'As the B-29 bombers began to pound Tokyo and most of the other major Japanese cities to rubble, the Japanese military became desperate to find a way to once again instill fear in its enemies. Out of such efforts was born the greatest secret of WWII the fire balloon. One woman, Yoshi, camouflaging her identity, is sent to uncover these delicate but deadly creations.'
Assembled from paper by schoolchildren and women in the waning years of the war, the Japanese fire balloons were launched from fields near Tokyo and Kyoto. They often reached the U.S. mainland in just three days and two nights. Armed with incendiary bombs, the balloons original goal was to ignite forest fires throughout the western states, which they did at an alarming rate. Wendel s research at the National Archives and the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., reveals that the balloons touched down in the U.S. more than 300 times from 1944 to 1945.
The balloons proved to be a better weapon than the Imperial Army ever knew. One sailed as far east as Michigan. At one point, the Japanese high command considered replacing the incendiary bombs with nerve and gas warfare. But it never came to that largely because of the U.S. military s ability to keep a secret.
|Publisher:||The Writer's Lair Books|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||402 KB|
About the Author
Tim has published two novels -- CASTRO'S CURVEBALL (Ballantine/U of Nebraska) and RED RAIN (Writers' Lair). In addition, his book THE NEW FACE OF BASEBALL (HarperCollins) was named Top History Book for 2004 by the Latino Literary Council.
His writing has appeared in the The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, Washingtonian, National Geographic Traveler, Huffington Post, The Potomac Review, Gargoyle, GQ and Esquire. His columns appear on the USA Today op-ed page, where he is on the Board of Contributors.
Tim teaches fiction and nonfiction writing at Johns Hopkins University, where he received the 2009 Award for Teaching Excellence and the Professional Achievement Award in 2004 and 2010. He is a Walter E. Dakin Fellow and Tennessee Williams Scholar to the Sewanee Writing Conference, and a Pen/Faulkner visiting writer to the Washington, D.C. Public Schools. He received his master's in writing from Johns Hopkins and a bachelor's degree in magazine journalism from Syracuse University.
Born in Philadelphia, he was raised in Lockport, N.Y. One of his first jobs was writing music reviews for The Buffalo Courier-Express. Since then he's worked on both coasts and in between, covering everything from the Olympics to the America's Cup.
He lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his wife and their two children.