Book Club

Buddha In The Attic

This months BritMums Book Club read was Buddha In The Attic by Julie Otsuka.
The book is a wonderful quick read at just 129 pages, and even with its small number of pages it manages to deliver a huge story that really gets your mind thinking and your heart feeling so many different emotions.
The book follows a group of Japanese women travelling to America to become brides for men that they have never met, but clutch dear photographs and letters from these new husbands-to-be. Its period frame is set between the first and second world wars.
The story does not really follow a select few characters like most books, but the author writes for all the women as one (They, We, Some Of Us). One page manages to magically include all the women in short snapshots, that creates a strong set of images to make all the women seem as one, despite all the different sorts of lives these women now lead. It is written unlike any book I have ever read… In a wonderful way!
Before reading this book I knew absolutely nothing of these real life japanese women living as aliens in America, but since reading the book Julie has managed to teach me how these women existed, the lives they led, the different types of husband that they married, their children and even the way they left their towns as the war affected their communities, husbands and children.
The story was beautifully written but totally heartbreaking, and at times brought me close to tears.
An amazing read, that even long after finishing it I still manage to think of it and its women often.
A small book that has left a huge impact on me.

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Hazel Newhouse

Hazel is a mum to 3 daughters and a son, she lives in Bedfordshire with her husband, kids and pets. Hazel has written for various publications, and regularly works alongside popular parenting and gardening brands.

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1 Comment

  1. I loved this book too. I didn’t know anything about their experience either until reading the book and it is eye-opening. I’m now about to read her first.

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