When the Emperor was Divine is a historical fiction novel written by American author Julie Otsuka about a Japanese American family sent to an internment camp in the Utah desert during World War II. The novel, loosely based on the wartime experiences of Otsuka's mother's family, is written through the perspective of four family members, detailing their eviction from California and their time in camp. It is Otsuka's debut novel, and was published in the United States in 2002 by Alfred A. Knopf.
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