Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Paper Wishes

Paper Wishes

Spring 2016 Fiction
Ages: 8 - 12 yrs.
Author: Lois Sepahban
ISBN: 978-0-374-30216-0
Hardcover Price: $16.99

In 1942 on Bainbridge Island, Washington, ten-year-old Japanese-American, Manami, lives happily with her grandfather, father, mother and a beloved little dog. Her older brother and sister are away at college. The dog, Yujiin, appeared right after grandmother died and became Manami's friend but Grandfather's shadow.

But after Pearl Harbor, everything changed. The Japanese-Americans were rounded up and Manami's family was being sent to a prison camp in the California desert. They must leave Yujiin behind.

A neighbor agreed to care for Yujiin and Grandfather and Manami said their goodbyes. Horribly upset, Manami picks up the little dog and hides him under her coat. Unfortunately, a soldier later discovers the dog, takes him away from the screaming child and puts Yujiin into a crate. Manami is so traumatized that she stops speaking.

Told in the first person, the indignities suffered by the imprisoned Japanese-Americans are revealed through the eyes of a grief-stricken child. Unable to speak, she begins to draw pictures for Yujiin. When these pictures are blown over the prison fence, Manami hopes that Yujiin will find and follow them to the camp. When other dogs begin to appear, Manami wonders if the wrong dogs received her pictures. Manami cannot recover her dog or her voice. Her story of imprisonment is realistic, engrossing, and enlightening.

Kemie Nix   ©2016 Parents' Choice
Kemie Nix is Chairman of Children's Literature for Children (CLC), a non-profit, tax-exempt, educational organization dedicated to bringing children and books together. Mrs. Nix, a senior book editor for Parents' Choice, has a remarkable sense of selecting books children love to read.

Share This