August Readers’ Group Pick
In recognition of the anniversary of the atomic bombing in Hiroshima, we have selected a book for our August Readers’ Group Pick that is based on a firsthand experience with the tragic attack seventy-one years ago. The Last Cherry Blossom by Kathleen Burkinshaw is a beautifully written middle grade book with a strong narrative about the atomic bomb and its effects in Japan. For readers of historical, juvenile fiction, this is a must-read novel that has elements of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes but for a slightly older audience.
Author Kathleen Burkinshaw wrote The Last Cherry Blossom based on her own mother’s story of growing up in Hiroshima during World War II. She was twelve years old when the bomb was dropped on August 6, 1945. This book will not only make a fine addition to classrooms studying WWII, but it also aims to help any reader interested in the Hiroshima bombing hear the inspiring story that is sure to put into perspective the horrifying event.
This August, pick up a copy of The Last Cherry Blossom to read with your book club to help us honor and pay tribute to the 71st anniversary of Hiroshima. With our printable discussion questions written by the author herself, we have everything here to help you and your reading group enjoy one of our favorite middle grade titles this year!
Burkinshaw was kind enough to share this photo of herself (right) and her mother (left) especially for Carousel readers. This is one of the last photographs of them together, and it’s also her favorite.
Printable Discussion Questions
Show Us Your Paper Cranes!
Recommended Reading From the Author
- For more information on what nuclear weapons could do if used today visit ICANW.org.
- For more information on the Hiroshima bombing please visit the Kids Peace Station of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.