To Hell and Back: The Last Train from Hiroshima (Asia/Pacific/Perspectives) by Charles Pellegrino.

Aug 04, 2017, 12:00 AM

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To Hell and Back: The Last Train from Hiroshima (Asia/Pacific/Perspectives) by Charles Pellegrino.

I have travelled with Pellegrino to Japan to visit survivors of both the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, and to consult with officials and historians there. Among that community he is well respected and considered an important voice for the history of these events. Pellegrino combines intense forensic detail—some of it new to history—with unfathomable heartbreak. The author unflinchingly chronicles these most devastating events in Japan, the only times nuclear weapons have been used against human beings, and begs us to hold hands and to pray that it never happens again. A must read for anyone with a conscience. (James Cameron, director, producer, engineer, and explorer)

By far the best book I have ever read on the subject. . . . No one I know has ever articulated more fully, more accurately, and more effectively the essential nature of the atomic bombings. A great book—a potential game-changer in the struggle to eliminate nuclear weapons. (Steven Leeper, Hiroshima Jogakuin University, former chair of the Hiroshima Peace Culture Foundation)

The book opens with imagery that leaves one speechless. Pellegrino is a poet at heart, a poet with a Japanese soul. (Francis Kakugawa, poet, Hiroshima family member)

Drawing on his considerable scholarly skills as well as his poetic sensibility, Charles Pellegrino has greatly enlarged our understanding of the singular tragedy that was—and is—Hiroshima. The pages themselves seem to weep, drenched as they are in poignancy, passion, and a salutary measure of unbearable truth.

(James Morrow, author of Shambling Towards Hiroshima and This Is the Way the World Ends)

I just finished reading the book again. Each time I take the journey, the words leave a stronger impression—the most important piece of literature written about the hibakusha (the exposed) since John Hershey’s Hiroshima. (Paule Savinio, author of From Above)

Charles Pellegrino’s writings have provided critical information, particularly on the first twenty-four hours after the nuclear explosion in Hiroshima. This information has added significantly [to our] knowledge and understanding about the medical and pathological events of the early period after the nuclear event. In turn, this information has allowed the development of a plan that could potentially save thousands of lives if another nuclear explosion, similar to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, occurs. Our military believes that this is inevitable. (Norman Ende, Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Rutgers, New Jersey Medical School)

Pellegrino fills this fascinating work with dark revelations, incredible imagery, and unforgettable characters. With a scientist's eye for detail, the author sets the record straight about what actually happened. So forget what you thought you knew about the August 1945 atomic bombings and their aftermath. This book is the definitive account. (Bill Schutt, American Museum of Natural History)

During my forty years as a senior scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory, including thirty years of collaboration with Charlie Pellegrino, I have always found him to be a careful, thoughtful, imaginative, and honest researcher. I was involved in R&D on applications of fission and fusion nuclear energy [for] nuclear rockets, and Charlie and I collaborated on a next step: Interstellar probe designs based on anti-matter propulsion. (James Powell, Brookhaven National Laboratory)

Let's hope this book touches the hearts of the many and that such extreme methods of societal control are finally eliminated. . . . A monumental work. (Roy Cullimore, founder and president, Droycon Bioconcepts)

Charles Pellegrino's unique forensic archaeological approach . . . should be required reading for all those making decisions of war. Despite pas...