Archives for July 2016

The Fukuhara family caught between two sides

MIDNIGHT IN BROAD DAYLIGHT: A Japanese American Family Caught Between Two Worlds By Pamela Rotner Sakamoto (New York: Harper, 2016, 464 pp., $29.99, hardback) At our vacation residence in the small San Luis Obispo County community of Los Osos, Calif., my wife and I have a delightful neighbor who is genuinely a “voracious reader.” By […]

Survivor’s painful past informs ‘purpose-driven life’

Keiko’s Journey: A World War II Memoir By Kay Hirai (Seattle: Chin Music Press, 2015, 97 pp., $17.95, paperback) Here is the personal story of a young girl born in Japan who survived the difficult war years before relocating to the United States with her Nisei mother at the age of 11. Keiko’s story begins […]

THE GOCHISO GOURMET: Flat out versatile

OK, I normally don’t highlight a specific grocery product, and while I don’t have any investment or vested interest in this product, I really like these Flatout flatbread products. Why? These thin flatbreads — sold in most supermarkets — can be used in multiple applications, and depending on the product you select, most are high in […]

A journey to say goodbye in Tohoku

When the Dead Pause and the Japanese Say Goodbye By Marie Mutsuki Mocket (New York: W.W. Norton & Company Inc., 2016, 336 pp., $16.95, paperback) “Perhaps it is possible, then, to see through more than one set of eyes …” Expected to speak and behave as a Japanese once she boarded the plane from America, […]

A bear-y fun journey around S.F.

A Wish from San Francisco Written and illustrated by Tomoko Maruyama (Shenzhen, China: TMK Design LLC, 2015, 48 pp., $17.99, hard cover) This cheerful picture book, illustrated in pastels and yellow poppies, celebrates the birthday of Maya the Bear. Set in San Francisco, Luke the Bear gathers Maya’s friends all around the city. Leaving his […]

San Jose Obon delivers comforting familiarity to community

This year’s Obon festival in San Jose’s Japantown, which took place July 9 and July 10, was the same as it is every year: parking was nearly impossible to find, a line extended all the way from Jackson Street around the corner to North Fifth Street for the shave ice sold at Shuei-do Manju Shop, […]

Prewar Nikkei life depicted

YOKOHAMA, CALIFORNIA By Toshio Mori, introduction to the 2015 edition by Xiaojing Zhou (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2015, 201 pp., $19.95, paperback) The new edition of Toshio Mori’s short story anthology “Yokohama, California” forms part of the new University of Washington Press reprint series of Asian American classics, joining such titles as Miné Okubo’s […]

OBITUARY: Lewis Iwao Suzuki

SUZUKI, IWAO LEWIS, 95, born November 29, 1920 in Los Angeles, CA and passed away January 24, 2016 in Berkeley, CA. A lifelong peace activist and artist, Lewis is pre-deceased by his wife of 55 years Mary Bonzo Suzuki. Lewis is the dear father of Masao Fred Suzuki (Susan Nakamura) of San Jose and Fumi […]

THE KAERU KID: Northwest USA road trip

Editor’s Note: This is the first of a two-part series. The goal for this road trip was to meet George Kubota Jr., who I wrote about in my preceding column (in the June 9, 2016 issue of the Nichi Bei Weekly), but the route also gave me an excuse to stay with friends and also […]

OBITUARY: Midori Satow

SATOW, MIDORI, 97, passed away peacefully on June 14, 2016 in Sacramento where she spent the last two years of her life. Born in Lompoc, California on April 7, 1919 she was a resident of San Francisco for over seventy years. Survived by daughters Nancy (Stan) Ito and Joyce Satow, daughter-in-law Judy Satow, grandchildren Jeff, […]

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