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Summary: Extensive data and photography tell the history of how Japanese Americans were treated during World War II. Because the book is built around personal stories, readers also get first-person insight into Japanese culture and traditions, as well. This pictoral history for Young Adults explores a little-studied event in US history that has relevance to cultural discussions today.
Type of Reading: independent reading
Recommended Age: read together: 10 and Up; read yourself: 13 and Up
Interest Level: 12 and Up
Reading Level: 9.2
Young Reader Reaction: Review pending.
Adult Reader Reaction: Imprisoned is fascinating reading (in an educational way), and is filled with personal stories. There are tons of pictures that really help set the context and give you a true sense of time, place, and the conditions that the interned Japanese Americans experienced.
Pros: Lots of pictures and short chapters make this an exceptional nonfiction resource for teens interested not just in history, but prejudice and perseverance, as well.
Cons: Those 2-page insets invariably came mid-sentence. I would turn the page expecting to finish a thought, but then I'd have a self-contained mini-bio.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a must-read that opens discussion (and potentially dialogue) using history as a context for topics relevant to today's kids.
Educational Themes: The pictures and text do an exceptional job not just of telling the history of how Japanese Americans were treated, but through personal stories. The material creates opportunities to talk about prejudice, ethnic pride, and discriminatory actions that are relevant to teens today.