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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group


Jon J Muth, Written by John Kuramoto

Feiwel & Friends


This adaptation of a Chinese folktale begins with a man's dissatisfaction with his life. Weary of being a stonecutter, he becomes many things in his quest for authority, each time finding that greater power lies elsewhere. Rooted in Taoist principles, Stonecutter is a story about the nature of power and the value of accepting who you are.

Originally published in a limited, fine art edition and long out of print, this is one of Jon J Muth's most heartfelt and exquisite works, and a book he entrusted to Feiwel and Friends to reach a wide new audience.

The stonecutter stood before the stone, deciding where to begin.
When at last he chose the proper spot, he drove the chisel into the stone with the hammer.
The work was long, slow, and difficult. . . .
"Each morning I go...

Praise for Stonecutter

“A thoughtful and straightforward look at a man who travels to find out that what he really wants to be is exactly what he is, Stonecutter is a smart book for high school and college graduates. Muth's Zen-like black and white brushstrokes are powerful, while Kuramoto's traditional Japanese folklore stays with the reader long after the book wears out. Stonecutter would also be a moving gift for a professional forced to take a lower paying job.” —Copley News Service

“Moral without being moralistic, the tale sends a simple and direct message unfreighted by pomp or pedantry. Muth's art is as carefully distilled as his prose. A series of misty, evocative watercolors in muted tones suggests the figures and their changing relationships to the landscape.” —Publishers Weekly, review of The Three Questions

“. . . Both an accessible, strikingly illustrated story and a thought-provoking meditation. Here Muth incorporates short Buddhist tales. . . . the peaceful, uncluttered pictures, like the story itself, will encourage children to dream and fill in their own answers.” —Booklist, starred review of Zen Shorts

Reviews from Goodreads

Jon J Muth, Written by John Kuramoto

JON J MUTH has written and illustrated many acclaimed picture books including his Caldecott Honor title, Zen Shorts, which Kirkus proclaimed, "As perfect a picture as can be"; and The Three Questions, which the New York Times Book Review called "quietly life-changing." His newest book, Zen Ties, debuted this spring and immediately landed on the New York Times bestseller list. He lives in New York State with his wife and four children.

JOHN KURAMOTO has collaborated on the text for many comic books and graphic novels, including The Crow. He lives in New York State.

Jon J Muth

John Kuramoto

Feiwel & Friends

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