Six months after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor they invaded and occupied the Aleutian Islands off the coast of Alaska. Little has been written about this part of WWII. The United States government kept their documents classified for many decades after the war.
This book is told from the point of view of the American civilians who were captured and taken prisoner along with some of the American and Japanese soldiers who fought in this battle.
The story opens with the cryptanalysts (code-breakers) whose job was to track all of Japans messages and de-code them so the Americans would know where they were going to attack next.
Weather also plays a big factor with the “Williwaws” winds. Winds that happened often and were hurricane force in strength. If the winds were not blowing then the fog would roll in.
After the attack Americans from the mainland and the native Aleuts were taken prisoner and packed into ships to be taken back to Japan. Even though the Aleuts were “American Citizens” they were not necessarily treated like that by their government. After they were brought back to Alaska conditions were very severe and many more of them died.
This battle is one that many people know little about. This is the first non-fiction young adult version of this battle. It is easy to read with more than 80 black and white photographs. This book left me with a lot of emotions and this is one battle that I will never forget. A really good read for those of you who like reading and learning more about WWII. This would be a good book to use with Karen Hesse’s Aleutian Sparrow. 221 pages, over 80 black & white photos Ages 11 and up
Recommended by: Joleen Waltman, Librarian, Idaho USA