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Eyes Behind Belligerence

4.1  ·  Rating details ·  29 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
Told in five parts, this novel unravels the challenges between two unlikely Nisei friends, Jim and Russell, into adulthood during the Second World War. As restrictions are imposed, (even in the safe, rural community of Bainbridge Island,) as harassments escalate, (including the F.B.I. invading their homes and deporting their fathers to Montana for espionage trials,) the fa ...more
Kindle Edition
Published March 3rd 2012 (first published November 14th 2011)
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Robin Levin
Oct 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Eyes Behind Belligerence, by K.P. Kollenborn is a rich and fascinating fictional account of the experience of Japanese Americans in the internment camps during World War Two.
Kollenborn follows two main characters and their families throughout the war and its aftermath. At the start of the war, Jim Yoshimura and Russell Hamaguchi (AKA Goro) are Nisei high school students living in Winslow, on the island of Bainbridge off of Washington state. Jim is quiet, intellectual and introverted. Four years
Lilian Gafni
Oct 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Story of Betrayal and Hope

This story tells the drama of American-Japanese citizens interned in a concentration camp during WWII for the only reason that they were of Japanese descent.

"Even God took the seventh day off at least once!" is a quote early in the book where Jim Yoshimura, one of the characters complains of having to do Sunday chores. Here was an all American young boy growing up and listening to The Jack Benny Show on the radio, going to school and worried about not having a girlfri
May 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my review. This is a great book! I like historical fiction, and this story is done extremely well. The characters are believable and the historical events are accurate. The story is very well written. I just cannot say enough about this book!
The book starts off with "Characters & Terminologies," a list that includes proper pronunciations which I really found useful. The story is broken down into five parts, each part consisting of
Aug 31, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I won this book on Goodreads and I enjoyed it very much. It was a long story but very believable and informative. I grew up in Europe and knew people and relatives who lived through concentration camps and Totaleinsatz, so I am very familiar with the damage WWII did to Europe, the fight of Germany with other European countries. Unfortunately our history classes only covered the basic facts about the involvement of the USA and Japan. I never thought about how Japanese people living outside of Jap ...more
Apr 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Eyes Behind Belligerence by K.P. Kollenborn is a fictional and lengthy novel of what life was like being Japanese in America just prior to and after the Bombing of Pearl Harbor during WWII. Although the author makes it clear this is a work of fiction many of the facts and events are historically accurate.

The book starts off with a list of "Characters & Terminologies" that include pronunciations which I really found helpful with understand the book and then the story is broken down into five
K.P. Kollenborn
May 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Although I studied history in college, I didn't focus on the events of WWII. I had classes on it, but they never showed what it was like for the Japanese and Japanese-Americans in America during that period. Eyes Behind Belligerence allows the reader to get a glimpse of the what it was like for the Japanese in the internment camps through the eyes of Russell and Jim, two high school aged boys struggling to find their place in America and the Japanese culture.

The book deals with tough questions,
Sarah Crawford
Jan 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a rather long e-book that covers the lives of a couple specific families during their stay in Manzanar. The story covers their lives before they ended up in the camp, their lives during their time in the camp and a little afterwards.
The two main characters are Jim and Russell. Jim is not a nice person and once in the camp his attitude grows really, really bad. Russell and he don't get along but at least Russell is a nicer person. Basically the story covers the various things that happen
May 31, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I won this as a First Reads giveaway.

I came as close to finishing this as I could. I got to page 300 and ended up skimming the rest. Before I get to why I did not finish this book completely, I will write about what I liked.

This book takes place during World War 2 after the events of Pearl Harbor. It follows the story of Japanese American families put into internment camps. The main characters are Russell Hamaguchi and Jim Yoshimura. The cover of the book has the words: war, racism, internment c
Ruth Francisco
Apr 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In a world of fast food, time management, speed dating, and flash fiction, it is nearly miraculous when an author is willing to do years of research, throw herself into the horrors of the past, and create real characters that live and breathe that era. The best historical fiction reveals unknown truths from the past, while at the same time delivering social or historical commentary that reflects issues relevant to our own time. This kind of writing is difficult. It takes time. It demands your so ...more
Jun 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I won this as part of a Goodreads FirstReads giveaway.
The story of two families as told through their teenage sons and the hardships and discrimination they endured during WWII for being Japanese-American. I really liked this story. I don't know much about the history of the camps in US during that time. I found this book informative. The characters were very easy to like and the struggles of dealing with not just being a teenager, but dealing with the emotions behind feeling like the world is a
Kersten Kelly
May 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great historical novel regarding the time of World War II. The author tells the story through the eyes of two families regarding their involvement with the internment camp. The author builds many of the characters up so that the reader can truly understand the context of the story, the hardships that they faced, and the difficult decisions that they were forced to make during this time. The story incorporates racism and loyalty toward two countries. It is a great read especially if you ...more
Elaine Orr
Sep 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Compelling story of two Japanese American families and their experience in an internment camp during World War II. Thorough research is evident, but the story does not read like a simple rendition of history. Characters handle the bigotry and captivity differently, and there is a lot for a reader to discover. See my full review on the web site of Self Publishing Review.
Aimee Jodoin
After the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, over one hundred thousand Japanese-Americans were forced to leave their homes and were relocated to internment camps scattered across the American west. Centering on two families with differing loyalties, this historical novel traces the events and relationships of a community of Japanese-Americans in the context of WWII racism, from the day of the attack on Pearl Harbor through the three years they spent in the Manzanar internment camp, as well as the ...more
K.P. Kollenborn
Dec 18, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  (Review from the author)
'Eyes Behind Belligerence' has a nice flow of weaving personal and social struggles. Although it centers around a developing friendship, the two boys' families and non-family members enrich the development of many stories which, in turn, enrich the lives of the two main characters.

Part One begins with the suicide of Jim's older brother. Nearly four years later, Jim continues to suffer, isolating himself and blaming his father. Russell is his opposite. Out-going and idealistic, he is the All-Amer
I received this book as a First Reads Giveaway.

I will admit I went into this book not knowing what to expect. While the other reviewers either loved it or hated it, they agreed that the story was good, but grammar and writing issues were present. After finishing the book, I would completely agree. The story starts out very slow, but ends very well. There are quite a few editing and grammar issues which did influence my opinion of the book. Normally when I come across a typo or something in the b
I received a copy of this book from the author, with a request for review.

I have little patience with books that are poorly written and full of errors. I can tolerate a few here and there, but the errors in this book seem to get worse as the story progresses. It's as if someone got tired of proofreading after the first couple of chapters and decided it wasn't necessary to even try with the rest of the book. The more I read, the more difficult it was to differentiate between errors and what the a
Jul 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. I loved the way it went back and forth through other main characters. This book is not only about the war between America and Japan, but also about the war within the Japanese Culture, causing Racism among themselves. Japanese & Japanese-Americans struggled with who they should be loyal to, causing the Japanese born people to scream disloyalty to the Japanese Americans and therefore were killed in the name of Treason in their own villages. After the war had gone o ...more
May 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing,I couldnt put this book down. Ms Kollenborn did a tremendous job in researching her book,with showing of old Japanese customs, historical events and the internment camps. I felt what it was like to be in that camp. Her two main characters Jim and Russell(Goro)Japanese-Americans are believable and with their parents who are much old school Japanese and extended families, you know that, what Ms Kollenborn has written could be considered a bit of a historical novel. So enjoyed the interacti ...more
Aug 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing. While you may learn about this in history in just a 56 minute passing, you really have no idea what actually happened.
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Even though I am from Kansas, I enjoy venturing into other worlds from around the globe which is why my writing focuses on diversity. With fluid accessibility to modern media and traveling opportunities, my Midwestern world can expand and explore beyond my own backyard. In addition to studying cultures, I take pleasure in studying history. Submitting to a moment in time allows us to remember, or t ...more
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