Farewell to Manzanar

Farewell to Manzanar

A True Story of Japanese American Experience During and After the World War II Internment

Book - 2002
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During World War II a community called Manzanar was hastily created in the high mountain desert country of California, east of the Sierras. Its purpose was to house thousands of Japanese American internees. One of the first families to arrive was the Wakatsukis, who were ordered to leave their fishing business in Long Beach and take with them only the belongings they could carry. For Jeanne Wakatsuki, a seven-year-old child, Manzanar became a way of life in which she struggled and adapted, observed and grew. For her father it was essentially the end of his life.

At age thirty-seven, Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston recalls life at Manzanar through the eyes of the child she was. She tells of her fear, confusion, and bewilderment as well as the dignity and great resourcefulness of people in oppressive and demeaning circumstances. Written with her husband, Jeanne delivers a powerful first-person account that reveals her search for the meaning of Manzanar.

Farewell to Manzanar has become a staple of curriculum in schools and on campuses across the country. Last year the San Francisco Chronicle named it one of the twentieth century's 100 best nonfiction books from west of the Rockies.

Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin, [2002]
Characteristics: xiv, 188 p. ; 22 cm
ISBN: 0618216200


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Jul 28, 2018

Well-deserved status as a virtual classic. Uncomplicated recollections of her childhood during incarceration, reassimilation after release, and attempts as an adult to make sense of it all. Heartbreaking yet life-affirming.

Mar 02, 2016

Jeanne is a child when her large family is relocated to an internment camp during World War II. Her family is forced to move to Manzanar , where they lose everything they have. Jeanne writes about the devastating effects the internment camp has on her family, but there is a disconnect as she views things through a child’s eyes. She does ordinary things at the camp, like go to church and take dance lessons. She recalls that the baton classes at Manzanar really did come in handy later, as she was a majorette in high school. After they leave the camp, Jeanne’s family scatters and never really recovers from the injustice of the internment camp. This is an insightful memoir that does a great job of remembering a terrible time in America’s past.

Jul 20, 2015

A fairly quick read that provided a perspective of WWII that I had not given much thought to. Great book to add to a list of others with other perspectives of WWII to get a deeper understanding of the war.

Sep 12, 2014

One of the best books about the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII. Houston's descriptions of her mother during that time were, I thought, especially poignant.

Jun 23, 2013

One of the better Japanese American memoirs about the World War II incarceration and its effect on Japanese American families.

jrochez98 Aug 27, 2012

it was EXTREMELY boring. i didnt enjoy whats-so-ever, neither did i understand much.

Apr 25, 2011

An interesting nonfiction book about the relocation of a japanese american family during world war II. I felt like the story was kind of short and would have liked the author to go in more depth about her experiences. Overall an ok book.


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maroon_baboon_66 Aug 19, 2012

maroon_baboon_66 thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

Feb 05, 2012

maroon_human_0 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 1 and 99


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