Category Archives: Nanea

Waiting for Nanea – Author Kirby Larson

There is just over a month until the release of Nanea Mitchell (August 24th), a Hawaiian girl living at the time of Pearl Harbor.  Nanea’s books are written by distinguished author Kirby Larson.

Prior to writing Nanea’s books, Larson wrote about the Pearl Harbor-era in her book Dear America – The Diary of Piper Davis: The Fences Between Us.  The book opens in Seattle, 1941, with Piper’s brother Hank departing for his naval base in Pearl Harbor.  Piper’s father is a Baptist minister who serves the Japanese-American community in Seattle.

The book focuses on the after-effects of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, namely the war with Japan and relocation/imprisonment of innocent Japanese-Americans living on the west coast.  This story about an attack leading to war and racial profiling of U.S. citizens seems terribly timely and familiar.

Before the war, Piper is just a regular 13 year-old girl upset because she is a “PK” (Preacher’s Kid) and therefore she isn’t allowed to wear lipstick.

Monday, November 10, 1941

It’s not fair!  I bought that tube of Tangee lipstick with my own money, and Pop won’t let me wear it.  He wants me to be such a Goody Two-shoes. . . . All I know for sure is that I am the only girl in the seventh grade with naked lips.

After the bombing, Piper finds herself with a first-hand view of the conditions experienced by innocent Japanese-Americans who were relocated to remote deserts and incarcerated: no sewer, no coal to heat with, extremely poor food, and no running water.

I was able to visit one of the Japanese camps in California many years ago.  Manzanar was one of 10 camps used to relocate and imprison Japanese-Americans because of their ethnicity.  It is in a very remote part of California near the Mojave desert.

IMG_0197

My photo of Manzanar.  I believe this is the Guard Station at the entrance to the camp.

Larson’s Dear America book brings to life many timely ethical issues, which I will leave to you to ponder should you pick up the book.  I recommend the book 5th grade and up based on the complex social issues of this era.

Brianna adds . . . 

Another great World War II book written by Kirby Larson is called Dash.  Eleven year-old Mitsi Kashino, a Japanese – American, has lived a pretty normal life with her parents, siblings, and beloved dog Dash. That was up until the attack on Pearl Harbor and the terrifying anti – Japanese sentiment. Many of her friends and classmates begin to turn on her.

Mitsi and her family are sent to a scary, big incarceration camp. The worst part is that Mitsi is separated from her dog, Dash. All Mitsi wants is to find her beloved dog again.

I (Brianna) recommend this book for kids in 5th – 6th grade. I remember reading it in the early part of 5th grade as an AR (Accelerated Reader) book. It was amazing!

We hope you look into these books by award-winning author Kirby Larson this summer before the release of Nanea!

 

New Nanea News

I’m feelin’ the alliteration today.

American Girl announced that today (4/11) is Nanea’s birthday, which is a bit odd considering she isn’t here yet.  They have not revealed the Year of her birth.

In this same Facebook post, the company said:

  • Nanea will not have perma panties
  • She does have ‘sleep eyes’
  • She will be released in “early fall”
  • She has a cloth body and will fit in all AG clothes
  • They will provide the phonetic pronunciation of her name soon
  • The company said they don’t know anything about her vinyl being soft but her heart ❤️ is
  • There will be a GOTY in 2018 (here’s to hoping it’s not another TrulyMe doll with a mole or freckles painted on)

I am really looking forward to seeing her collection.  I hope her clothes fit older dolls!  

AG New Book (Doll?) Series

I stumbled upon this on Amazon — a new book series called “American Girl Like Sisters” to be released at the end of August. Will cousins Emma, Sofia and Zoe also be dolls?  I am assuming so. Perhaps this is the evolution towards giving existing TM dolls a story.

When I read the book description it sure reminded me a lot of Cynthia Rylant’s childrens’ book series “Cobble Street Cousins” in which three cousins live in their Aunt’s grand old house in a cozy attic.  They have adventures like starting a cookie baking business.

I also happened upon the first images of Z. Yang’s books, of which two are listed.



Tenney is getting a 4th book in late September, plus “Tenney’s Journal” which is already out.  The 4th book looks like a continuation of her story with a Christmas theme and does not appear to be a journey book.  Watch for our ‘Girl of the Year, but Not’ to be getting some Christmas outfits, Nashville style.

I didn’t find any books about Nanea, which does make you wonder how they will squeeze her in in 2017 with all of these other book releases.