Books & Conversations Past Events
Author Discussion—The Inker’s Shadow by Allen Say
Allen Say is the award-winning author and illustrator of many acclaimed children’s books, including Drawing from Memory, an autobiographical volume that explored his love of comic books through a collection of his own photographs and drawings. Say now offers a companion to that book in The Inker’s Shadow, a graphic novel that tells the story of his own coming-of-age.
As a teenager in Southern California, Say was sent to an American military academy by his father so he could learn English and “become a success in life.” As the school’s first and only Japanese student, he immediately faced racism from his fellow cadets and teachers, who were all white; their complaints about his presence relegated him to a tool shed behind the mess hall. Determined to escape, Say saved up his money to buy a 1946 Ford for $50—and set out to find the America of his dreams.
Say will be joined in conversation by Lori Benton, Vice President and Publisher for Scholastic Trade Publishing. Benton is a longtime publisher and promoter of children’s books, and has known Say as both an author and a friend for decades. Say will be available for signings after the talk.
Seating is available first come, first serve. Doors open at 1:30 p.m.
Writing Little Tokyo in Crime and Rhyme
The Japanese American experience, both past and present, is rarely tackled in mainstream literature. Two award-winning authors, mystery writer Naomi Hirahara (A Grave on Grand Avenue) and poet Amy Uyematsu (The Yellow Door), have incorporated both their ethnic heritage and a strong sense of place into their works.
Once members of the same writing group, Pacific Asian American Women Writers-West (PAAWW-W), these two women will discuss the various cultural and literary influences that have shaped their writing and their Japanese American identity. Excerpts from their most recent works will be read while images of people and places that have inspired their creative growth are shown. A signing will follow, with books available for purchase.
Free with museum admission. RSVPs are recommended using the link below.
Read about Amy Uyematsu and Naomi Hirahara on Discover Nikkei: A Poet, a Mystery Novelist, and Writing in Japanese America
Gasa Gasa Girl Goes to Camp by Lily Yuriko Nakai Havey
In this creative memoir, Havey combines vintage photographs with her own paintings and writings to tell the story of how she grew from a ten-year-old girl into a teenager while living in Santa Anita Assembly Center and Amache Relocation Center during World War II.
Havey will read from and discuss her book. Audience Q&A to follow. Free with general museum admission.
China Dolls by Lisa See
Bestselling author Lisa See will discuss her new book, China Dolls, a WWII-era drama of friendship and betrayal amongst three Chinese American women whose lives cross in the glamorous nightclubs of San Francisco’s Chinatown.
The women’s fortunes take a turn after the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, and the book includes detailed accounts of the World War II imprisonment of Japanese Americans. See will also talk about her family’s personal connections to the Japanese American incarceration experience and her grandfather’s early efforts to exhibit art by Asian Americans.
Audience Q&A to follow.
Free with general admission. The book is available at the JANM Store.
Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty’s Trek Across the Pacific by Christine Yano, PhD
Join Christine Yano, co-curator of Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty, for a discussion of her 2013 book, which takes an in-depth look at the global economic and sociological effects of the export of Japanese “cute-cool culture.”
Free for members, $20 adult non-members, $10 non-members ages 6-17. Includes admission to Hello! after discussion.
Historic Wintersburg in Huntington Beach by Mary Adams Urashima
Join historian and author Mary Adams Urashima as she traces the fascinating history of Wintersburg Village, a vanished Japanese American pioneer community located in present-day Huntington Beach, CA.
Settled in the 19th century by descendants of samurai clans, Wintersburg was recently named one of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.