnson's pastel and ink illustrations capture authentic small details yet remain dreamily impressionistic. Pictures match the text well, although Tokoyo is often depicted in overly melodramatic poses that may detract from one-on-one reading, but become quite effective at a distance for group sharing. The strong, independent female protagonist will inspire many admirers. --John Philbrook, San Francisco Public Library
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140562842
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/1/1997
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 9 Years
  • Lexile: NC810L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.90 (w) x 10.02 (h) x 0.09 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2002

    Great book!

    I absolutely love this book! I first found it in the library several years ago. Since then I've read it at least fifteen times and I'm ready to read it again!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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