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Naita Naita

Text by Nakagawa, Hirotaka
Ill. by Cho, Shinta
Tokyo: Kin-no-Hoshi Sha, 2004

32 pp: 246 ~ 211 mm
ISBN : 4-323-07047-0
Ages : 4-9
Mother, Family, Growing-up

The Japan Picture Book Award, the Grand Winner Award 2005

This picture book shows gcryingh in different situations and contexts, something every child can recognize. The simple and poetic text is combined with uncomplicated illustrations to tell a story of a boy who lives with his parents and a dog. As an only child, he had his motherfs love all to himself. When she goes away to the maternity ward to give birth, he misses her and cries. Then, when she comes home with a baby, he cries again because he is happy to be reunited with her. The story tells us that people cry not only when they are sad but also when they are delighted or deeply moved. In the latter half of the book there is a heart-warming scene where the boy sees his motherfs tears when they share the same futon. The text does not explain much, but we can feel that she dearly loves her son. The boy also wonders why adults do not normally cry, and if he will be one day like his father who never seems to cry.

Hirotaka Nakagawa was born in Saitama Prefecture in 1954. After working as a nurse and a band musician, he became an author of childrenfs picture books. His works include Ha ga Nuketa (A Tooth Comes Out), which won the Grand Prix of Kenbuchi Picture Book Award, and Wani no Suwani (Swanee the Crocodile).

Shinta Cho was born in Tokyo in 1927. After his debut as a cartoonist, he came into the field of picture books and illustrations. His works include Oshaberi na Tamagoyaki (The King and His Fried Egg, 1959), which won the Bungeisyunju Cartoon Award, Kyabetsu-kun (Mr. Cabbage, 1980), which won the Grand Prix of the Picture Book Japan Award, and Gomuatama Pontaro (Rubber-Head Boy Pontaro, 1998), which won the Japan Picture Book Award. He illustrated more than 400 picture books which are mostly full of nonsensical humor. He passed away in 2005.
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