"6 August 1945; The bombing of Hiroshima" (J. Malam)

Book report of “6 August 1945, The Bombing of Hiroshima”. What happened in Hiroshima? Read it and find out.

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John Malam (1957-)



I just about searched all over the internet, but I didn’t fin anything about John Malam. I can’t believe it is so hard to find something about the man, he has written over 100 child books, it said on a page. I didn’t give up that easy, so I wrote an e-mail to him and asked him to send me a biography to me, and he really did. I’m going to put the mail into this report. His first interest was to be an archaeologist, and he did. But it ended in 1982, then he didn’t know what to do for a living. In 1987 he started as a child author in the grandly-named World International Publishing Ltd., a children’s publisher. A famous author named Charles Dickens gave out his book through them. John’s first book was “Stick and colour fun: endangered animals” who came out in 1990. His latest book is called “Titanic”. The book is about old shipwrecks, especially Titanic, who are the main subject. He is a bit odd, he wrote his last name like this:

|v| /- \|_ /-\ |v| (Malam). He seems like a nice fellow though. He writes for himself nowadays, and on his homepage it says that he has a home office looking like a library (a messy one), with eight bookcases full of books. The floor is always covered in piles of books, too.



The book is a pure fact book about what happened around the bombing of Hiroshima. It all started in 1904 when a British scientist wondered if energy from atoms could be used to make a weapon. It ended 14th of August, when Japan surrendered. It’s a very interesting and useful, you’ll learn a lot that you didn’t know before.


It is a fact book, so it isn’t any main characters. So I’ve wrote something I know about some persons who are mentioned in the book. I don’t know too many things about them, but I wont to tell what I know after all:

Albert Einstein, world-famous scientist, 1879-1955. He was a man with a great brain, he had a lot of undone hear and a moustache.


Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32. President of the USA, 1882-1945. A charismatic optimist with paralyzed his legs.

Adolf Hitler, Nazi leader in German, 1889-1945. He was a small, cruel man and on top of that he had a funny little moustache.


Harry S. Truman, 33. President of the USA, 1884-1972. He was a tall, thin man with round glasses.

Winston Churchill, the British Prime Minister, 1874-1965. He was a big boned man with a matching face.

Joseph Stalin, leader of the Soviet Union, 1879-1953. He was a masculine man with a big moustache. He had a friendly smile, but it covered a brutal man.


General Leslie R Groves, American head of the Manhattan Project from 1942 until 1947, 1896-1970. A fat man who didn’t care of others than Americans, he was the chief of the Manhattan project, under the President of course.


The settings were in America and Japan. The main setting was Hiroshima in Japan, where the bomb was dropped on 6th of August 1945.


It all started in 1896 when a French scientist found out that atoms give of energy when they are split. Then eight years later, a British scientist wondered if we could use atoms to make a weapon. Many countries started to research, and the scientist who found out how to split the atom, would have the secret for making an atomic bomb. Albert Einstein found out that uranium might be the element that they could use. They knew that Nazi Germany was experimenting with it too and they feared that Germany was going to beat them. In 1938 Germany succeeded, but they didn’t build it, they thought it would cost to much money to build. On 1st of September 1939, Germany invaded Poland, two days later Britain and France declared war on Germany. USA wasn’t involved in the war until 7th of December 1941, when Japanese war planes attacked Pearl Harbor on the Pacific island of Hawaii. 2400 American servicemen and civilians were killed. It was because Japan had declared its support for Germany, and USA had stopped supplying them with scrap metal and oil.


In 1943 USA started to build an atomic bomb for non-stop, the project was called “the Manhattan Project”. General Leslie R. Groves was head in charge, it cost $2 billion and around 129,000 people were working on it. They also found out that they could use another element called plutonium. They made a test model and two bombs, the test bomb was plutonium, and it was nicknamed Jumbo. The uranium bomb was named Little Boy, it was long and thin. The plutonium bomb was named Fat man, because it was much rounder. They tested Jumbo on 16th of July 1945 370 km from Los Alamos, south of New Mexico. It exploded with the force of 19000 tonnes of ordinary explosives. It became a huge fireball with a mushroom-shaped cloud. The temperature underneath the bomb tower was three times as hot as the Sun, and there was a crater with 730 meters in diameter. A deadly bomb had been created by the USA. In July 1945 Germany was close to defeat and Hitler killed himself. Germany surrendered 8 Mai 1945. The plan now was to end the Pacific war. Stalin agreed to join forces with America and Britain and go to war against Japan. The plan was that Soviet would declare war on Japan by 15 August and then they could invade Japan. But there was another plan that Soviet knew nothing about. President Truman wanted the “upper hand” over the Soviet Union and used the atomic bomb on Japan.


They would drop the bombs in broad daylight, and only if the weather was good. They had a list over cities they would bomb. The list was in this order: Kyoto, Hiroshima, Kokura and Niigata. Kyoto was spared because it was an ancient city of great religious importance to the Japanese. Nagasaki was added instead, in fourth place of the list. Instructions were given to the US Air Force not to drop fire bombs on the target cities. 6th of August 1945 a B-29 bomber flew Little Boy towards Hiroshima. Flying behind the bomber were two observation planes, carrying cameras and scientific instruments. The city’s residents had got used to see a weather plane at the time the bomber got there, it didn’t seem to be any cause for alarm. They dropped Little Boy over the Aioi Bridge in the city centre, no warning had been given to the city’s 350,000 inhabitants. It was designed to blow up 580 meters over Hiroshima. It had the same power as 12500 tonnes of conventional explosives. Up to 200,000 people over a period died because of the atomic bomb, 70,000 people died instantly, and 90 % of the city’s buildings were destroyed. Three days after Hiroshima another B-29 bomber set off, but this one is carrying Fat Man. Kokura was the target, but it was hidden by a cloud. I don’t know why but they jumped over Niigata and the plane was diverted to Nagasaki. This one was set off to explode 500 meters above the ground. It had the same force as 22,000 tonnes of ordinary explosives. 75,000 people died instantly and 1/3 of the city was destroyed. Some years later the numbers had gone up to 150,000 people. The Soviet Union had declared war on Japan a day before the bombing. Japan surrendered on 14th of August.

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