Book Reviews

Pan-Asian Comfort Food With a Twist

The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook: Home Cooking from Asian American Kitchens By Patricia Tanumihardja (Seattle: Sasquatch Books, 2009, 368 pp., $35.00, hardcover) A multitude of cookbooks reference mothers. A fair amount offer nods to grandmas of all ethnic backgrounds. And there is no shortage of pan-Asian cookbooks to choose from at the local bookstore. But Patricia […]

An Unharmonious History Revisited

CAMP HARMONY: SEATTLE’S JAPANESE AMERICANS AND THE PUYALLUP ASSEMBLY CENTER By Louis Fiset (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2009, 232 pp., $25, paperback) Many readers are probably familiar with Louis Fiset’s previous works, especially “Imprisoned Apart.” He has produced another important work on a subject long ignored perhaps because of the temporary nature of the […]

Documented: From Exile to Release from Concentration Camps

With the advent of digital, cell, and even laptop cameras, we snap endless images knowing that we can just transport them to a worldwide audience or merely delete them into cyberspace without a second thought. There was a time, however, when cameras were considered contraband and Japanese Americans had to turn them, along with guns, […]

Tasty Sweets, Minus the Guilt

THE WORRY FREE BAKERY: Treats Without Oil and Butter By Kuniko Ibaraki, translated by Jessica Bezer (New York: Vertical, Inc., 2009, 80 pp., $14.95, paperback) At first glance, the title may create skepticism in many die-hard dessert connoisseurs, but every recipe in this book is grounded in Kuniko Ibaraki’s idea that delicious desserts can be […]

Pan-Asian Comfort Food With a Twist

The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook: Home Cooking from Asian American Kitchens By Patricia Tanumihardja (Seattle: Sasquatch Books, 2009, 368 pp., $35.00, hardcover) A multitude of cookbooks reference mothers. A fair amount offer nods to grandmas of all ethnic backgrounds. And there is no shortage of pan-Asian cookbooks to choose from at the local bookstore. But Patricia […]

Global Warming, and a Plea for Change

THE BIG PICTURE: Reflections On Science, Humanity, And A Quickly Changing Planet By David Suzuki and Dave Robert Taylor (Toronto and Vancouver: Greystone Books; London and New York: David Suzuki Foundation: 2009, 272 pp., $19.95, 2009, paperback) In his latest book, David Suzuki tackles most of planet earth’s biggest issues, from the warming of the […]

An Unharmonious History Revisited

CAMP HARMONY: SEATTLE’S JAPANESE AMERICANS AND THE PUYALLUP ASSEMBLY CENTER By Louis Fiset (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2009, 232 pp., $25, paperback) Many readers are probably familiar with Louis Fiset’s previous works, especially “Imprisoned Apart.” He has produced another important work on a subject long ignored perhaps because of the temporary nature of the […]

Documented: From Exile to Release from Concentration Camps

MOVING IMAGES: Photography and the Japanese American Incarceration By Jasmine Alinder (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2009, 232 pp., $40.00, paperback) With the advent of digital, cell, and even laptop cameras, we snap endless images knowing that we can just transport them to a worldwide audience or merely delete them into cyberspace without a second […]

Uncovering Tokyo’s Yakuza and Nightlife

For 12 years, Jake Adelstein was embroiled in the seedy underbelly of Tokyo crime and nightlife, spending late nights schmoozing with police, conducting investigations at brothels and fielding death threats from the Japanese mafia. Adelstein himself, however, was not in law enforcement or a criminal. Rather, from 1993 to 2005, Adelstein worked as a crime […]

Military Service and Legal Challenges: Martial Law in Hawaii

(Note: The following is an excerpt from the book “A Tragedy of Democracy: Japanese Confinement in North America,” published by Columbia University Press) Intimately connected to the confinement of U.S. citizens of Japanese ancestry was the denial of civil rights to all civilians, Japanese Americans and others, under wartime military dictatorship in Hawaii. Although there […]

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