The true story of a fourteen year old Japanese boy, Manjiro, who in 1841 is shipwrecked on a deserted island and rescued by American whalers. At the time, Japan had been virtually cut off from the rest of the world for two hundred fifty years. Manjiro's decision to accept Captain Whitfield's invitation to come to Massachusetts and live with him was instrumental in changing the course of relations between two future superpowers. Even more interesting was the literary prediction by Herman Melville in his 1851 epic, Moby Dick, "If that double-bolted land, Japan, is ever to become hospitable, it is the whale-ship alone to whom the credit will be due; for already she is on the threshold."
Well-researched, well-written, beautifully illustrated, and a fascinating story as well. Once again, nice to learn more history from a so-called 'picture' book.