Yuko-Chan and the Daruma Doll
by Sunny Seki



Tuttle Publishing, 2012. ISBN 978-4-805-31187-5.
Reviewed by Doris Anne Roop-Benner
Posted on 06/19/2012

Younger Readers

Yuko-Chan and the Daruma Doll is about an orphaned blind girl who lived at the Daruma Temple. (Daruma was the Father of Zen Buddhism.) When Yuko-Chan's village was covered with ashes from a volcano, all the crops were damaged. The village was very worried about how it would recover from this disaster.

One day during a snow storm, when Yuko-Chan was delivering food to people in need, she fell over a cliff. While she was waiting for help, she took out her tea gourd to have a drink. She dropped the gourd and when she grabbed for it she realized that it was upright. So she pushed it over several more times and every time it fell over, it would come upright again.

Remembering that she had always been motivated by the words, "If you fall seven times, you must pick yourself up eight times," she had a bright idea. Why not make a doll that would come upright whenever it fell over?

She brought her plan to the temple and suggested they paint gourds to look like dolls and sell them to make money. The villagers embraced the idea and helped to make the dolls. During the Spring Festival, people came from everywhere to buy the clever Daruma Dolls. They made enough money to save the village, and the dolls are the most famous in all of Japan.

Seki tells us not only a beautiful story, but on every page he has richly painted images of Yuko-Chan, her Daruma Dolls, and her village that bring the words—both in English and in Japanese—to life. As a grandmother, I found this story to be sweet and inspiring. I think younger readers (and the young at heart) will enjoy it also.


Sunny Seki is the award-winning author and illustrator of The Last Kappa of Old Japan, The Tale of the Lucky Cat, and Gardeners' Pioneer Story. A native of Japan, Sunny studied illustration at Pasadena Art Center of Design. Sunny, his wife Judy, and their nine children live in San Gabriel, CA. Visit his website.

Authors/Publicists: For promotion purposes, you may quote excerpts of up to 200 words from our reviews, with a link to the page on which the review is posted. ©Copyright to the review is held by the writer (review posting date appears on the review page). If you wish to reprint the full review, you may do so ONLY with her written permission, and with a link to http://www.storycirclebookreviews.org. Contact our Book Review Editor (bookreviews at storycirclebookreviews.org) with your request and she will forward it to the appropriate person.

       
   
StoryCircleBookReviews provides a review venue for women author-publishers and for women's work published by independent and university presses.


Email me with news about your book reviews



LifeLines Weekend Writing Retreat

Sarton Women's Book Award


Your ad could be here.
Advertise with us!


   

Visit us on Facebook and Twitter and goodreads.





Buy books online through amazon.com by simply clicking on the book cover or title. Your purchase will support our work of encouraging all women to tell their stories.
This title is currently available ONLY as an e-book
#visitors: