おにぎりにんじゃ Onigiri Ninja (Rice-Ball Ninja)

2010s

Author : Yuka Kitamura 北村裕花 

Published : 2014

Personal Recommendation : 3-5 years old

What comes to your mind when you think of Japan?  If it is Sushi and Ninja (the spy), this would be perfect book for you.  As represented in Sushi, we Japanese eat Rice pretty much everyday and we were quite creative the way we eat rice.  One of which is obviously Sushi (w/ raw fish) but Sushi also includes “Roll” where Rice is rolled up with Seaweed called “NORI” and cut in pieces for people to eat easily.  For that sense, Rice and Seaweed is quite good combination.   Not to forget “XXX over rice”, where XXX can be Beef, Chicken, Port Cutlet or even Tempura Shrimp.  And more casual (than Sushi) yet very popular way of eating rice is called “Onigiri” the rice ball.    Rice ball is completely wrapped with Seaweed and it is like Black ball from outside.  So, the main character in this book is “Rice Ball Ninja”whom Rice ball is wearing black-ish Ninja Clothes (presumably Seaweed) and doing some secret assignment to serve his General. 

Here is the storyline.

  • One day, Rice Ball Ninja was called by General to come to General’s “Rice-Roll” castle. 
  • General Rice-Roll told Rice-ball Ninja that his secret scroll named “Makimono” (rolled book) has been stolen by Rice-Bowl Castle. Without this scroll, they cannot hold the feast festivity this year, though traditionally this festivity would be held once in 100 years and this year IS the year of this festivity.
  • “Yes Sir!”  Rice Ball Ninja jumped off from castle and rush to the direction of Rice-Bowl Castle.
  • As secret trained spy himself, he can do many of awesome Ninja art/tricks. He can use long seaweed as a rope to climb the Rice-Bowl Castle, also sprinkle Sesame/Salt to the guards over, so that guards lose visibility.
  • As Ninja arrived inside the castle, he looked everywhere and finally found the secret Rolled book.  The hidden recipe of rice-cooking method was written in this rolled-book.
  • Guards of Rice-Bowl Castle came to the room and used the rope to catch the Ninja.
  • Tied up tightly, Ninja was sat in front of Rice-Bowl General.  Rice Bowl General ‘General Shrimp Tempura Bol) saying “We were about to hold rice festival based on this recipe written in Makimono, but You were in the way, Ninja!
  • Then, Rice ball Nina used another great Ninja Art “Slim Rice Roll”.  Nina’s body got very slim and rope had been untied to set Ninja free.     
  • General (Mr. Shrimp Tempura rice bowl) was upset and try to use his shrimp as a weapon (like a Samurai Sword) 
  • Ninja quickly reacted and smashed another Ninja Art “Salted-Plum Throwing-Knifes” to throw.  (Note :  Salted-Plum is usually found in the core of Rice Ball as flavor addition) 
  • Followed by Throwing-Knife techniques,  Rice-ball Ninja also did his another Ninja Art “Shadow-Cloning Technique”so that bunch of mini-Rice ball Ninja attacks Rice-Bowl General. Rice-Bowl General finally surrendered and handed over the secret Rolled book to Ninja.
  • After retuning to Rice-Roll castle, he handed over the rolled book on his knees to the General.   “Well done, Ninja! Well done. Now we can have the rice festivity to remember for next one century!” 

All the kids love Onigiri (The rice ball) and they fantasize about becoming Ninja one day.  As soon as I figure out from the title of this book and realize the author combined those two strong themes (Rice-Ball X Ninja), I knew it was a WIN!  How can this book become NOT interesting for kids, right?  😊   I just hope the readers would not start throwing rice-balls pretending as throwing-knifes, after reading this book. 😊

You can purchase this book here. 広告はこちら

[商品価格に関しましては、リンクが作成された時点と現時点で情報が変更されている場合がございます。]

おにぎりにんじゃ (講談社の創作絵本) [ 北村 裕花 ]
価格:1540円(税込、送料無料) (2021/11/15時点)


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