Jasmine Toguchi Drummer Girl Launch Party

I celebrated the launch of Jasmine Toguchi Drummer Girl (book 3) at Savoy Bookstore & Cafe in Westerly RI on April 8. It was such a thrill to have the party at one of my favorite indie bookstores and to be surrounded by friends, family, and fans. Big thanks to the bookstore and Elissa Sweet for coordinating the event! (Black and white photo credit: Betsy Devany Macleod).

To help me celebrate, Odaiko New England, performed on taiko drums for the audience. And then as a special treat, audience members were invited to try their hands at taiko! I signed books after. I’m very grateful to all who came out for the party!

Happy Book Birthday, Jasmine Toguchi Drummer Girl!

Today, April 3, is launch day for book 3 in my chapter book series, Jasmine Toguchi!

A Junior Library Guild 2018 Selection

“An enjoyable offering about trying new activities and finding just the right talent that makes us feel “free and strong and happy.”” ―Kirkus

I’m so excited to share this book about third grader Jasmine Toguchi preparing for a school-wide talent show. Her mom introduces her to the Japanese taiko, and Jasmine worries that she might not be good enough in time. A story about having fun and making new friends. For more about the book and to purchase – Jasmine Toguchi Drummer Girl.

Also check out these posts:

An interview with me on First Book.

On KidLitExchange: I talk about my inspiration for writing the Jasmine Toguchi series

An interview with me on Mrs. Knott’s Book Nook.

Q&A Westerly Sun (Rhode Island)

On Book Riot: Karina Yan Glaser shares her top 20 favorite book releases for April 3, including Drummer Girl!

On NPStation – A video book review by a kid reader (adorable!)

Thank you, as always, for your support!

 

School Visit!

Thank you Cutchogue East Elementary School for the warm and wonderful welcome!

I spoke with the 2nd and 3rd graders about being a writer, Jasmine Toguchi, mochi, and dreaming big! I loved the origami pals the students made from the activity in Super Sleuth. The students were enthusiastic and attentive, and I enjoyed having lunch with the librarian, Mary Charters, who set up the visit. Sending thanks to the principal, staff, and the students! What a fabulous library and school!

 

 

Happy Girl’s Day at Newtonville Books

I had an absolutely wonderful time celebrating Girl’s Day at Newtonville Books on Saturday, March 3.  Girl’s Day or Hinamatsuri (doll festival) is a Japanese celebration honoring girls.

My mom and me on Girl’s Day with the traditional set of dolls representing the Imperial Court

Thank you to the amazing staff – Deb, Margaret, Guna, and to Nikki who set it all up, and to Mary Cotton, fabulous owner who stopped by to say hello (and get books signed)!

Gratitude to the families and kids who showed up to learn about Girl’s Day and hear me read from Jasmine Toguchi Super Sleuth. I showed the kids a doll from my Girl’s Day display and everyone seemed to enjoy the mochi my husband made. We had fun folding origami, too!

Thanks to my husband, Bob Florence, and friend and blogger Mia Wenjen for the photos!

 

Kid-Friendly Event at the Pao Arts Center

 

On Saturday, October 28 at the Pao Arts Center in Boston’s Chinatown, I had the pleasure of working with Susan Tan, author of the middle grade book Cilla Lee-Jenkins, Future Author Extraordinaire.

Families with kids joined us on a beautiful day – we read from our books and ran activities and crafts.

Even the parents participated! We talked about how Jasmine Toguchi and Cilla Lee-Jenkins could possibly be friends and pen pals, and invited kids to write postcards to either Jasmine or Cilla.

The kids were invited to create their own Monster Fighters from Susan’s book, and to fold their own origami pals from Jasmine Toguchi, Super Sleuth.

After the activities, Susan and I signed books for readers, passed out bookmarks, stickers, and pins, and answered questions. It was a fun and wonderful day!

Check out this lovely coloring job of Jasmine by a talented 7-year-old girl:

You can download the Jasmine Toguchi activities and join in the fun!

I am available for school visits. I’m currently booking for Spring 2018.

Junior Library Guild

I am so very honored that Jasmine Toguchi, Mochi Queen is a Junior Library Guild Fall 2017 selection. Yesterday I received my award package with my certificate!

I am filled with deep gratitude to the Junior Library Guild.

Podcast with Clever Cookstr

I owe you all a huge blog post with details from my recent book signings in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Boston, with a bit about my trip to NYC with my agent and a friend.

In the meantime, I wanted to share a link to an interview I did with Kara Rota of the fascinating and fun Clever Cookstr podcast. After you listen to me talk about my inspiration for Jasmine, my childhood food memories, and making mochi, be sure to check out her other interviews,  too!

Clever Cookstr: Why Mochi is the Perfect Dessert for Kids

Jasmine Toguchi, Drummer Girl

Book 3, Jasmine Toguchi, Drummer Girl is available for pre-order!

Pub date: April 3, 2018

It’s talent show time at school, and eight-year-old Jasmine Toguchi is excited to show her stuff. But as she thinks about her strengths―tree-climbing, mochi making, collage―none of them feel quite right to perform on-stage. Jasmine’s friends already have a talent: Tommy yo-yo’s, Daisy dances, and Linnie plays piano. Plus, Maggie Milsap (aka Miss Perfect) is saying she’ll have the best talent.

When Jasmine’s mom introduces her to the taiko, a traditional Japanese drum, Jasmine finally finds an activity that feels just right. But will she be good enough at taiko in time to beat Maggie Milsap?

Join Jasmine as she discovers her talent―and the difference between being the best and trying your best.

Pre-order at your favorite indie bookstore or online

Jasmine Toguchi Activity Downloads!

Here are some fun Jasmine Toguchi activities you can do with your kids and students! Click on the image for a free download. I’d love to see what your readers come up with. Please share on social media with #JasmineToguchiBooks. Thank you and enjoy!

Jasmine Toguchi: Paper Dolls

 

Jasmine Toguchi: Mochi Recipe

 

Jasmine Toguchi: Cooking and Community

 

Jasmine Toguchi: Origami

 

Jasmine Toguchi: Name Tags

 

Have fun!

 

Catch A Reader, Get A Bookmark

Thank you to everyone for making launch week for Jasmine Toguchi, Mochi Queen and Jasmine Toguchi, Super Sleuth amazing and wonderful! It lifted my heart to get your notes and social media boosts, and I loved seeing so many familiar faces at my launch party at Bank Square Books last week! Thank you!

I’ve also loved seeing photos of Jasmine Toguchi out in the wild! If you post a pic of you and/or your child reading either Mochi Queen or Super Sleuth, please let me know. I would love to send you a signed bookmark and stickers. Best way to let me know is by tagging me on social media (@DebbiMichiko on Twitter and jasminetoguchi or d.michiko.f on Instagram) or contacting me via my contact form. DM or email me at debbi.michiko@icloud.com with your mailing address.

But wait! There’s more! Every person who posts a picture by August 21, will be entered in a random drawing for a grand prize. The Jasmine Toguchi basket includes a Mochi Queen t-shirt (L),  flamingo plush, mochiko (for mochi recipe), chopsticks, and a free 30-minute classroom Skype visit.

Stay tuned here for some fabulous and free downloadable activities you and your kids can do! Happy reading and thank you again!