The Day the Buddha Woke Up
By Andrea Miller; artwork by Rima Fujita
Wisdom Publications 2018; 18 pp., $10.95 (board book)
The Day the Buddha Woke Up is the first ever Buddhist board book. It was written with small children in mind, but the words and images are worth pondering from both a child’s perspective and when we’re all grown up. This book, which is by Lion’s Roar deputy editor Andrea Miller, tells the story of how Siddhartha became the Buddha. It begins with Siddhartha’s birth, then goes on to his quest for understanding—fueled by his curiosity—and leads to his ultimate awakening under the Bodhi tree. Miller translates the tale into simple phrases easily understood by little ones and poses questions infused with childlike wonder such as, “Why aren’t people happy?” and “Is true happiness possible?” Rima Fujita, a renowned artist and Buddhist, creates beautiful, warm, and whimsical illustrations of animals, flowers, and faces to complement the wisdom of 2,600 years of Buddhism distilled into a few key words.