A picture book conveying the hope that readers will realize the important values obscured by prejudice.
- Book Intro
Mr. Saja opened SAJA Mart. The store is named after Mr. Saja, but at the same time, (since his name, saja, means “Let’s buy” in Korean) it is a supermarket he has opened hoping that people will come to buy many things. A lady enters SAJA Mart. Mr. Saja greets her, but surprised, the lady leaves. After that, the neighbors begin whispering about SAJA Mart. Soon, SAJA Mart ends up a place housing a terrifying lion (another meaning of saja in Korean), instead of a store where you can buy things. What will become of Mr. Saja’s supermarket?
2. Purpose of the book
1) What is prejudice?
Mr. Saja opened a supermarket. He lined the products up on the shelves, cleaned the store, and prepared to greet his customers. But a lady came to the supermarket only to run away terrified at the sight of a somewhat wild-looking Mr. Saja. Afterwards, the people in the neighborhood misunderstood Mr. Saja, because of his appearance and what they heard from the lady.
This book shows what prejudice is from the perspective of young children. Yet, it does not try to tell them that it is wrong. It doesn’t prompt Mr. Saja to alter his appearance to please other people, either. The book simply presents the actions of Mr. Saja, which reveal his naturally kind heart, and by chance, the neighbors come to realize this. The book doesn’t suggest that Mr. Saja was wrong for not caring about his looks or that the people were wrong for having stereotypes. After all, we all often misunderstand each other as we navigate life. The book emphasizes that what is important is a heart willing to always see the other person clearly, and the courage to quickly resolve any misunderstandings that may occur.
2) The theme portrayed in a harmony of colors
The illustrations in this book are a harmony of chromatic and achromatic colors. Stereotypes and prejudice involve focusing on a single aspect that stands out. The illustrator emphasizes this with contrasting colors. The faces and bodies of the characters are colorless. Only the clothes and accessories exhibit color. This implies that we see people and infer their personalities based on their clothes, which may reveal their inner selves. Symbolically, the illustrations show that that is not all there is to a person—just as the hues of my inner being are hidden, so too are the colors of all other people.
- About the Author
(English) She is the recipient of the best award from the 17th Children’s Book Contest by Changbi Publishers. She writes at her writing studio called Mary Eungyu which is located at a seaside village. Her children’s books include Heartful Bus, My Name IS Gugu Sneakers, Wimpy Manbo, Unbeatable Malsuk, My Dog Chomps Down Ramyeon, Great Nostrils, The Family of No-No Reading and the Cooking Books Shop, The Big-Ear Rabbit’s Counseling Center, I Have a Family, and Zipper Bag Boy. She also wrote a non-fiction book titled Lee Jungseob.
(English) “I wish that there were a village where a heart could stay and that I would like to live there for long.”
Lee Hyunjoo has illustrated for such books as Worries about Him, Logging-into School Today Again, On Board the Yellow Submarine, March from Selma and has written picture books such as Don’t Put Yourself Out but Solve Anyway 1 & 2, The Boy’s Mind, Children’s Poetry-Weltoon: Both of Us Together, Nothing Will Be Impossible, Nine Zero Nine Counseling Center, How to Draw Anime, Why Are You Crying?, Not Mommy But Auntie Tells a Story.
画的绘本有《那小子的担心》， 《今天也往学校- LOGIN》， 《坐上黄黄的舰艇》 《塞尔玛大游行》； 创作的绘本有《的心 诗+ Webtoon：我们两个就不成问题》， 《九百九咨询所》， 《画漫画的方法》， 《为什么哭？》， 《不是妈妈而是姨妈说给听的故事》等。
(Indonesian) Penulis adalah seorang kartunis yang sekaligus ingin menggambar kartun seperti menulis puisi. Ia mempelajari sejarah di perguruan tinggi. Saat ini aktif sebagai kartunis dan ilustrator. Publikasi kartunya terdapat pada majalah anak-anak 『Ikan Paus yang Melakukannya』, kelompok aktivis lingkungan "Green Union," dll. Buku-buku yang Ia buat antara lain, 『Hati Anak Laki-Laki』, 『Jangan Coba-coba Tapi Tetap Selesaikan 1, 2』, 『Pusat Konseling 909』, 『Puisi-Kartun Pikiran Anak - Tidak Masalah Jika Kita Berdua』, 『Metode Rahasia Kedua』 dan buku yang Ia gambar antara lain, 『Tangkap Pencuri Air Dirumahku』, 『HAM, Imigran, Perdamaian, dan Lingkungan, NGO Memecahkan Semua Masalah Tersebut』, dll