This event will take place in the Children's room on the second floor of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library.
About the Book
A young boy passes a painting of a hand on a wall in his neighborhood and watches others placing their own hands against it. The act means something different for each of them: Ms. Iris tells him it is a link to her home country; for Devin, it connects him to his older sister, who just left for college; for Savannah, it reminds her of her grandmother who passed away. The boy thinks of those who are on the other side of the mural, of loved ones lost or lonely or far away, and of his own mother, who is currently incarcerated. While he waits for her to come home, the hand is there to connect them to each other and remind them that they are not alone.
Monumental, moving, and hopeful, Place Hand Here is a masterful work that honors the way art and love are bridges between us.
Limited copies of "Place Hand Here" will be available for Beyond the Book Families to add to their home libraries courtesy of the DC Public Library Foundation
About the Author
Katie Yamasaki is a muralist and children’s book artist. She has traveled widely, painting over 80 murals with diverse communities around the world that explore local issues of identity and social justice. Her children’s book work focuses on similar themes of social justice and stories from underrepresented communities.
Yamasaki’s mural work takes a participatory approach, working with local community members to find ways to best communicate stories they want to tell. From incarcerated mothers at Rikers Island to the community surrounding Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx; elder members of the Japanese American Nat’l Museum to school communities around the country, Yamasaki has devoted her practice to telling visual stories in an effort to help us all see each other more clearly.
Most recently, Yamasaki wrote and illustrated “Dad Bakes” (Norton Young Readers, 2021), which tells the story of a father and daughter reconnecting after a separation caused by the father’s incarceration. Some of her other books, especially “When the Cousins Came” and “Fish for Jimmy” recount personal family stories about the internment camps of WWII and growing up in a multi-racial family. Yamasaki also co-authored “Everything Naomi Loved,” with Ian Lendler (NYR, 2020). “Everything Naomi Loved” tells the story of Naomi, and how she faces the hard changes gentrification brings to her beloved community.
Yamasaki earned her BA from Earlham College and her MFA from the School of Visual Arts in NYC, where she served on the faculty for several years. Currently, she is a teaching artist at The Center for Fiction in Brooklyn. Yamasaki worked for 14 years as a public school Spanish and Art teacher in both the Detroit and NYC public schools. She lives in Brooklyn with her family.
About Beyond the Book
Beyond the Book, generously funded by the DC Public Library Foundation, is a city-wide reading and learning club that engages Books from Birth graduates as well as developing readers across DC around a carefully selected title along with fun and educational learning activities that will deepen their understanding and enjoyment of the book as well as build their reading skills.