Archives for January 2020

FANTASTIC VOYAGE: Cross-culture parenting

Parents face many tough questions when it comes to raising a child: what to do about bed-times, allowance, screen-time, punishments, afterschool activities, diet, religion, and more. You also have to be careful about the different parenting styles such as the tiger parents, the helicopter parents, the snowplow parents, etc. Adding to the problem are the […]

Oregon prison’s healing garden offers renewed perspective

In 2014, Johnny Cofer, who is incarcerated at the Oregon State Penitentiary in Salem, Ore. told the institution’s activities director, Patrice Lans, he would love to see a Japanese garden and koi pond outside in the yard of the facility. At the Oregon State Penitentiary, there is an activities department, consisting of 11 clubs, one […]

A kid-friendly primer on Japan

ALL ABOUT JAPAN: STORIES, SONGS CRAFTS AND GAMES FOR KIDS By Willamarie Moore; Illustrated by Kazumi Wilds (North Clarendon, Vt.: Tuttle Publishing, 2017, 64 pp., $14.95, hardcover) Here’s all the information you’d enjoy about Japan, everything from clothing to vocabulary to holidays. Interesting sections include “Introducing Japan,” “Everyday Life,” “Holidays and Celebrations,” plus “Language and […]

A deep dive into the world of tsukemono

JAPANESE PICKLED VEGETABLES: 129 HOMESTYLE RECIPES FOR TRADITIONAL BRINED, VINEGARED AND FERMENTED PICKLES By Machiko Tateno (North Clarendon, Vt.: Tuttle Publishing, 2019, 144 pp., $16.99, paperback) There are many reasons why pickles are the “in” food, so it’s with great excitement that I review this new book that is sure to attract the attention of […]

Learning life lessons with Grandma

BA-CHAN THE NINJA GRANDMA: AN ADVENTURE WITH LITTLE KUNOICHI THE NINJA GIRL Authored and illustrated by Sanae Ishida (Seattle: Sasquatch Books, 2018, 32 pp., $16.99, hardcover) Here’s a ninja tale starring the adventures of little Kunoichi, released in 2018. This one pairs up “Ba-chan,” the “Ninja Grandma,” and her granddaughter. This is the third book […]

Examining the stratification of NYC’s Nikkei

DISTANT ISLANDS: THE JAPANESE AMERICAN COMMUNITY IN NEW YORK CITY, 1876-1930s By Daniel H. Inouye (University Press of Colorado: Louisville, Colo., 2018, 360 pp., $34.95, paperback; $27.95, Ebook) “Distant Islands: The Japanese American Community in New York City, 1876-1930s” by Daniel H. Inouye is one of the first books to devote in-depth research into this […]

An examination of racism in 1920s Hawai‘i’s society

RACED TO DEATH IN 1920s HAWAI‘I: INJUSTICE AND REVENGE IN THE FUKUNAGA CASE By Jonathan Y. Okamura (Champaign, Ill.: University of Illinois Press, 2019, 252 pp., $27.95, paperback; $99, cloth; $14.95, Ebook) A few years ago, I reviewed in these pages Jonathan Okamura’s book “From Race to Ethnicity.” I welcomed the chance to present to […]

Whirlwind tour through history

THE DISCOVERY OF ANIME & MANGA: The Asian Hall of Fame By Phil Amara and Oliver Chin, Illustrated by Juan Calle (San Francisco: Immedium, 2019, 40 pp., $16.95, hardcover) Phil Amara, Oliver Chin and Juan Calle’s third children’s book focuses on the history of Japanese anime and manga. Having previously done a bilingual history of […]

Making sense of JA millennials

Japanese American Millennials: Rethinking Generation, Community, and Diversity Edited by Michael Omi, Dana Y. Nakano and Jeffrey T. Yamashita (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2019, 301 pp., $39.99, paperback) As we welcome the year 2020, it should be abundantly clear that a younger generation known as millennials (for the purposes of this particular book, the editors […]

THROUGH YONSEI EYES: Friendsgiving

Many English teachers in Japan have a tough time during the holidays. It’s times like these when we realize how much we need each other here. I look around the room and become overwhelmed by how deeply I love the people around me.

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