No-No Boy

Written by:
John Okada
Narrated by:
David Shih

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
May 2018
9 hours 48 minutes
First published in 1956, No-No Boy was virtually ignored by a public eager to put World War II and the Japanese internment behind them. It was not until the mid-1970s that a new generation of Japanese American writers and scholars recognized the novel's importance and popularized it as one of literature's most powerful testaments to the Asian American experience.

No-No Boy tells the story of Ichiro Yamada, a fictional version of the real-life 'no-no boys.' Yamada answered 'no' twice in a compulsory government questionnaire as to whether he would serve in the armed forces and swear loyalty to the United States. Unwilling to pledge himself to the country that interned him and his family, Ichiro earns two years in prison and the hostility of his family and community when he returns home to Seattle. As Ozeki writes, Ichiro's 'obsessive, tormented' voice subverts Japanese postwar 'model-minority' stereotypes, showing a fractured community and one man's 'threnody of guilt, rage, and blame as he tries to negotiate his reentry into a shattered world.'
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Eva P.

I really enjoyed this book. It gives a rich perspective of the Japanese way of thinking in the time of Second World War. It is a very good way of learning history and allows the reader inside the characters’ thinking and feelings. Highly recommendable!

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Eric C.

I liked this book a lot. It was insightful and helped me understand more about life back in the day as an Asian (specifically Japanese). I can’t imagine the same thing happening nowadays, but I could really relate to this. Though I must say it was a bit depressing and the mood doesn’t really change through the book.

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