Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Rising Sun, Falling Star Blog Tour

rising sun tour

Welcome to the blog tour for Rising Sun, Falling Star by Vickie Hall!

Rising Sun

Different eyes and skin 
Mock me from the mirror’s light 
Enemy am I. 

Dec 7, 1941 
Today my life changed forever . . .I am no longer considered American, but by shear heritage I am now the hated enemy . . . 

The lives of Kenji and Aiko Onishi and their American-born children are about to unravel when the United States is thrust into war with Japan. Confronted by insurmountable prejudice and fear, the family is ripped from their California home without just cause by the American government and sent to an assembly center “for their own protection.” Forced to live in deplorable circumstances, every aspect of their lives regulated and controlled, the Onishi’s freedoms are stripped from their grasp as they struggle to survive behind barbed wire. It isn’t long before the mind-numbing confinement and feelings of helplessness begin to pit the family against one another. When sent to a relocation camp in the center of the Utah desert, they’re beset by ever increasing emotional and physical challenges, and Aiko is faced with her greatest yet: to mend the broken spirits of her family, or risk losing them forever. Based on true and tragic events that transpired during World War II, Rising Sun, Falling Star is a heart-rending story of one family’s struggle to survive uncalculated loss and emotional destruction.
Author Vickie Hall

Vickie is a native of Utah, but growing up, lived in the states of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Nebraska. When she’s not writing, she’s composing music, or shopping with her sister. She loves animals of all kinds and camping with her family. Her favorite pastime is watching old movies on TCM, and unashamedly has a crush on Cary Grant.
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December 7, 1941 is a day many American remember as the day that Japanese forces attacked US military bases in Hawaii. For hundreds of thousands of Japanese and people of Japanese descent living in the US, this was the beginning of a horrible nightmare. Soon rounded up like cattle, they were forced to leave almost all of their possessions behind and live in "relocation centers," a polite name for what really amounted to a prison. Through the dark times, the Onishi family will have to depend upon each other in ways they never imagined. 

This story was hard to read. I had heard about the relocation and detention of Japanese citizens and US citizens of Japanese ancestry, but I didn't know a lot of the details. The fact that this happened at all is horrific. I can't imagine what it would have been like to live like this. The book follows the Onishi family. Father Kenji owns a music store in San Francisco. He is truly living the American dream. His hard work has allowed him to buy a home and have a beautiful family. All that changes with the bombing of Pearl Harbor though. Suddenly the Onishis are the enemy merely based on how they look physically. Initially they go along with things to prove their allegiance to the US, but things quickly get out of hand when they realize this isn't the American experience they signed up for.

I found the writing to be a bit jumpy for my liking, but that doesn't take away from the story one bit. In this instance the story was so intriguing. I wanted to keep reading, but I was almost afraid to see how much worse things could be. If you are unfamiliar with the situation for Japanese (and people of Japanese descent) during those war years this is a must read. I can't imagine being forced from everything I know like that. Ultimately they find strength with each other though. The book manages to end on a rising note, and I wanted more just so I could see if the Onishis got the happy ending that I really felt they deserved. This book will make you think and will make you sad that something like this ever had to happen. It's not necessarily an enjoyable read, but it's a great book. 

Book provided for review.

Blog Tour Giveaway 
$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash 
Ends 8/11/13


Ingeborg said...

Thank you for the review. I am looking forward to reading the book.


Eva Millien said...

Thanks for sharing your review and the giveaway. Sounds like a great book. evamillien at gmail dot com