Book Review: Kiku Hughes's _Displacement_

Book Review: Kiku Hughes’s Displacement

by Gina & Renn

(This joint review is pretty short, since we chatted with Displacement author Kiku Hughes on the Books Between Sessions podcast. Listen on Stitcher or watch the video on YouTube!)

In Displacement, Kiku Hughes explores her Japanese-American grandmother’s experience in World War II internment camps. In the tradition of Octavia Butler’s classic Kindred, Kiku is swept into the past without warning and forced into the harsh conditions of the camps. She tries to speak with her grandmother and in the process makes several friends and witnesses history unfolding behind barbed wire. In contrast to Kindred, where the horror of past enslavement has been distilled into everyday racism in the present, Kiku’s present during the height of the Trump administration offers a frighteningly close parallel to the past, with exclusion- and detainment-based immigration policy. The threat of modern-day internment camps looms closer than many would like to believe. Even now that we have a new administration, Displacement reminds us that must always be aware of places toxic nationalism can fester into widespread injustice.