I Have a Complaint

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I Have a Complaint
Author: Shinsuke Yoshitake
Specifications: ISBN  978-4569785028
32 pages
18.8 x 25.2 cm / 7.5 x 10.0 in (WxH)
Category: Children & YA
Ages: 4+
Publisher: PHP Institute, Inc.
Kyoto, 2015
Buy now: amazon.co.jp


This is the eagerly anticipated follow-up to author Shinsuke Yoshitake’s wacky Riyū ga arimasu (I Have a Reason), in which the child justifies his nose-picking, nail-biting, and other bad habits by coming up with imaginative reasons for doing each. In this case, it is the grown-up who offers imaginative reasons for things that the child thinks are unfair.

The little girl who narrates the story starts by saying she is angry because grown-ups are so unfair. She’s decided that she’s not going to take it in silence anymore. Pushing open the door to her father’s room with a bang, she declares, “Papa, I have a complaint!” Her first gripe is that she has to go to bed early even though grown-ups get to stay up late. Papa explains improbably that, in order to get ready for next Christmas, Santa’s investigators make frequent visits to make sure the children in every house are in bed on time. The girl isn’t sure she believes him, but she goes on to her next gripe, asking why she always has to take her bath whenever the grown-ups say. Papa explains that if she doesn’t take her bath before the “mysterious bath monsters” come, there won’t be any hot water left. In another complaint, she wants to know why Papa always gets two sausages when she only gets one. His answer is that every grown-up also has a child inside him, so the grown-up Papa and child Papa each get a sausage. In spite of appearances, Papa has a quick and humorous comeback for every perceived injustice his daughter throws at him. Readers young and old will enjoy Papa’s silly responses to the complaints that children everywhere can identify with—and that grown-ups remember from their own childhood as well.