Write to Me: Letters from Japanese American Children to the Librarian They Left Behind

Write to Me: Letters from Japanese American Children to the Librarian They Left Behind
Author(s)
Co-Authors / Illustrators
Age Range
8+
Release Date
October 15, 2019
ISBN
978-1623541118
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A touching story about Japanese American children who corresponded with their beloved librarian while they were imprisoned in World War II internment camps.

When Executive Order 9066 is enacted after the attack at Pearl Harbor, children's librarian Clara Breed's young Japanese American patrons are to be sent to prison camp. Before they are moved, Breed asks the children to write her letters and gives them books to take with them. Through the three years of their internment, the children correspond with Miss Breed, sharing their stories, providing feedback on books, and creating a record of their experiences. Using excerpts from children's letters held at the Japanese American National Museum, author Cynthia Grady presents a difficult subject with honesty and hope.

Editor review

1 review
Write to Me
Overall rating
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Learning Value
 
5.0
This is a must read book that shows the lives of Japanese American children who ended up being taken from their homes and set to live in internment camps during WWII. Miss Clara Breed, a San Diego librarian, asked the children to send her a postcard when they got there. What happened is she received numerous postcards of what the children experienced during one horrific time in our history. Miss Breed didn't stop there. She went to the internment camps with books to share with the children. When she retired, she found a book of over 250 letters and postcards she received during the war.

I really love how this picture book shares some of the letters from these children, which gives readers a glimpse of the conditions and the political climate at that time. One huge thing is how this librarian offered the children hope during a dark time of US history.

Powerful non-fiction story of a librarian whose younger Japanese American patrons shared with her their experiences living in internment camps during WWII. It also shows the political climate and how intolerance and hatred toward one group of Americans ended up having them sent away to live in internment camps. The important message is that by remembering the past, hopefully we won't repeat it. A must add to any school library.
Good Points
1. A glimpse into the lives of Japanese American children who lived in internment camps during WWII
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