Lucy knows how to do everything. All her friends ask her for help if they need to know the right way to do something. When Toshi arrives, Lucy thinks he can’t do anything properly at all. She can barely hide her frustration. When she finally tries to teach Toshi the right way to do things, she learns a very important lesson herself.
This colorful book has a great message of diversity and learning from others—whether it be new things or different ways to do things.
Ariane has been drawing all her life, but only caught the picture book bug while working as an Au Pair near Chicago. She fell in love with all the picture books in the libraries she frequented. Never did it occur to her that she could do such a thing herself. Fast forward and a Psychology Degree and Masters in Children’s Book Illustration later and now in London, UK, her dream came true and she got her first picture book—Ice in the Jungle—published. She often bases her stories on her own experience, anecdotes and even research. With her books, she hopes to show children and adults alike how we can all live and learn together, no matter who we are or where we are from.
What is something you admire about Lucy and Toshi’s friendship?
Lucy and Toshi have a very special friendship because it came about from an act of kindness and listening and learning from one another.
“Ok, here’s a confession: Lucy is partly modelled on me.”
She is me before I saw the world. I grew up in small-town, where everyone did everything the same. You never question how you do anything until you see it done differently. And your initial reaction will be, that’s just wrong. That’s how I was thinking. Boy, was I in for a rude awakening when I visited my parents-in-law for the first time in India. I’ve learned to be understanding and try to see things from different cultural perspectives. It makes your life soooo much richer when you learn from a culture that’s so different to yours.
Developing Lucy’s character and the meaning behind Toshi:
Initially, Lucy looked quite different. Instead of the beret, she had two pigtails. But as I identified with her and her journey more and more I gave her the blue beret, because that was my signature hat from when I was little. And Toshi is such a sweetie. He represents all the beautiful things I love about Asia with its myriad of cultures. Did you know that the name Toshi in Japanese has lots of different meanings, depending on the kanji used for it? My favourite is “purple ladle”.