Common Read/ Common World Program
The University of South Alabama has chosen Julie Otsuka'a When the Emperor Was Divine as its 2019-2020 Common Read/Common World book. The book details the experiences of a unnamed family in the Japanese internment Camps in the United States during World War II.
Julie Otsuka received her MFA from Columbia and is a recipient of the PEN/Faulkner Award, the Asian American Literary Award, the American Library Association Alex Award, and France’s Prix Femina Étranger; she was also a finalist for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and The International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. among other awards.
She is the author of The Buddha in the Attic as well as When the Emperor Was Divine, which was her debut novel. It is based on her own family history; her grandfather was arrested as a suspected spy after Pearl Harbor was bombed and her grandmother, uncle and mother spent time in a Utah prison camp. Otsuka currently lives in New York City where she continues to write.
For more information see Julie Otsuka's web site.