Hotel … Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I really liked this book. It read like a historical memoir, rich with authentic detail. I like that it is set in Seattle. The bouncing back and forth between the 1940’s war years and 1986 reminded me of my own book (Cape Seduction) and was well done. Story moves at an easy pace; there is a lot of thought and day-to-day life.
The subject matter itself is a strong reminder of a another world of prejudice too easily forgotten. Japanese-heritage Americans were rounded up and removed in much the same manner as the Cherokees a hundred years before. The strong but conflicting goals and philosophies of Henry’s Chinese father are another reminder of the plight Asian immigrants faced in their new country. American-born Henry and his son Marty evolve but maintain their Chinese cultural ties. Especially interesting to me as I have a half-Chinese grandson who will be learning Mandarin.
And, of course, the love. Henry and Keiko’s is a poignant story. All of the characters are well-drawn, realistic and interesting.
This was a fast read for me and kept me entertained throughout. I’ll read more from Jamie Ford.