Remembering Pearl Harbor

Published 12:02 pm Tuesday, December 6, 2022

National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day is observed on December 7, to remember the 2,403 Americans who were killed in the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii on December 7, 1941, which led to the United States declaring war on Japan the next day and thus entering World War II. Honor those who lost their lives in that tragedy through one of the following stories.


At Dawn We Slept by Gordon W. Prange

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As intense and absorbing as a suspense novel, this is the unparalleled and exhaustive account of the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. It is widely regarded as the definitive assessment of the events surrounding one of the most daring and brilliant naval operations of all time. Through extensive research and interviews with American and Japanese leaders, Gordon W. Prange has written a remarkable historical account of the assault that America cannot forget.


The Bombing of Pearl Harbor, 1941 by Lauren Tarshis

This fictional account of the event is the fourth book in the I Survived series, written for children in third grade and up. Each book in the series tells a terrifying and thrilling story from history, through the eyes of a kid who lived to tell the tale.


The Pacific War Companion: From Pearl Harbor to Hiroshima by Daniel Marston

The Pacific War Companion brings together the perspectives and insights of world-renowned military historians. From the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor through the release of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the conflict in the Pacific was marked by amazing tactical innovations, such as those in amphibious warfare, and horrific battles that raged in the unforgiving climate of the island jungles. Each chapter in this book focuses on a different aspect of this conflict, from the planning of operations to the experiences of the men who were there.


To Wake the Giant by Jeff Shaara

The New York Times bestselling master of military historical fiction tells the story of Pearl Harbor as only he can in the first novel of a gripping series set in World War II’s Pacific theater. Told through the eyes of widely diverse characters, this story looks at all sides of the drama and puts the reader squarely in the middle. With you-are-there immediacy, Shaara opens up the mysteries of just how Japan—a small, deeply militarist nation—could launch one of history’s most devastating surprise attacks.


Our Man In Tokyo by Steve Kemper

A gripping, behind-the-scenes account of the personalities and contending forces in Tokyo during the volatile decade that led to World War II, as seen through the eyes of the American ambassador who attempted to stop the slide to war. Drawing on the diary of Joseph C. Grew, the ambassador to Japan at the time of Pearl Harbor, as well as U.S. embassy correspondence, diplomatic dispatches, and firsthand Japanese accounts, Our Man in Tokyo brings to life a man who risked everything to avert another world war, the country where he staked it all—and the abyss that swallowed it.


Jen Pace Dickenson is the Youth Services Librarian for Polk County Public Libraries. For information about the library’s resources, programs, and other services, visit or call (828) 894-8721.