Dark Blue Suit: And Other Stories

Peter Bacho, Author University of Washington Press $16.95 (192p) ISBN 978-0-295-97637-2
""First there were the men. Filipino men."" So begins Bacho's (Cebu) novel-in-stories, a collection of 13 tales that accrue in weight and dignity as they chronicle the secret history of Seattle's Filipino population during the 1950s and '60s. Bacho's first-person narrator, Buddy, tells us first about the immigrant generation, itinerant fishermen and workers in the canning industry. Though poor they were proud; Buddy remembers that his father wore ""a somber, dark blue suit, pressed and perfect."" Despite hardships, these pioneers educated their children to secure middle class lives. But the second generation had its own psychological burdens--racial discrimination, post-Vietnam trauma-- described in various stories, each of them told in quiet prose with the clarity of haunting recall. As a keenly observed and felt picture of a mostly unknown element in our ethnic melting pot, this collection merits attention. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/29/1997
Release date: 10/01/1997
Genre: Fiction
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