The buddha in the attic [electronic resource]. Julie Otsuka.

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  • Additional Information
    • Abstract:
      Summary: Winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award For FictionNational Book Award and Los Angeles Times Book Prize FinalistA New York Times Notable BookA gorgeous novel by the celebrated author of When the Emperor Was Divine that tells the story of a group of young women brought from Japan to San Francisco as "picture brides" nearly a century ago. In eight unforgettable sections, The Buddha in the Attic traces the extraordinary lives of these women, from their arduous journeys by boat, to their arrival in San Francisco and their tremulous first nights as new wives; from their experiences raising children who would later reject their culture and language, to the deracinating arrival of war. Once again, Julie Otsuka has written a spellbinding novel about identity and loyalty, and what it means to be an American in uncertain times.
    • Notes:
      Electronic reproduction. New York : Anchor, 2011. Requires OverDrive Read (file size: N/A KB) or Adobe Digital Editions (file size: 2183 KB) or Kobo app or compatible Kobo device (file size: N/A KB) or Amazon Kindle (file size: N/A KB).
    • ISBN:
      9780307700469 (electronic bk)
    • Accession Number:
  • Citations
    • ABNT:
      OTSUKA, J. The buddha in the attic. [electronic resource]. [S. l.: s. n.]. ISBN 9780307700469. Disponível em: Acesso em: 12 jul. 2020.
    • AMA:
      Otsuka J. The Buddha in the Attic. [Electronic Resource].; 2011. Accessed July 12, 2020.
    • AMA11:
      Otsuka J. The Buddha in the Attic. [Electronic Resource].; 2011. Accessed July 12, 2020.
    • APA:
      Otsuka, J. (2011). The buddha in the attic. [electronic resource].
    • Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date:
      Otsuka, Julie. 2011. The Buddha in the Attic. [Electronic Resource].
    • Harvard:
      Otsuka, J. (2011) The buddha in the attic. [electronic resource]. Available at: (Accessed: 12 July 2020).
    • Harvard: Australian:
      Otsuka, J 2011, The buddha in the attic. [electronic resource], viewed 12 July 2020, .
    • MLA:
      Otsuka, Julie. The Buddha in the Attic. [Electronic Resource]. 2011. EBSCOhost,
    • Chicago/Turabian: Humanities:
      Otsuka, Julie. The Buddha in the Attic. [Electronic Resource], 2011.
    • Vancouver/ICMJE:
      Otsuka J. The buddha in the attic. [electronic resource] [Internet]. 2011 [cited 2020 Jul 12]. Available from:


Booklist Reviews 2011 August #1

"*Starred Review* Otsuka's stunning debut, When the Emperor Was Divine (2002), a concentrated novel about the WWII internment of Japanese Americans, garnered the Asian American Literary Award, the ALA Alex Award, and a Guggenheim. Her second novel tells the stories of Japanese mail-order brides at the start of the twentieth century in a first-person-plural narrative voice, the choral "we." This creates an incantatory and haunting group portrait of diverse women who make the arduous ocean journey to California buoyant with hope only to marry strangers nothing like the handsome young men in the photographs that lured them so far from home. Prejudice and hardship soon transform the brides into fingers-worked-to-the-bone laborers, toiling endlessly as domestic workers, farmers, prostitutes, and merchants. Every aspect of female life is candidly broached in Otsuka's concise yet grandly dramatic saga as these determined, self-sacrificing outsiders navigate the white water of American society, only to watch their American-born children disdain all things Japanese. Drawing on extensive research and profoundly identifying with her characters, Otsuka crafts an intricately detailed folding screen depicting nearly five decades of change as the women painstakingly build meaningful lives, only to lose everything after Pearl Harbor. This lyrically distilled and caustically ironic story of exile, effort, and hate is entrancing, appalling, and heartbreakingly beautiful." Copyright 2011 Booklist Reviews.

LJ Reviews 2011 March #2

In her widely admired debut novel, When the Emperor Was Divine, Otsuka portrayed the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Here she retreats a few steps, following a group of Japanese women who travel to early 1900s San Francisco as mail-order brides. Given the success of Emperor, it's no surprise that this new work is getting a 75,000-copy first printing, a reading group guide, and a seven-city tour. I'm looking forward to this one.

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LJ Reviews 2011 August #1

In her acclaimed When the Emperor Was Divine, Otsuka wrought third-person narratives of a northern California Japanese family facing internment and alienation during World War II. Now she gives us a luminous second novel, setting off from the early 20th century on a ship of "picture brides" headed from Japan to San Francisco to meet Japanese workers who have arranged to marry them. Otsuka works an enchantment upon her readers—no Sturm und Drang here—and leaves us haunted and astonished at the powers of her subtlety and charms. This time she employs a choral-like narrative expressed in the third-person plural, with a gentle use of repetitive phrasing ("One of us…"; "Some of us…") punctuated by small, italicized utterances representing individual voices. The results are cumulatively overwhelming, as we become embedded in the hope, disenchantment, courage, labor, and resignation of these nameless women and their families across four decades. Did they think all their compromises, their search for community, meant that they had found a place here in America? Or, just as they had been upon their arrival in California, were they mistaken about what this land had to offer them? VERDICT Unforgettable and essential both for readers and writers. [See Prepub Alert, 2/14/11.]—Margaret Heilbrun, Library Journal

[Page 85]. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.