Julie Otsuka’s grandmother came to the United State’s as a picture bride. She arrived in this country like many Japanese women before her– from poor families and little else besides a picture of an arranged husband they had never met.
Otsuka’s book “The Buddha in the Attic” delves into the lives of these picture brides.
They would say, ‘when she got off the boat in San Francisco she was shocked to find that her husband was so short, so dark, so ugly or so old’ and I heard different variations of this story.” Otsuka said.
The book has won numerous awards including the Landgum Prize for American Historical Fiction and the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction.
“I just thought is was a great ready-made story and it has such a natural dramatic arc, and it really happened and no one had told it before so I thought, why not give it a shot?”
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