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The Breaking Jewel

3.31  ·  Rating details ·  42 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Set on an island in the South Pacific during the final days of World War II, when the tide has turned against Japan and the war has unmistakably become one of attrition, The Breaking Jewel offers a rare depiction of the Pacific War from the Japanese side and captures the essence of Japan's doomed imperial aims. The novel opens as a small force of Japanese soldiers prepares ...more
Paperback, 116 pages
Published January 23rd 2003 by Columbia University Press (first published January 16th 2003)
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Michael-Ann Cerniglia
Jul 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
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Mar 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
There really is no victory to be gained.
Very effective piece on the futility of war. These are human brings in an awful predicament, to effectively fight they must believe the lies.
Soobie's scared
I read the book for a university course on Japanese philosophical thinking and I was glad I did.

Unfortunately less than one month before I'd read "All Quiet on the Western Front" and I really loved that book. OK that the setting and the war are not the same (German trenches during WW1 vs. Pacific Island in WW2) but in comparison to Remarque's novel, Oda's work is way less interested in analysing the characters and we just got brief of them. I think that "The Breaking Jewel" is a bit less deep th
Even though this is a ridiculously short book it took me three days to read it. I kept getting distracted and constantly felt sleepy while reading it, and this rarely happens to me! I kind of felt the same way reading this as I did when I had to read The Things They Carried back in High School. I don't enjoy reading about war and I wouldn't have read this book if I hadn't been forced.

The only thing that I was sort of interested in was reading the Japanese view of things at the end of WWII, but
May 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is desert island literature, not just because it is set on an island in the Pacific. This story, written by one of Japan's most prominent peace activists, is an exploration of the psychology behind total war. Set on a South Pacific island under siege, it is a dark, riveting, and surprising story, almost impossible to put down. ...more
Evan Marc
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
Read for school. Cloying junk.
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Oda Makoto (小田 実 Oda Makoto, June 2, 1932 — July 30, 2007) was a Japanese novelist, peace activist, academic and Time Asian Hero.

Oda was born in Osaka in 1932 and graduated from the University of Tokyo's Faculty of Letters program, majoring in classical Greek philosophy and literature. He won a Fulbright Scholarship to Harvard University in 1958.

His travels through Europe and Asia on a budget of a

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