Warriors in the Crossfire
On the island of Saipan, in the South Pacific, the second world war is a distant idea. The Japanese have governed the island for twenty-five years and they mix regularly with the native islanders. Though no one questions who holds power, the two peoples coexist peacefully.Joseph has known Japanese occupation for his entire life. One of the only islanders accepted by the Japanese and allowed into their school, Joseph nevertheless is the son of the Chamorro chief and proud of his heritage. He seeks to fight against the oppressors, as his warrior ancestors had, and openly defies restrictions. A greater war approaches the island, however, and the Japanese impress the indigenous men into labor camps. Before he leaves, Joseph’s father takes him to the caves that their family has used to defend itself for thousands of years. On his solo journey home, Joseph’s responsibility to his family becomes uncomfortably palpable. He tries to hide from his obligation, but when his father dies through the labor camps, Joseph’s fantasy becomes impossible. As Joseph buries his father at sea and risks his own life, he begins to learn the true practices of a warrior. Equally difficult is taking his family to the caves, where want of food and water threatens starvation. American and Japanese troops approach the island, beginning to fight what will become one of the largest battles of the war. The stress forces Joseph to take responsibility not only for his family, but for his people as well. In this debut historical novel, Nancy Bo Flood creates a company of clear-voiced characters who move convincingly through a story of war and mounting pressure. Her experience as a resident of and teacher in Saipan inform an intimacy that quickly presents the texture of the island, its history, and its culture. Readers will feel Joseph’s strain as they read about this little-known chapter of American history.

Warriors in the Crossfire Details

TitleWarriors in the Crossfire
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMar 1st, 2010
PublisherFront Street, Incorporated
ISBN-139781590786611
Rating
GenreHistorical, Historical Fiction, Young Adult, War, Young Adult Historical Fiction, World War II, Cultural, Adventure, Survival, Childrens, Middle Grade, Family

Warriors in the Crossfire Review

  • Shannon
    January 1, 1970
    Warriors in the Crossfire is a haunting depiction of the invasion of Saipan during World War II. The author, Nancy Bo Flood, spent time living in Saipan, and this comes through in her writing. It is clear from the vivid descriptions, "Dawn was spilling light across the waves. Blood-red streaks cut along the wide straight horizon, separating ocean and sky.", that she has been there, seen it with her own eyes, and found it beautiful.This tale of Joseph and his cousin Kento is one that doesn't end Warriors in the Crossfire is a haunting depiction of the invasion of Saipan during World War II. The author, Nancy Bo Flood, spent time living in Saipan, and this comes through in her writing. It is clear from the vivid descriptions, "Dawn was spilling light across the waves. Blood-red streaks cut along the wide straight horizon, separating ocean and sky.", that she has been there, seen it with her own eyes, and found it beautiful.This tale of Joseph and his cousin Kento is one that doesn't end with a Disney flourish of miracles and magic. It includes heroism of the everyday kind, with a boy doing his best to protect his family, even when he doesn't know how. In one scene, Joseph carries his father's body, while shells explode in the distance. "My arms grew numb. I no longer felt fear or grief or even the rain." The invasion is told with all the terror of war, although depicted appropriately for a younger audience. When it became clear that the Americans would win the war, Japanese soldiers and citizens were marched to one end of the island and forced to leap into the sea. American soldiers dropped leaflets urging people not to jump. This true event, as depicted in Warriors, and witnessed by the character Joseph, had me holding my breath even as I turned pages. "People stepped through the swirling papers as if they were falling leaves." I highly recommend this book for teachers with WWII in their curriculums as well as for readers age 10 and up with an interest in history or war.
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  • Trinay
    January 1, 1970
    Warriors in the Crossfire is a historical fiction book that follows a young boy Joseph and his cousin Kento in Saipan. This book really shows that even with practice you are not really ready for life. Both boys learn what a true warrior is as World War 2 rages on. I find this book really interesting because it shows what civilians had to endure while a war was going on. I like how Bo, the author, is very descriptive in the book. On a more serious note this book provokes the though of what I woul Warriors in the Crossfire is a historical fiction book that follows a young boy Joseph and his cousin Kento in Saipan. This book really shows that even with practice you are not really ready for life. Both boys learn what a true warrior is as World War 2 rages on. I find this book really interesting because it shows what civilians had to endure while a war was going on. I like how Bo, the author, is very descriptive in the book. On a more serious note this book provokes the though of what I would do and feel if I was caught up in a real war so outside my back yard. This is a very scary reality and I am very fortunate to not have endured something such as the people during WW2 and the other wars.I also like how the book give survival tip such as dealing with sharks turtles and soldiers. On the other hand I do wish their was more about ww2, and a more dramatic plot line: the story also progressed slowly in the beginning. This was a good read.
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  • Gabe Dunbar
    January 1, 1970
    the setting of this book begins in Saipan There is this boy,named Joseph and his cousin named Kento who have to survive the war between Japaneses and America.In fact the Japanese have been in control of Saipan for the last 25 years and the boys are sick of it they want to do something about it.Most of the men of Josephs village has been sent to fight for the Japanese.Josephs Dad the leader of Saipan tells the boy to hide in the cave with there family. Whale they were hiding in the caves they hu the setting of this book begins in Saipan There is this boy,named Joseph and his cousin named Kento who have to survive the war between Japaneses and America.In fact the Japanese have been in control of Saipan for the last 25 years and the boys are sick of it they want to do something about it.Most of the men of Josephs village has been sent to fight for the Japanese.Josephs Dad the leader of Saipan tells the boy to hide in the cave with there family. Whale they were hiding in the caves they hurt and look for food later his family is dieing of thrust. He finally find the water that his Dad showed him when he showed him the cave.The war comes to saipan and Josephs sister Ann Maria gets shot in the head. The Americans take them to there tent and there is food and water the story ends when the war is over and Josephs family gets excited that the war is over.
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  • Andrew
    January 1, 1970
    This book is a pretty challenging book. It is about a 2 kids who live on an island named Saipan. While they live in harmony, World War II is happening. When the war comes to them, they had to go into hiding. They live and survive in a cave for many days.I like this book because it is about survival and I love camping and surviving. So while reading this book, I could relate to it. I like this book a lot. I rate it a 4 star book.
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  • Mckinley
    January 1, 1970
    Knew nothing about the fighting that took place here during WWII. Found it interesting.
  • Alex (not a dude) Baugh
    January 1, 1970
    Twelve year old Joseph. son of a Saipan chief and clan leader, and his Japanese cousin Kento Tanaka have always been friends and now they both want to become warriors. But Saipan has been occupied by the Japanese for the past 25 years and becoming warriors has been forbidden. Up til now, World War II hasn't had much of an impact on life on Saipan, but one day at the Japanese school the boys attend, they are sent home by their teacher with words of warning to obey. As the Americans get closer, th Twelve year old Joseph. son of a Saipan chief and clan leader, and his Japanese cousin Kento Tanaka have always been friends and now they both want to become warriors. But Saipan has been occupied by the Japanese for the past 25 years and becoming warriors has been forbidden. Up til now, World War II hasn't had much of an impact on life on Saipan, but one day at the Japanese school the boys attend, they are sent home by their teacher with words of warning to obey. As the Americans get closer, the Japanese need more soldiers, Kento explains to Joseph, so the school was close and the older boys will become soldiers. Joseph and Kento don't see each other very much now, when they do meet, Kento tells hims more soldiers have arrived on the island, that the war is coming closer. Then Joseph's father tells him to trust no one who isn't family, not even Kento. Later, Ako, Kento's younger sister, tells Joseph not to go to the cave when war comes. But what cave is she talking about?One night, before he reports for mandatory work at the airstrip used by the Japanese, Joseph's father wakes him and takes him to the cave where he has stored water and food for the family's survival when the war comes to the island. Soon, the bombing starts and Joseph thinks of all his has been told to do. It is a confusing time for a 12 year old who is now responsible for the safety of his mother, pregnant sister, and nephew. Once again, Kento and Ako beg Joseph to not go to the caves, but to come with them. But Joseph takes his family to the caves anyway. But when the family needs more water, Joseph risks going to the grotto to get it, and instead meets Kento, who asks for his help. The Japanese are losing the war and the soldiers are forcing all Japanese citizens on Saipan to honor the code of the samurai - defeat, dishonor, death. Ako and her mother have been forced to go to the cliffs, "the precipice that plunged straight down, the place of lost spirits, of a moaning wind that never stopped" where they along with the other Japanese were expected to jump to their death, according to Emperor Hirohito's directive. Joseph remembered these cliffs - his father had taken him there once and told him never to go there again. Would Joseph and Kento get there in time to save Ako and her mother? Or would the American soldiers in the helicopters over them kill everyone first, just as the Japanese always said they would?Warriors in the Crossfire is a small but powerful book, one that made quit an impression on me. I had never read a book for young readers about the impact that the fighting between the Americans and the Japanese had on the indigenous people or the innocent Japanese civilians living on Saipan. Saipan is a small island but was strategically important militarily for both nations in WWII. One of the effects of war, in general and WWII specifically because it was a total war, is that the people most frequently caught in the crossfire are the innocents - those people not engaged in warfare, and especially the children and that is exactly what happens in this well-written, well-researched book. This is a true coming of age story for both Joseph and Kento. At the beginning, both boys think they know what it means to be a warrior and that is what they want to become. But in the end, caught in the crossfire of warring nations, the boys learn that being a warrior, a true warrior turns out to be something very different than what they had thought. Flood gives the reader a wonderful insider's view of the rich culture of the island's indigenous people despite living under Japanese occupation for so many years. But there is also Japanese culture on the island and Flood gives a nod to that as well by introducing each chapter with a Japanese Haiku, for example (and my favorite)TO SEE, PEACEAfter darkness We seeWhat had been Un-seeable.This book is recommended for readers age 11+This book was sent to me by the authorThis review was originally posted on The Children's War
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  • Shel
    January 1, 1970
    Flood, N.B. (2010). Warriors in the Crossfire. Honesdale, PA: Front Street.9781590786611141 Pages.Appetizer: Joseph, his family and his tribe live on the island of Saipan in 1944. The island has already been under the control of the Japanese for the duration of the war, and many of the tribe's freedoms stripped away. As the American forces grow close, the Japanese military's presence also increases, taking the last vestiges of freedom and replacing it with the certainty that the island will be b Flood, N.B. (2010). Warriors in the Crossfire. Honesdale, PA: Front Street.9781590786611141 Pages.Appetizer: Joseph, his family and his tribe live on the island of Saipan in 1944. The island has already been under the control of the Japanese for the duration of the war, and many of the tribe's freedoms stripped away. As the American forces grow close, the Japanese military's presence also increases, taking the last vestiges of freedom and replacing it with the certainty that the island will be bombed. When Joseph's father is forced to leave to do manual labor for the Japanese, it falls to Joseph to lead his family to safety in the island caves, despite the fact that the rest of the islanders don't think anyone will be safe there.As you can probably guess, this book is a laugh riot.But seriously, there are a few moments of brevity, mixed in among the many tensions between the natives and the japanese, boyhood and manhood, loyalty and betrayal, imprisonment and freedom. It's a lot to take on. And Nancy Bo Flood manages to do so with a lot of poetic language.Flood does a stunning job of describing the setting. Her writing helped me to picture the island, but still left me wanting more. As a teacher, if I used this book in a social studies classroom, I would be sure to try to include some photos of Saipan (in the 1940s and now--Flood notes that the island is now home to many hotels and resorts) to support and really bring home the setting and sorrows of the story. However, when taking on such a project, while I would of incorporate this photo, and this one, I might leave this one out, depending upon the messages I wanted to share with young impressionable minds.As I read more and more, I found that while the book was a mere 140 pages, and a relatively quick read, I still had to take some breaks from some of the content. While there's nothing that is graphically upsetting, Joseph has to deal with a lot of tough emotional realities, fears and responsibilities in a time and place that is often ignored by the standard issue history textbooks, making this an important but also intense read.Dinner Conversation:"They're coming. Get down. Now!" I stared into the darkness at the black curved beach. Soldiers should not have been patrolling so early. The last group usually finished their round at midnight. Waves lapped against the wet sand. Palm fonds clattered. I heard the sounds of hard leather military boots stomping across loose coral and rock" (p. 9)."We flew up, over the outer edge of the reef, and were free. Free of the rules, the restrictions, the always watching, patrolling soldiers. The Japanese may have taken our stores, our schools, even our lands, but they could not take this. Not the ocean" (p. 14)."The new Japanese rules forbade us--any native--to use a canoe or fish outside the lagoon. We were all suspected of being spies, of sending information to the American military. We were not allowed to have a radio--none--in the entire village. No newspapers. Nothing printed. Each week brought new restrictions, earlier curfews, more arrests" (p. 25)."The cave is up there. As soon as I am certain no one has followed us, we will climb to it.""I don't understand--""Remember the turtle. Joseph. When the shark smells blood, he attacks. The turtle pulls in his head, waits...survives. Joseph, survive. Bring our family here" (p. 59).Tasty Rating: !!!
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  • Sheila Welch
    January 1, 1970
    WARRIORS IN THE CROSSFIREby Nancy Bo FloodThis story drew me in with its clearly depicted first scene – two boys in a small boat, riding ocean waves just before dawn. They’re hunting sea turtles, but things don’t go quite as planned, and one of them nearly drowns. Soon the boys’ adventures, as well as their friendship, are overshadowed by the threat of war coming to their island home of Saipan, which is under Japanese control.Joseph, the narrator, is an intelligent, native boy who believes in th WARRIORS IN THE CROSSFIREby Nancy Bo FloodThis story drew me in with its clearly depicted first scene – two boys in a small boat, riding ocean waves just before dawn. They’re hunting sea turtles, but things don’t go quite as planned, and one of them nearly drowns. Soon the boys’ adventures, as well as their friendship, are overshadowed by the threat of war coming to their island home of Saipan, which is under Japanese control.Joseph, the narrator, is an intelligent, native boy who believes in the old ways of his people and wants to live up to the expectations of his father, the village chief and clan leader. Joseph’s best friend, Kento, and he have always been close despite the fact that Kento’s father is Japanese. The boys are actually first cousins although they begin to feel all bonds between them stretched to the breaking point as the tension of an American invasion mounts. When the fighting actually begins, Joseph must decide whether to accept Kento’s offers of safety with the Japanese or to obey his father’s directive to hide in a hillside cave. The tension between two cultures, two nations, and two boys is strongly described. One scene, which takes place after the Japanese realize they can not win, is particularly haunting. Whole families of Japanese residents, some forced by armed guards, are marching to a treacherous, high cliff where they step off into the sea..Joseph tells his complex story of friendship, family, loss, terror, loyalty, and love in a vivid yet understated manner. I recommend this WWII story told from an unusual perspective for readers ages ten and older.
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  • Allison Parker
    January 1, 1970
    As the American forces fought their way closer and closer to Japan during World War II, the island nation of Saipan (under Japanese contol) was caught in between. In this historical fiction story, Joseph is a young man, a native of Saipan, whose people is under strict and often racist control of the Japanese. Rumors build that the Americans are advancing and the battles might reach their shores. While the people of Saipan literally are caught in crossfires, Joseph too is caught between cultures As the American forces fought their way closer and closer to Japan during World War II, the island nation of Saipan (under Japanese contol) was caught in between. In this historical fiction story, Joseph is a young man, a native of Saipan, whose people is under strict and often racist control of the Japanese. Rumors build that the Americans are advancing and the battles might reach their shores. While the people of Saipan literally are caught in crossfires, Joseph too is caught between cultures and roles. He is allowed to go to Japanese school and learn the disciplines of reading and writing, while his father teaches him the survival and leadership skills needed in the tribe. His family honors both Catholic and Saipan's ancient religious traditions. His best friend is half Japanese, even more torn between two worlds. Their friendship is tested as the conflict grows, and Joseph learns that he must protect his family on his own. I think this book is an important one, because it brings to light a seldom taught story in WWII history classes. Flood includes a beautiful historical note in the back explaining how much of the tragedy of this story really happened. I doubt it will be popular; though it's a thin book, the story starts slowly and it took me about half the book until I felt like I understood the protagonist's character. But for the child who has exhausted the library's supply of Holocaust novels, this book might bring a new perspective to the victims of that horrible world-wide war.
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  • Nick Smith
    January 1, 1970
    Warriors in the Crossfire by Nancy Bo Flood is one book you will not want to put down after you pick it up. Its addicting, fast moving, suspense filled book that will get your blood flowing. Sapian, an island in the South Pacific, a place of unwanted war for the native people. Warriors in the Crossfire is a novel about how the native people from Sapian are under the control of the Japenese. Joseph is the son the the chief of the natives and is one of the only natives accepted into the Japenese s Warriors in the Crossfire by Nancy Bo Flood is one book you will not want to put down after you pick it up. Its addicting, fast moving, suspense filled book that will get your blood flowing. Sapian, an island in the South Pacific, a place of unwanted war for the native people. Warriors in the Crossfire is a novel about how the native people from Sapian are under the control of the Japenese. Joseph is the son the the chief of the natives and is one of the only natives accepted into the Japenese schools. When war comes his father, the chief tells him to go to the caves and trust no one but family and not to listen to anyone. Kento, His cousin, and half Japanese, is his best friend and when the war comes Kento tells him to go with him and they will be safe. Who would you listen too? Your Father or your cousins family who's father is an officer in the military? It shows the hardships imperialism has on families. As the war gets closer, Joseph is handed more responsiblities and learns what it takes to be a true warroir and ancestor of the Navigators. If you like nonstop suspense... this book is for you.If you like native readings.... this book is for you.If you want to know the hardships of war... this book is for you.If you like cultural views.... this book is for you.If you are agaisnt imperialism.... this book is for you.If you are concerned about people in any war.... this book is for you to know they can save themselves.If you want to know WHAT IT TAKES TO BE A WARRIOR.... this book is for you.
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  • Ed
    January 1, 1970
    Flood, Nancy Bo. (2010). Warriors in the Crossfire. Ashville, NC: Front Street Books. 142 pp. ISBN 978-1-59078-661-1 (Hard Cover); $17.95.Joseph and his family have lived on Saipan longer than either the Japanese or the Americans. However, both the Japanese and Americans will kill Joseph and his family if they are not very careful.American students often think of the war between the Japanese and the United States during WWII in very simple, US vs. THEM, terms. However these islands are home to p Flood, Nancy Bo. (2010). Warriors in the Crossfire. Ashville, NC: Front Street Books. 142 pp. ISBN 978-1-59078-661-1 (Hard Cover); $17.95.Joseph and his family have lived on Saipan longer than either the Japanese or the Americans. However, both the Japanese and Americans will kill Joseph and his family if they are not very careful.American students often think of the war between the Japanese and the United States during WWII in very simple, US vs. THEM, terms. However these islands are home to people who are neither American nor Japanese and who share a history with both Americans and Japanese. These people have been ravaged, burned, killed, and, perhaps worse, largely forgotten by both sides. In a well-researched book that features language attempting to capture the rhythm and cadence of a culture, we feel the loss and isolation and confusion of a people who quickly realize that their survival will depend on luck and their own superior knowledge of their homeland. Both Americans and Japanese are equally likely to kill them. This book shows us the culture of the Carolinian and Chomorro people AND the major historical facts of the defeat of the Japanese in Saipan. The significance of this book combined with a poetic and absorbing story make this a book well worth adding to high school and middle school libraries.
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  • Aidan
    January 1, 1970
    In this book, the natives of the island Saipan are caught in a crossfire during World War II. The main character is a native teen who is cousins with a Japanese boy. The two are family, but they both have different perspectives. The Japanese boy is sure of victory, while the Native, Joseph, is sure of pain.I think this book was interesting because of its setting. Many have written about the second world war, but not many have written through the eyes of a native. Some have written from the Japan In this book, the natives of the island Saipan are caught in a crossfire during World War II. The main character is a native teen who is cousins with a Japanese boy. The two are family, but they both have different perspectives. The Japanese boy is sure of victory, while the Native, Joseph, is sure of pain.I think this book was interesting because of its setting. Many have written about the second world war, but not many have written through the eyes of a native. Some have written from the Japanese point of view, some the Americans, but the eyes of a person caught in a crossfire, not knowing which side to choose is different. The perspective is also different.My favorite aspect was when Joseph helped Kento, the Japanese boy, to find his family. My least favorite aspect was when Joseph saw the pile of dead bodies, being eaten by flies. It was disgusting to read about what was described.I would recommend this book to the serious of mind. I would not, however, read it to the bored. I thought this book was in the middle for me. It wasn't as good as others, but it was good enough to make my top shelves.
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  • Samantha
    January 1, 1970
    Joseph is an island native living with his family on Saipan, near Japan. His father is a tribe leader and as his father’s only son, he is expected to learn his people’s ways and heritage at his father’s side and one day take his father’s place as a tribal leader. Things change quickly for Joseph and his family as World War II nears its end and Japanese soldiers take over his island home in an attempt to push American soldiers back and protect the Japanese mainland. Joseph’s life changes from one Joseph is an island native living with his family on Saipan, near Japan. His father is a tribe leader and as his father’s only son, he is expected to learn his people’s ways and heritage at his father’s side and one day take his father’s place as a tribal leader. Things change quickly for Joseph and his family as World War II nears its end and Japanese soldiers take over his island home in an attempt to push American soldiers back and protect the Japanese mainland. Joseph’s life changes from one of fishing, gathering food from the jungle, and enjoying his family and schooling to a life of dodging bullets fired by skittish Japanese soldiers and worrying about who he can and cannot trust. As distrust and danger increases, Joseph finds himself forced to grow up quickly and act with courage to protect his family and save their lives. This fictional story is based on true World War II events and does not cover up the death and destruction of war. To fully appreciate Warriors in the Crossfire, be sure to read the author’s note at the beginning of the book and the historical note at the end. Recommended for grades 7 and up. Excellent companion to World War II studies.
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  • Raina
    January 1, 1970
    Brief Pro Review:What is it like to live in a warzone? And what if that war isn’t one you’re fighting? The tiny island of Saipan was caught in the middle of World War II. Its residents had to navigate tricky relationships with the Japanese and Americans, as the two countries fought their deadly war. This is the story of two islanders during those events. Recommended for collections serving young people, particularly because of its unique topic and setting.And candid:Honestly, it's been so long s Brief Pro Review:What is it like to live in a warzone? And what if that war isn’t one you’re fighting? The tiny island of Saipan was caught in the middle of World War II. Its residents had to navigate tricky relationships with the Japanese and Americans, as the two countries fought their deadly war. This is the story of two islanders during those events. Recommended for collections serving young people, particularly because of its unique topic and setting.And candid:Honestly, it's been so long since I read this, I feel ill-informed to write a review. My impressions are that I was really excited to booktalk this to middle schoolers, and then was disappointed to decide that it wouldn't quite work for that. I can't remember if that was because it was too gorey/prowar, or pitched too young, or what. Which, yeah, I know, is annoying. Also, the cover on the copy I have is way duller than the image on GR - in color. The design is the same, just the red is way more muted. I definitely still appreciate that this story was told, though. Extra star for the topic.
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  • Int'l librarian
    January 1, 1970
    The people of Saipan were caught in the US-Japanese crossfire of World War Two, and this novel personalizes the tragedy. Flood gives the violence perspective by focusing upon cultural customs and conflict. Joseph is destined to be a village elder, like his father. He respects the ocean as a source of power and identity. He also loves Japanese poetry, and attends the local Japanese school. It’s his best path to modern success, albeit limited by Japan’s claim to national superiority. The cultural The people of Saipan were caught in the US-Japanese crossfire of World War Two, and this novel personalizes the tragedy. Flood gives the violence perspective by focusing upon cultural customs and conflict. Joseph is destined to be a village elder, like his father. He respects the ocean as a source of power and identity. He also loves Japanese poetry, and attends the local Japanese school. It’s his best path to modern success, albeit limited by Japan’s claim to national superiority. The cultural tension explodes with the shells of the US invading force. The Japanese vow to die for their emperor, and force the same expectation upon the local people. The consequences are brutal and heartbreaking. The plot might earn five stars, but Flood’s writing style doesn’t. She is very clear, but she overuses short near-repetitive phrases for dramatic emphasis, when the story alone holds more than enough drama as a horrific moment in world history.
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  • Tyler Anderson
    January 1, 1970
    This book was about 2 boys on an island in the pacific during World War 2. Japan is under tight watch of the islanders and constantly taking away their privileges.The main character Joseph was thought of as an "island warrior" and his friend Kento wanted him to teach him how to be a warrior. since Kento was Japanese they weren't suppose to see each other which brought more troubles. The book wasn't as interesting as i originally thought it was going to be and I couldn't really connect with any p This book was about 2 boys on an island in the pacific during World War 2. Japan is under tight watch of the islanders and constantly taking away their privileges.The main character Joseph was thought of as an "island warrior" and his friend Kento wanted him to teach him how to be a warrior. since Kento was Japanese they weren't suppose to see each other which brought more troubles. The book wasn't as interesting as i originally thought it was going to be and I couldn't really connect with any part of it enough to want to dive into it. I wouldn't really recommend the book to anyone because i can't think of any group of people it would relate to or anyone it would entice. Overall I gave this book a 2 out of 5 because it wasn't so bad that I wanted to grab the blow torch but it wasn't anymore deserving of anymore stars.
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  • Maribel
    January 1, 1970
    This historical fiction story is set on the island of Saipan during World War II,occupied by the Japanese for over twenty years mixing with the native islanders. In this story Joseph,the son of a native chief, and his family try to survive the war and all of its effects on a family and their village. That one was caught in the crossfire when the Americans attacked the Japanese at this island.Joseph and his half Japanese cousin Kento play to be warriors and at the end they would be one of them. J This historical fiction story is set on the island of Saipan during World War II,occupied by the Japanese for over twenty years mixing with the native islanders. In this story Joseph,the son of a native chief, and his family try to survive the war and all of its effects on a family and their village. That one was caught in the crossfire when the Americans attacked the Japanese at this island.Joseph and his half Japanese cousin Kento play to be warriors and at the end they would be one of them. Joseph learnt a lot from his father "...to be a great warrior you must consider all consequences of your actions..."It is a book that can open up a dialog about the effects of war and the value of cherishing your family. Through the story despite all the dificulties they face, they knew the importance for all the family of remaining together.
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  • Sandra Stiles
    January 1, 1970
    What happens when war breaks out and you find yourself and your country caught in the middle between two warring nations? This book is based on actual historical events. The characters are made up. The setting was unfamiliar to me which is great. It meant research to learn more about the island of Saipan. Joseph lives on this island which has fallen under Japanese control The Japanese encroach on these native people believing many of them are spies for the Americans. Joseph is instructed by his What happens when war breaks out and you find yourself and your country caught in the middle between two warring nations? This book is based on actual historical events. The characters are made up. The setting was unfamiliar to me which is great. It meant research to learn more about the island of Saipan. Joseph lives on this island which has fallen under Japanese control The Japanese encroach on these native people believing many of them are spies for the Americans. Joseph is instructed by his father to hide the people in a cave so that they may survive. A tough decision but one he follows. No child should have to witness the atrocities of war like Joseph has, yet we know that children present and past live this life all the time. This is a book that will stay with me for a long time. It is also a book that I will recommend to our history teachers.
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  • Carro Herdegen
    January 1, 1970
    Language - G, Sexual Content - PG; Violence - PG"War is coming soon," but Joseph doesn't want to believe it. His cousin Kento warns him and his dad shows him where to take his family to be safe, but he doesn't want it to be happening. He is forced to accept it when the bombs come. He takes his family to a cave, but they need food and water to survive, especially when some get hurt.World War II was a hard time for many and that is definitely shown in this book. I love the intensity and imagery, e Language - G, Sexual Content - PG; Violence - PG"War is coming soon," but Joseph doesn't want to believe it. His cousin Kento warns him and his dad shows him where to take his family to be safe, but he doesn't want it to be happening. He is forced to accept it when the bombs come. He takes his family to a cave, but they need food and water to survive, especially when some get hurt.World War II was a hard time for many and that is definitely shown in this book. I love the intensity and imagery, even though some scenes made me cry. You can't help but get caught up in this story after you get to know Joseph and Kento in the first couple chapters.Reviewed for https://kissthebook.blogspot.com/
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  • Julie
    January 1, 1970
    This is a beautifully written book about a young Japanese boy and his Saigon-ian friend during the time of WWII. It is a very short read that only took me a couple of hours but time that I was fully engrossed in the story. This is a great book for the younger crowd (I'd say 13+ due to some descriptions of female anatomy) and teaches honesty, integrity, and loyalty. I highly recommend this read by Nancy Bo Flood! Be sure to check out her other works as well! She's a very talented author! I have r This is a beautifully written book about a young Japanese boy and his Saigon-ian friend during the time of WWII. It is a very short read that only took me a couple of hours but time that I was fully engrossed in the story. This is a great book for the younger crowd (I'd say 13+ due to some descriptions of female anatomy) and teaches honesty, integrity, and loyalty. I highly recommend this read by Nancy Bo Flood! Be sure to check out her other works as well! She's a very talented author! I have read her Sand to Stone and Back Again a few months ago and enjoyed it as well!
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  • Miz Lizzie
    January 1, 1970
    During World War II the Japanese occupied the island of Taipan, forcing the indigenous people to work for them and then abandonning them when the U.S. forces took the island. Joseph and his half-Japanese cousin must decide whether to let family bonds or ethnic bonds guide their actioins. The novel provides some fascinating insight to part of WWII history that has been largely overlooked. For all the danger, death, and hardship in the novel though, I was disappointed at the emotional distance con During World War II the Japanese occupied the island of Taipan, forcing the indigenous people to work for them and then abandonning them when the U.S. forces took the island. Joseph and his half-Japanese cousin must decide whether to let family bonds or ethnic bonds guide their actioins. The novel provides some fascinating insight to part of WWII history that has been largely overlooked. For all the danger, death, and hardship in the novel though, I was disappointed at the emotional distance conveyed in the text. I was intellectually fascinated and revolted by the story events but never emotionally engaged. That's a pity since it could have been a heart-wrenching story.
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  • Miss Amanda
    January 1, 1970
    SLJ gr 5-9 (but I would say it's gr 6-8) 138 pgsSaipan 1944. 12 year old Joseph is tired of all the restrictions that the Japanese place on his people. Unlike his father, Joseph wants to fight back when they insult him. As the American forces come nearer to the island in their fight with the Japanese, Joseph finds himself and his family caught in the crossfire. It is up to Joseph to find a way to help himself and his loved ones survive.I thought this story did a good job of making the reader fee SLJ gr 5-9 (but I would say it's gr 6-8) 138 pgsSaipan 1944. 12 year old Joseph is tired of all the restrictions that the Japanese place on his people. Unlike his father, Joseph wants to fight back when they insult him. As the American forces come nearer to the island in their fight with the Japanese, Joseph finds himself and his family caught in the crossfire. It is up to Joseph to find a way to help himself and his loved ones survive.I thought this story did a good job of making the reader feel, just like Joseph, that they were caught in the middle. I would recommend the story for older readers because the story does include a scene at Suicide Cliff.
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  • Amanda
    January 1, 1970
    SLJ gr 5-9 (but I would say it's gr 6-8) 138 pgsSaipan 1944. 12 year old Joseph is tired of all the restrictions that the Japanese place on his people. Unlike his father, Joseph wants to fight back when they insult him. As the American forces come nearer to the island in their fight with the Japanese, Joseph finds himself and his family caught in the crossfire. It is up to Joseph to find a way to help himself and his loved ones survive.I thought this story did a good job of making the reader fee SLJ gr 5-9 (but I would say it's gr 6-8) 138 pgsSaipan 1944. 12 year old Joseph is tired of all the restrictions that the Japanese place on his people. Unlike his father, Joseph wants to fight back when they insult him. As the American forces come nearer to the island in their fight with the Japanese, Joseph finds himself and his family caught in the crossfire. It is up to Joseph to find a way to help himself and his loved ones survive.I thought this story did a good job of making the reader feel, just like Joseph, that they were caught in the middle. I would recommend the story for older readers because the story does include a scene at Suicide Cliff.
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  • Jacqueline
    January 1, 1970
    Poetically written. A moving story of loss and courage. I had no idea what it was like for the native residents of Saipan during World War II.Many powerful statements in this book that really resonated with me. p. 61 "Trees that bend survive the typhoon; those that resist, shatter."p.82 "When you write, my father says you discover truths, something known but unknown to you."p.85 "Joseph, we do not know what is on the other side of a decision."Nancy Bo Flood does a masterful job portraying the di Poetically written. A moving story of loss and courage. I had no idea what it was like for the native residents of Saipan during World War II.Many powerful statements in this book that really resonated with me. p. 61 "Trees that bend survive the typhoon; those that resist, shatter."p.82 "When you write, my father says you discover truths, something known but unknown to you."p.85 "Joseph, we do not know what is on the other side of a decision."Nancy Bo Flood does a masterful job portraying the dignity of the native people of Saipan caught in the crossfires of war. It is a story that should not only be told, but heard.
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  • Ryan
    January 1, 1970
    Each chapter starts with a short poem - often haiku form, always brief but full of contrasting images: the beauty of the ocean and island and the fear and horror that war brings; the warrior in action, the warrior waiting. There were contrasts in each character - the Joseph on the ocean, free and confident, and the one hiding, frightened, uncertain - and contrasts in the setting - brilliant cliffs, people dying. I thought the story did an amazing job of capturing the intensity of being young, of Each chapter starts with a short poem - often haiku form, always brief but full of contrasting images: the beauty of the ocean and island and the fear and horror that war brings; the warrior in action, the warrior waiting. There were contrasts in each character - the Joseph on the ocean, free and confident, and the one hiding, frightened, uncertain - and contrasts in the setting - brilliant cliffs, people dying. I thought the story did an amazing job of capturing the intensity of being young, of loss and survival.
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  • Jennifer
    January 1, 1970
    This was a powerful story about the people on the island of Saipan during the final months of WWII. Told from the viewpoint of a young boy, this is a story with many themes: honor, family, war, sacrifice. The historical aspects of the story were well-researched, and again I learned things I didn't know about the history of our world. I love in the author's note when she thanks the people of Saipan who spoke with her and shared their stories and says, "May your stories light a candle for peace."
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  • Aden
    January 1, 1970
    Wow! With all the fighting and crazy plot twists, I don't know how the author fit the story in, too. I think Ako and Tayeo are the cutest kids and I loved how the both made Joeseph smile when he didn't know how he would keep going. I also loved how (like Is it Night or Day) it showed a side of WWII that we as Americans don't think much about. I was surprised at how the Japanese would do anything to keep from being defeated. I read in the afterword that the Japanese fought down to the last dozen Wow! With all the fighting and crazy plot twists, I don't know how the author fit the story in, too. I think Ako and Tayeo are the cutest kids and I loved how the both made Joeseph smile when he didn't know how he would keep going. I also loved how (like Is it Night or Day) it showed a side of WWII that we as Americans don't think much about. I was surprised at how the Japanese would do anything to keep from being defeated. I read in the afterword that the Japanese fought down to the last dozen soldiers before they surrendered Saipan. A great book I would recommend to any one.
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  • Tina
    January 1, 1970
    Joseph is a native of the island of Saipan - he is the son of a Chief. Japan has control over their small island during WWII - Joseph is the only native allowed to go to their schools. Soon after the American invasion, Japan realizes that it will lose control of the island and many Japanese families are forced to do the "unthinkable". After his father has died, Joseph is forced to hide his family in one of the many caves on the island. They must survive thirst and starvation. Good story - lots o Joseph is a native of the island of Saipan - he is the son of a Chief. Japan has control over their small island during WWII - Joseph is the only native allowed to go to their schools. Soon after the American invasion, Japan realizes that it will lose control of the island and many Japanese families are forced to do the "unthinkable". After his father has died, Joseph is forced to hide his family in one of the many caves on the island. They must survive thirst and starvation. Good story - lots of action.
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  • Michael
    January 1, 1970
    This is a story of native peoples caught in the crossfire of World War II in the Pacific. The people of Saipan Island huddle between the occupying Japanese, who vow death to all rather than surrender, and the Americans who are said to be so vicious they eat children. Who do you fight for? Who do you fear most? And does it take more courage to fight or to survive?Due out in March. Till then, how about reading "Elephant Run" by Roland Smith? Another powerful piece of historical fiction from WWII.
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  • Melissa Dwyer
    January 1, 1970
    Originally rated G by S. JackendoffAn historical novel that will provide students with a very different point of view concerning the life of an islander living under Japanese rule and being attacked by U.S. forces during WWII. It is quite a readable and gripping novel. The only reason that I did not rate this higher is because I am not sure how often our students will want to circulate this book.
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