Book Club: Discussing ‘The Buddha in the Attic’

Buddha in the AtticOur latest book is The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka. Book Club hostess Jacqueline Steward starts us off on the discussion below. Read what she thought about the book and join in.

Taking part in the BritMums Book Club with Penguin is a great way to score a free copy of new books, read along with a group of fellow bloggers and discuss what you loved (or hated) about them in the comfort of your own home.

Keep up to date with the latest by joining the BritMums Book Club community group and to be first to know about the next book and how to get your free copy!

Discussing The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka

Like many things in life, small, modest packages often hold the biggest surprises. I read The Buddha in the Attic and just loved it. It left me wanting more about this subject: the experience of Japanese mail-order brides sailing to the U.S., anxiously wondering what their new life and partners held in store for them.

Told as collective narrative, the book’s shared viewpoint and unique stories impressed on me the power of individuals and Julie Otsuka’s rich, deep prose to tell often very complex stories so simply and powerfully.

My American aunt snatched it from my fingers as soon as I’d finished and tells me it has been read by two of her U.S. friends, who also loved it. I’d like it back, but I love that this is a book that shares a spirit between my Aunt, her friends and the discussion already taking place on BritMums Book Club.

Like the voyage, the description and language reminded me of being on a boat slowly rocking away. I loved the generous spirit, an insight into a slice of US/Japanese history and the introduction to a really interesting author. A few of you have mentioned her first novel and I’m looking out for that right now as well as Damian Barr’s memoir Maggie & Me. You can catch Damian on BritMumsTV discussing his writing process with lots of quick, snappy tips,  if you are interested in writing memoirs and/or want to know what it felt like to be growing up in Glasgow during Margaret Thatcher’s first term as PM.

I can’t wait to hear what you all thought of The Buddha in the Attic. Post away and remember to add your link to the Linky at the bottom so we can all come visit and continue the discussion.

— Jacqueline Steward

Sign up now to get the next book club book FREE

Fill out the form NOW for the next book: Clare Balding’s autobiography My Animals and Other Family. Again, it’s open to the first 100 who sign up (UK addresses only). The form will close once we’ve reached 100 so get in quick. We will update you via @BritMums, G+ and BritMums Book Group Community. Any questions just ask! For those outside the UK or unable to get a free copy, you can obviously buy here via Amazon or any good independent bookshop.

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6 Responses to Book Club: Discussing ‘The Buddha in the Attic’

  1. Emily Tealady 02 September 2013 at 11:42 #

    A beautiful book. So well written. I enjoyed every page. It was so descriptive and intelligent to read.

  2. Marianne Whooley 02 September 2013 at 15:39 #

    I LOVED this book, it touched my soul

  3. Galina V 03 September 2013 at 11:23 #

    This was the best book of the three I have read so far in the Book Club. A real masterpiece. Will skip the next book but looking forward to reading the reviews.

  4. Iona@redpeffer 04 September 2013 at 09:24 #

    I agree that it’s the best book of the three so far. Beautifully written, even though it’s about quite a tough subject area. Brought me close to tears frequently-the simplicity of the prose is stunning.

  5. Jenny 06 September 2013 at 18:21 #

    I adored this book, can’t wait to get my hands on her other book.

    Just wondered if there was a book club blog badge I can use on my blog?

  6. Elwira 08 September 2013 at 11:12 #

    I loved it too and look forward to reading the next one – The Buddha in the Attic was one of the best literary discoveries this year 🙂 x