Allen Say, the award-winning author and illustrator of many acclaimed children’s books, will discuss his latest work, “The Inker’s Shadow,” on Saturday, Oct. 10, at 2 p.m. at the Japanese American National Museum, 100 N. Central Ave. in Little Tokyo.

Say’s books include “Drawing from Memory,” an autobiographical volume that explored his love of comic books through a collection of his own photographs and drawings. He now offers a companion to that book in “The Inker’s Shadow,” a graphic novel that tells the story of his own coming of age.

As a teenager in Southern California, Say was sent to an American military academy by his father so that he could learn English and “become a success in life.” As the school’s first and only Japanese student, he immediately faced racism from his fellow cadets and teachers, who were all white; their complaints about his presence relegated him to a tool shed behind the mess hall.

Determined to escape, Say saved up his money to buy a 1946 Ford for $50 — and set out to find the America of his dreams.

Say will be joined in conversation by Lori Benton, vice president and publisher for Scholastic Trade Publishing. Benton is a longtime publisher and promoter of children’s books, and has known Say as both an author and a friend for decades.

Say will be available for signings after the talk. His book will be available for sale through the JANM Store in October. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Doors open at 1:30 p.m.

For more information, call (213) 625-0414 or visit

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *