Within These Lines

Within These Lines

by Stephanie Morrill

Hardcover

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Overview

Within These Lines is a moving story of love, hope, and family set against the dark history of Japanese internment in America. This book had me captivated!” —Maureen McQuerry, YALSA award-winning author of The Peculiars

Evalina Cassano’s life in an Italian-American family in 1941 is quiet and ordinary … until she falls in love with Taichi Hamasaki, the son of Japanese immigrants. Despite the scandal it would cause and the fact that interracial marriage is illegal in California, Evalina and Taichi vow they will find a way to be together. But anti-Japanese feelings erupt across the country after the attack on Pearl Harbor, and Taichi and his family are forced to give up their farm and are incarcerated in a Japanese internment camp.

Degrading treatment at Manzanar Relocation Center is so difficult, Taichi doubts he will ever leave the camp alive. Treasured letters from Evalina are his sole connection to the outside world. Embracing the boldest action she can to help Taichi, Evalina begins to radically speak out at school and at home, shining a light on this dark and shameful racial injustice.

With their future together on the line, Evalina and Taichi can only hold true to their values and believe in their love against all odds to have any hope of making it back to one another.

Within These Lines is:

  • A historical YA novel set against the backdrop of WWII and the shameful era of American injustice surrounding Japanese internment camps
  • Told from the dual points of view of an Italian-American woman and Japanese-American man brought together by love then separated by war, injustice, and hatred
  • As haunting and unflinching as it is hope-filled and love-driven
  • Perfect for fans of Monica Hesse, Ruta Sepetys, and Elizabeth Wein

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780310765233
Publisher: Blink
Publication date: 03/05/2019
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 181,849
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.40(d)
Lexile: HL730L (what's this?)
Age Range: 13 - 17 Years

About the Author

Stephanie Morrill lives in Overland Park, Kansas, with her husband and three kids. She is the author of The Lost Girl of Astor Street, The Reinvention of Skylar Hoyt series, Go Teen Writers: How to Turn Your First Draft into a Published Book, and the Ellie Sweet series. She enjoys encouraging and teaching teen writers on her blog, GoTeenWriters.com. To connect with Stephanie and read samples of her books, check out StephanieMorrill.com.

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Within These Lines 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
EstherF 5 months ago
I haven’t known about the Japanese American concentration camps in the US for very long. Several years ago, I came across a book about it, but I never finished it—probably because I didn’t find it all that interesting. However, my curiosity about the history surrounding that has been somewhat piqued since then, so when I saw this book coming out, I was excited to read it to learn what I could! I instantly fell in love with Evalina and Taichi’s story. Seeing these two friends trying to make the best out of life—and fight for each other—was pretty special. I sympathized with Evalina’s feelings of helplessness, and Taichi’s just wanting to make the best of the situation, but most of all, I appreciated the resilience shown here. It was also special to watch Evalina and Taichi’s relationship grow during the story. They both learned lessons about how to treat others and love others even in difficulty, and how to forgive and keep loving even when it seems hopeless. It’s challenging to read stories about people who are put in difficult situations who do the best they can with what they have. Where I would be tempted to complain, they just dug in and did what needed to be done, and I really appreciate that sort of commitment! In all, this was a great story! Perhaps not the nicest happening in America’s history, but I’m thankful people are willing to talk about the not-so-great aspects as well as the good ones. War is awful, no matter how one looks at it, but stories like this—while they may be fictitious—still speak of the brave men and women who lived for others as much as they could even in hardship. A good book! I requested a free review copy of this book from Netgalley, and this is my honest opinion of it.
CynB More than 1 year ago
Within these Lines, by Stephanie Morrill, tells the compelling story of two teenagers very much in love. One is Italian-American and the other is Japanese-American. The bombing of Pearl Harbor by Japan in December, 1941 catapulted the United States into World War II. Simultaneously, fear and racism combined to make anyone of Japanese descent, including American citizens, suspected of espionage and treachery. This entire population was evacuated from their homes and livelihoods to live in camps under horrific conditions. Morrill allows us to experience this awful period through the eyes of these two teens. How they and their families survive the evacuation is a story of character and love as well as hardship. Morrill's eye for historical detail brings this story alive...from the mention of the saddle shoes and hairstyles to the radio news broadcasts, this story is filled with authenticity. The author gently reminds us that the treatment of the Japanese in America during the war is one of several episodes of sanctioned-racism in our history. May we not forget. I would recommend this book to middle and high school students whose teachers and parents can help them process the historic time period. Many thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for allowing me to read an electronic ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Within These Lines is about Evalina, an Italian-American, and Taichi, the son of Japanese immigrants. Life as they know it is disrupted when America enters WW2 and anti-Japanese feelings sweep across the country. Taichi and his family are forced to move to a Japanese-American internment camp where life is anything but a bed of roses. (Okay, maybe it’s a bed of roses, just the thorns part.) This book is fantastically well-researched and superbly written as the author tackles the often untalked about subject of what America did with Japanese during the war. I remember the first time I was introduced to the subject of American internment camps I was horrified. This book does an amazing job of making the camps and situation come to life and wraps you up in the story until you feel like you’re right there in the drafty, crowded shacks with Taichi. Although it’s a very sad and unfair part of our country’s history, I think it’s important that we don’t bury and forget it, because history has a tendency to repeat itself. This book is real and gritty and sad without being hopeless – the author somehow hit a great balance with making the book exceedingly real while still being interesting and giving the readers the hope that better things are in store. The characters are well-crafted and even though I didn’t like the way the handled certain things, they stayed very consistent to their character/personality. It was interesting to see how different cultures handled the various issues and troubles they faced. The author did an amazing job at creating a truly American/Japanese character in Taichi, vs. simply slapping a Japanese name onto an American character. (The author gave me a copy for review, but I liked it so much I went ahead and bought another copy!)
Lisa_Loves_Literature More than 1 year ago
Although this one actually started off slow for me, and I was unsure if I would like it, it really redeemed itself in the end. I usually love historical fiction like this, especially when it is about certain parts of history that I only know the bare minimum about. To be honest, the only thing I really knew about the Japanese detainment camps during WWII had to do with what I'd learned from one of the characters in the original Karate Kid movie. Yeah, I know, that's sad. I'm sure I learned other things in school, but that is all that stuck with me. The book started out seeming like it was just going to be a pretty simple romance story with some of the historical times that it was set in. But once we got to the point where Taichi got sent to the camp, it really got into what resonated with me. The fact that here in America we would start a camp, and run it, almost as bad as what the Nazi's were doing in Germany, frustrates me. However, the book reminded me about how the press made sure to only cover what made it look like the camps were nice relaxing, fun places. That the truth of the matter wasn't really shown. That kind of detail is so relevant in today's world, when we hear about fake news, and you hear that governments or companies, want to control what is reported. But it wasn't just the Japanese interment camp parts that this book really brought up. There was also the bit that Evalina had to deal with not only as a female, but also as a minority in the country at that time as well. The fact that inter-racial marriage was so illegal at that time, so much more than really ever occurred to me, a very sheltered girl when I was growing up in the suburbs of the 80s. Overall this was a great historical fiction for teens, and I look forward to putting it in my school library for my students to read.
Shopgirl152ny1 More than 1 year ago
This was a wonderful, fascinating story I had a hard time putting down! I didn't know very much about what Japanese-Americans went through during World War II, especially what living in internment camps would have been like. It really opened my eyes to the hardships they endured and how terribly they were treated by the government and sometimes also by other people. It made me angry to see the injustice but fascinated with how Evalina and Taichi dealt with it. I loved these characters! Evalina was a wonderful person, full of passion and principles. I loved how she stood up for what was right, even though sometimes she spoke before she thought. And stubborn! But definitely in a good way. Taichi was such a sweet, respectful guy. I liked his honesty, bravery and how much he cared about people. They really had a lot to overcome and the story kept you guessing whether or not they would make it. There was a little bit about faith such as church is mentioned and Evalina prays at different times for people. The writing is great and I highly recommend this wonderful story! I received this book from JustRead Tours. This is my honest opinion. I was not compensated for this review.
Reading_Bee More than 1 year ago
I enjoy reading Historical Fiction, and WWII has always fascinated me. I appreciated the author bringing to light this lesser-known and heart-wrenching time in American History and dealing with it with a sense of grace and gravity. I liked that we were able to view this time from the perspective of a young, multi-racial couple. Evalina is Italian-American, Taichi is Japanese-American. I think because of that, we were able to see, even more clearly the struggles and prejudices these people were forced to face. I liked Taichi. He was authentic and relatable. Even after being forced from his home and being made to live in terrible conditions, he (and his family) still maintained such a level of dignity and patriotism, and that made me really admire them. I’m glad the author allowed us to read from his POV and get a “first-hand” view of what life really might have been like in the Japanese-American Internment Camps. (Note: I have always admired the Nissei that fought with such distinction in WWII, and I like that the author touched on them just a bit, even if I would have liked to read a bit more... ) For some reason, though, I had a hard time connecting with Evalina. I understand her heartache and that there were so many horrible things happening that she was nearly powerless to change, but I would have liked to see more kindness and sincere trying to influence real change, instead of just anger... Overall, though, this was a really incredible book. I think I read it in about a day. I hope you enjoy it just as much as I did—truly a good read. I think it is so incredibly important that we as Americans take an honest look at our history and learn from it, so we do not repeat the same mistakes as those that went before. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review, and all opinions are my own.
Faye_reviews More than 1 year ago
Haunting and evocative, Within These Lines tells the story of a young American couple separated by war and racism. Evalina Cassano and Taichi Hamasaki's lives are changed forever with the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Taichi and his family are sent away to Manzanar Internment Camp for the duration of the war, while Evalina must remain. Their love for each other is tested by distance, time, and the experiences that they each face. Evalina is passionate and courageous, she doesn't back down when it comes to fighting for the one that she loves. Evalina is definitely determined, and when she sets her mind to something, it usually comes to pass. I admired how she didn't give up, through it all she put her head down and kept going. Taichi has always been his family's "Good Boy" a good student and athlete, he works hard alongside his family on their farm. When he and his family are sent away to Manzanar he questions what his future will hold, and if he can ever overcome the things that he cannot change. Taichi isn't a complainer, but as unrest grows in the camp he must decide where his loyalties lie, and can he stand with a country that won't stand with him? I admired Taichi for his often quiet strength, his protectiveness and stubborn streak. Overall, a compelling glimpse into the impact of the Japanese internment, and how it affected those within and out. A chilling read, that captures the raw emotion of the injustices suffered by many Japanese-Americans. I liked how it showed how we can love a country and not agree with everything it does, and deals with a difficult time in history. This not a popular subject matter, and I thought that the author did an excellent job of showing the varying sentiments within Manzanar and how people dealt with the internment differently. The camp is brought to life in stark, jarring detail, with only flashes of life outside brought to Taichi through letters. I liked how in the impact of the war is shown through Evalina and Taichi's peers, and the choices they make as well. This is a story that quietly grabbed me and didn't let me go till the last page, compelling, haunting, and thought-provoking, a worthy read that you won't want to miss. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and testimonials in Advertising."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In December 1941, Japanese forces bombed Pearl Harbor, officially bringing the United States into World War II. As fear spread through the nation, the U.S. government forced Japanese Americans to leave their homes, jobs, friends, and lives behind and enter internment camps. Set against this historical backdrop of turmoil, fear, and racism, Within These Lines by Stephanie Morrill tells a heart-rending, yet beautiful story of love that perseveres, even when all else is against it. Though Evalina Cassano and Taichi Hamasaki are fictional, their lives pulse with such compelling authenticity that you forget - even if for a moment - they’re characters in a novel and not living,breathing souls. Yet their story of hope in the face of utter darkness and their courage to fight for what is right is inspiring. Even though this story takes place many decades in the past, it rings with timeless truths about the dangers of letting fear dictate our decisions, and reminds us of the value and dignity of all human life. That’s a message as needed today as it was in 1942. This story gripped me from page one. By the time I read the final line, I’d not only learned more about our country’s history - and events that did affect real people - but I was also reminded of the importance of acknowledging the truth of where we’ve been so that we can live justly and love our neighbors. I believe that’s a testament to the power of stories like Within These Lines.
SarahSundin More than 1 year ago
Thought provoking and timely, Within These Lines highlights a dark period in history. Through compelling characters, we see the injustice and feel the fears and doubts and dilemmas. But mostly, we see the shimmering ribbon of hope through Evalina and Taichi’s unrelenting love. Stephanie Morrill has written a novel to ponder, a novel to cherish.
BookwormforKids More than 1 year ago
Written with depth and heart, this is a lovely historical romance which takes a glimpse at one of the uglier times in American history. Evalina likes nothing more than to ride to the market to select fruits and vegetables, and take the orders coming in for her parents' restaurant, but it has more to do with the delivery helper, Taichi, than with the produce. She keeps her heart secret, especially since Japan bombed Pearl Harbor months before, and immigrants and American Japanese are beginning to be taken into custody or made to evacuate their homes. Her concern for Taichi and his family soon proves to be well placed as his family leaves their farm to live with an aunt. They are being watched and scrutinized by neighbors, the government and everyone else. Still, Evalina can't deny what her heart is telling her and is determined to find a way for them both to make it through. The setting engulfs right away into the historical period, allowing the streets, houses and people to come to life as if the reader is stepping into their world. It was easy to sympathize and like Evalina from the very first moment. She's kind, caring, doesn't have an over-bearing personality, and yet, stands for what she knows to be right. It's a fine line for her to walk, and she attempts it with heart-filled grace. Depth is key in these pages, especially in connection with the characters. It's not a fast moving novel and lets the feelings flow, but never grows boring either. It's fascinating to watch the relationship develop and meet the troubles as best as it can. Some more meaningful scenes seemed to skim by too fast, but in general, the plot develops smooth and draws in. It's hard not to cheer for both characters and feel dismayed at the events which unfolded during that time period. Fans of depth, emotion, romance and history will enjoy every page. I received an ARC copy and found it to be a lovely read.
Hannah White More than 1 year ago
Wow, this book. It's hard to put my thoughts into words. This book is one of those books that you finish and kind of sit back and think "wow." It's one of those books that you can't stop thinking about days, weeks, even months after reading. It's one of those books that sticks with you for a very long time to come. Within These Lines tells the story of a young Italian-American woman named Evalina Cassano who falls in love with a Japanese-American, Taichi Hamasaki. Set in the 1940's, the two are facing a lot when they begin seeing each other. But that doesn't stop them, not even when the "evacuation" of the Japanese-Americans places miles between the two of them. This book is a wealth of important historical information. I had no idea about many of the things that took place in this book. I had a vague knowledge of the fact that some sort of Japanese-American concentration camps existed, but that was the extent of my knowledge. This book was an incredible eye opener to me. It's a book that everyone should read, especially Americans, as it's a very important, and often overlooked, piece of our country's history. I think my favorite aspect of this book was Evalina. She was everything I would want to be, should a situation like this arise in my life. She was there for Taichi every step of the way, and she did so many things that I would never in a million dreams find the courage to do. Maybe, if we read enough books with characters like Evalina, we'll find ourselves getting a little bolder and braver as a result. No harm in trying, right? Stephanie Morrill does a phenomenal job of putting us in the time period and making us fall in love with these characters as they fall in love with each other. It's a sad book, yes, but it's also beautiful. I definitely recommend it to YA readers. This is a story you'll walk away from thinking about for a long time to come. I can't wait for Stephanie's next amazing historical novel!
AdrianaGabrielle More than 1 year ago
I don’t even know where to begin with this review. I fell in love with it from page one. This book broke and repaired my heart only to then break it again moments late. It’s a beautiful and moving piece of fiction by Stephanie Morrill. I have to say that I simply adore how this book not only navigated a beautiful, precious and tedious relationship between an Italian-American girl and Japanese-American boy after the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941. A time when racism and injustice against the Japanese living in America occurred. I just loved this story of Evalina and Taichi. Two young people in love in a time where it was illegal in most states for them to be married, a time where they were both at risk because of their relationship but still they pushed through.I was rooting for them the whole book! Just couldn’t put it down because I NEEDED to know what happened next . Looking at the characters I loved Evalina’s heart and passion in this story. Her heart for the injustice inflicted on many people. Her heart for the one she loved and the passion she put into raising awareness for what was going on that so many people were blinded to. Seeing this passion and this heart in Evalina, I found that I related to her very much in that sense as I saw myself in her. This book is an absolutely amazing piece of fiction you should not skip out on getting for yourself.
Elizabeth Houseman More than 1 year ago
From the very start, I knew that "Within These Lines" was going to be good. Love is difficult enough as it is, but these (incredible) characters also had to fight through the hatred of society and the pain of war. The plot was strong and kept me hooked. The 1940s setting was vivid and the characters were lovable in so many ways. With truth and wisdom weaved throughout, Morrill tells a story that shows us how to fight for love. Morrill’s book was touching, but it was educating, too. I’ve never had historical fiction teach me so much and make me want to learn more about the subject. Simply put, the content of this book is important. Topics like these (interracial love, the darker side of American history, race, etc.) deserve to be covered more often with the care and respect Morrill used when writing this book. I’m so glad that I was able to read this novel through a review copy, and I’m excited for the rest of the world to get to read it, too! I would absolutely recommend "Within These Lines" to anyone interested in romance, YA, and/or historical fiction.
tealovingbookworm More than 1 year ago
Stephanie Morrill has written a novel based on real life events that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. This well-researched book confronts the hidden atrocities that Japanese-Americans faced during WWII. While media and politicians were assuring the nation that the Japanese-Americans were being evacuated to internment camps for their own safety, we learn the truth about the sometimes abhorrent conditions in which they were forced to live. The story centers around Evalina, a young Italian-American, and her secret relationship with Taichi, a young Japanese-American who is forced to leave his home and live in the compound at Manzanar, California. Evalina is a very strong-willed, outspoken young woman and we experience her journey as she seeks to claim Taichi and his family’s freedom. Taichi is fearful of the effects of an interracial marriage and does his best to try to protect her as best he can. I found this book very thought-provoking and heart-wrenching at times, but a book I would highly recommend. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blink YA Books through Net Galley and was under no obligation to post a positive review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Though written for the young adult audience, this book holds appeal for adults as well, and that made it a great read-aloud for our family. The two characters are in somewhat of a Romeo & Juliet story, living in a time when interracial marriages are already unacceptable, and now the Japanese are looked down upon because of Pearl Harbor. These strong characters stand up and support each other through the hardships of the era. Taichi tries to shelter Evalina from the realities of life in the camp, which the author paints well, but lightens it up a bit so as not to be overly graphic for young readers. The book is about a relationship, but it's also an educational story about this blot on US history.
GNadig More than 1 year ago
This was such a good book! I loved both of the protagonists, and only wish I could've seen more of them (especially together). Highlights: -Characters. Love these precious cinnamon rolls. 'Nuff said. -Time period--I don't know a lot about what went on at home during WWII, so I appreciated this alternative look at this difficult time in history. -All the emotion. Normally, I'm not a fan of strong emotion, but this book did it just right. Loved it. Lowlights: -I really wanted to see the story of how Taichi and Evalina fell in love in the first place. We only saw snatches of it in flashbacks, which made me sad. In other words, more Evalina and Taichi!!! -The plot wasn't what I was expecting (but this could just be because I'm not super familiar with the genre.) I kept looking for a clear rising action, climax, and falling action, but it wasn't as clean cut as I expected. -The ending felt a wee bit rushed (not enough winding down from such a build-up). Also, I would've liked to see more of what happened between the ending and the epilogue. GIVE ME MORE TAICHI AND EVALINA. Ahem...please? 4.5 stars! Recommended for ages 13 and up. Content warnings: Sexual: light kisses, not described. One character has a miscarriage out of wedlock before the story, and it is mentioned a few times. Language: Racial slurs are used against characters of Japanese descent. Violence: The Japanese Americans are often targets of attacks--both from Caucasians and Japanese loyalists. Several violent incidents occur on page, but none are graphic.
Anonymous 27 days ago
In spite of having read various books detailing the U.S. involvement in the Pacific & European theatres during WWII, I was not aware of the horrendous treatment of the Japanese Americans in our country at that time. Ms. Morrill is able to combine the facts with a romantic story line and thereby create an entertaining yet educational account of the pain the Japanese Americans suffered during that unfortunate event.