Bridge Of Scarlet Leaves: Book summary and reviews of Bridge Of Scarlet Leaves by Kristina McMorris

Bridge Of Scarlet Leaves

By Kristina McMorris

Bridge Of Scarlet Leaves
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' rating:

  • Published in USA  Mar 2012,
    352 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this book

Book Summary

Los Angeles, 1941. Violinist Maddie Kern's life seemed destined to unfold with the predictable elegance of a Bach concerto. Then she fell in love with Lane Moritomo. Her brother's best friend, Lane is the handsome, ambitious son of Japanese immigrants. Maddie was prepared for disapproval from their families, but when Pearl Harbor is bombed the day after she and Lane elope, the full force of their decision becomes apparent. In the eyes of a fearful nation, Lane is no longer just an outsider, but an enemy.

When her husband is interned at a war relocation camp, Maddie follows, sacrificing her Juilliard ambitions. Behind barbed wire, tension simmers and the line between patriot and traitor blurs. As Maddie strives for the hard-won acceptance of her new family, Lane risks everything to prove his allegiance to America, at tremendous cost.

Skillfully capturing one of the most controversial episodes in recent American history, Kristina McMorris draws readers into a novel filled with triumphs and heartbreaking loss - an authentic, moving testament to love, forgiveness, and the enduring music of the human spirit.

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!

Some of the recent comments posted about Bridge Of Scarlet Leaves. Join the discussion! You can see the full discussion here.

At what point in the story do you believe Lane and Maddie's relationship truly became love?
I believe it was at the beach when Lane told her that his parents had arranged a marriage for him, and then he asked Maddie to marry him. When she thought she might be losing Lane. She had snuck notes into his pockets plenty of times conveying her ... - lucyb

Did your impression of Kumiko change once she revealed her past? Have you ever encountered a similar situation in which a discovery altered your perspective of a person?
Yes it did. I believe that everyone has something going on in their life that is not visible to others. Until we truly know a person and their background or situations are made known, we might view them differently, sometime better, sometimes worse... - lucyb

Did your impression of Kumiko change once she revealed her past? Have you ever encountered a similar situation in which a discovery altered your perspective of a person?
I agree wholeheartedly with the others who have responded that I felt much more positively toward Kumiko, and that I really enjoyed watching her emerge from her solitude after she shared her past. I also marvelled at how so often we don't react the ... - rachelb

Do you feel that Lane cared more about salvaging his relationship with TJ than building his ongoing love with Maddie?
My feeling is that Lane did what he did was for Maddie at and not jus T.J.....he knew that all Maddie had left in terms of her family was T.J. In Japanese tradition, family was what mattered most! He sacrificed his own future happiness, to save ... - nancy f.

Do you think TJ should have been so protective of Maddie?
I think TJ took his role way too seriously. It's one thing to look out for a younger sister but he went way too far. Maddie proved over and over again that she was a strong person. While her brother was stuck in grief and denial, she went on with her... - janen

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Reviews

Media Reviews

"A sweeping yet intimate novel that will please both romantics and lovers of American history." - Kirkus Reviews

"Though the prose is too often hackneyed, this gripping story about two 'brothers' in arms and a young woman caught in between them hits all the right chords." - Publishers Weekly

"Readers of World War II fiction will devour [this] poignant, authentic story..." - Jenna Blum, international bestselling author of Those Who Save Us

"An unputdownable love story... [McMorris'] attention to detail is meticulous, the East meets West clash between cultures - revelatory." - Lesley Kagen, New York Times bestselling author of Good Graces

"Impeccably researched and beautifully written... I highly recommend this book!" - Karen White, New York Times bestselling author of On Folly Beach

"Fascinating and moving... an absolute pleasure to read." - Whitney Otto, author of How to Make an American Quilt

"A beautiful, timeless love story... McMorris' words reach right of the page and grab at your heart." - Sarah Jio, author of The Violets of March

"An epic romance... I followed Maddie and Lane's fast-paced journey to unexpected places with my breath held and fingers crossed." - Margaret Dilloway, author of How to Be an American Housewife

"This wonderful World War II novel is written with a wealth of insight that, presumably, comes from the author's own experiences growing up in a Japanese-Caucasian family. Although McMorris does not shy away from exposing the mistreatment of men, women, and children, who were guilty of nothing more than having Japanese ancestry, neither does she settle for simplistic judgments. Instead, she gently probes the complexities of human relationships…. The "bridge" in the title draws attention to the musical imagery that is skillfully woven into the novel, adding depth and elegance while highlighting themes of hope and forgiveness. Rich in historical detail, peopled with well-developed characters, and spiced with tension and drama, Bridge of Scarlet Leaves is a novel to savor, and then to share with a friend." - The Historical Novels Review, Nancy J. Attwell

"Kristina McMorris, the author of Letters from Home, amazed me with Bridge of Scarlet Leaves. I loved it. I’m still in awe of how well written it is. I was awakened to so many different aspects and trials of that time period that I wasn’t aware of prior to reading the novel. McMorris has a unique ability to portray the emotions of an era we didn't belong to, through words.... I now have a whole new outlook and respect for those involved in WWII after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Bridge of Scarlet Leaves is a must read for 2012. You won't be sorry!" - Night Owl Reviews Magazine, Tiffany Schlarman

The information about Bridge Of Scarlet Leaves shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Reader Reviews

Write your own review

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by JaneN
Bridge of Scarlet Leaves
This is a story that needs to be told, especially now when people are so divided. It is a story of two people, Lane and Maddie, who fall in love and marry the day before Pearl Harbor. It would be hard enough to start anew life in the best of times, they had to do in the worst of times. A good book well written and thoroughly enjoyable. A great book for book clubs as there is so much to discuss here.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Dorothy T.
Good read about a bad time
This is not the first book I have read about the internment of Japanese and Japanese Americans during World War II and the plight of POWs in Japanese camps, but it is definitely more heart-wrenching, as it includes the pain and regret of things said and done, or not said or done. But there is also a great deal of hope and healing for the characters. Kristina McMorris shows a true gift for character development, and her arrangement of the story keeps the suspense building. She handles well the conflict of cultures and how her characters build the bridges to span the divide. You don't need a book club to appreciate this one, but book club members will appreciate the discussion it will inspire.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by JEM
Bridge of Scarlett Leaves
I found this book to be engrossing from the minute I picked it up. The book takes you through the lives of a number of people slightly before the day Pearl Harbor was bombed and continues on to the end of the war.
Needless to say, this saga pits American families, and American Japanese families against, and on occasion with each other throughout the time before , during, and after.
What was particularly interesting to me was that during much of the book I was thinking I like it,it it's an easy read, but it feels like so many books I have read in this genre.
However-sometime in the last third of the book, I had not realized just how captured I was with the story and the characters. Turns out, and I never do this, I actually shed tears a few times towards the end.
I also enjoyed the infusion of some Japanese words which made me feel like an American learning a language that I had no knowledge of.Having had to do this with my in-laws,who spoke little English when I met them, this was very realistic.
I would recommend this book highly. I can't wait to read the author's other book now!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Author Information

Kristina McMorris Author Biography

Kristina McMorris is an award-winning author and graduate of Pepperdine University. A weekly TV host since age nine, including an Emmy Award-winning program, she lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and two sons. Bridge of Scarlet Leaves is her second novel, following her widely praised debut, Letters from Home.

Link to Kristina McMorris's Website

Other books by Kristina McMorris at BookBrowse
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

More Recommendations

More Recently Published Novels

more...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Shotgun Lovesongs
    Shotgun Lovesongs
    by Nickolas Butler
    Nickolas Butler's debut novel, Shotgun Lovesongs, follows five life-long friends, now in their mid-...
  • Book Jacket: Gemini
    Gemini
    by Carol Cassella
    How good is Gemini, Carol Cassella's book about a Seattle intensive care physician who becomes ...
  • Book Jacket: The Goldfinch
    The Goldfinch
    by Donna Tartt
    Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer for Fiction.

    Her canvas is vast. To frame a story about art, love and ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
by Gabrielle Zevin

Published Apr. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  143Happier at Home:
    Gretchen Rubin
  2.  170The Weight of Blood:
    Laura McHugh

All Discussions

Who Said...

Polite conversation is rarely either

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

P Your O C

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.