(Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossom)
Title: Yunagi no Machi, Sakura no Kuni
Drama, Historical, Seinen, Slice of Life
Manga Action (JP), Last Gasp (EN), JManga (EN)
Summary from MangaUpdates:
Part 1: Hiroshima, 1955. Ten years after the city was consumed by a scorching flash of light, a woman's soul is still deeply shaken by the earth-shattering explosion that devastated her home and changed her life forever...
A family from Hiroshima struggles to come to terms with their survival of the atomic bombing of their city. The protagonist is Minami Hirano, about 20 years of age.
Part 2: Set some decades later, the niece of Minami Hirano is bewildered by her father's mysterious disappearances. She and a friend follow him to discover what he is doing.
The main theme of this is historic manga concerns the question what impact the war and the atomic bombing had on the most vulnerable. Fumiyo Kôno examines this question in her outstanding book—an award-winning, widely-discussed masterpiece!
This manga has won two awards, the 2004 Japan Media Arts Festival's Grand Prize for manga and the 2005 Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize's Creative Award.
The art was simple; maybe too simple that I couldn't even differentiate which one is a young girl and which one is an adult woman. Still, the simplicity is what this series need. The plot might not be very complicated, but it's special and touching. It shows how far the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 1945 affected the life of the people there, years after the bombing. People are suffering both physically and mentally.
The author wanted to encourage strength to its reader, that's what I feel after reading the manga. The impression was even stronger after I read the author's note at the end of the book. It pictured the restlessness and the fear people have, but also encourage that you have to move on and live your life as best as possible no matter who you are.