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Review: Within These Lines

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Review: Within These Lines

19 Mar Posted by in Reviews | Comments Off on Review: Within These Lines
Review: Within These Lines

Within These Lines by Stephanie Morrill
Reviewed by: Faith Oygard
Genre: Historical Fiction/Coming of Age/Teen Fiction
Publisher: Blink
Publication Date: March 5, 2019

Haunting and evocative, Within These Lines tells the story of a young American couple separated by war and racism.

Evalina Cassano and Taichi Hamasaki’s lives are changed forever with the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Taichi and his family are sent away to Manzanar Internment Camp for the duration of the war, while Evalina must remain. Their love for each other is tested by distance, time, and the experiences that they each face.

Evalina is passionate and courageous, she doesn’t back down when it comes to fighting for the one that she loves. Evalina is definitely determined, and when she sets her mind to something, it usually comes to pass. I admired how she didn’t give up Through it all she put her head down and kept going.

Taichi has always been his family’s “Good Boy.” A good student and athlete, he works hard alongside his family on their farm. When he and his family are sent away to Manzanar he questions what his future will hold, and if he can ever overcome the things that he cannot change. Taichi isn’t a complainer, but as unrest grows in the camp he must decide where his loyalties lie, and can he stand with a country that won’t stand with him? I admired Taichi for his often quiet strength, his protectiveness and his stubborn streak.

Overall, a compelling glimpse into the impact of the Japanese internment, and how it affected those within and out. A chilling read, that captures the raw emotion of the injustices suffered by many Japanese-Americans. I liked how it showed how we can love a country and not agree with everything it does, and deals with a difficult time in history. This is not a popular subject matter, and I thought that the author did an excellent job of showing the varying sentiments within Manzanar and how people dealt with the internment differently. The camp is brought to life in stark, jarring detail, with only flashes of life outside brought to Taichi through letters. I liked how the impact of the war is shown through Evalina and Taichi’s peers, and the choices they make as well. This is a story that quietly grabbed me and didn’t let me go till the last page. Compelling, haunting, and thought-provoking, a worthy read that you won’t want to miss.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and testimonials in Advertising.”

Rated PG: This book deals with some very serious elements, such as racism and coming of age, there is nothing overly explicit and the romance is appropriate–a few kisses, but the subject matter is more for older children/teens. Thematic Elements.

Reviewer’s copy was provided by the Publisher. Thank you!


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