Stubborn Twig: Three Generations in the Life of a Japanese American Family (Paperback)

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September 2009 Indie Next List

“This account of a Japanese-American family explores the immigrant experience, World War II internment camps, and the fight against injustice. Kessler spent a lot of time with members of the Yasui family, and the result is an immensely engaging read. It's an absorbing history lesson of the story behind the story.”
— Terry Dallas, Armchair Books, Pendleton, OR


Masuo Yasui traveled from Japan across the other Oregon Trailathe one that spanned the Pacific Oceanain 1903. Like most immigrants, he came with big dreams and empty pockets. As Masuo broke the race barrier in the local business community, his American-born children broke it in school, scouts and sportsauntil December 7, 1941, changed their lives forever. Stubborn Twig is a classic American storyaa story at once tragic and triumphant, one that bears eloquent witness to both the promise and the peril of America.

About the Author

Lauren Kessler is professor and director of the Multimedia Journalism Master's Program at the University of Oregon as well as a national speaker, workshop leader, and founder and editor of ETUDE, the online magazine of narrative nonfiction. In addition, she is the author of three textbooks and seven works of narrative nonfiction, including MY TEENAGE WEREWOLF: A MOTHER, A DAUGHTER, A JOURNEY THROUGH THE THICKETS OF ADOLESCENCE, Pacific Northwest Book Award winner DANCING WITH ROSE (published in paperback as FINDING LIFE IN THE LAND OF ALZHEIMER'S), WASHINGTON POST bestseller CLEVER GIRL and LOS ANGELES TIMES bestseller THE HAPPY BOTTOM RIDING CLUB--which David Letterman, in fierce competition with Oprah, chose as the first (and only) book for the Dave Letterman Book Club. She appeared twice on his late-night show. She is also the author of Oregon Book Award winner STUBBORN TWIG, which was chosen as the book for all Oregon to read in honor of the state's 2009 sesquicentennial. Dr. Kessler's journalism has appeared in THE NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE, LOS ANGELES TIMES MAGAZINE, O magazine, UTNE READER, THE NATION, and She received her Ph.D. from the University of Washington. Dr. Kessler blogs at out more at

Product Details
ISBN: 9780870714177
ISBN-10: 0870714171
Publisher: Oregon State University Press
Publication Date: August 12th, 2008
Pages: 308
Language: English