My Friend the Enemy
Hating the Japanese was simple before she met Sogoji. Pearl Harbor was bombed on Hazel Anderson's birthday and she's been on the lookout for enemies ever since. She scours the skies above Mount Hood with her binoculars, hoping to make some crucial observation, or uncover the hideout of enemy spies. But what she discovers instead is a 15-year-old orphan, hiding out, trying to avoid being sent to an internment camp. Sogoji was born in America. He's eager to help Hazel with the war effort. Is this lonely boy really the enemy? In this thought-provoking story of patriotism, loyalty, and belonging, Hazel must decide what it means to be a true American, and a true friend. From the Hardcover edition.
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Chapter 1 - Doing our Part
Watch the Andrews Sisters singing their song, "Don't Sit Under the Apple Tree." As you watch, look for details that help you identify what time period both this song and also the novel take place during. (This annotation contains a video)
Based on the earlier film annotation of the Andrews Sisters singing and the historical references in the highlighted text, readers can infer that this novel takes place during
During World War II, America engaged in two war fronts against the Axis powers (Germany, Italy, and Japan). The highlighted text reveals that Jed is preparing to join the fight in the Pacific against the Japanese. Below is a map of the Japanese Empire in 1942. (This annotation contains an image)
What job is Hazel's father now doing to support the war effort?
Did you know that you can look up any word in the text of the book or the text of the questions and answers? Just click (or press on mobile devices) the word you want to define and hold until the blue text selector pops up. When you release, a define option will appear. Since it's so easy to look up words, make sure you use this feature frequently... Is there a word on this page you need to look up?
Chapter 2 - Hawk's Nest
Lonnie Cook recounts his experiences during the Pearl Harbor Attack on December 7, 1941. As you watch, consider how his real-life experience is different from Hazel's fictional experience. (This annotation contains a video)
Contrast Lonnie Cook's real-life experience at Pearl Harbor (seen in the previous film annotation) with Hazel's experiences on the same day. Be sure to identify at least two differences between the two experiences.
Below is a picture of Mount Hood. This detail is further proof that Hazel lives in Oregon. (This annotation contains an image)
Chapter 3 - The Riddle in the Brush
Hazel reveals an important fact in the highlighted text. However, we have to wonder why the Japanese people no longer live in the area. As you continue to read, look for evidence that reveals how these people were treated during this time in American history.
Use the context of the highlighted text to define "Hirohito."
Watch the film clip below which will help you develop a better understanding of the discriminatory and intolerant way that Americans of Japanese ancestry were treated following Pearl Harbor. What is the danger in treating fellow Americans in such a manner? (This annotation contains a video)
Hazel says that she "always wanted to go to camp" However, her idea of camp is idealistic and innocent. Describe how the Japanese Americans who are sent to camp are treated. Use at least two details from the previous film annotation to support your answer.
During WWII, propaganda (like the poster below) was used frequently to stir Americans to support the Allied war effort. From Hazel's words, we can infer that she has seen a lot of the propaganda which depicted Japanese soldiers, leaders, and citizens in a demonic way (like the figure on the right-side). Why is this wrong? (This annotation contains an image)
How does Hazel feel in comparison to her older sister?
Chapter 4 - Our own War Hero
Personification is a type of figurative language that gives human-like qualities to objects that are not human. In the picture below the purple text denotes personification. In the highlighted text, the trees leaning over and muttering are examples of personification. (This annotation contains an image)
Watch the video below on imagery. Notice in the highlighted text that the author uses descriptive language to create imagery. In addition, we see personification with the leaves whispering; figurative language can also be used to create imagery but is not required. (This annotation contains a video)
What devices does the author use in the highlighted text to create imagery and help readers visualize the teacher?
Watch the video on character traits. In the highlighted text, we can infer that Hazel is resourceful because she is using her brother's kit to help her decipher the Japanese characters on the paper she found. (This annotation contains a video)
Chapter 5 - Enemy Territory
Which character traits best describe Hazel based on the highlighted text?
Watch the video exploring onomatopoeia below. In the highlighted text, we see the word "Chop" is an example of this sound device. (This annotation contains a video)
Which type(s) of figurative language is used in the highlighted text to describe Hazel?
Chapter 6 - An Invitation to Tea
The term "Jap" is discriminatory and reveals Hazel's mistrust or fear of anyone who looks Japanese. Although Sogoji is of Japanese ancestry, Mr. Lanski points out that Sogoji is an American.
What can you infer about Hazel based on the highlighted text?
Watch the video on historical fiction. Which details in the highlighted text help us to identify this text as an example of historical fiction? (This annotation contains a video)
Chapter 7 - To Save the Nation
Why does Hazel feel like she "just got off the Tilt-A-Whirl at the county fair"? Be sure to explain the events that have caused her to feel this way as well as to identify a word to describe what she is feeling.
Mrs. Lanski uses hyperbole in the highlighted text when she praises Sogoji "to the skies." Read the definition of hyperbole below. Why might an author use this literary device? (This annotation contains an image)
Who comes to dinner to eat with Hazel's family?
What is your opinion of Sogoji? Does Hazel have an overactive imagination, or do you believe this boy could be a threat? Based on your opinion, what course of action would you take in Hazel's shoes?
Chapter 8 - The House of Mitsumi
What is the purpose of the simile in highlighted text?
Below is a picture of bamboo. This vegetation is not native to Oregon. (This annotation contains an image)
Below is a picture of several women modeling Japanese kimonos. These garments are often worn today for weddings and special occasions. (This annotation contains an image)
What do you think is making Hazel feel sorry? Be sure to incorporate an explanation of the simile in the highlighted text in your answer.
Here, Hazel is doubting the significance of her contribution to the war effort. However during World War II, Americans on the home front experienced hardships including rationing food, gas, and clothing. This message is conveyed through the propaganda poster below. (This annotation contains an image)
What to Do About "Charlie"
What type of figurative language is used in the highlighted text?
Watch the video on similes and metaphors. In the highlighted text, we see an example of a simile when Hazel is compared to a locomotive. (This annotation contains a video)
Chapter 10 - Friendly Fritters
Watch the video on tone and mood below. In the highlighted text, we see that Estelle's tone is sarcastic through her use of "Yippee" to describe staying at home and mending. As a result it creates a humorous and compassionate mood in us as readers. (This annotation contains a video)
Which type of figurative language is used in the highlighted text?
Which word would least accurately describe Sogoji's life with the Lanskis?
Like Hazel, we have to wonder at Sogoji's choice to stay with the Lanskis. However, Hazel's earlier comment about the camp being "probably not so bad" also makes us suspicious. What do you think is going on?
Chapter 11 - The Team
Watch the video on text-based evidence below. Hazel's mom is indignant or annoyed by Mr. Mayhew. Which piece of text-based evidence would support this? (This annotation contains a video)
Give two pieces of text-based evidence that would support that Sogoji has experienced a difficult life.
In the highlighted text, we see further proof that Hazel is beginning to move past her suspicion and prejudice of Sogoji and see him as a person rather than an enemy. Can you think of a time in your life when you learned to really like someone who is different from you? What advice would you give Hazel?
The highlighted simile is used to convey which emotion?
Chapter 12 - The Tower
Below is a picture of origami cranes. (This annotation contains an image)
What skill does Sogoji posses that will help Hazel achieve her dream?
We can infer from the highlighted exchange that Hazel's mother is worried that Estelle may be losing interest in waiting for Jed.
Below is a picture of Mount Fuji located in Japan. (This annotation contains an image)
Chapter 13 - Tengu-Kakushi
According to Ivy, where has Mr. Mayhew been going?
Hazel's imagination causes her to worry about how Jed might fare if he were to receive word that Estelle was calling off their engagement.
Which word would best describe how Hazel feels based on the highlighted text?
Chapter 14 - The Honor of the Emperor
We can infer from the highlighted text that Sogoji is cautious about revealing this information to Hazel. In addition, we can assume from Lanski-san's comment that Sogoji is recommended to stay away for a while because he is a physical reminder of the enemy Jed is fighting.
Explain why it is important from Hazel's point of view to finish the tower, and explain why it may be important to finish the tower from Sogoji's point of view.
Below is a picture of Kintaro riding a carp, a type of fish. Is this how you visualized Kintaro during Sogoji's stories? Why or why not? (This annotation contains an image)
Chapter 15 - A White Dove
Summarize the argument that Hazel refers to in the highlighted text.
Longfellow's famous poem "Paul Revere's Ride" is performed as a rap in the video below. Look for similarities and differences between the central ideas in this poem and the novel. (This annotation contains a video)
The highlighted simile is used to convey which emotion?
The highlighted statement means that Mitsumi turned to drinking alcohol and was most likely an alcoholic.
Which central idea is primarily explored in both "Paul Revere's Ride" (seen in the last film annotation) and this novel?
Chapter 16 - What are Friends For?
Below is a picture of an olive branch; this branch symbolizes peace. Knowing that the olive branch represents peace and good will, what conclusion can you draw about Hazel based on her actions? (This annotation contains an image)
What does Sogoji do for Hazel's birthday?
Below is a picture of a vintage trinket box with a ballerina, like the one that Hazel receives from her mom. Hazel goes on to say that Sogoji's present is the one she can't stop thinking about. Why do you think this is? (This annotation contains an image)
Chapter 17 - The Big Night
Which type of figurative language is used to describe the calming effect that Hazel's dad has on the family?
Hazel's pent up anxieties and fears come tumbling out when she has the opportunity to speak with her father alone. This illustrates that Hazel trusts her father and feels he is her confidant. We also begin to understand how much she misses him while he is away due to the war.
Which types of figurative language are used in the highlighted text?
Watch Beyonce perform "America the Beautiful" at President Obama's inauguration in 2008. What central ideas and images come to mind when you listen to this song? (This annotation contains a video)
Explain how Hazel's feelings toward Sogoji change over the course of the novel. Be sure to include at least three details (from the beginning until this point in the novel) to support your answer.
Chapter 18 - A Midnight Clear
Greta Garbo was a famous actress during Hollywood's silent and classic periods. She would have been iconic during this time period. (This annotation contains an image)
What conclusion can a reader draw from the highlighted text?
Watch the trailer for the film, "The Nativity Story." This is the Christmas story that Hazel tells Sogoji about. How is the film preview below different from Hazel's recounting? (This annotation contains a video)
Compare and contrast Hazel's retelling of the Christmas story about Mary and Joseph with the film preview from The Nativity Story in the previous annotation. Give two similarities and two differences.
Chapter 19 - Fire in the Sky
After reading about the feelings toward the Japanese Americans returning from the internment camps in this novel, choose one word to describe how this group of Americans was treated and explain your word with an example from the text.
Notice that mom's attitude is very indulgent towards Frank. She desires to spoil him while he is home on leave. We can infer that spending time with loved ones is especially important to people living during this time period.
What does Frank do that alerts us as readers to his growing interest in what Hazel is saying?
Which character trait would not be used to describe Frank?
Chapter 20 - The Tuesday Patrol
What can you infer about Frank's point of view versus Hazel's? How do they differ?
Why does Hazel believe it is "unfair" for the Japanese Americans to, as Frank says, "get the idea they're not welcome here"?
Watch the short video below on making inferences. We can infer from the highlighted text that Frank and Hazel are in danger! How do you think Frank and Hazel feel in this moment? (This annotation contains a video)
Which character trait would best describe Frank and Hazel based on the description in the highlighted text?
Chapter 21 - The Yanks are Coming
In this moment, Hazel seems to grasp how fragile life is. For much of this novel, she uses her imagination to allow her to be a war hero; however, this moment reminds us of how young and innocent she really is.
Why does Hazel say, "The words signal tower struck me like lightning"?
Chapter 22 - The Right Thing
Watch the video on conflict in literature. As you read the highlighted text, look for clues that would help you to identify what type of conflict is happening right now in this novel. (This annotation contains a video)
What does Hazel do to prove her loyalty to her friend, Sogoji?
Pay special attention to the highlighted detail. It will become more significant later in this story.
Chapter 23 - Western Union
Based on Mrs. Lanski's reaction and Mr. Lanski's words in the highlighted text, what can be inferred?
Watch the video on static and dynamic characters below. Notice how connected Hazel feels to Sogoji in this moment; this is a vast difference from the Hazel we met at the beginning of the novel. Therefore, Hazel is an example of a dynamic character. (This annotation contains a video)
What does Frank mean when he refers to a "bobcat"?
Chapter 24 - In the Rain
Hazel's simile suggests that she feels numb as if someone else turns on her grief. However, once she starts crying, she is unable to stop. We must remember that Jed was her hero.
Below you can see the stars that families would hang in their windows during the war. A blue star represented a soldier serving while a gold star represented a soldier who was killed. (This annotation contains an image)
What is Hazel referring to in the highlighted text?
Chapter 25 - The Game's Up
Remember this moment as you continue to read because it will become more significant. This is called foreshadowing. Watch the video on foreshadowing below. (This annotation contains a video)
Which type of figurative language is used in the highlighted text?
Based on the highlighted description, we can infer that "shikatonganai" is the Japanese word for fate. What will be Sogoji's fate?
Which word best describes the tone of the highlighted description?
Chapter 26 - When the Worst Happens
The expression "on the lame" is used to refer to someone who is on the run from law enforcement. Mr. Mayhew turns out to be a deserter, which is against the law. This would have been looked upon as an especially horrific crime during this time period since mostly everyone has known someone who has lost a loved one in the war.
What detail from Mr. Mayhew's interview makes the lieutenant suspicious and ultimately leads to Mr. Mayhew's arrest?
We can infer from Hazel's outburst that she has become very protective of Sogoji.
Mr. Lanski warns Hazel that she may not want to accompany him to say good-bye to Sogoji because of society's perception of the Japanese. From the highlighted text, we see that Hazel will go. Choose one character trait to describe Hazel at this point in the text. Be sure to explain your choice.
Chapter 27 - The Mountain is Forever
What do you suppose Hazel means to do with the suitcase?
Based on the highlighted text, would you characterize Mr. Lanski as heartless or compassionate towards Sogoji's situation? Explain your choice.
Hazel makes an allusion or reference to Charles Dickens' famous novel "Oliver Twist." Watch the trailer for the movie version below. As you watch, consider why Hazel thinks it is a good thing that Sogoji is unfamiliar with this story. (This annotation contains a video)