Go by Kazuki Kaneshiro
Updated: Feb 14
Summary: Sugihara is a Zainichi - born and raised in Japan, but holding Korean nationality. As he finds his way through high school, romance, and friendships, Sugihara has to come to terms with his identity.
Review: This has been sitting on my Kindle for quite a while because...well, I'm not a huge fan of ebooks. (Gimme them fat stacks of paper!...Sorry trees.) In fact, my Kindle has been dead for the past two months. But, I finally charged it up and opened this.
Coming of age stories don't usually appeal to me because they all seem the same: angsty teen with raging hormones who is only interested in hating their parents, having sex, or both. This was no exception. Add in the obscene amount of physical violence and bullying coming from peers and adults alike, and this story was definitely not my cup of tea. (If you hate them so much then why did you download it? I don't know, that's a question for several-month-ago me.)
The part I did like was the glimpse into a culture I knew nothing about. Sure I knew that the Japanese, Chinese, and Koreans tend to not get along, but the Zainichi was a whole new side I had never heard before. Go featured an interesting insight into the discrimination that most Koreans who live in Japan face.
While Sugihara suffered from many of the issues all teenagers whine about, his were coupled with the oppression of his heritage and made life that much more difficult. Even being hassled by police became more dangerous with laws regarding Zainichi as foreigners with alien registrations. (Reminds you a lot of how many immigrants are being treated on the other side of the world. *Cough* 'Murica.)
Even though most of the story made me never want to visit Japan, I learned more about the culture which made it worth the read.