web site hit counter Women Heroes of World War II—the Pacific Theater: 15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival - Ebooks PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

Women Heroes of World War II—the Pacific Theater: 15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival

Availability: Ready to download

After glamorous American singer Claire Phillips opened her own night club in Manila, using the proceeds to secretly feed starving American POWs, she also began working as a spy, chatting up Japanese military men and passing their secrets along to local guerilla resistance fighters. Australian Army nurse Vivian Bullwinkel, stationed in Singapore then shipwrecked in the Dutc After glamorous American singer Claire Phillips opened her own night club in Manila, using the proceeds to secretly feed starving American POWs, she also began working as a spy, chatting up Japanese military men and passing their secrets along to local guerilla resistance fighters. Australian Army nurse Vivian Bullwinkel, stationed in Singapore then shipwrecked in the Dutch East Indies, became the sole survivor of a horrible massacre by Japanese soldiers. She hid for days, tending to a seriously wounded British soldier while wounded herself. Humanitarian Elizabeth Choy lived the rest of her life hating only war, not her tormentors, after enduring six months of starvation and torture by the Japanese military police.   In these pages, readers will meet these and other courageous women and girls who risked their lives through their involvement in the Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II. Fifteen suspense-filled stories unfold across China, Japan, Mayala, Singapore, the Dutch East Indies, and the Philippines, providing an inspiring reminder of women and girls’ refusal to sit on the sidelines around the world and throughout history.    These women — whose stories span from 1932 through 1945, the last year of the war, when U.S. Marines landed on Iwo Jima — served in dangerous roles as spies, medics, journalists, resisters, and saboteurs. Nine of the women were American; seven were captured and imprisoned by the Japanese, enduring brutal conditions. Author Kathryn J. Atwood provides appropriate context and framing for teens 14 and up to grapple with these harsh realities of war. Discussion questions and a guide for further study assist readers and educators in learning about this important and often neglected period of history.


Compare

After glamorous American singer Claire Phillips opened her own night club in Manila, using the proceeds to secretly feed starving American POWs, she also began working as a spy, chatting up Japanese military men and passing their secrets along to local guerilla resistance fighters. Australian Army nurse Vivian Bullwinkel, stationed in Singapore then shipwrecked in the Dutc After glamorous American singer Claire Phillips opened her own night club in Manila, using the proceeds to secretly feed starving American POWs, she also began working as a spy, chatting up Japanese military men and passing their secrets along to local guerilla resistance fighters. Australian Army nurse Vivian Bullwinkel, stationed in Singapore then shipwrecked in the Dutch East Indies, became the sole survivor of a horrible massacre by Japanese soldiers. She hid for days, tending to a seriously wounded British soldier while wounded herself. Humanitarian Elizabeth Choy lived the rest of her life hating only war, not her tormentors, after enduring six months of starvation and torture by the Japanese military police.   In these pages, readers will meet these and other courageous women and girls who risked their lives through their involvement in the Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II. Fifteen suspense-filled stories unfold across China, Japan, Mayala, Singapore, the Dutch East Indies, and the Philippines, providing an inspiring reminder of women and girls’ refusal to sit on the sidelines around the world and throughout history.    These women — whose stories span from 1932 through 1945, the last year of the war, when U.S. Marines landed on Iwo Jima — served in dangerous roles as spies, medics, journalists, resisters, and saboteurs. Nine of the women were American; seven were captured and imprisoned by the Japanese, enduring brutal conditions. Author Kathryn J. Atwood provides appropriate context and framing for teens 14 and up to grapple with these harsh realities of war. Discussion questions and a guide for further study assist readers and educators in learning about this important and often neglected period of history.

30 review for Women Heroes of World War II—the Pacific Theater: 15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival

  1. 5 out of 5

    Pamela

    Kathryn J. Atwood's meticulous research and her respectfully straightforward, exquisite writing might be in tune with a young-adult audience, but it's also suitable for mature adult readers desiring a condensed summation of WWII and the female heroes in the Pacific theatre: nurses, journalists, resistance workers, informants, and innocent civilians caught in the crosshairs of war. A riveting and shockingly eye-opening book. War is not lovely, no matter how you spin it. I know this all too well. Kathryn J. Atwood's meticulous research and her respectfully straightforward, exquisite writing might be in tune with a young-adult audience, but it's also suitable for mature adult readers desiring a condensed summation of WWII and the female heroes in the Pacific theatre: nurses, journalists, resistance workers, informants, and innocent civilians caught in the crosshairs of war. A riveting and shockingly eye-opening book. War is not lovely, no matter how you spin it. I know this all too well. However, the things these courageous women endured in the Pacific Theatre - brutal living conditions, unrelenting starvation, masochistic torture and rape, imprisonment.... Despite Atwood's tender phrasing, she kept it real; offering this cautionary note preceding the text: "Many women in this book became heroes in the midst of horrific situations. Although I've made every effort to prevent the following stories from being too graphic, readers first encountering the Nanking Massacre, the sufferings of "comfort women," or the brutality of the Kempeitai might be disturbed by certain chapters in this book. I strongly advise younger teens to seek the guidance of a trusted adult." Due to content, this was a terribly hard book for me to get through. Yet I did. And I will continue to read books such as this, so that I never grow complacent or become uncaring and/or unappreciative toward those who courageously served in the name liberty, humanitarian justice, and freedom. FIVE ***** Young Adult History/Biography of Honorable Distinction and Written with Integrity ***** STARS Other noteworthy titles by Kathryn J. Atwood suitable for young adults, in relation to war history: - Women Heroes of World War II: 26 Stories of Espionage, Sabotage, Resistance, and Rescue - Women Heroes of World War I: 16 Remarkable Resisters, Soldiers, Spies, and Medics

  2. 4 out of 5

    Rupert Colley

    Kathryn Atwood has already written two great books about women and war – women heroes from the Second World War and from the first. Now, we have a third – Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater: 15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival. The books are aimed at the young adult audience but readers of any age will not fail to be moved and horrified in equal measure by the stories contained within these pages. As Kathryn writes in her foreword, she’s tried not to make the Kathryn Atwood has already written two great books about women and war – women heroes from the Second World War and from the first. Now, we have a third – Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater: 15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival. The books are aimed at the young adult audience but readers of any age will not fail to be moved and horrified in equal measure by the stories contained within these pages. As Kathryn writes in her foreword, she’s tried not to make the stories too graphic but we’re talking about the Rape of Nanking here, young girls forced into being ‘comfort women’, and the much-feared Kempeitai, Japan’s military police. So we approach with caution because what some of these women had to endure is mindboggling. Yes, there are tales of incarceration, torture and rape but this book is not a horror-fest. Instead, what we have is a very sympathetic portrayal of these incredibly brave and resourceful women and what they went through in the name of justice and humanity. Atwood begins with a brief overview of Japan’s relationship with the West during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. She reminds us that Japan fought on the side of the Allies during the First World War. But post-war Japan was treated dismissively by their European allies – much of it based on racism. She summarises Japan’s development into a fascist, one-party state, and how young Japanese boys were hardened and desensitized by brutal and compulsory military training. We tend to think of the Second World War as having started on 1 September 1939, the point Germany attacked Poland. But some historians now consider 7 July 1937 to be a more accurate date – the ‘Marco Polo Bridge Incident’ which started the war between Japan and China. On 7 December 1941, the Japanese attacked several Western strongholds in the Far East, most notoriously, the US Navy stationed at Pearl Harbor. Two months later, Japanese forces humiliated the British by taking Singapore. Atwood book covers all these pinch points and several more within the Pacific theatre of war. Atwood gives us 15 tales of women who, each in their own way, fought against Japanese aggression. Take Vivian Bullwinkel, for example. Vivian was one of 22 Australian nurses who, on 12 February 1942, was forced by Japanese soldiers into the waves off Bangka Island in the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia). They smiled at each other, aware of what was about to happen. Their matron, Irene Drummond, managed to call out, ‘Chin up, girls. I’m proud of you and I love you all’ before the machine guns opened fire. Vivian, although shot, survived. The only one. Then we have Wilhelmina ‘Minnie’ Vautrin. Minnie was working in a women’s college in the Chinese city of Nanking when the Japanese invaded in December 1937. The college became a designated refugee camp. Designed for about 300 students, by the end of the year, 10,000 terrified women had squeezed in, desperate for sanctuary from Japanese soldiers intent on raping every female they could find, however young or old. Tortured by what she had witnessed in Nanking, Minnie returned home to Indianapolis where, in May 1941, she took her own life. Another chapter relates the story of Sybil Kathigasu, a Malayan nurse, who, together with her surgeon husband, helped scores of wounded guerrilla fighters. But she was arrested and interrogated and tortured by the Kempeitai. Sybil survived the war but the injuries sustained at the hands of the Kempeitai were too severe and she died in 1948, aged 48. Fortunately most of the women from these tales survived the war and lived to an old age. Elizabeth Macdonald, who worked as an undercover agent during the war, died in 2015 having made it passed her 100th birthday. Atwood, as always, writes well, her admiration for these women evident. She’s not afraid to tackle the horrors they had to endure but manages to do so with great sensitivity, and avoids becoming overly voyeuristic. These 15 extraordinarily courageous women deserve to be remembered. Kathryn Atwood’s fine book helps ensure that they will be.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Chris Wolak

    The 75th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor is December 7th and if you buy or borrow only one book to read about WWII for yourself or the young people in your life, let it be this one. Through covering the action of these 15 women, Atwood provides an excellent introduction to the reasons for the war and many of the themes, conditions, and major battles of the war years in the Pacific. She doesn't shy away from the atrocities of the war, yet presents the material in a way that's suitable for ages 14 & u The 75th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor is December 7th and if you buy or borrow only one book to read about WWII for yourself or the young people in your life, let it be this one. Through covering the action of these 15 women, Atwood provides an excellent introduction to the reasons for the war and many of the themes, conditions, and major battles of the war years in the Pacific. She doesn't shy away from the atrocities of the war, yet presents the material in a way that's suitable for ages 14 & up. Last year I reviewed Atwood's Women Heroes of World War I and was thrilled when asked if I'd like a review copy of her latest, Women Heroes of World War II: The Pacific Theater. This is Atwood's second book on Women Heroes of WWII. The first came out in 2011 and focused on the European Theater. Turning her attention this time to the Pacific Theater, Atwood has written another excellent biographical/historical work that introduces readers to the 15 women featured within as well as to the major battles and themes of the war and situates it in its historical context. Her introduction provides context for Japanese aggression beginning with Matthew Perry's expedition that forced the opening of Japan's borders to the West in 1854, to World War I and its fallout, to the rise of fascist Japan and its quest to conquer neighboring countries. A map at the front of the book highlights the lands Japan had conquered by August 1942. This map also helps readers place the women featured in this book. These woman (and girls) were reporters, nurses, missionaries, entertainers, and civilians who took action to defend and help their peers, loved ones, and countries, either through support and/or sabotaged of the enemy. From this book it is clear that women were pro-active participants in the war effort. How many more unknown women heroes were there? There are also, of course, many unknown male heroes whose stories will never be told, but since women rarely get their due in history books, especially on the topic of war, Atwood's work is vitally important and a significant contribution to the fields of military history, biography, and history in general. The book is organized into four sections: Part I: China 1. Peggy Hull: In a War Zone -- American, reporter in China in 1932. 2. Minnie Vautrin: American Hero at the Nanking Massacre -- American, college president. 3. Gladys Aylward: "All China Is a Battlefield" -- British, later Chinese citizen, missionary. Part II: The US and Philippines 4. Elizabeth MacDonald: Pear Harbor Reporter and OSS Agent -- American, OSS agent. 5. Denny Williams: American Nurse Under Fire -- American. former US Army Nurse living in Manila. 6. Margaret Utinsky: The Miss U Network -- American, Red Cross Nurse & Canteen Operator. 7. Yay Panlilio: Guerrilla Warrior --American father/ Filipino Mother, undercover agent for US Army Intelligence. 8. Claire Phillips: Manila Agent -- American. entertainer ran spy network as "High Pockets." 9. Maria Rosa Henson: Guerrilla Courier and Rape Survivor -- Filipina, 14 year old rape survivor/sexual slave (aka Japanese "comfort woman"). Part III: Malaya, Singapore, Dutch East Indies 10. Sybil Kathigasu: "This Was War" -- Malayan, nurse and midwife, provided medical assistance to guerilla fighters on penalty of death. 11. Elizabeth Choy: "Justice Will Triumph" -- Ethnic Chinese from Borneo, living in Singapore, volunteered as nurse, POW, later first woman to serve on Singapore's Legislative Council. 12. Vivian Bullwinkel: Sole Survivor -- Australian, Army Nurse, sole survivor of 22 nurses who were slaughtered on Banka Island. 13. Helen Colijn: Rising Above -- Dutch, teenage POW internment camp survivor. Part IV: Iwo Jima and Okinawa 14. Jane Kendeigh: Navy Flight Nurse -- American, first nurse to land on Okinawa, April 7, 1945 (the battle raged from April 1 - June 22) 15. Dickey Chapelle: "As Far Forward as You'll Let Me" -- American, photographer at Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Survived WWII, died from wounds in Vietnam on November 4, 1965 while on patrol with the Marines. She was the first female American corresponded to be killed in action. Each chapter offers context about the subject's personal life and situates her within the larger geopolitical setting. Atwood's writing is clear and energetic. Each woman's story reads like a mini-action adventure with historical facts and anecdotes seamlessly woven through. There are 20 black and white photos and occasional text boxes explore related events such as the Burma Railway, Kamikazes, and Executive Order #9066 (The order that forced more than 100,000 Japanese Americans into internment camps). Like the Introduction, the Epilogue concisely wraps up the end of the war, the recovery from the war, and explains the roots of the Cold War. Atwood includes a section of Discussion Questions and Suggestions for Further Study to get readers thinking and students talking. One of the questions that interested me is the difference between German civilian and Japanese civilian attitudes toward the war: "Every German student must learn about Hitler and Nazism while Japanese students learn very little about their nation's role in the war. Why?" Of all the stories in this book, Vivian Bullwinkel's is one that haunts me. She was an Australian Army Nurse who, after surviving a ship bombing and sinking, was marched back into the water at Banka Island along with 22 of her fellow nurses and gunned down by Japanese soldiers. She was left for dead and woke up hours later, having floated back to land. Before the bullets started to fly, the group's leader, Irene Drummond, said, "Chin up girls, I'm proud of you and I love you all." What courage in the face of certain death. Bullwinkel went on to survive in the jungle and as a POW for three years before the war's end. She died in 2000 at the age of 84. Bottom line: Buy it for yourself and/or for the teen in your life. A great addition to any general library and a must have for WWII enthusiasts and students of women's history. Review originally appeared on my blog here: http://www.wildmoobooks.com/2016/10/w...

  4. 5 out of 5

    Charlie

    In the Pacific Theater of World War 11, it wasn't just the Marines in action it was the unsung women heroes that fought the battles against the Japanese occupation. They didn't sit on the sidelines watching and hoping the war would end soon. They helped in their own way contributing what they could be it a camera, first-aid, spying, you name it they did it. On the surface, they seemed to be innocent of helping to win the war but underneath the surface, their lives were at stake. Hats off to the In the Pacific Theater of World War 11, it wasn't just the Marines in action it was the unsung women heroes that fought the battles against the Japanese occupation. They didn't sit on the sidelines watching and hoping the war would end soon. They helped in their own way contributing what they could be it a camera, first-aid, spying, you name it they did it. On the surface, they seemed to be innocent of helping to win the war but underneath the surface, their lives were at stake. Hats off to the author Kathryn J. Atwood for putting together a remarkable story of those women heroes that did what they could to help win the war. I salute you, Kathryn, for a job well done and I salute ALL the unsung heroes of World War 11.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Mary Farrell

    I was given an advance copy of Kathryn Atwood's Women Heroes of World War II—the Pacific Theater and I loved it. So meticulously researched and jam-packed with engaging stories of extraordinary women, interwoven with the essential facts of the conflict in the Pacific. What an accomplishment! Kathryn’s finely detailed and fast-paced writing makes for fascinating reading, exquisite close-ups of little-known women and a much needed perspective on World War II. Before the bombing of Pearl Harbor thro I was given an advance copy of Kathryn Atwood's Women Heroes of World War II—the Pacific Theater and I loved it. So meticulously researched and jam-packed with engaging stories of extraordinary women, interwoven with the essential facts of the conflict in the Pacific. What an accomplishment! Kathryn’s finely detailed and fast-paced writing makes for fascinating reading, exquisite close-ups of little-known women and a much needed perspective on World War II. Before the bombing of Pearl Harbor through the long years of Japanese occupation, women bravely, day by day, stood with the victims of war and thwarted the enemy. Finally, their stories are told.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

    Be warned (as the author includes at the beginning of the book) this may not be appropriate for younger teens. Atwood does a remarkable job of keeping the facts straight without excessively gruesome detail, but it's true facts of horrid times. This was a fascinating and enlightening collective biography. I finished reading and can't help but think after all I learned from reading this book, what stands out the most is I learned how much I don't know. The Pacific Theater was brutal and cruel and Be warned (as the author includes at the beginning of the book) this may not be appropriate for younger teens. Atwood does a remarkable job of keeping the facts straight without excessively gruesome detail, but it's true facts of horrid times. This was a fascinating and enlightening collective biography. I finished reading and can't help but think after all I learned from reading this book, what stands out the most is I learned how much I don't know. The Pacific Theater was brutal and cruel and malicious but, as also pointed out in the book, I really had very limited information about it from schooling. Additionally, I know what I really don't know is the incredible strength of people - as a group and as individuals. These few of so many stories give just a tiny glimpse into unbelievable endurance of humanity.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Samantha Shank

    Women Heroes of World War II: The Pacific Theater profiles 15 courageous young women from countries in the Pacific, such as China, the Philippines, and Singapore. Chapters are sorted by country, and each woman's story lasts about 10 pages. At the end of each chapter, there are more resources for extended research. I prefer the shortened chapters (instead of long biographies) because they allow me to briefly learn about some women, while letting me go more in-depth for my favorites. Atwood shines Women Heroes of World War II: The Pacific Theater profiles 15 courageous young women from countries in the Pacific, such as China, the Philippines, and Singapore. Chapters are sorted by country, and each woman's story lasts about 10 pages. At the end of each chapter, there are more resources for extended research. I prefer the shortened chapters (instead of long biographies) because they allow me to briefly learn about some women, while letting me go more in-depth for my favorites. Atwood shines a light on some of the horrors of the Pacific theater, such as the Bataan Death March and the rape of Nanking. in an age appropriate manner. At the same time, I never felt like she belittled anything. You'll meet a woman who was a singer by day, and spy by night, and an Australian nurse who was the sole survivor of a Japanese massacre. The age range is about 14+, which I think is appropriate for most, although assistance through reading some of the chapters may be necessary. In an interview, Atwood realizes that when people think of WWII in Europe, they instantly think of the concentration camps. However, when it comes to the Pacific, most people's image is immediately the mushroom clouds from the atomic bombs. With Pearl Harbor's 75th anniversary coming up this year, I felt this book would make an excellent gift for both boys and girls in high school, or mature students in junior high. In an age where musicians and celebrities are known as "heroes" - Women Heroes of World War II: The Pacific Theater shows us what true heroism looks like. Disclaimer: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This did not shape my opinion.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Vanessa

    Amazing stories. I had not heard of any of these women before. I know much less about thePacific Theater than he European theater of WWII. The amount of suffering of the soldiers and others supporting them. The US government leaders and how they stopped supporting the troops on Bataan, but lied that they would support them. Those men and women were left to die and given nothing. The Bataan death march: unmagenable suffering and the hatred of the Japenese: sick what they did and how they treated t Amazing stories. I had not heard of any of these women before. I know much less about thePacific Theater than he European theater of WWII. The amount of suffering of the soldiers and others supporting them. The US government leaders and how they stopped supporting the troops on Bataan, but lied that they would support them. Those men and women were left to die and given nothing. The Bataan death march: unmagenable suffering and the hatred of the Japenese: sick what they did and how they treated the POW's and others. Trough all this and more, what women did because they had to try and help at least some. The women that had to leave and couldn't continue the mission felt worse than the horrors they saw daily.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Marie

    So much of war is told through the eyes and lens of men. Finally we have the stories of women in the context of - spy, resistance, healer, photographer, reporter and survivor to name but of few perspectives. This book is a tremendous resource for studying women in the pacific theatre as well as providing a jumping point for future studies.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Aimee

    Review originally posted @ Reading Lark: http://readinglark.blogspot.com/2016/... Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater is a collection for young adults of brief sketches of the wartime contributions of fifteen extraordinary women. They include reporters, spies, nurses, guerillas, photographers, and survivors. I chose to review this book because most of the contributions of women to history were conspicuously absent from my history textbooks as I was growing up. I can’t say for certa Review originally posted @ Reading Lark: http://readinglark.blogspot.com/2016/... Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater is a collection for young adults of brief sketches of the wartime contributions of fifteen extraordinary women. They include reporters, spies, nurses, guerillas, photographers, and survivors. I chose to review this book because most of the contributions of women to history were conspicuously absent from my history textbooks as I was growing up. I can’t say for certain, but I expect this is still largely the case, and Atwood’s book Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater definitely helps fill that gap. Reading the accounts of these fifteen women was by turns thrilling, horrifying, and ultimately uplifting. In the first section, covering the Japanese invasion of China, Atwood writes about Minnie Vautrin who risked her own safety to protect women and girls during the Nanking Massacre (in which 300,000 civilians and unarmed POWs were murdered and tens of thousands of women were raped). The second part of the book covers heroes in the U.S. and the Philippines. Two of the women, Margaret Utinsky and Claire Phillips, ran an underground network in support of the Philippine resistance. Yay Panlilio, a journalist in Manila, actually joined a guerilla group! In the section of the book covering Malaya, Singapore and the Dutch East Indies, the reader learns about Elizabeth Choy who helped smuggle food and other items into a nearby prison camp, and a teenager who survived extreme deprivation in another Japanese prison camp. In the final segment of Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater, Atwood tells the story of Jane Kendeigh who, after caring for injured soldiers at Iwo Jima, was the first navy flight nurse to land in Okinawa. Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater is a wonderful little book. Atwood has a great cross section of women both from different countries and from different time periods and parts of the Pacific Theater. I also loved seeing their photographs. On the negative side, Atwood only covered what the women were doing during WWII, and I wanted a little more background. I’m not sure if there is enough surviving documentation, but I would have really liked to learn more about each of the women’s lives before the war. Finally, I also struggled a bit with the dissonance between the level of the writing and the subject matter. The narratives are at an upper middle grade level, though some of the subject matter (particularly, as noted by the author, the Nanking Massacre, “comfort women,” and the cruelty of the Japanese Kempeitai) was much more mature. Those small things aside, the women featured in this book are amazing examples of courage and the will to endure. This volume is a worthy addition to any nonfiction collection, and I look forward to reading more of Ms. Atwood’s books about women in times of war.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Monsma

    Kathryn Atwood has written another fascinating book in her series covering women heroes of the world wars. From Claire Phillips who ran a Manila nightclub to get funds to feed American prisoners of war to Jane Kendleigh, who ministered to wounded soldiers in the air as one of the first Navy flight nurses, Atwood presents compelling stories of real women in the thick of the war. Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater begins and ends with general information on the war in the Pacific Th Kathryn Atwood has written another fascinating book in her series covering women heroes of the world wars. From Claire Phillips who ran a Manila nightclub to get funds to feed American prisoners of war to Jane Kendleigh, who ministered to wounded soldiers in the air as one of the first Navy flight nurses, Atwood presents compelling stories of real women in the thick of the war. Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater begins and ends with general information on the war in the Pacific Theater and then moves to focus in on the stories of specific women, presenting an excellent mix of information about the women's lives before the war, their actions during the conflict, and a brief description of their post-war life. Though I know a fair amount about the war in Europe, my knowledge of the war in the Pacific Theater is more limited. Because of this, I learned a good deal about what was happening in Asia before the war and the cultural practices that led to the efficiency and brutality of the Japanese forces. This book will be a useful resource for biography projects, though depending on the class, this one might need to be used with caution. No stories of war are pleasant, but some of these stories are particularly dark, including the torture and starvation of prisoners and the use of imprisoned women as "comfort women" for the Japanese troops. Each eight to eleven page biography includes pictures of the woman covered, sidebar information about the war that directly relates to the story, and sources to use to find more information. The study guide in the book will be especially helpful for teachers wishing to use the book in their classrooms. It provides discussion questions and also suggestions for further, more in-depth projects using additional resources. Atwood has published three previous books about women during the World Wars with Chicago Review Press: Women Heroes of World War I, Women Heroes of World War II, and Code Name Pauline: Memoirs of a World War II Special Agent. I received a complementary copy of Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Whitney

    This book has been on my to read list for a while. I was happy to get the chance to finally read it. This is a collection of fifteen incredible stories of women taking action. There are many more of these stories from World War II, but this collection is a wonderful place to start. I think what impressed me the most was the variety of experiences these women had. Although there are some similarities in a few of the stories, there really is an uniqueness to each woman's story. I think this is a wo This book has been on my to read list for a while. I was happy to get the chance to finally read it. This is a collection of fifteen incredible stories of women taking action. There are many more of these stories from World War II, but this collection is a wonderful place to start. I think what impressed me the most was the variety of experiences these women had. Although there are some similarities in a few of the stories, there really is an uniqueness to each woman's story. I think this is a wonderful tribute to the brave actions they took. I liked how many of the women found themselves in this situation, and rose to the occasion. They chose to act when they could have tried to wait out the war. I found the stories inspiring, and appreciate the service of these women. I will say that some of the women experienced truly horrific events, which can be difficult to read. I note this simply because if younger readers are to read it they should be prepared. I do think we owe it to them to not forget what happened. I think it makes my appreciation for them even higher when I and other readers understand that these are not just women that did a few things that helped the war. They made tremendous sacrifices that continued to affect them their whole lives. I think this book is an excellent way to start learning about history. It is divided into sections by area. So it is really easy to find stories of women in China or Okinawa. I also like that after each woman's story, there is a Learn More section. It provides sources to read more in depth about a woman if you found her story particularly interesting. I previously read Women Heroes of the American Revolution and also really enjoyed it. I have found this series to be excellent, and I cannot wait to read more book in the Women in Action series. I love that this series is bringing attention to the roles women have had in history, and will continue to read their books. The series is also at a level that younger readers could read about these incredible women and enjoy the books. I received a free copy of this book from Goodreads First Reads Program in exchange for and honest review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kari Mathias

    This book is so remarkable and interesting - I read it in one afternoon! This book makes you feel things, for sure. Most of the stories are gut-wrenchingly sad, even when they end happily, and I was furious most of the time because half of these women I had never heard about before. They were brave and resilient and wonderful, and their stories deserve to be told in every school. Though, I feel like they gloss over a LOT of what happened in the Pacific Theater in most schools, not just where women This book is so remarkable and interesting - I read it in one afternoon! This book makes you feel things, for sure. Most of the stories are gut-wrenchingly sad, even when they end happily, and I was furious most of the time because half of these women I had never heard about before. They were brave and resilient and wonderful, and their stories deserve to be told in every school. Though, I feel like they gloss over a LOT of what happened in the Pacific Theater in most schools, not just where women are concerned. I really, really loved this book. I feel like it's so important, and that everyone should read it. (One thing that confused me, though, is that my library had this classified as a children's book. I would NOT let anyone under the age of maybe 14-15 read this, but that might be just my opinion.)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This nonfiction novel highlights 15 strong females, who took admirable actions in the Pacific Theater of WWII. Some of these woman helped in attempt to eventually find their husbands who had been taken to war, others looked to be the first to perform great feats, while others saw a great need and worked to fulfill that need. This novel provided a great female perspective on WWII, by highlight strong females who typically do not receive the glory.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Although this book was somewhat more graphic than Kathryn Atwood's previous books, it is one of my favorites. I love the way she writes, in a way that educates readers, but also shares the experiences of these women. Atwood shines light on these fearless women and history of WWII that is often ignored. It was a fantastic read and I would recommend it to just about anyone.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Rod Hemingway

    This is not an in depth history book. It is a young adult version of a history book. Some good stories, but light on the in depth details. Worth a quick read then find something else to dig deeper. What it does give the reader an understanding of is how much Japanese barbarity has been glossed over in Western Societies. Much more so than German atrocities.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    Great informative book about courageous women in World War II. I’m eager to read her other books.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Margaret Elder

    This book is classified as a juvenile non-fiction book. It's only for mature juveniles, though, as some of the subject matter is somewhat shocking. I decided to read it because I knew nothing about women who were involved in the Pacific Theatre, and it's always refreshing to read stories of heroines. I enjoyed reading about the women, their hardships, their fortitude, etc. Many endured terrifying physical and mental abuse while remaining faithful to their cause and country. One of the best thing This book is classified as a juvenile non-fiction book. It's only for mature juveniles, though, as some of the subject matter is somewhat shocking. I decided to read it because I knew nothing about women who were involved in the Pacific Theatre, and it's always refreshing to read stories of heroines. I enjoyed reading about the women, their hardships, their fortitude, etc. Many endured terrifying physical and mental abuse while remaining faithful to their cause and country. One of the best things about this book is that each chapter features one woman and is followed by a bibliography so that the reader can select books, articles, etc. and learn more.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Annie

    I didn't realize this was part of a series, but now that I know I need to go out and get the others. I love how the stories are short and well-researched. It is great to have so much content about how women participated in the war effort aside from just "holding down the fort at home." The women featured in this book are career women, brave, and true humanitarians.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Alex Baugh

    Ever since I started this blog, I've thought a lot about heroes and heroism. In her new book, Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater, Kathryn Atwood takes as her guiding principle two quotes. One from humanist and women's rights activist Zainab Salbi, which reads "War can teach you so much about evil, and so much about good." The other quote is from diplomat/historian George F. Kennan. who said "Heroism is endurance for one moment more." The 15 women that Atwood has chosen for her se Ever since I started this blog, I've thought a lot about heroes and heroism. In her new book, Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater, Kathryn Atwood takes as her guiding principle two quotes. One from humanist and women's rights activist Zainab Salbi, which reads "War can teach you so much about evil, and so much about good." The other quote is from diplomat/historian George F. Kennan. who said "Heroism is endurance for one moment more." The 15 women that Atwood has chosen for her second book about woman in WWII are indeed examples of heroes who endured in the midst of and despite so many of the wartime evils they encountered. Once again, Atwood has included stories about courageous nurses, journalists, a photographer, a missionary, a teenage survivor of a Japanese POW internment camp, and yes, even a 14 year old rape survivor who was forced to become a comfort woman for the occupying Japanese in the Philippines. Their nationalities are as varied as their situations, ranging from American to Dutch, Malayan, Chinese, Filipino, British, and Australian, but each and every one has a story this is as harrowing as it is compelling. Most people think that World War II began with Germany's invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939. I've always thought it to have began in 1937, with the Second Sino-Japanese War and the fall of Nanjing, but Atwood takes the reader back to 1932 China. The Japanese had already invaded Manchuria, and now they set their sites on Shanghai. American reporter Peggy Hull had just arrive in China thinking to write articles about women there, but suddenly she found herself the war correspondent for the NY Daily News instead. Peggy reported on this early fighting between Japan and China despite the danger, but was later ironically refused accreditation as a war correspondent when the fighting intensified, and was forced to report from Hawaii until 1945. Peggy's story is followed by that of Minnie Vautrin, also an American. When the Japanese invaded Nanjing in 1937, Minnie was working at a woman's college there. The college was turned into a woman's refugee camp, in an attempt to protect them being raped by the Japanese, who were intent on raping every female, in Nanjing, regardless of age. By the end of 1937, the college had become a sanctuary for 10,000 women. The most difficult story to read is that of Maria Rosa Henson, a 14 year old Filipina who had always lived in near poverty with her mother. After the Japanese invasion of the Philippines, Maria was repeatedly raped by soldiers as she went about collecting desperately needed firewood. When she and her mother finally moved in with a male relative, he talked Maria into joining the Hukbalahap, or Huk, a guerrilla army, working as a courier. One day, she was taken by the Japanese to a garrison, where she was repeatedly beaten and raped until some Huk guerrilla's rescued her. Atwood continues Maria's story, telling about her attempts to make the plight of "comfort women" known and attempts to make the Japanese government acknowledge what was done to Maria and so many other women during WWII. Some of the experiences included in this volume are difficult to read, case in point is that of Maria, but they all are important and deserve the kind of acknowledgement that Atwood gives the women in her "hero" books. So many could have given up, turned their backs, left their it all for someone else to do, but instead these courageous women endured that one moment more. Atwood has organized Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater in sections of place: I- China; II- the Philippines; III- Malaya, Singapore, Dutch East Indies; IV- Iwo Jima and Okinawa. I was already familiar with some of the stories she included, like that of American photographer Dickey Chappelle but I still found Atwood's bio of her to be fresh and informative. In fact, I found that to be true of all the stories. They are written with Atwood's characteristic energy, and though they are short, the stories are so succinct that I felt I had actually read much more than I did. Be sure to read the Introduction, where Atwood has included some very important background information. There is also a map of the Pacific Theater to help reader unfamiliar with that part of the world. At the end of each woman's story, readers will find Learn More suggestions for further reading, and the Epilogue will take them past the end of WWII and into the Cold War. Back Matter includes Discussion Questions and Suggestions for Further Study, perfect for high school students studying WWII, an extensive Bibliography and, as with all good researchers, Notes used for each section of the book. For an excellent overall picture of this part of the world in WWII, pair Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater with Mary Cronk Farrell's book Pure Grit: How American World War II Nurses Survived Battle and Prison Camp in the Pacific. I cannot recommend this new book by Kathryn Atwood highly enough. This book is recommended for readers age 13+ This book was sent to me by the publisher, Chicago Review Press This review was originally posted on The Children's War

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tracy

    This was more a 4.5. Reading about what these women went through made me thankful that I did not suffer like they did and made me admire their courage even more. I wish more people knew their stories.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Haley S

    Very good book!! It was sad at times and my heart goes out to those courageous women.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Meh. Some interesting stories. Disappointing that it's set in the Pacific, but almost all of the heroes are white americans.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marianne Ramey

    Well written. Made me interested in learning more about each woman.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

    Really a 4.5 from me. The writing tripped me up a few times but the stories are amazing and well researched. Want to read more!

  26. 4 out of 5

    PWRL

    A

  27. 5 out of 5

    Brianna Westervelt

    Found in the Pacific: Astounding stories of women who served in World War II Following her first volume about women in World War II, author Kathryn J. Atwood reveals even more stories of women on the harrowing Pacific front. by Brianna Westervelt In this latest addition to Chicago Review Press’ YA historical “Women of Action” series, Kathryn J. Atwood focuses on the Pacific theater of World War II. (Previously I reviewed Courageous Women of the Civil War from this same series.) Indeed, women were v Found in the Pacific: Astounding stories of women who served in World War II Following her first volume about women in World War II, author Kathryn J. Atwood reveals even more stories of women on the harrowing Pacific front. by Brianna Westervelt In this latest addition to Chicago Review Press’ YA historical “Women of Action” series, Kathryn J. Atwood focuses on the Pacific theater of World War II. (Previously I reviewed Courageous Women of the Civil War from this same series.) Indeed, women were very active in the Pacific theater, working as reporters, missionaries, special agents, nurses, photographers, and more. The book opens with a brief background chapter about the Pacific front that includes Japan’s relationship with China—which was a huge deal, but is usually omitted from American kids’ history books. The chapters are divided up by region: China; the U.S. and the Philippines; Malaya, Singapore, and the Dutch East Indies; and Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Each chapter ends with additional resources about the women profiled. However, I did not like how nearly every chapter ended abruptly with the specific woman’s death, especially as a number of these women later wrote about their war experiences. A particularly poignant moment comes in the section about Helen Colijn, a Dutch teenager. While she suffered in a Dutch East Indies prison camp with her two sisters and numerous other women, a vocal orchestra concert was planned and performed. The concert provided a rare moment of normalcy for the women, who, for an hour or two, didn’t feel like they were in a prison camp. One performer later said, “When I sang that vocal orchestra music, I forgot I was in the camp. I felt free.”

  28. 4 out of 5

    Veronica

    In the 1930s, the world seemed to go mad. Whilst Europe was in upheaval and the eyes of the world were directed there, a different brand of fascism took root in Japan as well. Taking their cue from the western world, watching how the Americans, British and French colonialized lands that did not belong to them, Japan began to follow in suite. Expanding its territories, the Japanese rained terror down on those they occupied. During that tumultuous period, until the US dropped the atom bombs on Hir In the 1930s, the world seemed to go mad. Whilst Europe was in upheaval and the eyes of the world were directed there, a different brand of fascism took root in Japan as well. Taking their cue from the western world, watching how the Americans, British and French colonialized lands that did not belong to them, Japan began to follow in suite. Expanding its territories, the Japanese rained terror down on those they occupied. During that tumultuous period, until the US dropped the atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the lives of fifteen different women were touched. Normal, everyday women who had to rise to the occasion, follow their conscience, and combat the evil that they were facing. The author arranged to have a copy of her book sent to me to review (Thank you, Kathryn!) and I can’t begin to tell you how much I learned. My knowledge of Japan, China, and the Pacific Theater was limited. I read “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes” when I was eight, studied Japan in the third grade, and heard of the bombing of Pearl Harbor – aside from that I was clueless about Japanese history and how their fascism developed. “Women Heroes of WWII – the Pacific Theater” not only gives a short history lesson, it delves into how Japan went astray and how after the war they were given a pass, unlike Germany. There are fifteen different biographies of women, from journalists to spies to children who were witnesses. Many risked their lives to do what was right. One of the more heart wrenching stories was of a young teenager who was forced to become a “comfort woman” and how years later she came forward to speak of her experiences. While the accounts of some of the ladies in the book are harrowing, girls of all ages need to read this. It is a part of history that we have forgotten and must remember. So I highly recommend this book, and once more thank the author for sending it to me.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Diane

    From the Christian Science Monitor: "In Women Heroes of World War II: The Pacific Theater, Kathryn J. Atwood tells “15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival.” Ms. Atwood published a similar book in 2011 about woman during World War II in Europe. Readers of these books must be prepared for accounts that thrillingly inspire, but potentially sadden to tears. Some stories are very grim, and not appropriate for early teens. Several stories end with the death of the hero – but not befor From the Christian Science Monitor: "In Women Heroes of World War II: The Pacific Theater, Kathryn J. Atwood tells “15 Stories of Resistance, Rescue, Sabotage, and Survival.” Ms. Atwood published a similar book in 2011 about woman during World War II in Europe. Readers of these books must be prepared for accounts that thrillingly inspire, but potentially sadden to tears. Some stories are very grim, and not appropriate for early teens. Several stories end with the death of the hero – but not before she’d helped others to live, and weakened the forces of evil. In this book, the enemy is Japan, which was allied with Germany and Italy. Its military treated civilians in the countries they conquered – and captured Western fighters – with extraordinary cruelty. In the first book the enemy was Nazi Germany, which notoriously brutalized most of Europe. The European stories are more satisfying because they are less about survival under incomprehensibly inhumane conditions, and more about women taking action against the bad guys. And although Atwood wisely tries to prevent the Pacific stories “from being too graphic,” she leaves in enough description to disturb some readers. That said, this book is a noble effort, and worth reading if one is prepared for grisly details. Atwood also shares the broader history of the war in the Pacific in an introduction that nicely encapsulates what everyone should know. In just a few pages, she tells how in the 1850s the Americans forced Japan to sign trade agreements. And how, after World War I, although Japan fought on the side of the western Allies, it was forced to sign humiliating treaties that restricted its power in the Far East. Ultimately, Fascists took control of Japan, and in the 1930s they began a campaign to seize Chinese territory. This reader is especially grateful for Atwood’s description of the end of the war and the surrender of Japan, understanding better how President Harry Truman was persuaded to unleash catastrophic horror by dropping two nuclear bombs on Japan. What all of Atwood’s stories have in common is an unwillingness by women to stand down in the face of grave injustice – or seek safety to save their own lives. Instead, they resisted. And they inspire"

  30. 4 out of 5

    Meghan

    The introduction and epilogue had good information, though nothing new to me. Many topics were covered and many were controversial, so that was good. I would have liked to see a story from Japan's point of view and was surprised that Tokyo Rose was not featured.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.