The Buddha in the Attic

The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka is a short (129 pages) beautifully written delight of a book. It is not a narrative story in the traditional sense as there is very little dialogue, but the story comes through nicely.

The story line deals with picture brides. These are women who traveled from Japan to San Francisco to marry Japanese men who were already working in the United States. These women came from small towns, farms, big cities. They were sent by families who could not afford to keep them, some came seeking adventure, some escaping or hiding from their past. Their lives are traced from their hopefulness at a fresh start and the excitement of being chosen, through the long, exhausting boat ride across the Pacific to their arrival in San Francisco and the reality of their new lives.

The book describes every aspect of their lives. Love found and lost, hopes realized and dashed, children and the trials of everyday life in a new country. The book ends with the start of war. Chronicling their experiences in a not quite heartbreaking way.

The book is divided into 8 sections, each one more beautifully written that the previous one. Done in an "incantatory" style the book really is more a poem than a narrative. Wonderfully written this book is one of the best I have read in a long time.

Check our catalog

 
Comments List

Archive posts

Collapse all

Excerpts is the library newsletter and comes out every three months. It is mailed to every Glencoe resident. Copies of the newsletter are available online (below) and at the library. Please be sure to check the library calendar for program updates.

2019 Issues

June 2019

March 2019

2018 Issues

December 2018

September 2018

March 2018

June 2018

2017 Issues

December 2017

March 2017

June 2017

September 2017

2016 Issues

December 2016

September 2016

March 2016

June 2016

2015 Issues

December 2015
September 2015
June 2015

March 2015

2014 Issues
December 2014
September 2014
June 2014
March 2014

2013 Issues
December 2013
September 2013
June 2013
March 2013

2012 Issues
December 2012
September 2012
June 2012
March 2012

2011 Issues
December 2011
September 2011
June 2011
March 2011

2010 Issues
December 2010
September 2010
June 2010
March 2010

2009 Issues
December 2009
September 2009
June 2009
March 2009

2008 Issues
December 2008