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Stealing Home
Cover of Stealing Home
Stealing Home
A gripping graphic novel that tells a boy's experience in a WWII Japanese internment camp, and the lessons that baseball teaches him.Sandy Saito is a happy boy who's obsessed with...
A gripping graphic novel that tells a boy's experience in a WWII Japanese internment camp, and the lessons that baseball teaches him.Sandy Saito is a happy boy who's obsessed with...
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Description-

  • A gripping graphic novel that tells a boy's experience in a WWII Japanese internment camp, and the lessons that baseball teaches him.

    Sandy Saito is a happy boy who's obsessed with baseball—especially the Asahi team, the pride of his community. But when the Japanese attack Pearl Harbor, his life, like that of every North American of Japanese descent, changes forever. Forced to move to a remote internment camp, he and his family cope as best they can. And though life at the camp is difficult, Sandy finds solace in baseball, where there's always the promise of possibilities.

    Through his experience, Sandy comes to realize that life is a lot like baseball. It's about dealing with whatever is thrown at you, however you can. And it's about finding your way home.

About the Author-

  • J. Torres is a Filipino-born Canadian comic book writer. He is perhaps best known for his run on DC Comics' Teen Titans Go, the Eisner-nominated Alison Dare and the Junior Library Guild/TD Summer Reading Club title Bigfoot Boy. Winner of the Shuster Award for Outstanding Writer, Torres has worked with characters from A (Archies) to Z (The Mighty Zodiac) and many more in between. Torres was born in Manila and raised in Montreal, where he was educated at McGill University. He is married with two sons and currently resides in a suburb of Toronto, Ontario.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    July 15, 2021
    Sandy and his family, Japanese Canadians, experience hatred and incarceration during World War II. Sandy Saito loves baseball, and the Vancouver Asahi ballplayers are his heroes. But when they lose in the 1941 semifinals, Sandy's dad calls it a bad omen. Sure enough, in December 1941, Japan bombs Pearl Harbor in the U.S. The Canadian government begins to ban Japanese people from certain areas, moving them to "dormitories" and setting a curfew. Sandy wants to spend time with his father, but as a doctor, his dad is busy, often sneaking out past curfew to work. One night Papa is taken to "where he [is] needed most," and the family is forced into an internment camp. Life at the camp isn't easy, and even with some of the Asahi players playing ball there, it just isn't the same. Trying to understand and find joy again, Sandy struggles with his new reality and relationship with his father. Based on the true experiences of Japanese Canadians and the Vancouver Asahi team, this graphic novel is a glimpse of how their lives were affected by WWII. The end is a bit abrupt, but it's still an inspiring and sweet look at how baseball helped them through hardship. The illustrations are all in a sepia tone, giving it an antique look and conveying the emotions and struggles. None of the illustrations of their experiences are overly graphic, making it a good introduction to this upsetting topic for middle-grade readers. An emotional, much-needed historical graphic novel. (afterword, further resources) (Graphic historical fiction. 9-12)

    COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    November 1, 2021

    Gr 4-7-Sandy Saito, who lives in Vancouver, Canada, with his family, doesn't have the strongest relationship with his father, James, a physician; James's focus on his work means he doesn't always have time for Sandy. But they do love to bond by watching the Japanese Canadian baseball team, the Asahi, play every summer, until the unthinkable happens: The U.S. naval base Pearl Harbor is attacked in 1941. This event triggers the U.S.'s entry into World War II, and Sandy, James, and other coastal Japanese-descended citizens in the United States and Canada quickly face discrimination by former friends and neighbors before being rounded up and sent to camps. Although their entire world is upturned, Sandy and others at the camps latch onto the game of baseball and the spirit of the Asahi as they do their best to adapt and survive. Though baseball sets the stage for the story and returns intermittently in moments of joy or escape, it is largely a vehicle for exploring Canadian World War II imprisonment camps. Hardships are depicted, but the story's brisk pacing keeps readers from dwelling on them for long. Oatmeal-beige coloring dominates the artwork, accentuated by swaths of darker brown shades for contrast. Namisato relies on tidy panels and linework, with creative use of space and detailed backgrounds of natural and city settings. The illustrator strategically employs high-angled scenes when characters, portrayed diminutively, endure moments of uncertainty or despair. An afterword and further resources are included in the back matter. VERDICT A strong companion read to George Takei's They Called Us Enemy from the Canadian perspective, though aimed at a slightly younger audience.-Alea Perez, Elmhurst P.L., IL

    Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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