By Joseph J. Krakora
Illustrated by Abigayle James
A story to captivate readers of all ages, Yuki’s Journey follows a dog searching for his owner after a tsunami and earthquake have devastated Japan. On his odyssey, Yuki discovers his heart and strength, and displays super-canine gifts, which resonate in a kind of mantra, e.g. “smiling, as much as a dog could smile."
Animals who befriend him personify his master’s favorite toys: a set of puppet-masks of mythic figures in Japanese culture. Sequels to the first book (already in the works) feature these creatures drawn from Japanese folklore, such as Baku, the benevolent elephant-headed monster who comes to children in the night and eats their nightmares!
Joseph J. Krakora wrote Yuki’s Journey as a tribute to the Japanese people after the 2011 tsunami. It received an ecstatic reception in a benefit reading at the Japanese Embassy, hosted by the Ambassador. Joe retired recently as director of external affairs at the National Gallery of Art where he helped mount major exhibitions of Japanese art and reciprocal shows in Japan. This first book is brilliantly illustrated by his granddaughter, Abigayle James, a gifted young artist with a curious affinity for Japan. A teenager in the Virginia Tidewater, she just won admission to art school on the strength of her portfolio of Yuki drawings.