‘Displacement’ Tells Time-Travel Story About JA Experience

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“Displacement” by Kiku Hughes (Macmillan Publishers)

A teenager is pulled back in time to witness her grandmother’s experiences in World War II-era internment camps in this historical graphic novel.

Kiku is on vacation in San Francisco when suddenly she finds herself displaced to the 1940s camp for Japanese Americans that her late grandmother, Ernestina, was forcibly relocated to.

These displacements keep occurring until Kiku finds herself “stuck” back in time. Living alongside her young grandmother and other Japanese American citizens in camp, Kiku gets the education she never received in history class. She witnesses the lives of Japanese Americans who were denied their civil liberties and suffered greatly, but managed to cultivate community and commit acts of resistance in order to survive.

The author weaves a riveting, bittersweet tale that highlights the intergenerational impact and power of memory.

Kiku Hughes (https://kikujhughes.wixsite.com/kikuhughes) is a cartoonist and illustrator based in the Seattle area. Her work has been featured in Beyond Anthology Volumes 1 and 2, Short Box #6 and the Alloy Anthology. She creates stories about identity, queer romance and compassionate sci-fi. “Displacement” is her first graphic novel, and it is a story she’s wanted to share for as long as she can remember.

“A potent look at history and the lasting intergenerational impact of community trauma.” — School Library Journal, starred review

Kiku Hughes

“This graphic novel blends historical fact and science fiction into an enthralling time-travel tale.” — Horn Book

“Art features straightforward linework with full-color, often spare backgrounds that focus on characters. … Hughes centers [Kiku’s] powerlessness to create a compelling story about an oft-overlooked period of U.S. aggression against its own citizens.” — Publisher’s Weekly

“Spare, fine-lined artwork in muted earth tones emphasizes the flat desert landscape and echoes the staid, somber tone of the narrative overall, which is dense with voice-overs reflecting on the reverberating impact of the camps on her family and the Japanese diaspora in general.” — Booklist

“A timely and well-paced story of personal discovery.” — Kirkus

“Poignant and powerful … a work of art that is both timely and timeless.” — John Jennings, artist of “kindred: a graphic novel adaptation”

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