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K Is for Kabuki Review by Charlotte GochnauerGloria Whelan and Jenny Nolan
Sleeping Bear Press
PO Box 9187
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
Cherry Blossoms, Judo, and Kimonos all conjure up pictures of Japan, but have you heard of Haiku or the Ginza? Many interesting and little-known facts about this unique island nation are explored in another Discover the World book from Sleeping Bear Press. With its large beautiful illustrations and charming poetic style, K Is for Kabuki allows you to tour Japan without leaving your sofa. Each letter of the alphabet has a topic with additional information on the side of the page, including the history of the Japanese theater, a profile of the emperor, and facts about the bullet train. The information given is not overwhelming; it is written in a very engaging yet simple style. At the end of the book, there is glossary that includes all the Japanese words and their definitions. There is also a section on pronunciation that I found very helpful.
This 40-page non-fiction book is recommended for ages 4-8, but my older children enjoyed reading through it. I learned new information myself during my perusal of it. The illustrations complemented the style of the book well with soft colors and simple drawings. This truly was a tour of Japan for children, and it could very easily be incorporated into a social studies or history lesson for the homeschooling family.