When Blossoms Fall - plot

The novella When Blossoms Fall by Masako Fukui tells the story of a Nikkei Australian family. The story is narrated from the perspectives of three members of the family: Yuri, her mother Michiko, and her father Hajime.

Yuri is a young girl who is struggling to come to terms with her identity as a Nikkei Australian. She is aware of the stigma that her family faces because of their Japanese heritage, and she is also grappling with the legacy of her father's service as a kamikaze pilot during World War II.

Michiko is a complex and conflicted character. She is proud of her Japanese heritage, but she is also ashamed of her Japanese husband. She tries to protect Yuri from the harsh realities of the world, but she also struggles to come to terms with her own past.

Hajime is a deeply troubled man. He is haunted by the guilt of his actions during the war, and he is also struggling to find a place for himself in Australia. He loves Yuri deeply, but he is unable to give her the answers that she needs about her identity.

The novella explores the themes of memory, belonging, and identity. It shows how the legacy of war can continue to haunt families for generations, and it also explores the challenges of reconciling different cultures and identities.

The novella does not have a traditional plot in the sense of a linear narrative with a clear beginning, middle, and end. Instead, the story is told through a series of interconnected vignettes that explore the different perspectives of the three narrators.

However, there is a sense of progression in the story as Yuri comes to terms with her identity and her family's past. She learns to accept her Japanese heritage, and she also begins to understand the complexity of her grandfather's character.

The novella ends with Yuri feeling a sense of hope and possibility for the future. She realises that she can create her own identity, and that she is not bound by the past.

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