104 pages 3 hours read

Alan Gratz


Fiction | Novel | Middle Grade | Published in 2018

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Chapters 31-40Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 2, Chapter 31 Summary: “No-Man’s-Land”

American star shells cast a green light over the landscape as Hideki makes his way south alongside hundreds of Okinawan refugees. When he notices Japanese army boots under a woman’s kimono, he realizes that this is actually a male Japanese soldier in disguise. Knowing that the Americans will open fire on the group once they spot the disguise, Hideki slips away.

He comes across a group of American corpses and gathers food from their backpacks. He also collects their photos and adds them to his growing collection. After being shot at by a US sniper, Hideki manages to reach a Japanese bunker built into a cave. He is surprised to find it empty; the Japanese army must be retreating further south. He continues moving as well.

Part 2, Chapter 32 Summary: “Typhoon of Steel”

Hideki joins the tens of thousands of Okinawan refugees and Japanese soldiers moving south in the heavy rain. Mournfully, he compares the image of Okinawa before in his mind—coral sand roads, palm trees, and women in beautiful kimonos—to the current muddy mess and destruction.

When something moves in the corner of Hideki’s eye, he recognizes Ray’s ghost and explains to it that he needs to find Kimiko. As an American plane swoops low over the crowd, Hideki sees Japanese soldiers running and understands that the plane is radioing their location to a battleship offshore.