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Children's Book Author Allen Say On Winning Awards & His Latest Project

Children's book author and illustrator Allen Say

Children’s book author and illustrator Allen Say


“Receiving an award at my age makes me feel like a boy who is given a medal for winning a race or getting an A in math,” says Portland artist and author Allen Say

Say recently won the Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children’s Literature at this year’s Oregon Book Awards. He was honored for his book Drawing from Memory, an autobiographical depiction of his life as an artist growing up in Japan and a tribute to his late mentor, Japanese cartoonist Noro Shinpei.

“This prize, the Oregon Book Award for Children’s Literature, is doubly sweet for the child in me — a boy who had never heard of Oregon until he was a grown-up.”

Say has won a number of honors, including the Caldecott Medal in 1994, but this is his first award connected to his current home state.

Allen Say's newest book, The Favorite Daughter, is dedicated to his daughter Yuriko.

Allen Say’s newest book, The Favorite Daughter, is dedicated to his daughter Yuriko.

Scholastic, Inc.

Soon readers will be able to take a look at Say’s next project, which is scheduled for release later this month.

“My new book The Favorite Daughter is a late thank-you note to my daughter Yuriko that has taken 20 years to write — to thank her for being my daughter who has always been as lovely as her name, The Child of the Lily,” explains Say.

To learn more about Allen Say, watch our Oregon Art Beat profile.

Allen Say Children's literature author

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Illustrator and Author Allen Say

Japanese-born Portland-based children?s book illustrator and author Allen Say?s work has won some of the biggest honors in children?s literature. His most recent book, "Drawing From Memory", describes growing up in post-World War II Japan and apprenticing himself to a famous Japanese comic book artist at the age of 12. Say talks about his life and how his autobiography influences his art.