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‘Life After Manzanar’ Authors at Santa Monica Library

SANTA MONICA — As part of its annual community reading event, Santa Monica Reads, the Santa Monica Public Library welcomes authors Naomi Hirahara, Heather C. Lindquist and Art Hansen for a discussion of their book “Life After Manzanar” on Tuesday, May 22, at 7 p.m. in the Main Library’s Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium, 601 Santa Monica Blvd.

Naomi Hirahara and Heather Lindquist

Every year, Santa Monica Public Library presents Santa Monica Reads, a community reading initiative that encourages all residents and visitors to read and discuss the same book in book discussions and special events held throughout the city. Now in its 16th year, the program features “Farewell to Manzanar,” the classic memoir by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston and James D. Houston, which chronicles the young Jeanne’s experience with her family during World War II when Japanese Americans were uprooted and incarcerated by the government. While Wakatsuki Houston briefly touches on her family’s life after Manzanar in her book, many readers are left wondering what happened to most of the internees following their imprisonment.

Now, in their newly released book “Life After Manzanar,” authors Hirahara and Lindquist weave together oral histories of the “resettlement,” the period just after those of Japanese descent were released from Manzanar and other camps back into a hostile American landscape with little more than $25 and a one-way bus ticket to anywhere. In their talk at Santa Monica Public Library, Hirahara and Lindquist are joined by historian Hansen, who wrote the foreword to “Life After Manzanar,” to share some of the most remarkable stories they uncovered in their research for the book.A book sale and signing follows their presentation.

This program is free and open to all. Seating is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis. The Santa Monica Public Library is wheelchair-accessible. For disability-related accommodations, call Library Administration at (310) 458-8606 at least one week prior to event. The Main Library is served by Big Blue Bus routes 1, R10 and 18. Bicycle parking racks are available at the library.

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