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For author Shaw Kuzki, who was born in 1957 and grewup in Hiroshima, one of the two Japanese cities devastated by the atomic bombings in August 1945, the importance of preserving and honoring stories from a harrowing past has been a driving force.

“Most of my classmates (growing up) were second-generation survivors,” Kuzki says. “Some of them grew up hearing lots of stories about the bombing, while others heard almost none because the memories were too painful. … But when you left the city or the prefecture, you could really sense that the memories of the tragedy were something only we had in common. After I moved to Tokyo for university, I started feeling that I needed to convey these memories to others somehow.”

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