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To Hell and Back: The Last Train from…

To Hell and Back: The Last Train from Hiroshima…

by Charles Pellegrino

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The first bomb, and then the second

To Hell and Back: The Last Train from Hiroshima by Charles Pellegrino (Rowman & Littlefield, $29.95).

This book, based on accounts by survivors of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, has an unusual history itself: Five years ago, an earlier edition of the book was withdrawn from publication because of the use of untrustworthy sources. In To Hell and Back: The Last Train from Hiroshima, Charles Pellegrino offers a revised and carefully edited version of the book, with first-person accounts from the few living hibakusha, those exposed to the blasts.

Among them was a man who survived the bombing from Hiroshima and fled to Nagasaki, where he had relatives, only to survive yet another atomic bombing.

To Hell and Back is detailed, gruesome and emotionally draining; it’s hard not to believe that those who were closest to the bombs and thus vaporized were the lucky ones. Released on the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, Pellegrino’s book—like John Hersey’s Hiroshima—is horrible and necessary.

Reviewed on Lit/Rant: http://litrant.tumblr.com/post/128990410163/the-first-bomb-and-then-the-second-t... ( )
  KelMunger | Sep 30, 2015 |
Seventy years ago the United States dropped the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, causing unfathomable devastation and loss lo lives. Any book that uses the testimony from actual people who survived or witnessed this destruction and does not focus on the political always proves to have more of an impact. At least for me. There are pictures now in my head that will never leaves, passages I have read that I will not forget.

The author goes int depth of what the actual waves of the bomb did to a person, to the buildings and why it missed some who were so close but survived. Some of this was confusing to me though I felt the author patiently tried to relate this message in simpler terms, I just don't have much of a technical mindset. All in all a memorable, well written book , a book about a time I hope will never come again.

ARC from NetGalley. ( )
  Beamis12 | Aug 19, 2015 |
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Draws on the voices of atomic-bomb survivors and the science of forensic archaeology to describe the events and aftermath of two days in August 1945 when nuclear devices detonated over Japan changed life on Earth forever. --Publisher's description.

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