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The Last Train from Hiroshima [Audio]
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Recently, there have been questions about the accuracy of some parts of this book. At this time, Tantor Media will continue to make it available to our customers, but we wanted to make you aware of the issues. Here is a statement from the hardcover publisher of the book, Henry Holt and Company: "It is with deep regret that Henry Holt and Company announces that we will no longer print, correct or ship copies of Charles Pellegrino's The Last Train from Hiroshima due to the discovery of dishonest sources of information for the book. It is easy to understand how even the most diligent author could be duped by a source, but we also understand that this opens that book to very detailed scrutiny. The author of any work of non-fiction must stand behind its content. We must rely on our authors to answer questions that may arise as to the accuracy of their work and reliability of their sources. Unfortunately, Mr. Pellegrino was not able to answer the additional questions that have arisen about his book to our satisfaction." The Last Train from Hiroshima offers listeners a stunning "you are there" time capsule, gracefully wrapped in elegant prose. Charles Pellegrino's scientific authority and close relationship with the A-bomb's survivors make his account the most gripping and authoritative ever written. At the narrative's core are eyewitness accounts of those who experienced the atomic explosions firsthand-the Japanese civilians on the ground and the American fliers in the air. Thirty people are known to have fled Hiroshima for Nagasaki-where they arrived just in time to survive the second bomb. One of them, Tsutomu Yamaguchi, is the only person who experienced the full effects of the cataclysm at ground zero both times. The second time, the blast effects were diverted around the stairwell in which Yamaguchi had been standing, placing him and a few others in a shock cocoon that offered protection, while the entire building disappeared around them. Pellegrino weaves spellbinding stories together within a narrative that challenges the "official report," showing exactly what happened in Hiroshima and Nagasaki-and why.
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About the Author

Scientist Charles Pellegrino is the author of nineteen books of fiction and nonfiction, including Unearthing Atlantis, Ghosts of Vesuvius, and the New York Times bestseller The Jesus Family Tomb, coauthored with Simcha Jacobovici. Arthur Morey has recorded over two hundred audiobooks in history, fiction, science, business, and religion, earning a number of AudioFile Earphones Awards and two Audie Award nominations. His plays and songs have been produced in New York, Chicago, and Milan, where he has also performed.

Reviews

There are many books about the two atomic bombs that ended the war in the Pacific. Pellegrino's addition to that corpus brings to the 21st-century eye a clear vision of the destruction, both physical and human, that accompanied the attacks. Among them are the stories of about 30 people who are known to have survived the Hiroshima blast and fled to Nagasaki, where they were bombed again. The majority of the book is a depressing catalog of vignettes describing the horrific injuries and the fates of both immediate victims and survivors. Pellegrino (Ghosts of Vesuvius), a prolific writer of both fiction and nonfiction, explicitly intends to renew our memories of the horrors of atomic war in the hope that future ones can be avoided. VERDICT Although there is already a substantial and eloquent body of work on the subject, Pellegrino's able exposition of the mechanisms, results, aftermath, and healing will find readers among antiwar patrons, peace researchers, and some military readers, but it is an addition to a crowded genre.-Edwin B. Burgess, U.S. Army Combined Arms Research Lib., Fort Leavenworth, KS Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

Using a combination of firsthand accounts of Japanese A-bomb survivors, American aviators, and classified documents of government officials, Pellegrino (The Jesus Family Tomb) reconstructs two horrifying days and their aftermath when the age of atomic warfare was introduced over Japan. He is fascinated with the "strange alchemy" of these cruel weapons ("One ten-millionth of a second later, a sphere of gamma rays escap[ed] the core at light speed") as the bomb fell on Mrs. Aoyam tending her garden at Point Zero, literally before she could see it coming. Pellegrino is equally interested in the grotesque effects the blasts in Hiroshima and Nagasaki inflicted on the human body with its gamma rays, neutron spray and poisonous black rain. The stories of the few Japanese survivors includes a group of 30 civilians fleeing from Hiroshima to Nagasaki where they arrived to endure the second bomb, are heart-stopping. Pellegrino dissects the complex political and military strategies that went into the atomic detonations and the untold suffering heaped on countless Japanese civilians, weaving all of the book's many elements into a wise, informed protest against any further use of these terrible weapons. 16 pages of b&w photos, maps. (Jan.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

Adult/High School-Pellegrino's masterful retelling of the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki through the eyes of Japanese survivors and U.S. military personnel, using the science of forensic archaeology, is a riveting and detailed account of the atomic blasts and their aftermath. The intimate personal narratives, including those from survivors of both nuclear bombings and those who were near the bombs' hypocenter in shock cocoons while everything outside their protective "bubbles" was decimated, form a powerful yet horrific account of the massive devastation of Japanese civilians. What these survivors saw and experienced will form an indelible impression on readers. Many of the stories from these survivors as well as American journalists who visited ground zero were censored or criticized for lacking authenticity, based on the regulations and findings by General Douglas MacArthur's September 11 Committee of 1945. The committee did not want the public to know how pervasive and long-term the effects of nuclear radiation were on civilian populations. With this volume, Pellegrino has brought all of this important information to light and makes a clear and compelling case for never using nuclear weapons again.-Melanie Parsons, Fairfax County Public Library, VA Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

"The stories of the few Japanese survivors...are heart-stopping... A wise, informed protest against any further use of these terrible weapons." ---Publishers Weekly Starred Review

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