Customer Reviews for

The Buddha in the Attic

Average Rating 3.5
( 164 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(45)

4 Star

(41)

3 Star

(34)

2 Star

(25)

1 Star

(19)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

Most Helpful Favorable Review

11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

Poetic.

Julie Otsuka writes beautifully. While other reviewers didn't like the "we" voice she used, and thought there should have been a main character, I kind of disagree. I think using multiple perspectives was more suitable for the story because she wrote the book on behal...
Julie Otsuka writes beautifully. While other reviewers didn't like the "we" voice she used, and thought there should have been a main character, I kind of disagree. I think using multiple perspectives was more suitable for the story because she wrote the book on behalf of an entire generation of Japanese women. This was a good, quick read filled with poetic language and stories that were both fascinating and tragic. I really enjoyed it.

posted by BabyHouseman87 on December 10, 2011

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

No real characters in this book!

If you like to read books that don't develop any real characters and distorts history this is the book for you. I wanted to like this book, but I couldn't connect with any of the non-existing characters. I gave it one star because I have read books that are worse. Th...
If you like to read books that don't develop any real characters and distorts history this is the book for you. I wanted to like this book, but I couldn't connect with any of the non-existing characters. I gave it one star because I have read books that are worse. This was a terrible short read. There was no centralized theme, or overall plot. The men in the story were made out to be villains. I kept waiting for this story to begin, it was depressing and negative in my opinion. I want the hours of my life back that I wasted on this.

posted by ZeeLeeDeeGee on October 17, 2011

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 164 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 9
  • Posted December 14, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    There Are Stories We Tell Ourselves and Then There is the Truth

    When I think of my Italian grandmother immigrating to the U.S. in 1916, I'd be fooling myself to imagine a cheerful scenario of twinkling red and green lights and steaming trays of homemade lasagna served on a white lace tablecloth. The truth, with its elements of hunger, poverty and alleged domestic abuse, is a much darker story. And yet she immigrated hoping for a better life than the one she was leaving behind.

    The mail-order brides in Julie Otsuka's Buddha in the Attic cross the ocean hoping for a better fate than the "farm wife" lives they are destined to lead in Japan. Their dreams of handsome husbands and affluent lives dissolve the moment they set foot in America.

    In the collective voice of a generation, Otsuka tells of the the disappointment, despair and brutality that awaits so many of these women. Those who are defiant and determined often end up victimized in other ways. Many grit their teeth and soldier on to bring forth children whose "Americanization" is heartbreakingly depicted.

    This small book isn't emotionally easy, but thanks to Otsuka's blistering, unsentimental prose, it's compulsively readable. Much of it is sad and shocking. But it will make you grateful for those who came before and had the courage to live their lives allowing us opportunities and an existence they could only dream of.

    11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 10, 2011

    Poetic.

    Julie Otsuka writes beautifully. While other reviewers didn't like the "we" voice she used, and thought there should have been a main character, I kind of disagree. I think using multiple perspectives was more suitable for the story because she wrote the book on behalf of an entire generation of Japanese women. This was a good, quick read filled with poetic language and stories that were both fascinating and tragic. I really enjoyed it.

    11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 28, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Fast read

    I enjoyed reading this book. The story was interesting, fun, and unpredictable! I highly recommend this book and this author! I cant wait to read more from her.

    10 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 26, 2011

    Good Quick Read

    at only 101 pages it's a quick read but I loved every minute of it! I recommend this book.

    7 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 17, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    No real characters in this book!

    If you like to read books that don't develop any real characters and distorts history this is the book for you. I wanted to like this book, but I couldn't connect with any of the non-existing characters. I gave it one star because I have read books that are worse. This was a terrible short read. There was no centralized theme, or overall plot. The men in the story were made out to be villains. I kept waiting for this story to begin, it was depressing and negative in my opinion. I want the hours of my life back that I wasted on this.

    5 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2011

    Historical Fiction

    Informative...mail order brides from Japan end up living like slaves. Very tedious reading. Couldn't wait to get it over with. Accounts of many women and their lives in America before and after WWII.

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2011

    Highly recommend!

    This book was not only very interesting, but a history lesson...GREAT, short read!

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 13, 2011

    would not recommend

    The story line was a collective pool of story's all put together. There were no main characters. I didn't feel the era come through the writing and I was disappointed with the abrupt end. With that said, I did found it interesting but would not recommend it.

    3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 13, 2011

    I hate to say I was disappointed

    I had high hopes for this book, but the gimmicky writing wore on me. By the time I got to the end, I was glad it was over. It had glimpses of brilliance, but the lack of continuity killed it.

    3 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 12, 2011

    Not so good

    I did not like this book. It is too repetitive and the writing style gets monotonous after a few pages so my mind would drift elsewhere. I stopped reading halfway through. I enjoyed the author's prior book but not this one.

    3 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 4, 2011

    Great Read!

    Thought provoking. Simple read but so interesting it was hard to put down.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2011

    Not what i expected

    I had high hopes for this story from the beginning. I was intrigued by the Japenese women's journey to America by boat and what it was like to meet the husbands they traveled all that way for for the first time. From there, it was all downhill. There are no characters or plot. The writing style was one long run-on sentence. There was not even a conclusion. The book just abruptly ends. There were some interesting moments, but overall I would not recommend it.

    2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2011

    One of the worst books that I have read. Based on this book, I would not read another book by this offer. I cannot reecommend this book for any avid reader.

    Sentences were repeated so much that you skipped over much of the content. I found no real story and finally quit reading.

    2 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 13, 2011

    Highly recommended

    Using a poetic voice the author tells an "everywoman" story spanning the multiple experiences of young Japanese women who hoped to find a new life, something better in California. It is useful to be aware that this was just one "tribe's" story from the female point of view as American Immigrants. This would be a good introduction to that embarrassing period of US history when people were judged by racial/heritage origins. It should be a basis for discussions in classrooms and bookclubs today-it still happens.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2011

    Don't bother...

    If you've read When the Emperor was Divine don't bother with this. It's the same thing.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2012

    Quite boring

    The author chose to tell the story of Japanese immigrants to the USA in a style that is so impersonal. There is no one main story or character and as a result the style is very repetitive and tiresome. I loved her first book "The Emperor Was Divine" and was very disappointed from this one.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2012

    Fasinating Historical Fiction

    This book is written in a group first person. What is happening to one character is happening to all. The Buddha is a history spanning many years and tells of the Japanese abuse of their own as well as American abuse during the Second world War.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2011

    Too impersonal

    I found this hard to really latch onto as there is no main character but more of a conglamorate of thousands of people. Just not my writing preference I suppose.

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 30, 2011

    Great story reporting history as it was!

    As I read this I felt as if I were there watching it happen. Utterly baffling how they were/are treated.
    As women, they were not respected. As humans, they were slave labor.
    It would be good read for men to help them understand themselves and their female friends.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 23, 2011

    Okay but not great

    Good easy read but already forgot the plot

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 164 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 9