Flowers From Mariko

By School Library Journal

This is the story of a Japanese-American girl whose family has suffered through three years of internment at a desolate “relocation center” during World War II. When her father returns to California, he finds that his truck has been sold and that their former landlord has disappeared with the proceeds. This sad event, along with the loss of most of their other possessions, means that Mariko’s father cannot immediately resume his gardening business. The family settles into a bleak trailer park established for returning internees. Bit by bit they are able to rebuild their lives. The child’s father finds some discarded gardening equipment that he can fix and Mariko starts a flower garden that comes to symbolize their rebirth. An author’s note provides some brief background that allows children to put the story in context.