Emma's world has just been turned upside down: her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and her family is moving back to the United States after living in Japan since Emma was a baby. Emma doesn't know how to deal with the stress, fear, lonliness and culture shock. However, things seem a little better when she starts volunteering at a long term care facility and helps a woman with locked-in syndrome write poems. She even meets a boy named Samnang there and they bond over Japanese and Cambodian culture. Just when Emma starts to feel at home in Massachusetts, she gets the opportunity to return to Japan early. Now that she has two homes, which will she choose?
I really enjoyed The Language Inside and thought that it was a beautiful read. I was not expecting the book to be written in verse, but it worked well with the story, especially since Emma spends part of the book writing poety. I was able to read The Language Inside very quickly because there weren't many words on each page and the pages flew by. Even with less words, the author is able to present a well-rounded story with developed and interesting characters. I loved reading about Japanese and Cambodian cultures and I felt like I learned a lot. This book would be great for a book club, fans of poetry and people who like to read about different cultures.