|@@Fukimanbuku is a picture book about a little girl and butterbur sprouts created by Tashima Seizô (1940- ). It also displays the authorfs affection towards the soil, plants and humans. It is one of the books which began the picture book boom in the 1970s.|
@@One summer night, Fuki-chan could not sleep and went out to gather stars in the mountain. The lights which glittered like star were actually the night dew on the leaves of butterbur. Fuki-chan falls asleep under the leaf of a butterbur. Early next spring, she goes to the mountain again. There she finds many butterbur sprouts on the ground where the leaves had been.
@@Fukimanbuku was created while Tashima was living in Hinode Village, Tokyo. Butterburfs strong hold on life, the soil which aids its growth, and Fuki-chan who was moved by the life force are all represented in powerful pictures drawn in paint mixed with mud. A seemingly fantastic story is represented realistically by Tashimafs down-to-earth drawings. Fuki-chan and butterbur are both depicted as equal living beings. Pictures play a significant role in the book.
@@Fukimanbuku received the Fifth Kodansha Cultural Prize for Childrenfs Picture Book Publication. In 1972, even before publication, the process of creating the book was broadcast by NHK and the book attracted a great deal of attention when it was published. It was highly praised from the beginning. Contemporary reviews pointed out that it appealed deeply to onefs whole body. On the other hand, the weakness of the text was pointed out, and actually pictures were esteemed more than the text. While it appealed to adult readers, it was also pointed out that the image of Fuki-chan (butterbur in Japanese) and butterburs are easy to be confused by children.