Posted on May 15, 2019


In Julie Otsuka’s novel, Japanese women sail to America in the early “The Buddha in the Attic” unfurls as a sequence of linked narratives. : The Buddha in the Attic (Pen/Faulkner Award – Fiction) ( ): Julie Otsuka: Books. Winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award For Fiction National Book Award and Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist A New York Times Notable Book A gorgeous.

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Some people being taken away in the middle of the night.

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Placed on lists and rounded up in the middle of the night, they were taken away for the duration of the war. The style is poetic and haunting. From the Hardcover edition.

Such a device shouldn’t work but does. They work back breaking hours on the fields, as maids in the homes of Americans as well as buxdha care of their children and their homes.

It’s heartbreaking and so real—what must be going through someone’s mind when they’re abruptly forced to leave behind everything they’ve toiled teh bring to fruition? Portarono via qualcosa, portarono via qualcuno, lasciarono qualcosa, lasciarono qualcuno.

A history lesson in heartbreak. Some of us can’t wait to discuss it with our friends on Saturday. These ln left lives as laborers in Yamaguchi rice paddies or Osaka brothels to become laborers in California fields or maids in mansions. Their assets would be seized, their accounts frozen.

In eight unforgettable sections, The Buddha in the Attic traces the extraordinary lives of these women, from their arduous journeys by boat, to their arrival in San Francisco and their tremulous first nights as new wives; from their experiences raising bbuddha who would later reject their culture and language, to the deracinating arrival of war.

Master Harold and the Boys: T his is a small jewel of a book, its planes cut precisely to catch the light so that the sentences otsukw in your mind long after turning the final page. View all 31 comments. The final chapter, “A Disappearance,” is told from the point of view of the white American families left behind, who at first miss their Japanese neighbors but gradually forget about them. This brings me to my conclusion. Buddha in the Attic is a fictionalised account of the Japanese picture brides who arrived at San Francisco in hope of a better life than the one’s the had left, a life better than the ones that their mothers had Were they still walking three steps behind our fathers on the streets with their arms full of packages while our fathers carried nothing at all Once in the USA, many had been cheated.


But to go back to Japan would mean being shamed.

The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka – Reading Guide – : Books

They were ill from the long voyage at sea and desperately homesick – although most had been sent to America to relieve their families of financial burden; they knew their only future is before them, their only home the one they would build with their stranger-husbands. Some of us will like the book. The book ends where all the Japanese are gone from the broader society, removed with ghost trains to secret, unknown destinations, and is replaced with Mexicans and other groups. Within this slim volume the history of 20th century Issei and Nisei – first and second generation Japanese immigrants to the western hemisphere – is told by Japanese women, who must “blend into a room”, who must “be present without appearing to exist.

Some of us will find the constant plural first person narrative terribly annoying, wondering if any group of people can be so cohesive and ‘one’ that they can always speak in unison, no matter the topic.

But I persisted to the next chapter. When the Emperor Was Divine has been translated into six languages and sold more thancopies. Jan 08, Julie Christine rated it it was amazing Shelves: We forgot about God. The first part of the book, in which one voice tells the collective stories of the different girls, was extremely confusing. The issei and their nissei second generation American children were viewed as the enemies of the people.


With no characters or plot, the book might be classified a prose poem. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. I thought atitc was a nice touch that in her acknowledgments, Otsuka admits having reappropriated some lines of dialogue from Donald Rumsfeld in and inserted them as the “mayor” in I thought it began in one voice, but then shifted to a disembodied “us.

Mar 22, Brina rated it really liked it Shelves: The writing style of Otsuka will probably polarize readers. Of course, there were some who lived a decent life, keeping their heads down, speaking a few words of English all their lives, but of course that didn’t save them from being victim of xenophobia during the war. The book is divided into different historical sections, starting with the young girls’ journey on the ship, through their disappointing discovery of the truth, and A novel, without characters, with a non-fictional theme, but with a timeline, recollects the true events of a group of Japanese young women’s immigration to America.

See ij reviews. The book gives a breathless, kaleidoscopic account of the women’s hopes and fears and the hard-working lives for which they settled. Even the subject matter is daring. Please try again later. For me, the concentrated way in which Otsuka conveyed a we A narrative about the experience of Japanese women in the ss who came otsukx the USA as “mail-order brides” for Japanese men.

Life in America, according to Otsuka, was not the American dream depicted in letters. See and discover other items: How would one categorize this hybrid poem-novella?