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Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes (Puffin Modern Classics) Paperback – April 12, 2004
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From School Library Journal
Paula L. Setser, Deep Springs Elementary School, Lexington, KY
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.
An extraordinary book, one no reader will fail to find compelling and unforgettable. ("Booklist", starred review)
Top Customer Reviews
Sadako lives an idyllic life with her parents and two brothers not far from where the atom bomb was dropped in 1945. Although she sees evidence of this horrific act on the faces of other people and knows that many have died from the diseases caused by the radioactive materials, her life hasn't been touched by this. But then Sadako becomes very ill as the result of the radiation. Shortly after she is diagnosed her friend tells her the story of how a thousand paper cranes can bring good luck. And so Sadako begins making origami paper cranes and wishes for good health.
This book is based on the true story of the girl Sadako who was born in Japan in 1943 and died from leukemia in 1955. Today she is a national hero to children in Japan. While this is a sad book adn may not b eright for all younger children, it does teach a wonderful lesson about the effects of war on innocent people and courage in the face of a terminal illness.
As a footnote, last spring we attended the wedding of a friends son. As a party favor at the end of the wedding, the bride made paper cranes for the guests to wish us luck as we had wished them the same. She also told the legend of a thousand paper cranes and couldn't help but think about this when I saw this book on the library shelves and as I read this book. I don't think I will ever look at a paper crane the same way now after reading this book.
Ten-year-old Sadako is very active, dreaming of representing her school on the track team. Until she starts experiencing dizziness and other odd symptoms, which she hides from her family as long as she can. Ultimately she is hospitalized with the "atom bmomb disease," which causes her great physical and emotional pain, as her tender life is soon to be senselessly cut short. Must she die so young and unfulfilled, a decade after the day that stopped history? Is there no end to the list of civilian Japanese casualties?
Then her faithful girlfriend suggests a method--based on superstition--to distract her and pass the time in bed: folding 1000 paper cranes (the Japanese art called Origami). Her brother even offers to hang them. Can such a repetitive act really conquer the curse upon this innocent girl, as folklore insists? Will she live long enough to complete her self-appointed task? This short and touching read inspired both school children of Japan and later many adults to honor her commitment to life and beauty, to trust and hope. Written in a style for younger readers, the message of SADAKO will reach out to senstitive humans of all ages.
I felt almost like a child learning of this atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima for the first time. The events in this story sparked my interest. The author, Eleanor Coerr, does a wonderful job of presenting some facts about the bombing in a way that children can relate to, while leaving enough unknown that they will want to find out more. Is this not what historical fiction should do?
The text and pictures make this book easily readable by a child as young as seven years. Including the epilogue, it is only sixty-four pages long, and the transitions throughout hold a reader's attention. The story teaches while presenting an ejoyable read. For these reasons and many others, I was very inpressed by this book.
I think it was a wonderful lesson for students to experience what occurred to the people of Japan from their viewpoint. I bought this book for my nephew to read because I think it is so important for kids to understand effects of war from "the other side's" viewpoint. I think that it will help build tolerance and understanding about tough issues such as the effects from the A bomb and what it did to the Japanese people.
I think this is a great book for parents to read to their upper elementary kids. It will open up a line of discussion that might otherwise be overlooked.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Sadako chan's story moved my heart. I don't know why people create wars when we all can live together and be happy together in peace. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Parinda
Always read this book to my fifth graders as a way to teach them a little WWII history. Read more
It is shocking the extent to which this book has been embraced, despite being historically inaccurate. Read morePublished 2 months ago by PippiSue
This is a book my students were recently reading as a novel study. We read the book, talked about the historical setting, and even had a Japanese Culture Day. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amanda Marie
A great book to use to teach WWII Japan Theater. I read this to my 7th grade class every year, and we discuss the effects of the Atomic Bomb. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Angela Nottingham
maby sell the book for a better cost like 3:99 or 2:99 that would b better·but the book was awesome i love it so much·Published 3 months ago by Jessica Williamson
This is a cute although sad story. I gave this to my niece for her birthday along with a 1000 page set of origami paper and string that I bought separately so that she can make... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Rayne