Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet; image taken from Amazon.com

Not all love stories turn out the way they should.  But, that does not make them any less of a love story.  That is undercurrent that runs through the novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, by Jamie Ford.

This touching story is set during one of America’s darkest periods, one that many Americans know little about.  After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, thousands of West Coast Japanese (many of them American citizens) were shipped inland to internment camps.

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, Not Your Classic Love Story

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet takes its cue just before the roundups occurred.  Henry Lee, our protagonist, is a Chinese American attending a Caucasian school where he meets his first love, Keiko Okabe – a young Japanese girl.  Through their ostracism and friendship, a strong love develops between them just before her family is shipped to an internment camp.

Like many other Japanese Americans, Keiko’s family stored their precious objects at the Panama Hotel before leaving.  And when, years later, Henry witnesses the excavation of these artifacts it drags up more than physical objects.  He searches through the items looking for memories of his first love.

This novel may not have all the classic elements of a love story, but it becomes one nonetheless.  And, it is likely to shave you hooked from the first page to the last, ending with a wish for more.

As the story of the Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet progresses, we learn of the desperate gestures made by a young Henry Lee for his love.  If you are interested in learning more about the roots of this story, take a look at the short video interview with the author below.  You can pick up a copy of this touching love story from Amazon.

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