Authors

Ryusuke Saito

Ryusuke Saito 斎藤隆介

Ryusuke Saito (1917–1985)  was born in Tokyo, and graduated from Meiji University. He began his career as a reporter for regional newspapers in Hokkaido and then Akita. He adopted the pen name Ryusuke Saito in 1950 when he published the story Hachiro (Hachiro) in the Shuhoku chugakusei shinbun (Northern Akita Middle School News). His first collection of children's stories was Bero-dashi Chonma (Chonma Sticks His Tongue Out), for which he received the 1968 Shogakukan Children's Publication Culture Award. From the late 1960s into the 1970s, Saito was one of the leaders of a movement to create new folk tales in the style of traditional tales. He collaborated with Jiro Takidaira on many such works, including Hachiro, The Tree of Courage, The Mountain of Flowers, and Hannichi-mura (Half-Day Village).

Books by Ryusuke Saito
  • Book

    Hachiro

    Set in Akita Prefecture and told in traditional folk-tale style, this is a story of how Lake Hachirogata was formed. Its dialogue is in the Akita dialect. Hachiro is a giant with a gentle heart. He is so big that birds build nests in his hair. One day he …

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  • Book

    The Tree of Courage

    Five-year-old Mameta lives with Grandpa. He's a timid boy, who always wakes Grandpa up to accompany him when he has to go to the outhouse in the middle of the night. The shadow of the giant horse-chestnut tree in the yard scares him. Grandpa tells him th …

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