The Master Puppeteer
by Katherine Paterson
Discussion Guide pdf version - emailed to you - no shipping
Jiro, a young man living in Medieval Japan, leaves home to join a puppet theater as a way to help his family through the famine that is plaguing the country. At the theater he learns about the art of puppetry and about growing up. While food is scarce at this time, the rice merchants seem to be becoming richer and richer. Close to starvation many poor people begin to riot. A Robin Hood figure, Saburo, emerges and robs the rice merchants repeatedly using clever disguises and tricks.
At the theater, Jiro befriends Kinshi who is harshly treated by his father, the master puppeteer. Kinshi helps him to learn the puppet craft and they endure the hardships of the life together. In the end, Jiro discovers who Saburo really is and Kinshi and his father are somewhat reconciled. There is much for discussion in the relationships of the families in the story. Students like this story because it doesn't turn out as expected and because the mystery of Saburo blends effectively with the mystery of the puppet theater. The 10-page guide includes discussion questions and writing prompts.
This product was added to our catalog on Tuesday 29 May, 2007.