Daniel James Brown with Tom Ikeda & Lori Matsukawa
A week after a national launch, Densho, Seattle’s nationally-esteemed non-profit organization devoted to keeping alive the history of the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, and continued lessons from then for today, and Elliott Bay Book Company present this Seattle launch program for Facing the Mountain: A True Story of Japanese American Heroes During World War II (Viking), a major new book about WWII Japanese American incarceration and the 442nd RCT by Seattle writer Daniel James Brown. The virtual event will feature a conversation between Daniel James Brown and Densho Executive Director Tom Ikeda, (who has conducted oral histories with many of the men highlighted in the book) and will be hosted by broadcast journalist Lori Matsukawa, who has roots in both Seattle and in Hawai’i. We look forward to a more Seattle-centric discussion this evening, with some attention also to less well known events in Hawai’i, and we hope that you’ll bring your questions.
“Facing the Mountain proves that the savagery of war isn’t restricted to foreign battlefields. Many went to war – those who remained incarcerated endured the wrath of their fellow countrymen. It is said that to be an American we should strive to live life worthy of the sacrifices of those who came before us. Our bearing with each other is dependent on it.” —Lt Col Michael J. Yaguchi, USAF (ret), Commander, Nisei Veterans Committee.
“Daniel James Brown brings to life the gripping true story of Japanese Americans whose steely heroism fought Nazism abroad and racism at home. Bound by Japanese values of filial piety, giri (social obligation) and gaman (endurance) and forged in the crucible of brutal combat, the soldiers served the very country that locked their families in American concentration camps for no crime other than looking like the enemy while camp resisters fought for justice denied.”—Lori L. Matsukawa.
Daniel James Brown is the author of The Boys in the Boat, The Indifferent Stars Above, and Under a Flaming Sky. Tom Ikeda is executive director of Densho, a Seattle-based non-profit dedicated to collecting, preserving, and sharing Japanese American history and promoting social justice and equity. Lori Matsukawa, who recently retired after 36 years as an anchor and reporter at KING TV, won two Northwest Regional Emmy Awards, one in 2018 for her series “Prisoners in Their Own Land” about the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II and another in 2019 for “Shane Sato: Portraits of Courage” about a photographer's mission to photograph Nisei veterans, who served as part of America's "Greatest Generation."
Presented by Densho and Elliott Bay Book Company.