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*****= An all-time favorite
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***The Ash Garden

by Dennis Bock

Reviewed September 23, 2001.

At the beginning of this book, I was impressed with its power and very absorbed in its stories.  The author takes the stories of three people and brings them together.  One is a girl who, at six years old, became a victim of the bomb at Hiroshima.  Another is a scientist responsible for creating the bomb, and the third is his wife, who is a refugee from Austria.  The author skilfully weaves their stories, dipping back and forth between the years of WWII and the present.

Yes, the book is sobering.  I feel I have a much clearer picture of the horror of Hiroshima now.  I’m not sure I wanted that picture, but it was presented in a human, compassionate way.  The whole novel was written beautifully and expertly.  My only quibble is that I didn’t feel fully satisfied at the end, didn’t really feel a full sense of completion.  However, it was an excellently written, thought-provoking book.

Copyright © 2003 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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