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I LIVE IN TOKYO by Mari Takabayashi


by Mari Takabayashi & illustrated by Mari Takabayashi

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-618-07702-2
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Here is a charming—and accurate—introduction to Tokyo as seen through the eyes of a fictional seven-year-old girl. Mimiko takes readers month-by-month through the year, highlighting foods, festivals, and family and school activities. The left edge of each month’s double-paged spread names the month in English, in Japanese characters, and in transliteration. Takabayashi (born and raised in Tokyo) has painted many small, lively vignettes, all informatively labeled, to extend her more general text and larger pictures. The vibrant watercolors elegantly combine childlike simplicity with a wealth of detail. We see school texts and uniforms, Japanese writing, the Japanese zodiac, Mimiko’s top ten favorite meals, a bullet train passing Mt. Fuji, and more. A painted map of Japan provides a frame of reference, and the final page includes pronunciations for the months, the numbers from one to twelve, and a few Japanese words and phrases. (Picture book/nonfiction. 4-8)