***The Ash Garden
by Dennis Bock
Reviewed September 23, 2001.
At the beginning of this book, I was impressed with its power and very
absorbed in its stories. The author takes the stories of three people
and brings them together. One is a girl who, at six years old, became
a victim of the bomb at Hiroshima. Another is a scientist responsible
for creating the bomb, and the third is his wife, who is a refugee from
Austria. The author skilfully weaves their stories, dipping back and
forth between the years of WWII and the present.
Yes, the book is sobering. I feel I have a much clearer picture
of the horror of Hiroshima now. I’m not sure I wanted that picture,
but it was presented in a human, compassionate way. The whole novel
was written beautifully and expertly. My only quibble is that I didn’t
feel fully satisfied at the end, didn’t really feel a full sense of completion.
However, it was an excellently written, thought-provoking book.
Copyright © 2003 Sondra Eklund.