Sunday, July 22, 2018

Red Sunrise by Simon Laffy | A Book Review

Red Sunrise by Simon Laffy | A Book Review by iamnotabookworm!

So, earlier this week, I went to a book sale here in Cebu. I just browsed. I don't have the money to spare to buy new books and besides, I have quite a long list on my TBR, both in e-book formats and in paperbacks. I don't think it makes sense to add more books to the pile as I am already struggling with what I have right now. I just don't have enough time. Also, the books I wanted to buy, if I were to buy, were Clive Cussler's. They only have three books there at the sale and I've read two of them. I did find very interesting new authors and stories and I took pictures in case my TBR would have room for them. 

I got this book through Instagram. The author sent me a message and asked if I wanted to review his book and I agreed. This is about a US naval war veteran who have survived the most brutal way to die during World War II via a kamikaze attack on his ship. After recovering from his injuries, he decided to travel around the world by boat. During his sea travel, he meet various people and started to examine his life, his mind, and all his losses. The journey turned into an introspection into the choices he had made in his life and how it led up to his current state. And it turns out, there's more for him to do before he takes his last breath.

This is a sad, tragic, and a tale of redemption. The redemption of Commander Jack Sampson. As the author have mentioned in his blurb, Sampson is an ex-naval officer who turned into an anti-war hero. That perfectly summarizes this whole adventure. But of course, to understand his journey why after giving years of his life for the service of the United States, he ended up offering the rest of his life to end wars, is a tale you must read so you'll understand his motivations. Sampson had seen war and had experienced firsthand the losses that it had caused, especially in his personal life. He has lost his family and his friends because of war. It also almost cost him his own life. It was by a sheer miracle that he survived but his sanity had suffered most because of it. Physical wounds heal but the recurring dreams and nightmares are going to forever haunt him. His guilt will keep chasing him for things that should have been and what might have been. 

So, this book is like an expose on the United States effort on the study, testing, and production of atomic bombs as a new way of getting an upper hand in military warfare. It's a way of again showing the world its might and power. Who would dare challenge her if she has the ultimate weapon of destruction? I admit I don't know much about this subject. But after reading this, I understand better now. And Bikini was immortalized as the new name for swimwear. How could you ever forget the fate of Bikini Atoll? In this book, it described how that beautiful untouched island won the lottery as the unfortunate recipient of the effects and destruction of an atomic explosion. Until now, that island is dead and will take years to actually be safe for humans to step on its shores again.

This is very informational and I came out educated after reading this story. Commander Sampson is a hero and the last moments of his life were never in vain. This is a very good read and I ended up rooting for Sampson to succeed in his journey to find his inner self again and to finally discover that the greatest redemption is to forget oneself for a greater cause. Not for his country but for sake of the world or for those whose voice is not loud enough to be heard.

My only observation was that there were portions wherein the transition between events, was not very clear. I found myself pausing at some points because there were some paragraphs that were not connected but there was no clear indication that one thought has ended and a new one has begun. I wished in some parts, the paragraphs did not just follow each other like they were one thought. Other than that, this was interesting enough to read and since I like historical thrillers, this one was not off the mark. 

I give this 3/5 mushroom cloud. Yes, after reading this story, I don't think I would want to see a red sunrise. It's not a spectacle that anyone should look forward to see. It's a beginning of a very very horrible day. So, after Nagasaki, there's Hiroshima, and then Bikini. The two places in Japan may have recovered and is now again a bustling city, like it was not a witness to a very gruesome tragedy caused by war. But Bikini will forever remain just a memory of what it used to be. It will never ever know life again.

If hatred alone were a weapon, he would have been able to wipe them out. 

...devotion to your religion seemed to be measured by how wicked you could be to others.
- Simon Laffy, Red Sunrise - 

Thank you again, Simon Laffy for the copy.

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