Review: 2:46 Aftershock: Stories from the Japan Earthquake

2:46 Aftershock is very much an artifact of its time, specifically it is an Internet-created anthology of short descriptions of the 11 Mar 2011 earthquake and its effect on the residents.  It is being sold to raise money for the Red Cross relief efforts.

It is a remarkable emotional collage of the reactions of these people to a seminal event in their lives.  Each entry is concise and evocative.  The topics range from how the author’s core values have survived a terrifying event, to thoughts about how the media served and didn’t serve the people, to whether an author would live in a high-rise again. Taken together, the pieces form a vivid snapshot of how a life-changing moment impinged on this community.

If I were to pick a nit, it would probably be that many of these pieces are from non-native Japanese.  But that would be a nit.  This book captures the reaction of this community, and its unfair to gripe about the composition of a group that produces a work of this power.

It is only fair to mention that one of my good friends, Rod Van Meter, is a contributor.

Strongly recommended.

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