Farewell to Manzanar

  • by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston
  • Narrated by Jennifer Ikeda
  • 4 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Jeanne Wakatsuki was seven years old in 1942 when her family was uprooted from their home and sent to live at Manzanar internment camp - with 10,000 other Japanese Americans. Along with searchlight towers and armed guards, Manzanar ludicrously featured cheerleaders, Boy Scouts, sock hops, baton-twirling lessons, and a dance band called the Jive Bombers who would play any popular song except the nation's number-one hit: "Don't Fence Me In".
Farewell to Manzanar is the true story of one spirited Japanese-American family's attempt to survive the indignities of forced detention...and of a native-born American child who discovered what it was like to grow up behind barbed wire in the United States.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Freedom subverted

Do you live in a country where 110,000 innocent individuals can be taken from their homes at a moments' notice and detained in an isolated location for years with armed guards and no escape? If you're an American, the answer is yes.

In the racist roundup now known as the Japanese Internment, no charges were brought, no appeals were possible, and no due process observed. Families were apprehended without cause, incarcerated in the desert, then unceremoniously "released" three years later, their jobs, homes, and social networks dissolved in the interim.

Jeanne Wakatsuki was 7 years old when her family was forcibly relocated, by the US government, from Long Beach, CA, to the remote, high desert prison camp known as Manzanar. How this unthinkable action affected her, her siblings, and her parents is outlined in this true coming-of-age tale, set in the Japanese internment camp at Manzanar, California.

Through the eyes of a child, but with the wisdom of an adult, Jeanne describes her life in the prison camp, and the impact it had on her family. While she has every reason to be outraged at the injustice, Jeanne tells her story without rancor, focusing on facts, events, and details that let you feel her experience, illuminating a little-known historical series of events. Her memoir is clear-eyed and poignant, an easy listen you won't soon forget.

At the dawn of the great American experiment of democracy, Thomas Jefferson warned us that the price of freedom would be eternal vigilance. Although Jeanne's story happened in WWII, echoes of racism cloaked as national defense again surfaced after 9-11. Those who value freedom need to know Jeanne's story, as a protection against this type of atrocity ever being revisited.
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- Avalon "Bibliophile, English Teacher, Wordsmith"

Narrated by a robot?

Would you listen to Farewell to Manzanar again? Why?

The narrator sounds like a text-to-audio conversion. Her voice is flat and lifeless.

How could the performance have been better?

She could perhaps have a pulse.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?


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- Anthony

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-22-2013
  • Publisher: Recorded Books