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Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet (2009)

por Jamie Ford

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
6,7974661,377 (3.95)520
Set in the ethnic neighborhoods of Seattle during World War II and Japanese American internment camps of the era, this debut novel tells the heartwarming story of widower Henry Lee, his father, and his first love Keiko Okabe.
Adicionado recentemente porkent23124, srweather, biblioteca privada, CarlaDianne, cconton, LTSandboxPelican, JoeB1934, PattyMae05, AngelaLynnPantilione
  1. 251
    The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society por Mary Ann Shaffer (hoosieriu97)
    hoosieriu97: This story is beautifully written about the same time period.
  2. 231
    Snow Falling on Cedars por David Guterson (JGoto)
    JGoto: This is also set in Washington state with a well-written story dealing with racism against Japanese Americans after World War Two.
  3. 40
    When the Emperor Was Divine por Julie Otsuka (pdebolt)
    pdebolt: This is also a story about an American family of Japanese descent sent to an interment camp.
  4. 30
    Farewell to Manzanar por Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston (carport)
  5. 20
    Tallgrass por Sandra Dallas (tahcastle)
    tahcastle: Both stories explain the Japanese Internment camps. Tallgrass was the town's views of the Japanese moving into their neighborhood. Hotel explained the moving of the Japanese out of their homes into the camp.
  6. 10
    China Dolls por Lisa See (kqueue)
    kqueue: Both books deal with Asian-Americans at the onset of World War II and the injustices they suffered along with the tensions between Japanese-Americans and Chinese-Americans.
  7. 10
    The Buddha in the Attic por Julie Otsuka (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: Both books give a picture of the people of Japanese descent living in America during World War II.
  8. 00
    Letters from Skye por Jessica Brockmole (cbl_tn)
    cbl_tn: Both books focus on young lovers separated by war.
  9. 00
    The Japanese Lover por Isabel Allende (Blogletter)
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» Ver também 520 menções

Inglês (458)  Norueguês (2)  Italiano (2)  Sueco (2)  Holandês (1)  Espanhol (1)  Finlandês (1)  Alemão (1)  Todas as línguas (468)
Mostrando 1-5 de 468 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
This is a very touching love story about "star-crossed" sweethearts who meet in a time of war. Specifically, two sixth-graders form a bond over a love of jazz music as well as their "otherness". They are the only Asians in an all-white prep school. They are "scholarshipping" and must work in the cafeteria together. So what makes this an ill-fated love? Keiko is Japanese- American and Henry is Chinese-American. Henry is forbidden by his father to associate with his Japanese neighbors. In addition, this takes place during World War II, directly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Along with the beautiful love story, I enjoyed the influence of art and music in the story. The writing also evokes a strong sense of place- Seattle in the 1940s. I did find some of the events a little far-fetched, but I don't to include any spoilers in my review. 4 out of 5 stars. ( )
  Chrissylou62 | Apr 11, 2024 |
I’ve heard this book’s title over the years but never knew what it was about - I picked it up because as a, “Hmm, I’ve heard this one was good.” I’m so glad I did.

As a huge fan of all things WW2, I am always surprised when there is more out there to learn - the United States’ Japanese internment camps is one of those subjects for me. While I knew of them, I knew nothing about them.

Bitter and Sweet is not necessarily about the camps themselves, but how Keiko, an average 12-year old American born Japanese girl ended up in one, and how her best friend and school mate, an American born Chinese boy named Henry, would not let her go, until he did. But did he?

Beautifully written, the reader will not even realize the nuances of racism and hatred that runs deep and pervasive throughout the book as you feel the childhood crush turn to real love in its truest sense.

The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, written many years ago, could not be more timely in today’s world, where so much is going on regarding culture, race, hatred. Read the book - fall in love with Keiko and Henry’s sweet pubescent journey as they navigate the differences in their cultures, their families, their race. I think you will remember this one for a very long time; I know I will. ( )
  LyndaWolters1 | Apr 3, 2024 |
An interesting account of a first-generation Chinese-American boy living in Seattle at the time Japanese neighbors were being interred in camps during WWII. Strong intergenerational and cultural elements. ( )
  maryelisa | Jan 16, 2024 |
Things I liked about this book:

It is really fun to read a good book that takes place in the city where you live. It makes everything seem more real and you can always make conversation about it when you pass by a place mentioned in the book. For example, I learned a lot about Seattle's jazz history reading this book and now when I go to the I.D. to do Karaoke I will pretend I am Ray Charles. Also fun: tragic love stories with redemptive endings. Indeed. Another thing I enjoy: well-researched historical fiction. And to top it all off, the author is a great storyteller. I think this is a book you can recommend to readers as young as 14 or 15, but at the same time will appeal to people who lived through WWII.

Things I did not like about this book:

I had some issues with the dialogue. Sometimes it sounded wrong or forced. And I wasn't bowled over by Ford's writing. He's a good writer, but not a superb one. Also, as Madeline said, I think I spotted a few anachronisms. For one, I found it hard to believe that in 1986 a person could be tracked down via computer and telephone in just a few hours, especially if that person had changed her name. Also, I think meddling with letters between star-crossed lovers is a really played out thing to put in a novel. I think we're all overly familiar with that particular injustice thanks to [a:Nicholas Sparks|2345|Nicholas Sparks|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1273850585p2/2345.jpg], right? Come to think of it, this must be on tvtropes.com... And it is!

Overall: Recommended for an airplane trip or a long weekend in a cabin. Set expectations to medium and enjoy.

( )
  LibrarianDest | Jan 3, 2024 |
This fell a bit flat. It may not be fair because romance is one of my least liked genres. It was actually okay as far as the romance part went. The characters felt stagnant, the story felt like it was told by a tired narrator, there seemed a few too many inconsistencies, and the kids seemed a bit young for the bond depicted. The ending was a bit too "perfect", though that seems to be how romances generally go. I didn't totally hate the book, but it wasn't a favorite and I'd not recommend it. ( )
  MahanaU | Nov 21, 2023 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 468 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
While the novel is less perfect as literature than John Hamamura's Color of the Sea (Thomas Dunne, 2006), the setting and quietly moving, romantic story are commendable.
adicionada por Katya0133 | editarSchool Library Journal, Angela Carstensen (May 1, 2009)
 
Although Ford does not have anything especially novel to say about a familiar subject (the interplay between race and family), he writes earnestly and cares for his characters, who consistently defy stereotype.
adicionada por Katya0133 | editarBooklist, Kevin Clouther (Nov 15, 2008)
 
A timely debut that not only reminds readers of a shameful episode in American history, but cautions us to examine the present and take heed we don't repeat those injustices.
adicionada por Katya0133 | editarKirkus Reviews (Oct 15, 2008)
 
In his first novel, award-winning short-story writer Ford expertly nails the sweet innocence of first love, the cruelty of racism, the blindness of patriotism, the astonishing unknowns between parents and their children, and the sadness and satisfaction at the end of a life well lived.
adicionada por Katya0133 | editarLibrary Journal, Joanna M. Burkhardt (Oct 1, 2008)
 

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My poor heart is sentimental

Not made of wood

I got it bad and that ain't good.

--Duke Ellington, 1941
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Old Henry Lee stood transfixed by all the commotion at the Panama Hotel.
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Henry stared in silence as a small parade of wooden packing crates and leathery suitcases were hauled upstairs, the crowd marveling at the once-precious items held within: a white communion dress, tarnished silver candlesticks, a picnic basket – items that had collected dust, untouched, for forty-plus years. Saved for a happier time that never came.
…wandering over to the Panama Hotel, a place between worlds when he was a child, a place between times now that he was a grown man.
The years had been unkind. … Like so many things Henry had wanted in life – like his father, his marriage, his life – it had arrived a little damaged. Imperfect. But he didn’t care, this was all he’d wanted. Something to hope for, and he’d found it. It didn’t matter what condition it was in.
“With that many people, what’s to keep you from just taking over the camp?”

"You know what keeps us from doing just that? Loyalty. We’re still loyal to the United States of America. Why? Because we too are Americans. We don’t agree, but we will show our loyalty by our obedience. Do you understand, Henry?"
Henry had much to do. … He’d do what he always did, find the sweet among the bitter.
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Wikipédia em inglês (2)

Set in the ethnic neighborhoods of Seattle during World War II and Japanese American internment camps of the era, this debut novel tells the heartwarming story of widower Henry Lee, his father, and his first love Keiko Okabe.

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Jamie Ford's book Hotel on the Corner of Bitter And Sweet was available from LibraryThing Early Reviewers.

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Jamie Ford é um Autor LibraryThing, um autor que lista a sua biblioteca pessoal no LibraryThing.

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Jamie Ford conversou com membros do LibraryThing de Feb 1, 2010 a Feb 14, 2010. Leia a conversa.

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