Author Event: Katie Yamasaki Reads Fish For Jimmy at DCHM


Until May 27th, visitors to the New-York Historical Society can experience the WWII & NYC exhibition that has taken over most of the Museum’s main floor. The exhibition explores the experiences of New Yorkers of all different backgrounds during the war. In honor of this exhibition, Katie Yamasaki will read from her beautifully written and illustrated bookFish for Jimmy: Inspired by One Family’s Experience in a Japanese American Internment Camp, on May 18th at 1 pm. The event will be free with Museum admission.

As a preview to her event, Ms. Yamasaki answered our History Detectives author questions We hope you enjoy the interview and that you come to hear her read, see photos of her family, and get your book signed on May 18th!

DiMenna Children’s History Museum: What were you like between the ages of 9 and 12?

Katie Yamasaki: Between the ages of 9 and 12 I was very busy and very athletic! I loved to do gymnastics and play soccer at that time. I also loved drawing and paper maché sculpture at school. I was with friends from my neighborhood and my cousins most days after school and every weekend. If I could describe myself with one word, it would be active!

DCHM: What is your favorite time period in American history?  Why?

KY: My favorite time period in American history is probably the 60’s- I am very inspired by all of the social and political resistance movements that were happening at that time.

DCHM: What is your favorite place in New York City?  Why?

KY: My favorite place in NYC is probably the middle of the Brooklyn Bridge, Jacob Riis Beach or Brooklyn Bridge Park. I also love the front steps of the Brooklyn Museum. I love all of those places because they always feel  like you are surrounded by lots of breezy, fresh air and people who are taking a moment away from their busy lives to enjoy some open space. The fountain in front of the [Brooklyn] Museum is a very joyful place as well with kids splashing and playing all summer long. That brings many people joy.

DCHM: What made you want to write Fish for Jimmy?

KY: For as long as I can remember, I felt that there needed to be more stories about the Japanese Internment. I grew up knowing that it happened, and knowing that it happened to my family. That said, I never had a teacher from kindergarten-12th grade who even acknowledged that it happened. I feel that Fish for Jimmy needed to be told, not only to share an underreported part of history, but also to make connections between violations to our civil liberties of the past with those of the present. I also wanted to tell a story that shows the courage and resilience of children during times of war.

DCHM: What three words best describe Fish for Jimmy?

KY: Honest, Suspenseful, Family

If you have any questions about this program, email familyprograms@nyhistory.org. See you there!


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