Fiction. Asian American Studies. Hiroshi Kono is eight years old and only just beginning to question the racial and economic inequities he sees around him, when he and his family—along with 120,000 other Japanese Americans—are packed off to a concentration camp run by the US government. The harsh and barren world of the Arizona desert where Hiroshi and his family find themselves sets sibling against sibling, parent against child and neighbor against neighbor in a complex grappling with duty and disappointment that will reverberate through the ensuing decades. Sexual initiation, kabuki tales, jazz clubs and alcoholism form the backdrop against which Hiroshi, his siblings and his parents struggle to define themselves. Whether describing Hiroshi's tumultuous postwar coming of age or excavating generational grievances exacerbated by internment, Gene Oishi gives heartbreaking and at times humorous context to the life of a family set adrift by its wartime experiences.
Gene Oishi, former Washington and foreign correspondent for the Baltimore Sun, has written articles on the Japanese American experience for The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, Newsweek, and West Magazine, in addition to the Baltimore Sun. His memoir, In Search of Hiroshi, was published in 1988. Now retired, he lives in Baltimore, Maryland with his wife Sabine. He is the author of the novel FOX DRUM BEBOP (Kaya Press, 2014). Author City: BALTIMORE, MD USA