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About the Book
An uplifting story that makes readers cry tears of laughter as well as sorrow, and reassures us that there is love and laughter in the midst of chaos and uncertainty. Restores your faith in humanity during difficult times!
On March 11, 2011, one of the biggest earthquakes in history occurred off the northeast coast of Japan, triggering a deadly tsunami that destroyed much of the Tohoku coastline.
Driven by a desire to help the people of Tohoku, long-time Tokyo resident Caroline Pover embarked on a mission to collect emergency supplies from her native UK. Caroline delivered these supplies to an isolated part of Japan that even many Japanese have never heard of: the Oshika Peninsula. While there, she saw beyond the horror of the debris and destruction, and fell in love with the beauty of the landscape and the spirit of the people who had called the peninsula home for hundreds of years since their samurai ancestors first settled there. Compelled to do whatever she could to help, she promised to return, once more, just for a month ...
One Month in Tohoku is the true story of what became the many months Caroline spent visiting Oshika. During extended periods of time over the course of many years, she lived alongside the people of Oshika, and they embraced her as one of their own -- she still visits them to this day. This book tells us about a very traditional way of life in a remote community that cares deeply about all who are a part of it. It is the story of how, after a disaster took away everything they had, these seemingly forgotten fishing communities are still rebuilding their lives. It is also the story of how a network of people from all over the globe were inspired to donate millions of yen to support families, schools, and businesses, and to never forget the survivors of the world's costliest disaster.
To commemorate the ten-year anniversary of the tsunami, Caroline has set out in words a deeply moving tale of the very human impact of a natural disaster. Readers will cry tears of laughter as well as tears of sadness, and be touched by Caroline's surprising humour and honesty and that of her Oshika friends as they unexpectedly become so beloved to one another. This is the story of a beautiful friendship between a very determined Englishwoman and the incredibly brave and resilient fishermen, women, and children of Tohoku.
"The book is a delight, and I would highly recommend reading as we move towards the 10 year anniversary (2021) of the quake / tsunami."
"A deeply personal story with a universal theme: what can one person do in the face of unthinkable death and despair? One Month in Tohoku provides an unexpected but welcome answer: whatever we set our mind to ... [The book] a brilliant example of what is possible if we discard our jaded apathy and rediscover the joy of helping. A delight and a privilege to read."
"This is a wonderful book by someone with a gift for harnessing compassion and enthusiasm to get important things done. It's about hope, optimism and, most of all, about love. Great read, and very authentic."
"Caroline weaves an engaging story touching on so many different aspects of the earthquake, tsunami, and aftermath. Yes, there is heartbreak, but there is also hope and inspiration."
"Fans of Japan, entrepreneurs, volunteer and community leaders, or those just looking for a good story will soon fall in love with this book and its author, Caroline. This personal memoir hits every emotion ... I found myself cheering for her through the pages while also becoming motivated to do more in my own community in the process. Great as a read for yourself, perfect as a gift for someone else."
"It is an account of events there that has largely escaped main stream media-even in Japan. We all remember the devastating images of the raw destruction of the tsunami, which were plastered over global media. This memoir transports us into the lives of the people most directly affected by this destruction, long after the cameras have gone."
"A captivating, inspiring and emotional real life story of the outplaying of compassion for the country Caroline fell in love with ... A compelling read that leaves you amazed at how one woman can do so much to change people's lives for the better. It will make you weep, gasp, giggle and more as you (quite literally) hear Caroline tell her story."
"This book is much more than just one month in Tohoku ... Although so much of it is sad, there is also so much that is good and happy. I think anyone who has ever considered voluntary work would enjoy reading this, especially those frustrated by the red tape which often prevents the right donations getting to the people who really need them."
"As soon as I started reading this book, I was gripped. Caroline writes in a way that keeps you totally engrossed. I spent my days thinking about what I'd read the night before and waiting for the evening when I could pick it up again. I laughed out loud, and I cried out loud too. I felt like I was living the journey in real time with her all the way. I haven't read a book quite as moving in a long time ... This book isn't just a memoir, its an inspirational life changing must-read for everyone, and its hilarious too!"