Thursday, January 13, 2011

Book a Day: 11

Another snow day for Richmond Memorial Library, but we're still reviewing our book a day. Today, another superlative selection from the non-fiction category; "Today and Today", with haiku by Kobayashi Issa, and illustrations by G. Brian Karas. Issa, as the poet is known, was a Japanese Buddhist priest who lived from 1763 to 1828. He wrote over 20,000 haiku and is considered one of the foremost masters of the form. Karas uses 22 select poems from Issa to tell the life of one family throughout the year from Spring ("Once snows have melted the village soon overflows with friendly children.") to Spring again ("As simple as that, spring has finally arrived with a pale blue sky.") In my opinion, although this book is cataloged with the poetry, it is really a picture book with wonderful illustrations, evocative and sweet, that tell a story along with the haiku. The central story, told with extreme subtly through the illustrations, is of the loss of the grandfather. It's done so gently that unless you're pointing it out it can be overlooked. A simply beautiful book worth checking out. Call number is J 811 Kobayashi (which is confusing and may be changed), but is now located on the new shelf. Ms. Patty

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