“Weedflower,” by Cynthia Kadohata

“Weedflower,” is a touching historical novel from Newberry Award Winning novelist Cynthia Kadohata.

Sumiko is a twelve-year-old Japanese girl living in California. Her family runs a flower farm that produces high quality flowers for florists throughout the area. Although Sumiko sometimes has to deal with teasing and racism from her classmates, her life has been relatively peaceful.

Everything changes, though, when Pearl Harbor is bombed. Public opinion shifts against the Japanese Americans and many feel that every Japanese person is a spy. Sumiko and her family are sent to a detainment camp in the Arizona desert. The dry soil of Sumiko's new home is not well suited toward growing flowers, and it seems that all traces of her former happy life will soon disappear.

Eventually she meets Frank, a young Indian boy. She wants to make friends with him, but he is angry at the Japanese people, because they are now living on land that used to be part of his tribe's Indian reservation.

“Weedflower” is a wonderful historical novel. It portrays the feelings of Japanese American during World War II with accurate detail. It also shows the challenge but also success of friendship across racial divides. Once again Cynthia Kadohata has produced a wonderful book that I highly enjoyed. Although “Weedflower” was not as moving or emotional as her Newberry Award winning “Kira-Kira” I felt that it was a very admirable book.

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Inkweaver Review 2008-10-13T10:16:00-05:00

11 replies so far. What are your thoughts?

Charmi said...

tell me why was it suprising when sumiko got kicked out from the party??????

From:.................. Charmi Patel

Anonymous said...

It was an interesting interpretation of life in a japanese internment camp. I thought the conditions would be much worse, but it seemed as though, by the end, Sumiko genuinely enjoyed her internment.

Anonymous said...

Well, Charmi, how would you feel in that position? Remember, Sumiko had no previous exposure to this harsh prejudice....so she must have been extremely shocked to get such a rude reaction.... as the novel progresses, she learns more about this unjust prejudice and therefore is accustomed to certain cruel treatment.

Anonymous said...

I love this story. It portrays how the World War II look like in the eyes of a young innocent young girl. When they arrived at Camp Three, some of the religious people said the dust that is surrounding is a test from God. And Tak-Tak asked Sumiko, "What if they failed the dust test?"

The way Sumiko question what actually the government is doing with Japanese American is doing. First, they want them in California. Then, they want them out again. Then, they want them in the racetrack. Then, they want them out again. Then, they want them in Poston. And in the end of the story they are out again.

The way the government tested the loyalty of a Japanese by giving them a form to fill. If they answer yes in the form to give their full loyalty to the country, then they can be trusted and allowed to join the military. If loyalty can be tested by filling form then it should have been done before they were send to the camp.

From the eyes of a child, adults and government are very funny people.

Anonymous said...

what does frank and sumiko have in common? Also how does the meeting go between joesph and bull? And what issue is the family divided about?

Anonymous said...

the end to me was disappointing
but im ok with the story

Anonymous said...

what are some important facts from the book?

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