DEAR MISS BREED by Joanne Oppenheim

DEAR MISS BREED

True Stories of the Japanese American Incarceration During World War II and a Librarian Who Made a Difference
Age Range: 11 & up
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Looking back to a shameful but characteristic chapter in this country’s history, Oppenheim wraps an angry account of the U.S. West Coast Japanese-American population’s forced removal in the panic following Pearl Harbor around a heartfelt tribute to Clara Breed, a San Diego children’s librarian who kept in touch with several of her evacuated young “regulars” and became an advocate for their release. The text is sometimes repetitive or overstuffed with minor details, but—supported by frequent excerpts from letters, passages (pointedly labeled “Testimony”) from the 1981 reparation hearings and lines from the author’s own interviews with survivors—it not only creates a scathing picture of the living conditions those children and their families were forced to endure, but also bears eloquent witness to their deeply rooted patriotism and unshakable determination to make the best of things, come what may. Supplemented by a range of period commentary and illustrated with rare snapshots, this is rich in primary material and also bears unmistakable relevance in this post-9/11 atmosphere. (bibliography, notes) (Nonfiction. 11+)

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 2006
ISBN: 0-439-56992-3
Page count: 288pp
Publisher: Scholastic
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15th, 2005




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