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{ "item_title" : "Love in the Library", "item_author" : [" Maggie Tokuda-Hall", "Yas Imamura "], "item_description" : "A powerful must-read.--Booklist (starred review)Set in an incarceration camp where the United States cruelly detained Japanese Americans during WWII and based on true events, this moving love story finds hope in heartbreak. To fall in love is already a gift. But to fall in love in a place like Minidoka, a place built to make people feel like they weren't human--that was miraculous.After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Tama is sent to live in a War Relocation Center in the desert. All Japanese Americans from the West Coast--elderly people, children, babies--now live in prison camps like Minidoka. To be who she is has become a crime, it seems, and Tama doesn't know when or if she will ever leave. Trying not to think of the life she once had, she works in the camp's tiny library, taking solace in pages bursting with color and light, love and fairness. And she isn't the only one. George waits each morning by the door, his arms piled with books checked out the day before. As their friendship grows, Tama wonders: Can anyone possibly read so much? Is she the reason George comes to the library every day? Maggie Tokuda-Hall's beautifully illustrated, elegant love story features a photo of the real Tama and George--the author's grandparents--along with an afterword and other back matter for readers to learn more about a time in our history that continues to resonate.", "item_img_path" : "https://covers1.booksamillion.com/covers/bam/1/53/620/430/1536204307_b.jpg", "price_data" : { "retail_price" : "18.99", "online_price" : "18.99", "our_price" : "18.99", "club_price" : "18.99", "savings_pct" : "0", "savings_amt" : "0.00", "club_savings_pct" : "0", "club_savings_amt" : "0.00", "discount_pct" : "10", "store_price" : "" } }
Love in the Library|Maggie Tokuda-Hall
Love in the Library
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Overview

"A powerful must-read."--Booklist (starred review)Set in an incarceration camp where the United States cruelly detained Japanese Americans during WWII and based on true events, this moving love story finds hope in heartbreak. To fall in love is already a gift. But to fall in love in a place like Minidoka, a place built to make people feel like they weren't human--that was miraculous.

After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Tama is sent to live in a War Relocation Center in the desert. All Japanese Americans from the West Coast--elderly people, children, babies--now live in prison camps like Minidoka. To be who she is has become a crime, it seems, and Tama doesn't know when or if she will ever leave. Trying not to think of the life she once had, she works in the camp's tiny library, taking solace in pages bursting with color and light, love and fairness. And she isn't the only one. George waits each morning by the door, his arms piled with books checked out the day before. As their friendship grows, Tama wonders: Can anyone possibly read so much? Is she the reason George comes to the library every day? Maggie Tokuda-Hall's beautifully illustrated, elegant love story features a photo of the real Tama and George--the author's grandparents--along with an afterword and other back matter for readers to learn more about a time in our history that continues to resonate.

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781536204308
  • ISBN-10: 1536204307
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press (MA)
  • Publish Date: February 2022
  • Dimensions: 9.7 x 10.9 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.98 pounds
  • Page Count: 40
  • Reading Level: Ages 5-8

Related Categories

Love grows in the face of fear in Love in the Library, a picture book based on the experiences of author Maggie Tokuda-Hall’s maternal grandparents in Minidoka, a World War II incarceration camp in Idaho. As the book opens, a young woman named Tama has been forced to live at Minidoka for the past year, because in the wake of the attack on Pearl Harbor, being Japanese American is “treated like a crime.” Though she finds the camp unsettling, she makes the most of her assignment to work in the camp’s library. There, she is surrounded by books and receives regular visits from a man named George. It’s not until a conversation in which George validates Tama’s feelings of dread that she realizes he has been coming to the library to see her: “You can’t possibly be reading all those books you check out,” she tells him. “No,” he replies. “Do you see how long they are? I’m only human, you know.” They marry and have their first son while imprisoned at Minidoka. Illustrator Yas Imamura’s soft, muted, earth-tone illustrations work wonders in bringing the characters and setting to life. Her fine, smooth lines gently capture the tenderness that permeates this tale, and backlit scenes seem to lift Tama and George from the page. Tokuda-Hall depicts Tama as a multifaceted woman who is vulnerable yet tough, scared but willing to seek out the miraculous in her newly limited life. That she conveys Tama’s abiding spirit while also acknowledging the great injustice of the imprisonment of Japanese Americans during this time is important: Tokuda-Hall never sugarcoats Tama’s experience, and her author’s note emphasizes the hate that spawned the imprisonment: “Hate is not a virus; it is an American tradition,” she writes. Love in the Library returns again and again to Tama’s search for the words to describe her experience, such as constant: “Constant questions. Constant worries. Constant fear.” Later, when Tama realizes that George loves her, he tells her that the word for when she feels “scared and sad and confused and frustrated and lonely and hopeful” is human. Love in the Library is an exquisite piece of historical fiction and a love story for the ages.

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