In his short novel, Elephant Run, Roland Smith exposes what life was like for the Burmese people before and after the Japanese army invaded through the eyes of young Nick Freestone. It opened my eyes to the harsh life that the people had to deal with. He wrote this in a way that was appropriate for kids and also easy for them to understand. I know this because I had previously read this book when I was younger and reread it to see if I would interoperate it differently. It was even able to show the struggles that a young, attractive girl would have to face due to the unwarranted advances of older men. This book, exposes the often over looked struggles that Asian citizens had to face while under Japanese occupation. While it does show the horrific things that the Japanese did to their prisoners, as well as the citizens of the countries that occupied, it also reveals that not all of the men are bad. Through Sergeant Sonji and even Colonel Nahayoshi, Smith shows that there were good men who fought for Japan but were bound to service by their traditions. As well as bringing to light an unseen point of view for WWII, Smith also describes how elephants, religion and other cultural played a huge part for the occupation of Burma. Smith is able to show all of these things in this book and is able to make it easy for people of any age to understand it.
Here you can find stock footage showing a few ways that elephants were used in WWII… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTgMeXCsOck