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Cover for Fish for Jimmy

Fish for Jimmy

Inspired by One Family's Experience in a Japanese American Internment Camp

Katie Yamasaki


List Price: 16.99*
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Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (12/10/2019)


For two boys in a Japanese American family, everything changed when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and the United States went to war.

With the family forced to leave their home and go to an internment camp, Jimmy loses his appetite. Older brother Taro takes matters into his own hands and, night after night, sneaks out of the camp and catches fresh fish for Jimmy to help make him strong again.

This affecting tale of courage and love is an adaptation of the author's true family story, and includes a letter to readers with more information about the historical background and inspiration.

Praise For Fish for Jimmy: Inspired by One Family's Experience in a Japanese American Internment Camp

"Illustrator Yamasaki (Honda: The Boy Who Dreamed of Cars), in her authorial debut, draws from her own ancestral history as she describes the family's difficulties, yet she resists dropping hints about what's to come. . . Although memoirs of politically sensitive times are often subdued, this one is unexpectedly suspenseful." —Publishers Weekly

"A new and moving look at one of the most disgraceful events in U.S. history, effectively told with childlike surrealism." —Kirkus Reviews

"Yamasaki, who works as a muralist and educator, creates sweeping paintings that capture the story in a literal manner even as she makes bold metaphorical leaps. When the two boys lie in bed at night, the menacing shadows of the camp's guard tower are imprinted on their blankets. The family stands poised on Taro's reclining form, while the imagined torsos of F.B.I. agents loom in a forbidding muddy background. One of the most moving spreads shows Taro capturing fish in a river, each fish carrying a reclining Jimmy on its back. The overall result is a dramatic, visual feast. And Yamasaki gives readers a reassuringly happy ending." —New York Times

Holiday House, 9780823423750, 32pp.

Publication Date: February 1, 2013

About the Author

Katie Yamasaki is a muralist, author, and teacher. When she was growing up, the World War II internment of 110,000 Japanese and Japanese American citizens was never discussed in school—even though most of Katie's Japanese family was interned.  Inspired by her family's history, she wrote Fish for Jimmy to honor their bravery and the memory of those like them. Based in Brooklyn, New York, she travels widely across the world to paint in and work with diverse communities.  She is passionate about art as dialogue and storytelling.