Grades 6 - 8
Grade level Equivalent: 7.4
Lexile Measure®: 1040
Guided Reading: Y
- General Nonfiction
- Japanese and Japanese American
- World War II
- Tolerance and Acceptance
- Friends and Friendship
- Prejudice and Tolerance Experiences
About This Book
To Americans of Japanese ancestry, World War II came like a hurricane that swept away their security and freedom. On December 7, 1941, they woke up as citizens and by nightfall, after the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, they were the enemy who could not be trusted. In a matter of months they would be imprisoned by their own government. Their only crime was having the "wrong" ancestors.
While ware are usually told in terms of great battles and major victories, the true story of war is often reflected in acts of courage. Dear Miss Breed is the account of how a remarkable librarian became a lifeline to "her children," as she called the middle- and high-school-age Japanese Americans of San Diego whom she had come to know and love.
In the early 1940's, Clara Breed was the children's librarian at the San Diego Public Library. But she was also friend to dozens of Japanese American children and teens when war broke out in December of 1941. The story of what happened to these American citizens is movingly told through letters that her young friends wrote to Miss Breed during their internment. This remarkable librarian and humanitarian served as a lifeline to these imprisoned young people, and was brave enough to speak out against a shameful chapter in American history.
Copies of their correspondence, photographs, and recent interviews with survivors make this an outstanding collection of stories.