Discover Nikkei

https://www.discovernikkei.org/en/journal/series/nihongo-papers/

The Nihongo Papers


Sept. 14, 2007 - Aug. 8, 2008

Award-winning author Naomi Hirahara presents a bioterrorism thriller that involves characters that span generations and continents, strawberries, and a mystery that unfolds to reveal dark family secrets.

Read Chapter One



Stories from this series

Thumbnail for Chapter 12
en
ja
es
pt
Chapter 12

Aug. 8, 2008 • Naomi Hirahara

Chapter 11 >>Carlos Yamashita’s favorite Japanese superhero was Kikaider. Half blue and half red, Kikaider was a humanoid robot created to save the world from a mad scientist, Professor Gill. Carlos regularly watched old Japanese Kikaider live-action programs broadcast on cable in Paraguay. One of his friends also brought back manga and cartoons of Kikaider from his family’s summer trips to Japan. They spent hours eating rice crackers and talking about the various cartoon panels that had the best action. …

Thumbnail for Chapter 11
en
ja
es
pt
Chapter 11

July 11, 2008 • Naomi Hirahara

Chapter 10 >>Saburo Shishido looked up at the house. Although vacant, it was still standing. A Victorian, the house was designed by one of the preeminent architects in Watsonville. He and Itsuko had stayed in the round room after they got married. The union had been arranged by their parents back in Wakayama. Itsuko’s parents had done well in America and had returned to Japan, but Itsuko wanted to stay behind in their beautiful house. Her favorite room was the …

Thumbnail for Chapter 10
en
ja
es
pt
Chapter 10

June 13, 2008 • Naomi Hirahara

Chapter 9 >>Jorge Yamashita was in a state of shock. His sweaty hands almost slipped from the steering wheel. Beside him in the passenger seat was his ten-year-old son, Carlos. Behind them sat his late wife’s grandfather, Bisabuelo, and Greg Shishido, the son of Jorge’s boss, gagged and bound with gray duct tape. Pressed against Greg’s stomach was a gun held by Bisabuelo. “Abuelito, do you have to have that thing in the truck?” Jorge said in Spanish, nervously checking …

Thumbnail for Chapter 9
en
ja
es
pt
Chapter 9

May 9, 2008 • Naomi Hirahara

Chapter 8 >>“Where is my husband?” Sayuri Shishido repeated, pressing the broken china underneath the woman’s chin. The Asian woman actually must have been a little older than she looked, based on the lines around her neck. She was toned and sinewy, an athlete. Sayuri was more of an academic couch potato, but she had a wife’s anger on her side. “I don’t—” The woman began to choke, and Sayuri pulled the china back a little but kept a firm …

Thumbnail for Chapter 8
en
ja
es
pt
Chapter 8

April 11, 2008 • Naomi Hirahara

Chapter 7 >>Greg Shishido slowly awoke. His head first felt like it was filled with cotton balls, and then bang—searing pain, lightning bolts shooting through his brain. He cursed in the darkness, perhaps too loudly because a cool, bony hand quickly covered his mouth. His eyes adjusted to the low light. Peering into his face was an old Nikkei man, his head completely bald. He was so gaunt that his cheeks were sunken in, a skeleton man. Where was he? …

Thumbnail for Chapter 7
en
ja
es
pt
Chapter 7

March 14, 2008 • Naomi Hirahara

Chapter 6 >> The door opened, allowing a sliver of sunrise to temporarily blind the boy holding a gun in the corner of the Oxnard hotel room. The boy, Carlos Yamashita, squinted and aimed at the silhouette of a thin man in the doorway. Carlos was ready to shoot when the man tumbled forward and collapsed onto the frayed rug. He stayed down and a few seconds later, Carlos could hear the squeak of Bisabuelo’s wheelchair. “Boy, put that down,” …

We’re looking for stories like yours! Submit your article, essay, fiction, or poetry to be included in our archive of global Nikkei stories. Learn More
New Site Design See exciting new changes to Discover Nikkei. Find out what’s new and what’s coming soon! Learn More
Author in This Series

Naomi Hirahara is the author of the Edgar Award-winning Mas Arai mystery series, which features a Kibei Nisei gardener and atomic-bomb survivor who solves crimes, Officer Ellie Rush series, and now the new Leilani Santiago mysteries. A former editor of The Rafu Shimpo, she has written a number of nonfiction books on the Japanese American experience and several 12-part serials for Discover Nikkei.

Updated October 2019

Discover Nikkei Updates

NIKKEI CHRONICLES #13
Nikkei Names 2: Grace, Graça, Graciela, Megumi?
What’s in a name? Share the story of your name with our community. Submissions now open!
NIMA VOICES
Episode 16
June 25 (US) | June 26 (Japan)
Featured Nima:
Stan Kirk
Guest Host:
Yoko Murakawa
PROJECT UPDATES
NEW SITE DESIGN
See exciting new changes to Discover Nikkei. Find out what’s new and what’s coming soon!