Stuff contributed by gasagasagirl

As You Like It

Chapter Eight—Turning Japanese

Naomi Hirahara

It takes Gen some time to calm Tom down. After all, I, his enemy, have taken over his grill. It doesn’t matter whether you are from Hiroshima, Japan, or Harlem, New York City. No chef should invade another chef’s cooking space, even if it’s outdoors in the ...

As You Like It

Chapter Seven—Food Fight

Naomi Hirahara

After I was used by Morgan Taketa, I stay in my bed of Amazon packaging and bubble wrap for almost two weeks straight. Unfortunately for my roommate Risa, whose Manhattan apartment I’m staying in, my bed is in the middle of her studio. Risa is the most kind-hearted person ...

Nikkei Oshogatsu Stories 2017 - Part 1

Naomi HiraharaLaura Honda-Hasegawa

In our January e-newsletter, Discover Nikkei put out a call for Oshogatsu stories. We asked our Nikkei readers from around the world to show us, through photos and words, how they welcomed the New Year. We received several stories written in English, Japanese, and Portuguese. One story, by Justin Inahara ...

As You Like It

Chapter Six—“We Believe in America”

Naomi Hirahara

We are sitting in a restaurant in Battery Park, which is on the south side of the island of Manhattan.

As You Like It

Chapter Five—Death by Yelp

Naomi Hirahara

“This was just amazing.” Morgan Taketa says after wiping his lips with a cloth napkin that was hand-sewn by my best friend, Risa. He still has a bit of brown okonomiyaki sauce in the corner of his mouth, but I am not going to say anything. Morgan the banker can ...

As You Like It

Chapter Four—Deep Like the Rivers

Naomi Hirahara

Deep’s Butcher Shop in East Harlem is nothing like the ones I’ve seen in other parts of New York City. Yes, there’s a large refrigerated case of meats, but the walls, for the most part, have cases of books. And not cookbooks, but books of poetry and ...

As You Like It

Chapter Three—The Perfect Cut

Naomi Hirahara

My feet are swollen and sore, and it’s all because of pork belly. In Japan we had a special distributor which brought our okonomiyaki restaurant fresh cuts two times a week. They were sliced thin like American bacon with just the right amount of marbling. The slices cooked perfectly ...

As You Like It

Chapter Two—Trade Secrets

Naomi Hirahara

A-ra, I think, struggling to turn off the hot water shower faucet. My uncle. The last person in the whole wide world that I want to talk to.

As You Like It

Chapter One—Throwaway Girls

Naomi Hirahara

“I guess we are throwaway girls,” Risa says, helping me to unpack one of my boxes. I do not know why it is taking her so long. That box has my special okonomiyaki cooking tools—my extra shiny and sharp spatulas, my special knives to slice cabbage extra thin. It ...

Death of an Origamist

Chapter Twelve—Waiting Room

Naomi Hirahara

“Okay, the grace period is over.”

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About

Naomi Hirahara is the Edgar Award-winning author of two mystery series set in Los Angeles. Her Mas Arai series, which features a Hiroshima survivor and gardener, has been translated into Japanese, Korean and French. Her first Mas Arai novel, SUMMER OF THE BIG BACHI, is currently being developed into an independent film. A former editor of The Rafu Shimpo newspaper and curator of historical exhibitions, she has also published noir short stories, middle-grade fiction and nonfiction books, including TERMINAL ISLAND: LOST COMMUNITIES OF LOS ANGELES and two biographies for the Japanese American National Museum, including AN AMERICAN SON: THE STORY OF GEORGE ARATANI, FOUNDER OF MIKASA AND KENWOOD. Co-written with Heather Lindquist, a book on the struggles of Japanese Americans after being released from Manzanar concentration camp (LIFE AFTER MANZANAR) was published by Heyday Books in 2018. Her seventh and final Mas Arai mystery, HIROSHIMA BOY, was released the same year. Set to be released in September 2019, her new mystery, ICED IN PARADISE, will follow the adventures of Leilani Santiago, who operates her family’s shave ice business in Kaua’i. She received her bachelor’s degree in international relations from Stanford University.

Nikkei interests

  • community history
  • family stories
  • festival/matsuri
  • Japanese/Nikkei food
  • Japantowns
  • language

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