Stubborn Twig is the story of one Japanese American family's century-long struggle to adjust, endure and ultimately triumph in their new country. Masuo Yasui arrived in America in 1903 with big dreams and empty pockets. He worked on the railroads, in a cannery and as a houseboy before settling in Hood River, Oregon, to open a store, raise a large family and become one of the area's most successful orchardists. As Masuo tried to break the color barrier in the local.business community, his American-born children also strived to overcome it in school, Scouts and sports by excelling in almost everything they took on. But none of their accomplishments could shield them from the intense racism that pervaded much of the West Coast. For the Yasuis' firstborn son, the constraints and contradictions of being both Japanese and American led to tragedy. But his seven brothers and sisters steadfastly pursued the American dream, with one of.Masuo's sons becoming Oregon's first Japanese American lawyer and two others becoming surgeons. December 7, 1941, changed the Yasuis' lives completely and forever. Following Pearl Harbor, all West Coast ethnic Japanese, most of whom were U.S. citizens, were forced from their homes with only what they could carry and interned in vast inland "relocation camps." Shamed and broken, Masuo eventually took his own life. But the family endured. Today, while many members of the.third generation have made their mark in various professions, some are still searching for their place in American society. The Yasui family freely opened its records and its memories to Lauren Kessler, who has written a living work of social history that rings with the power of truth and surpasses the drama of fiction. Stubborn Twig is a moving saga about not only the promise but also the perils of America and the meaning of becoming and being an American.