Have you ever wondered how people become artists? How they decide their paths? Who helps them; who hurts them? Award-winning children's book illustrator Allen Say knew from a very young age that when he was drawing, he was happy.
Growing up in Japan during World War II wasn't easy. To make matters worse, Allen's parents divorced, and no one in his family wanted him to be an artist. But all that Allen wanted was to be an artist. He spent as much time as he could drawing things he saw, things he imagined, and drawing other people's drawings.
When Allen was just about 13, he read a curious story in the newspaper. A boy, only 3 years older than Allen, had walked 350 miles to Tokyo to ask for a cartoonist job at a local newspaper. Noro Shinpei, the most famous cartoonist in Japan (and Allen's favorite), was so impressed that he made the young man his student. After reading that article, all Allen could think of was whether Shinpei would take him on as a student. Allen had to find out. Shinpei's answer could decide Allen's future as an artist – the only future he had ever wanted.
Read this autobiography to find out Allen Say's path to becoming the world-famous artist he is today.
–Emily, Scholastic Booktalker