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  • Ages 6 and up
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Osaru no mainichi

[How the Monkeys Spend Their Day]

Written and illustrated by Itō Hiroshi

Kōdansha, 1991. 85 pp. ISBN 978-4-06-197822-5.

Also published in: Chinese (traditional characters)

On a tiny island far to the south, a group of monkeys spend each day the same way. “When the sun rises in the morning, they wake up, go pee, and then eat their breakfast. Then comes grooming, followed by tree-climbing, frog-throwing, and swimming. When night falls, they go to sleep.” Once or twice a year, something different happens: an old sea turtle visits the island and tells the monkeys what he has seen traveling around the world. One day, the monkeys spot the sea turtle on the far horizon. After the initial excitement, they wait for him in a row on the beach. This time, however, when the sea turtle finally makes it to the sand, he is so exhausted that he falls asleep. The monkeys wait, careful not to wake him.

    When the old sea turtle wakes up, he tells the monkeys about being so distracted by an enormous ship that he hit his head on its hull. The monkeys gasp, imagining how big the ship must have been.

    With the daily lives we used to take for granted being taken from us all over the world, these island monkeys appear all the more precious for the way they value the everyday routines of their easygoing lives. Also appealing are their readiness to “wait” instead of hurrying people to act, and their wild imaginings when the sea turtle speaks. This picture book is filled with fun illustrations, and is a reminder of things we have forgotten today in our constant pursuit of novelty, profit, and change. (SY)
『Osaru no mainichi』の表紙画像

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Itō Hiroshi

Born in Tokyo in 1957. Has published children’s story books in addition to picture books and illustrations. Has won awards including the Nippon Picture Book Award and the Robō no Ishi [Roadside Stone] Children’s Literature Award. His picture books include Ruraru-san no niwa [Ruraru’s Yard], Hebi-kun no osanpo [A Snake’s Stroll], and Daijōbu daijōbu [Don’t Worry, It’s OK]. His picture story books include Manhōru kara konnichi wa [Greetings from Manholes], Gokigen na sutego [trans. Free Kid to Good Home], Neko to tomodachi [The Cat and His Friends], and Sannin Santa [The Santa Trio].

Translation rights inquiries

Kōdansha Ltd.
(attn. Kitaoka Morio, International Rights Dept.)
2-12-21 Otowa, Bunkyō-ku, Tokyo
112-8001
Tel.: +81-3-5395-4112
Fax: +81-3-3942-7204
Email: kokusai_shoseki@kodansha.co.jp
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