The Book Reviews – Website

August 30, 2009

Eyes of the Emperor

Filed under: E — thebookreviews @ 9:35 pm
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Eyes of the Emperor

Auhtor: Graham Salisbury

Page Length: 6

Reading Level: 229     

Genre: Realistic Fiction

PLOT SUMMARY: The story begins just prior to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, in 1941.  Eddy is a Japanese/American boy who lives in Honolulu.  Against his father’s wishes, Eddy lies about his age and joins the U. S. Army with some of his friends.  After the bombing on December 7, Eddy and his Japanese/American friends fall under the army’s discretion and are given menial jobs such as digging trenches, rather than undergoing regular army training.

Eddy and his friends are then moved to Cat Island, Mississippi, to participate in a secret mission approved by President Roosevelt.  The mission entails training for dogs to learn to identify the smell of Japanese people.  This task is completely demoralizing to Eddy and his comrades but they continue to follow orders because they took an oath to protect the citizens of the United States.  Eddy is nearly killed once, when his dog’s trainer fails to call his dog to stop an attack. 

Finally, the government comes in to observe how the program is progressing.  When the dogs fail to be able to distinguish between the Japanese and the Anglo Americans the mission is abandoned and Eddy and company are sent to Europe to fight with the U. S. troops.

REVIEW: Although fiction, this book was based on realistic events and gives examples of how the Japanese Americans were discriminated against during World War ll.  This book could be used to compare how people from Islamic nations were treated after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  The characters in this book were well developed and the author used similes and metaphors throughout. Parts of the book were a little slow because the action was a bit repetitive, however, I think it would be a good book for junior high and high school boys to read.

AREAS OF TEACHING: Historical Context, Metaphors and Similes, Character, Setting, Point of View, Sequence of Events

RELATED BOOKS: A Boy at War, Under the Blood-Red Sun, House of the Red Fish

MOVIE CONNECTIONS: Pearl Harbor (2001)


REVIEWED BY: Shirley Wagner



  1. this helped me a lot thank you very much

    Comment by luke — August 26, 2010 @ 7:51 pm | Reply

  2. This was great. Thank you. 🙂

    Comment by Anonymous — February 11, 2012 @ 8:01 pm | Reply

  3. THis was very desricptive and helped me for my essay on this book.

    Comment by Anonymous — February 27, 2012 @ 1:52 am | Reply

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