Farewell to Manzanar by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston and James D. Houston [in What Do I Read Next? Multicultural Literature]
Jeanne Wakatsuki was just 7 years old when Pearl Harbor was bombed. Within months, her father was taken away by the U.S. government. Soon thereafter, the rest of the Wakatsuki family was uprooted and unjustly incarcerated at Manzanar. Camp life meant three-and-a-half years behind barbed wire, surviving imprisonment with 120,000 other Americans of Japanese ancestry scattered throughout most desolate regions of the American West.
Houston began Farewell to Manzanar as a personal memoir, as a means of dealing with a past that was too painful and difficult to actually voice, except finally through the distance of pen and paper. The result proved to be a landmark postwar historical text, still taught in countless classrooms throughout the country.
Readers: Young Adult, Adult