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Hiroshima

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

You'll love this book!

Hiroshima, by John Hersey, is a historical book about two women, and four men that survived the atomic bomb on August 6th, 1945. It talks about what the six survivors were doing when the bomb went off, what they had to go through for many months, what sorts of devistati...
Hiroshima, by John Hersey, is a historical book about two women, and four men that survived the atomic bomb on August 6th, 1945. It talks about what the six survivors were doing when the bomb went off, what they had to go through for many months, what sorts of devistation did they see, and their emotions. Their emotions like in mourning, dissapointment, anger, sadness, or relief. This book also shows a lot about the Japanese culture. Its also a good book because it doesnt just give you facts, but stories that will stay in your mind. This book might be a little gruesome since the bomb caused such chaos and killed many.If you're looking for a good historical book that tells both sides of the story : the American side and the Japanese side, this is a good book. However, in the begining, I was confused about the characters. There are six characters making it hard to follow each individual without getting cunfused on who is who. However, later on in the book, some people tie together in each others lives making it easier to remember who is each character.

posted by 4914845 on October 20, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Highly Recommended

John Hersey, a devoted writer and editor, tells the tales of six survivors who lived through the greatest single manmade disaster in history, in the book Hiroshima. The vivid descriptions of the experiences these people went thorough gave me chills. The scenes sounded t...
John Hersey, a devoted writer and editor, tells the tales of six survivors who lived through the greatest single manmade disaster in history, in the book Hiroshima. The vivid descriptions of the experiences these people went thorough gave me chills. The scenes sounded too disturbing to even be true. But the entire book was very factual. Roads being so hot they were soft, human flesh slipping off from the lightest touch, and humans vanishing with only ash outlines to prove their existence. These descriptions were told so well they sound unimaginable. Although this book was interesting to read, I found myself getting bored and distracted easily. The lack of dialogue and a main plot made me get lost throughout the story and unexcited to keep reading. Although I was bored when reading most of the novel, I felt very compassionate towards these survivors, for they had risked their lives to help others in need. I was able to connect with this story because I visited the city of Hiroshima a couple years ago. The city is bustling and lively, filled with people. I couldn't imagine the horror these six survivors went through. I got to see the A-bomb dome, the largest building still existing from the time the bomb was dropped. The Sadako statue filled with colorful cases and thousands of cranes makes me happy that our world is striving for peace. But the images I witnessed in the peace memorial looked so similarly to the mental pictures I could visualize while reading. If someone were interested in Japanese history and facts then I would highly recommend this book. But for a person looking for an exciting story and plot I wouldn't. Overall this was a very decent book that informed me but didn't hold my attention through out the whole novel.

posted by keritera on October 18, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2010

    You'll love this book!

    Hiroshima, by John Hersey, is a historical book about two women, and four men that survived the atomic bomb on August 6th, 1945. It talks about what the six survivors were doing when the bomb went off, what they had to go through for many months, what sorts of devistation did they see, and their emotions. Their emotions like in mourning, dissapointment, anger, sadness, or relief. This book also shows a lot about the Japanese culture. Its also a good book because it doesnt just give you facts, but stories that will stay in your mind. This book might be a little gruesome since the bomb caused such chaos and killed many.If you're looking for a good historical book that tells both sides of the story : the American side and the Japanese side, this is a good book. However, in the begining, I was confused about the characters. There are six characters making it hard to follow each individual without getting cunfused on who is who. However, later on in the book, some people tie together in each others lives making it easier to remember who is each character.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Highly Recommended - one of the best memoirs I have ever read!

    Hiroshima, by John Hersey, describes the story of the atomic bombing and its affect on the lives of six Japanese people. On August 6, 1945, the story begins when one of the first atomic bombs ever used on another country devastates Hiroshima, leaving six survivors. These people are Dr. Masakazu Fujii, Reverend Mr. Kiyoshi Tanimoto, Dr. Terufumi Sasaki, Father Wilhelm Kleinsorge, Mrs. Hatsuyo Nakamura, and Toshiko Sasaki. The author describes the affects of the bombing from all six points of view, and it gives us a clear view of the emotions of each individual and how they cope with the traumatic experience. As the book progresses we see how the characters grow into heroes among each other because of their motivation to attempt to rescue others who have been badly injured by the atomic bomb. I really enjoyed reading this book because I love reading about events that have happened in Japan's history. I also liked this book because of the way the author portrays the emotions of each of the characters. It made me feel the fear, anger, or nervousness that was in the mind of the characters. Overall I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is interested in reading about an event in Japanese history and likes to be able to connect emotions with the characters. This is an excellent book and I'm glad that I took the time to read this amazing story.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2013

    One War, Six Survivors Hiroshima, a classic novel written by Jo

    One War, Six Survivors
    Hiroshima, a classic novel written by John Hersey in 1946, is a truly inspirational book. It traces the lives and dangerous experiences of six individuals (two doctors, two women, and two religious men).  Dr. Masakazu Fujii, Dr. Terufumi Sasaki, Mrs. Hatsuyo Nakamura, Mrs. Toshiko Sasaki, Father Wilhelm Kleinsorge, and Reverend Mr. Kiyoshi Tanimoto all go through daring and perilous journeys through the war just to survive in the end, even if it results in radiation sickness or severe injuries. After reading Hiroshima, the true meaning revealed itself. I believe that the theme or true meaning to Hiroshima is not about the reasons why the bombing of Hiroshima happened or to inform, but how something so devastating can bring together people as a community and work together. In chapter 4, John Hersey explains, “One feeling they did seem to share, however, was a curious kind of elated community spirit . . . a pride in the way they and their fellow-survivors had stood up to a dreadful ordeal.” I think the key words that should be recognized in this quote are “community spirit”. These two words are what fully support the major theme of this book. Reflecting on all the gruesome horror stories of the sicknesses and injures people experienced; it really makes the reader empathize what happened. What I really liked about this novel is that it strikes the readers emotions and explains the six survivors experiences, however, It annoyed me sometimes because the point of view kept changing throughout the entire book. It was hard to follow occasionally and it felt very disorganized even though the content was incredible. These flaws shouldn’t be a deal-breaker when deciding whether or not to read Hiroshima because it can be overlooked for the content. As much as I would love to reccommend other works by John Hersey, I cannot because I have not yet read any other novels written by him. However, Overall, i give this book 4 out of 5 stars!

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  • Posted July 13, 2012

    Hiroshima is a non-fiction book that tells the stories of 6 surv

    Hiroshima is a non-fiction book that tells the stories of 6 survivors of the dropping of the first atomic bomb. The book started minutes before the bomb dropped and heated up quickly. The book is told in a very matter of fact manner, which means that is tells all the details without sugarcoating them. For instance, the author uses a lot of descriptions like this one, "their faces were wholly burned, their eyesockets were hollow, the fluid from their melted eyes had run down their cheeks" (68). Although the book is very graphic, intense, and sad, it is a good story and deserves a rating of 4 stars. It is a good book with great writing, but the way the story is told might not appeal to everyone and the content could be disturbing to a number of people. Overall the book is a good read and I recommend it if you can handle graphic content and immense sadness in a novel that tells the story of one of the greatest man-made tragedies the world has known thus far.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2011

    Hiroshima: An excellent story about the truth

    The book, Hiroshima, by John Hersey, is a story about the struggle for survival for six defferent Japanese citizens during the bombing of Hiroshima. The book takes the reader from minutes to hours before the bomb was dropped in each person's perspectives. The six characters are Mrs. Nakamura, a tailor's widdow, Dr. Sasaki, a surgeon at the Red Cross Hospital, Father Kleinsorge, a German preist, Miss Sasaki, a young clerk working at a tin factory, Mr. Fujii, a doctor at a local clinic, and Mr. Tanimoto, a Methodist pastor. Throughout the story, each person struggles to survive sickness, sleep deprivation from helping the ill, and helping eachother to survive.

    I felt this book was an excellent book to read not only for school but for personal enjoyment. I read this book once for school, but later I decided to read it again because it was that good! I feel Hersey does a great job of adding the emotional effect to each page as the reader flips through the book. His writing style is fantastic because he is able to print the images (no matter how horrific) into the reader's mind to really keep the seriousness of the story present. This book also does a great job of showing readers the horror of the bombing and why the atomic bomb is such a dangerous weapon. Parts such as when Mr. Tanimoto is running through the debris and seeing all of the injured and dying people call for help really intensify the experience of reading this book. Overall, a very touching, fantastic book for readers at least in middle school. Hopefully this book will show people what war looks like at its ugliest.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2010

    Hiroshima

    I think the author of this book did an outstanding job of describing the chaos during the bomb dropping period. John Hersey described the scene vividly as the collapse of buildings, an ever flowing river of blood, and the pleas of people heard in the form of screams as they were desperate for help. It almost made the readers feel like they were in that situation. I would recommend this book to everyone, Not only because it is a historical fact, but also because there are a lot of valuable lessons in the book to be learned.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2010

    Very Moving

    In Hiroshima by John Hersey he recollects the fateful day the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 and how it affected the Japanese people. John Hersey touches on the delicate topic of the bombing by following the stories of six survivors and how they dealt and operated during this disaster and in time to come. I thought that an interesting aspect of the story was when the author went back to find the survivors many years after the event and see how their thoughts changed or stayed the same. I felt that this story was a very in depth view at the bombing and it made me realize that the "bombing of Hiroshima" that we all hear in history was not just the bombing of a place, but a bombing of real people. In some parts of the story the dialog got confusing and it was hard to tell the meaning of the paragraph. Overall this book had a powerful message and many moving points in the book. I would recommend this book to anyone who would love a good memoir that embodies a powerful meaning.

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  • Posted January 13, 2010

    Great book, based on a true event

    Hiroshima, by John Hersey, is the story of the United States Nuclear bombing of the Japanese city, Hiroshima. Mr. Hersey tells the story through the memories of the survivors. Even though the book is quite short, there is a great deal of meaning in its pages. While there are many characters in the book (six), Hersey focuses mainly on Mrs. Hatsuyo Nakamura. She is a tailor's widow, and she has to support her three young children. While many in the United States did not understand the magnitude of the bomb, the people featured in the book experienced something that no one should ever have to endure; a nuclear bomb. The actual explosion was not what ended so many lives; it was the radiation poisoning that remained in the water and air for many years later. In the book, each chapter describes the survivors' feelings and thoughts both before and after the bomb hits. The reason I really liked this book is because the story is told not by the author, but by the survivors who were actually physically and emotionally harmed. This gives you a true glimpse into how the whole city of Hiroshima was devastated. Perhaps the deepest thoughts came from Dr. Terifumi Sasaki. He is a hard working physician who believes that he should help every single person he can after the bombing. He works for nineteen hours straight, wrapping bandage after bandage over the mangled, bleeding limbs. He is an excellent doctor who devotes his life to help the victims of the bombing. But aside from Sasaki's successful life as a doctor after the bomb, he experiences a deeper, paranormal kind of pain. He constantly says he is haunted by the souls of the people of Hiroshima, who were not properly buried in his beliefs. His mind is always running, thinking of those who he could not help. This book not only focuses on the lives of people, but the lasting effect the first nuclear bomb it had on the war. The author talks in some parts how the bombing only encourages other nations to do the same. John Hersey wrote this book perfectly, because you get to feel the pain that the people of Hiroshima felt on that early morning on August 6, 1945. If you have not read this book, I encourage you to. It is an eye opening read that gives you the real story of those awful days in Hiroshima, Japan.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2008

    Astonished

    ¿Review of Hiroshima¿<BR/> Hiroshima was one of the best books I have ever read. I¿m not just saying that either. It has all the things I look for in a book. It has action, suspense, devastation, and it¿s adventurous. I always wanted to read more. I loved how the author wrote it so it felt like you were actually there.<BR/> One of the things I liked about the book was the author¿s way of writing. He told the story in the lives of six totally different people. Some were poor, some were rich, and some were average. You could see the different affects of the bombing from the different people. I saw the hardships that the Japanese people had to go through during this time. I don¿t know how they did it.<BR/> The author used symbolism to explain things. He showed that water is a bad thing in the story. Even though water is usually a good thing John showed that during the bombing it wasn¿t. So he made you really pay attention to the story to understand what was happening.<BR/> At the end of the book it told about each character to give you a better understanding of them. In my book it was information from an interview he had with them years after the bombing. It also tells about their lives after the bombing. This was one of the most interesting parts in the book.<BR/> I would recommend this book to anyone. If you don¿t like action and killing then this book isn¿t for you. I have never read a book with this much action. Every time you turn the page something happens. Whether it¿s an explosion, fire, or someone is being hit by something. It is also pretty disturbing. If you are easily grossed out then it¿s not for you. Even though I¿m not easily grossed out I was grossed out a little bit by it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2008

    WOW

    An incredible story of humanity. One of people helping people in thier most desparate hour. Six survivors, doing what they can - practicing the 'art of compassion'. These six lived long lives. This is what became of them. A small book, with a big heart.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2006

    hiroshima

    this is one great book. i read it for a assignment and i really enjoyed it. i will read it over and over again because it is so good. if i didn't have to read it for an assignment, i would have read it just for fun! it is that great of a book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2006

    hiroshima was touching (dude)

    This book was really touching because as I was reading it i found out what had happen and what the people felt like when the bomb was dropped.It tells the tales of real people and what they were doing the day they were bombed and it tells what people saw and the effects of the bomb as well.I would highly recommend this book because its a good source of hitory but it is a little graphic because they describe alot of gory description.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2006

    Worthy War Story

    On August 6, 1945, the world changed forever as the first atom bomb ever used against another country, was dropped on Hiroshima. It was one of only two ever used for wartime purposes. The city of Hiroshima was crumbled by the blast and the following fires. It is estimated that over 100,000 people were killed by the blast, resulting fires, or the radiation sickness that plagued everyone in the area. Three days later, a second, more powerful bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. Even after all the death from Hiroshima, there were survivors. Hiroshima follows six survivors who owe their life to small decisions they made, and where they were at fifteen minutes past eight, that fateful morning. Mr. Tanimoto was away from the blast that morning, helping a friend move furniture when it happened Miss Sasaki was inside the Tin Works, where she worked when it happened Dr. Fujii was facing away from the blast on the back porch of his private hospital when the blast occured Mrs.Nakamura, a tailors widow, was in her house with her three children when the bomb was dropped Father Kleinsorge, of the Society of Jesus, lay in his cot at the mission house when the explosion knocked him to the floor and Dr. Sasaki, perhaps the only person in Hiroshima not even scratched in the blast, was carrying a blood sample through the hallway of the Red Cross Hospital. These six people made a decision that they did not know would save their lives until after they reflected upon it. This non-fiction story is gripping and emotional to read. Seeing the war through Japanese (and sometimes German) eyes sheds new light on the situation. After reading this amazing story of human will to survive, it is more difficult to accept a morally right or wrong viewpoint. The bomb dropped on Hiroshima was a tragedy, but most of the hibakusha, or people who survived the blast, saw the bomb as inevitable and widely accept its purpose. Several days after Hiroshima, World War Two ended, and even though some Japanese people hated the United States, the wounds between the two peoples began to heal. Any fan of historical fiction will love this amazing book of determination, survival, and human kindness.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2005

    great book

    Hiroshima, by John Hersey, is a book that many people have already read and have prior knowledge of the events which the book is based on. Hiroshima is based on the dropping of the atomic bomb onto the Japanese city of Hiroshima. The book goes into great depth of the horror caused by the dropping of the A-bomb. This book goes through with 6 survivors and shows how they survived and what they done to help the others. I would greatly recommend this book to any person who has an interest in American or War history because it will hold your attention throughout the entire book. Before I read the book I thought I knew a large amount of knowledge about the war but this book has taught me much more than I knew.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2004

    The fate of the atomic bomb to the Japan people

    The book written by John hersey had a extinct influence on the life of all the innocent lives just by a drop of a bomb by the Americans. The Japan people had suffered alot, because John hersey had made the book very descriptive to where he let you be in the Japan peoples shoes. Through the book I have learned many things, one thing that I know is that even though you are innocent you may die for no reason. Just by one bomb many can get so hurt no matter what condition you are in. You can really feel the pain in the story because John hersey had described it in a way where you can feel it. I got some confusion in some parts where I had to re-read the passage or focused on the sentence more. Overall I did enjoy this book. Now I have more knowlegde to the worlds past events, that many peoples lives had suffered. If I had been in the story it would have been a great experience but as I read the more I felt like I was in the story. The Japan people have been alot and hopefully nothing like this will happen again! World peace!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2004

    Drama Straight From The Heart

    The book was in fact quite interesting since it was about the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. The beginning of the story went with my fascination but slowly it began to fade away. Some parts had too much detail and I would find myself having to re-read some parts over again. Don¿t get me wrong here, the details got me to understand some parts of the book well enough to feel the innocent citizens experience that day. What was so great about the book was the dramatic and over-power feelings from the survivors point of view. I also liked that while I was reading the book, I had felt like I was actually there. It made me feel for their sorrow and anger towards the U.S., although it probably wasn¿t all their fault. John Hersey had done well in writing the details of what happened to thousands of civilians that devastating day in Hiroshima and brought it to life. But it didn¿t really explain about the reason for the atomic bomb being dropped in the first place. Like it was kind of a one-sided story. Still, we are all human and we do have our faults in life. Also, what I didn¿t like was that he was getting me confused when he added new people who came up towards the end. Overall, the book's main point was to get the reader to feel and understand what the civilians of Japan and Nagasaki went through. Which was the most defining point in their life. I recommend this book to anyone so you¿d have a feel of what the Japanese had gone through just from a drop of an atomic bomb.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2003

    Death, Suspense, Agony

    As a young reader, this book has been one of the most excruciating for me to read. Each new page was filled with more painful passage than the last, but it was all incredibly captivating. It¿s a quick read with easy vocabulary, with intense description of action sequences. Time slows down as you roll your eyes over each word, holding your breath, waiting to see the outcome of the horrific sequences in which there is much gore, and definitely agony, both for the reader and the characters. I recommend this book to you if you¿re looking for a quick thrill, and an exhilarating feeling of relief that we aren't living in such times today. A good 4 out of 5.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2002

    The bomb

    The irony of all this is that the bomb may have saved millions of lives at the expense of a lesser number. The Japanese were digging in and were preparing for an all out fight, just look at Okinawa or Iwo Jima, where for the first time the wounded and lost were greater than the Japanese. Too, The dropping of the bomb may have prevented the US and Soviet Union from using the bomb. Even though, I do feel empathy towards these six people and others who were exposed to the bomb, I can't help seeing Rape in Nanking, Bataan death march,Pearl harbor and other Japanese atrocities.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2002

    HIROSHIMA

    I think that Hiroshima is a good book but it could have been more clear on who the author was writing about. He made the characters go back and forth with what they were doing and what was happening. SO that was confusing sometimes. other than that it was well written and told. I recommend this book to people that do not mind war movies and books because it can get pretty discusting what happens to the people in Hiroshima. so I give it 4 stars.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2002

    This book is One of a Kind...

    Have you ever read a book that really made you stop and think about life? After I read Hiroshima I noticed how good I have my life. Being the age that I am and being in America makes me glad that I was not alive during the time of the bombing or live in Japan. The memories of it will last a lifetime for everyone that lived in that time period. Today we have a similar problem with war again, but we have not used atomic bombs on our enemies in this war. Wars of course or never equal because then there would be no point because it would go on forever in a tie, therefore someone has to be defeated. Hiroshima was a touching book that people of all kinds should read. It gives one a different outlook on World War II because most of the time Americans get the picture of how the American¿s felt during the war. Reading it makes you think again whether or not it was a bad idea to drop the a-bomb or not. In many ways it did good because it was a stop to the war, but thousands of Japanese were killed that were just citizens, (kids, women, older people, etc.) At that time, in the middle of war, it would be difficult to make a hasty decision so the U.S. Government Officials had to do what could be done at that time for revenge. The parts that stuck out in my mind the most were how many people got long term effects. It was horrible to hear about the pain, not just physically, but mentally people had to go through. If my family got killed, but I lived and was sick all the time, it would be too confusing and hard on me. Radiation sickness sounds horrible with all the symptoms that last for so long, such as low iron, low white blood cell count, etc. If they did not die in the war most of the citizens got sickly and died early. Mrs. Sasaki was a woman who had a bookshelf fall on her legs, she was just one of the people that the John Hersey wrote about. It had her thoughts on what happened and trials they went through. It crushed me to read about how sick these people got, and alone they must have felt with no home, and some without their families. This book opened my mind more about how the Japanese were affected because of the bomb. I learned about various, true details of what happened to those in Hiroshima. It makes one feel as if they really got to know these people in person and built a relationship with them. Hiroshima is a book that all types of people would enjoy. It will open your mind to many different views on War.

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