I discovered this tiny hardback book in the children’s section of my local bookstore; however, this picture book translated from Japanese, explores a universal theme; that of the inevitable struggle to accomplish that which is beyond our current capabilities. The story is basically the conflict that arises at bath time, as the toddler is determined to undress himself; his need for self-sufficiency clashes with mama-san’s desire for expedient efficiency; independence vs: authoritarian control and who gives up what? Shinsuke Yoshitake explores this life-long recurring theme with a Zen-like profound simplicity and the accompanying illustrations contributed smiles while reading the text. I declare this book a ‘’keeper’’ for all ages/stages of life!
Reviewed by Brynn Pardy
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