Books, History

Review: THE LUCKY BASEBALL

Author: Susanne Lieurance
Publication Info: Enslow, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-7660-3311-5
Source: Publisher-provided copy
Intended audience: grades 3 through 6
Genre: historical fiction, chapter book (160 Pages)
Themes/topics: World War II, baseball, Japanese Internment
Synopsis: Harry Yakamoto lives a normal life in Seven Cedars, CA, until his family is interned in Manzanar, a Japanese internment camp. Baseball becomes is preoccupation and salvation during the many years his family lives in the camp.
Why I like this book: I’ve always been fascinated by Manzanar. Driving past it, there is no sign that it was home to thousands of Japanese-Americans who were held against their war during World War II. I’ve also found Manzanar to be a fascinating topic because it’s rarely discussed. Lieurance’s expertly told story provides insight into the harsh conditions of Japanese internment camps. Her plot is transporting and her characters well-developed. Children will enjoy Harry and his passion for baseball without realizing how much they are learning. As usual, Enslow provides backmatter explaining the real history and providing links to further reading.