Once Upon a Time in Japan Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-11-26 
Review Score: 5 out of 5 star From 3 user ratings

" A collection of translated traditional Japanese folktales published with NHK Japan Broadcasting Corporation. The eight stories feature four different illustrators each with unique styles. Engaging and entertaining. Includes an audio CD. " said.

" This was a nice little collction of fairy tales. The stories have a lot of symbolism that may not be completely understandable to western audiences but they are fun. my favoritestories involved animals like cranes and the story of Taro a young boy who sleeps for years and then waked up totransform his town. " said.

"Once Upon a Time in Japan is a book published by Tuttle Publishing with NHK Japan Broadcasting Corporation, and it has a whole bunch of stories that are set in Japan. There is a story about a fox and an otter. In that story, there is a fox who goes by the river, and then the Otter catches him some fish. The fox says that the next day he will give the Otter a feast, but when the Otter comes to the Fox’s house, the Fox just ignored him. Another story is about a man who saves a crane, and then a woman comes to his house and becomes his wife. She goes into the shed and weaves a beautiful cloth for him to sell, but she never wants him to come into the shed while she is weaving. Read the entire review at

Reviewed by Rachel W.
" said.

"Eight folktales featured on the Japan Broadcasting Corporation's radio series are brought to life in this volume with engaging text and interesting illustrations that offer fresh interpretations of the stories. While the Japanese audience will surely be familiar with most of these stories, the English-speaking world may not be, making this a cultural treasure worth savoring and sharing with others. Some such as "The Wife Who Never Eats" are humorous because the wife does, indeed, eat, but never when her husband is around, while others, such as "The Mill of the Sea" offer a great explanation for the ocean's salty content. Being a fan of animal tales, I read with relish "The Fox and the Otter" in which the long-suffering otter gets revenge on the fox for his wrong-doings, and I also loved "The Gratitude of the Crane," which may remind readers of the Western story of Psyche with its reminder not to look when you've promised not to look. The accompanying CD provides additional delights as readers may also listen to the tales. There isn't a weak story among the collection, making me yearn for another volume of these culturally-important tales filled with reminders of how to behave and what to avoid. There is much wisdom in the book's pages, but it is delivered in humorous and stylish fashion. " said.

" "Once Upon a Time in Japan", translated by Roger Pulvers and Juliet Winters Carpenter with a free audio CD narrated by Yuki Aotoni is a deliciously, colorful and delightful children's book that's as breathtakingly lovely to study as it is to read. Produced by NHK Japan Broadcasting Corporation for their "popular radio series" "Once Upon a Time in Japan" it includes eight folk tales, that subtly remind readers to be generous, kind, helpful and loving to family, friends and animals. It also explains how certain phenomena came about, with fanciful explanations. My favorite is in "The Mill of the Sea", which cleverly describes the sea salt's initiation by one of the story's characters.
Exquisitely illustrated by various artists, I loved the ones by Manami Yamada ("The Monkey and the Crabs") and Takumi Nishi ("The Gratitude of the Crane") the most because they brought alive the tales with a vividness and energy usually reserved for film, while the other illustrations simply partnered the words effectively.
To get the complete experience of the book, I listened to the accompanying CD, complete with the melodious accented voice of Yuki Atoni against a background of sound effects, while I read the book the first time. Then, upon my second reading, I recited the text aloud myself and escaped into the book's magic. Significant as a cultural reference and learning tool, "Once Upon a Time in Japan" is a literary masterpiece I won't soon forget.
" said.

" Stories illustrated by different Japanese artists. " said.

" I loved the art and the first few stories. The last few seemed unfinished to me. Weird, could just be me. " said.

" A collection of translated traditional Japanese folktales published with NHK Japan Broadcasting Corporation. The eight stories feature four different illustrators each with unique styles. Engaging and entertaining. Includes an audio CD. " said.

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