A-bomb victim Sadako’s book now in English

HIROSHIMA (Kyodo) The English translation of a Japanese picture book on Sadako Sasaki, a girl who died at age 12 after battling leukemia resulting from the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, has been completed recently, according to its publisher.

 

“Memories of Sadako,” the English version of the original book published in 2005, was translated by several people, including Keiko Miyamoto, a part-time teacher in Hiroshima who knew Kiyo Okura, an atomic bomb survivor and author of the Japanese book who died in 2008 at the age of 67.

Okura, who spent three months with Sasaki in the same hospital room when she was 14-years-old, had expressed hope that her book would be translated into English for people around the world.

Sasaki, who became the model for the Children’s Peace Monument in Hiroshima, was 2 years old when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945. She later developed leukemia and folded paper cranes while in the hospital, praying for recovery, only to succumb to the illness.

The book describes Sasaki in her early adolescence and includes episodes such as when she and Okura figured out unique ways to fold paper cranes, racing to see which of them could fold more cranes, finding a pen pal from the readers’ column in a magazine and taking on the challenge of reading Ogai Mori’s novel “Gan” (“The Wild Geese”).

The English book, which has 64 pages, is priced at ¥840.

 

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