Monday, February 9, 2009

Gorgeous Picture Book

One of the most beautiful books for kids in a long time is Wabi Sabi, published by Little, Brown. The book is written by Mark Reibstein and illustrated by Caldecott Award-winner Ed Young. The book tells the story of Wabi Sabi, a little cat in Kyoto, Japan, who tries to discover the true meaning of her name. The lyrical text and breathtaking collages work together to weave a story of finding real beauty in unexpected places. Mark Reibstein is an English teacher and writer who has lived in New York, California, Hawaii, Japan, and Thailand. While living in Kyoto, he met a cat named Wabi Sabi, and they remained very close friends for ten years. Now Mark and his daughter live near San Francisco with their good friend Arlo, who is also a cat. When illustrator Ed Young was young, he thought he could "disappear" into his own world, brought to life through his drawings. Years later, he has provide artwork for more than seventy books.

The book was unavailable for several months, because of the high demand, but we have a few copies back in stock. You'd be hard-pressed to find a more delightful and gorgeous book for kids of all ages. As defined in the book, wabi sabi "is a way of seeing the world that is at the heart of Japanese culture. It finds beauty and harmony in what is simple, imperfect, natural, modest, and mysterious. It can be a little dark, but it is also warm and comfortable. It may best be understood as a feeling, rather than as an idea."

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