Hunt for the Bamboo Rat by Graham Salisbury


I put off reading this because I’m tired of WWII stories, at least Holocaust ones; I’ve read a ton of those. But this is not one of those. Bamboo Rat is about an American born Japanese boy from Hawaii. It was a bit of a slow start but quickly picks up after Zenji is employed by the Army to translate for them. He goes to Manila to spy on Japanese businessmen living at the hotel where he stays, and is there when Pearl Harbor is bombed. Then he leaves with the army as they retreat to other islands, goes through some of the fighting, is captured by Japanese soldiers and tortured, survives, and so much more. I stayed up late to finish this one, reading it in just one day. The author’s note tells me the story was inspired by a real person, making it even more impressive to me. I’ve given it to one of our history teachers to read, I love getting coaches to read books.  

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