Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes

by

Eleanor Coerr

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Chizuko Character Analysis

Sadako’s best friend from school. When Chizuko first visits Sadako in the hospital, she brings Sadako several pieces of colorful papers and a pair of scissors, and instructs Sadako in the art of making origami paper cranes. She tells Sadako that, according to legend, if a sick person folds one thousand paper cranes, he or she will become healthy again. The cranes Chizuko introduces into Sadako’s life give her a goal and a purpose during her long stay in the hospital, and allow her to feel hope even in her darkest moments.

Chizuko Quotes in Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes

The Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes quotes below are all either spoken by Chizuko or refer to Chizuko. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Peace and Pacifism Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Puffin Books edition of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes published in 2004.
Chapter 2 Quotes

At the entrance to the Peace Park people filed through the memorial building in silence. On the walls were photographs of the dead and dying in a ruined city. The atom bomb—the Thunderbolt—had turned Hiroshima into a desert. Sadako didn’t want to look at the frightening pictures. She held tight to Chizuko’s hand and walked quickly through the building.

“I remember the Thunderbolt,” Sadako whispered to her friend. “There was the flash of a million suns. Then the heat prickled my eyes like needles.”

“How can you possibly remember anything?” Chizuko exclaimed. “You were only a baby then.”

“Well, I do!” Sadako said stubbornly.

Related Characters: Sadako (speaker), Chizuko (speaker)
Page Number: 16-18
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 5 Quotes

That afternoon Chizuko was Sadako’s first visitor. She smiled mysteriously as she held something behind her back. “Shut your eyes,” she said. While Sadako squinted her eyes shut, Chizuko put some pieces of paper and scissors on the bed. “Now you can look,” she said.

“What is it?” Sadako asked.

Chizuko was pleased with herself. “I’ve figured out a way for you to get well,” she said proudly. “Watch!” She cut a piece of gold paper into a large square. In a short time she had folded it over and over into a beautiful crane.

Sadako was puzzled. “How can that paper bird make me well?”

“Don’t you remember that old story about the crane?” Chizuko asked. “It’s supposed to live for a thousand years. If a sick person folds one thousand paper cranes, the gods will grant her wish and make her healthy again.” She handed the crane to Sadako. “Here’s your first one.”

Sadako’s eyes filled with tears. Sadako took the golden crane and made a wish. The funniest little feeling came over her when she touched the bird. It must be a good omen.

Related Characters: Sadako (speaker), Chizuko (speaker)
Related Symbols: Paper Cranes
Page Number: 34-36
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 6 Quotes

Everyone saved paper for Sadako’s good luck cranes. Chizuko brought colored paper from class. Father saved every scrap from the barbershop. Even Nurse Yasunaga gave Sadako the wrappings from packages of medicine. And Masahiro hung every one of the birds, as he had promised.

Related Symbols: Paper Cranes
Page Number: 40-41
Explanation and Analysis:
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Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes PDF

Chizuko Character Timeline in Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes

The timeline below shows where the character Chizuko appears in Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2: Peace Day
Peace and Pacifism Theme Icon
History, Family, and Tradition Theme Icon
Hope, Strength, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...air outside is warm and the streets are busy. Sadako runs to her best friend Chizuko’s house—the two of them have been “close as two pine needles on the same twig”... (full context)
Peace and Pacifism Theme Icon
History, Family, and Tradition Theme Icon
...bodies and ruined buildings line the walls. Sadako looks away from the pictures and holds Chizuko’s hand tightly. Sadako tells Chizuko that she remembers the bombing—“there was the flash of a... (full context)
Chapter 5: The Golden Crane
History, Family, and Tradition Theme Icon
Hope, Strength, and Perseverance Theme Icon
Sadako’s first visitor that afternoon is Chizuko. She approaches Sadako’s bed and tells Sadako to shut her eyes. When Sadako opens them... (full context)
History, Family, and Tradition Theme Icon
Hope, Strength, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...first golden crane into her hand and feels a funny feeling come over her. When Chizuko leaves, Sadako sets to work on folding cranes. Some of them are lopsided, but Sadako... (full context)
Chapter 6: Kenji
History, Family, and Tradition Theme Icon
Hope, Strength, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...family start saving paper for her to use to make the good luck origami cranes. Chizuko brings Sadako paper from school, her father saves every scrap he can from his barbershop,... (full context)
Chapter 8: Last Days
Peace and Pacifism Theme Icon
History, Family, and Tradition Theme Icon
Hope, Strength, and Perseverance Theme Icon
Death as Freedom Theme Icon
...small steps around her room, everyone agrees that she looks like a princess. Just then, Chizuko comes in for a visit, and tells Sadako that she should wear the beautiful kimono... (full context)