The Last Cherry Blossom (MP3 CD)
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Yuriko was happy growing up in Hiroshima when it was just her and Papa. But her aunt, Kimiko, and her cousin, Genji, are living with them now, and the family is only getting bigger with talk of a double marriage And while things are changing at home, the world beyond their doors is even more unpredictable: World War II is coming to an end, and since the Japanese newspapers don't report lost battles, the Japanese people are not entirely certain of where Japan stands. Yuriko is used to the sirens and the air-raid drills, but things start to feel more real when the neighbors who have left to fight stop coming home. When the bombs hit Hiroshima, it's through Yuriko's twelve-year-old eyes that we witness the devastation and horror. This is a story that offers young listeners insight into how children lived during the war, while also introducing them to Japanese culture. Based on author Kathleen Burkinshaw's mother's firsthand experience surviving the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, The Last Cherry Blossom hopes to warn listeners of the immense damage nuclear war can bring, while reminding them that the enemy in any war is often not so different from ourselves.