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Writer's Reads: Elizabeth Miki Brina, author of Speak, Okinawa

  • Written by  Geographical
  • Published in Reviews
Elizabeth Miki Brina Elizabeth Miki Brina
29 Apr
Elizabeth Miki Brina is a teacher and author. Her debut book, Speak Okinawa, is out now. Here she shares some of the books that have inspired her perceptive worldview

Woman Warrior

The Woman Warrior: Memoir of a Girlhood Among Ghosts • Maxine Hong Kingston • 1976

Maxine Hong Kingston is magnificent as she captures the history and mythology of her ancestors from China, as well as the lives of her family of immigrants and Asian Americans.

Click here to purchase from The Geographical Bookshop at bookshop.org

Autobiography of my mother

Autobiography of My Mother • Jamaica Kincaid • 1996

With exquisite and inimitable prose, Jamaica Kincaid portrays the complicated, defiant, lonely yet resilient life of a woman in Dominica. 

Brother Im dying

Brother, I'm Dying • Edwidge Danticat • 2007

This story revolves around two brothers: one who moved to the USA and one who stayed in Haiti. Edwidge Danticat portrays the bond between her father and uncle with utmost love and dignity while also recreating scenes of violent upheaval.

The buddha in the attic

Brother, I'm Dying • Julie Otsuka • 2011

Through a chorus of voices, Julie Otsuka tells the story of a group of young brides, married by mail, who travelled from Japan to San Francisco by boat. Their experiences of adjustment, isolation, estrangement, and eventual detainment at concentration camps during the Second World War is painful yet necessary to confront.

Click here to purchase the book from the Geographical bookshop at Bookshop.org

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On earth were briefly gorgeous

On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous • Ocean Vuong • 2019

This book brings the reader to so many places: Vietnam, Connecticut, the vast and perpetuating trauma of war, the intricate private wounds between a single mother and her only son, the raw turmoil of first sexual encounters.

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Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail • Cheryl Strayed • 2012

Cheryl Strayed bravely processes the trauma of losing her mother to cancer and of losing her husband to her own infidelity and addiction to heroin as she hikes more than 1,000 miles along the Pacific Crest trail.

Click here to purchase the book from the Geographical bookshop at Bookshop.org

The line becomes a river

The Line Becomes a River • Francisco Cantú • 2018

Even though his grandfather came from Mexico, Francisco Cantu decided to become a border patrol agent to see and understand for himself. He writes with keen insight and compassion.

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