When Spencer Fujii's grandparents arrived in Hawaii at the turn of the century, they brought Japanese customs with them. Five decades later, those traditional expectations still shape the lives of the Fujii family. Spencer, the child of first generation Japanese-American (Nisei) sugarcane plantation workers, is the middle son of this exquisite first novel. He is haunted by the sacrifice of Taizo, not only Spencer's big brother but his hero, who kept the tradition all too faithfully. While the Japanese traditions of responsibility, acceptance, and sacrifice form the structural backbone of this remarkable novel, it is the delicate evocation of Spencer's family life, his childhood days with the much-loved Taizo, and the beauty of his final communion with his mother that displays Deborah Iida's enormous talent. "Deborah Iida's fine writing and her wonderful ear opened the window on the world of Japanese Americans in Hawaii, a world that captured this reader."--Abraham Verghese, author of MY OWN COUNTRTY; "A small gem."--Kirkus Reveiws; "Resonant. A tender tale of secrecy and obligation, introducing us to a Hawaii the tourists never see."--Glamour.