Jasmine Toguchi – Mochi Queen
by Debbi Michiko Florence, published 2017
“I just had to be able to help make mochi! I need to think of a way to convince my parents. Good think I had the perfect thinking spot…”
Here’s a short, easy-to-read children’s book, and a nice contribution to multi-cultural literature. As we continue to become a more ‘homogenized’ society in the US, it’s important to remember how many of us have roots in other countries, with other cultural traditions. The Japanese culture is very rich, and it’s lovely to be reminded of families that continue their traditions.
Mostly this children’s book lets us view the typical ‘you’re a girl’ pattern that exists, alas, probably more than we know. What’s lovely is how nicely this is handled, where the parents offer support to break with tradition.
The simplicity of the book makes me feel it’s best for 7 to 9, at most. I think older children will not find much to hold them. However I enjoyed reading it, and would enjoy sharing it with any child, regardless of their ancestry. There are several other children’s books about Jasmine Toguchi, so if this particular book strikes a chord, I’d recommend checking out the other books in the collection.