Lois Sepahban

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux | Release date: January 5, 2016 | ISBN: 978-0374302160
Genre: Middle Grade Historical Fiction

A moving debut novel about a girl whose family is relocated to a Japanese internment camp during World War II--and the dog she has to leave behind.

Ten-year-old Manami did not realize how peaceful her family's life on Bainbridge Island was until the day it all changed. It's 1942, after the attack on Pearl Harbor, and Manami and her family are Japanese American, which means that the government says they must leave their home by the sea and join other Japanese Americans at a prison camp in the desert. Manami is sad to go, but even worse is that they are going to have to give her dog, Yujiin, to a neighbor to take care of. Manami decides to sneak Yujiin under her coat, but she is caught and forced to abandon him. She is devastated but clings to the hope that somehow Yujiin will find his way to the camp and make her family whole again. It isn't until she finds a way to let go of her guilt that Manami can accept all that has happened to her family.


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Lois Sepahban grew up in central California. Her family moved around a lot, but during her early years she lived in the Tehachapi mountains that form the southeastern boundary of California's Central Valley. She spent her childhood climbing trees, reading books, and creating maps and leading her brother and sister on hunts for buried treasures. On all of her adventures she was accompanied by her dog, Strider, an Australian shepherd, who walked her to the bus stop every morning and then met her there to walk home at the end of the day.
Today, she is married and has two children. She lives on a small farm where she has a barn that she fills with animals who need homes. She has dogs, cats, and the sweetest chickens in the world!

If you’re interested in school, library, or bookstore visits, Lois is located in Kentucky.
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“This historical debut speaks volumes of love and longing.”
—Kirkus Reviews