03 May 2012

When The Emperor Was Divine ~ Julie Otsuka

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Short, sharp writing ... the only poetry is in the title!
US internment camp for Japanese during WW2

I didn't enjoy this near as much The Buddha In The Attic and I'm glad that I read that one first.  (Chronologically, the author wrote When The Emperor Was Divine first ... but the time period it is about comes after The Buddha In The Attic).

The impact of WW2 on US Japanese citizens was harsh.  Families were broken up and moved into camps.  This is written though the eyes of one family ... and mainly through the eyes of the children.

At times I felt that this allowed the author to get away with painting the picture with a broad brush and skimping on historical detail.  It has the same randomness of style that I enjoyed in TBITA but in this I found it simplified the information and made its delivery inconsistent.