Kimiko Kajikawa, Children's Book AuthorKimiko Kajikawa, Children's Book Author
Kimiko Kajikawa, Children's Book Author

  Starred Reviews for Tsunami!


  "A visually powerful and dramatic tribute to one man's willingness to sacrifice everything for others."

— Kirkus, starred review

  "An earthquake, a fire, a tidal wave and selfless heroism, all packed into 32 pages, guarantee that this story will hold the attention of even the most restless listeners...Kajikawa's portrait of an old man who acts unhesitatingly against his own interests delivers a forceful message."

— Publisher's Weekly, starred review

  "Young uses a panoply of papers to create collages that tell the story of a sacrifice that saved hundreds of lives. Patterned and marbled papers, fibrous grass cloth, translucent rice paper and tissue, photographic magazine papers, and even corrugated cardboard are keenly cut, roughly torn, layered, wrinkled, mounted, and manipulated to produce images that range from dead calm to the sea-spittled tumult of a roiling vortex that promises to consume everything in its path. The art reflects the frenzy of the events and is a departure from the more serene, controlled, and balanced work we know of Young. Kajikawa has based the character of Ojiisan on Japanese hero Hamaguchi Gohei, who in 1854 set his own rice-stack harvest ablaze, diverting the attention of revelers and drawing them away from impending disaster. A simple story of the power of a simple act."

— School Library Journal, starred review

  "An eventful tale of disaster and heroism..."

— The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, Recommended

Award-winning illustrator, Ed Young: biography, lesson plans, books and videos

Tsunami! makes Fuse #8's blog's 2010 Caldecott Predictions list

Elizabeth Bird said, "My Ed Young track record is off, but I thought this was a real stunner.  I'm still haunted by the wall of black water rising above the tiny helpless village.  *shudder*"

Check out Elizabeth's review of Tsunami! here:

Author Wins International Award

Oscar the Grouch and Master puppeteer, Caroll Spinney, come out of the trash can to congratulate Kimiko Kajikawa for winning a 2009 Christopher Award.

Children's book author, Kimiko Kajikawa, won a 2009 Christopher Award at the 60th Annual Christopher Awards Ceremony held at the McGraw-Hill Building in New York City. The awards, first presented in 1949, are given annually to film, television, and books that "affirm the highest values of the human spirit." Kimiko Kajikawa, a New Hope, PA resident, won an award for her book, Close to You: How Animals Bond (Henry Holt Books for Young Readers).

The awards honored six feature films, seven television programs, six books for adults and five books for children that debuted in the 2008 calendar year. All were judged to exhibit exceptional artistic and technical proficiency, a significant degree of public visibility and, most importantly, they clearly affirm the highest values of the human spirit.

Along with Kajikawa, other 2009 Christopher Award winners included Slumdog Millionaire, Wall*E, Sesame Street, John Adams Miniseries, Steve Lopez (The Soloist), and Walter Dean Myers (Sunrise Over Fallujah).

"This year's honorees have enriched the lives of generations of young people, in New York, throughout the nation, and beyond," said Judith Trojan, Christopher Awards program manager. "The Christophers recognize media that remind audiences and readers of all ages and faiths of their power to make a difference in their communities and the world-at-large." The entrants were reviewed by panels of media professionals; members of The Christophers' staff with expertise in film, TV and publishing; and by children's reading specialists.

Christopher Life Achievement Award-winner, author/historian David McCullough, was especially proud of his Award, which he now displays in his library. "It gives me the chance to talk about the bedrock values The Christophers stand for and why having my work so honored means worlds to me." Christopher Award-winner Ken Burns (director/producer) agrees. "In an awards environment that is all ego, it is refreshing to have The Christopher Awards around to remind us all of the real purpose of our work."

Close to You: How Animals Bond Chosen Children's-Book-of-the-Month Club Selection

In 2008, Henry Holt released Kimiko Kajikawa's Close to You: How Animals Bond, a followup to her book, Sweet Dreams: How Animals Sleep. Close to You was also featured as a selection by Children's-Book-of-the-Month-Club.

Yardley author and local animals add up to a winning combination in new books
Yardley News

"If necessity is the mother of invention, what happens in the succeeding generations? In Yardley, invention gave birth to a book, and necessity became the grandmother of a creative career. Yardley resident Kimiko Kajikawa has just published three new books, the latest in a line that has gained her a reputation as a top-notch author and photographer of children's tales."

Yardley News

"Yardley children's author Kimiko Kajikawa drew a crowd on Saturday at the new Barnes & Noble bookstore at the Court at Oxford Valley where she signed her new books, Cool Cat, Hot Dog, and Dancing Rainbows for an enthusiastic crowd. Joining her at the book signing were "The Big Kahuna," said to be the fattest cat around, and its owner, Lower Makefield resident Lyn Mount. The Kahuna is one of the cats featured in her new children's book, Cool Cat. The cat and her owner were both big hits and Kajikawa was rumored to have a sore arm from signing so many books."