BOOK REVIEW – The U.S. Navy: A Concise History

By Craig L. Symonds, Oxford University Press, New York, NY (2016) Reviewed by Jason W. Smith, PhD It is often a pleasure to read short books, and Craig Symonds’ The U.S. Navy: A Concise History does not disappoint. Symonds, professor emeritus at the United States Naval Academy, is an eminent scholar of naval history whose

BOOK REVIEW – Thinking Wisely, Planning Boldly: The Higher Education and Training of Royal Navy Officers, 1919-39

By Joseph Moretz, Helion & Company, West Midlands, UK (2014) Reviewed by CDR Benjamin Armstrong, PhD The years following the Great War have become something of a favorite of modern day military analysts in search of historical analogy. The development of innovative doctrine, the introduction and assimilation of new technologies, and struggles with fluctuating fiscal

BOOK REVIEW – US Navy Escort Carriers 1942-45

By Mark Stille, New Vanguard Series, Osprey Publishing, New York, NY (2017) Reviewed by Michael F. Solecki There were three major types of aircraft carriers in World War II (WWII). The first, very expensive “fleet” carriers, were large, fast, heavily armored, and armed for self-defense, carried over 80 planes designed with major strike and long-range

BOOK REVIEW – The Parent’s Guide To The U.S. Navy

By Thomas J.  Cutler, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD (2017) Reviewed by Nathan Albright In an era where service in the United States military or reserves is no longer a general expectation of a large body of citizens, there can be a vast gulf of ignorance and misunderstanding between the military and the families of

BOOK REVIEW – The First World Oil War

By Timothy C. Winegard, University of Toronto Press; Toronto, Buffalo, and London, UK (2016) Reviewed by Phillip G. Pattee In his latest book, The First World Oil War, Oxford Ph.D. and Colorado Mesa University professor Timothy C. Winegard argues that the Great War was the first time in history that territory was conquered and occupied

BOOK REVIEW – I Was Just a Radioman: The Memoirs of a WW2 Pearl Harbor Survivor

Edited by Pamela Ackerson. Self-published, (2016) Reviewed by Charles H. Bogart This self-published monograph was compiled by Ms. Ackerson to preserve the family history of Aviation Chief Radioman Henry Lawrence’s service in World War II. The audience at which the book is directed is family and friends. Henry Lawrence, in June 1940 at the age

BOOK REVIEW – Sea Power: The History and Geopolitics of the World’s Oceans

By Adm. James Stavridis, USN (Ret.), Penguin Press, New York (2017) Reviewed by John R. Satterfield, DBA Sea Power: The History and Geopolitics of the World’s Oceans is a companion to The Accidental Admiral, Admiral Stavridis’ earlier best seller that provided many Americans with a basic education in national and global security. Stavridis, the first

BOOK REVIEW – Heligoland: Britain, Germany, and the Struggle for the North Sea

By Jan Rüger. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK (2017) Reviewed by Alan M. Anderson, Ph.D. Heligoland rises abruptly and unexpectedly in the southeastern corner of the North Sea.  Featuring dramatic cliffs rising more than 160 feet, it is a small, triangular island less than four-tenths of a square mile in area. Along with the nearby

BOOK REVIEW – Predicting Pearl Harbor: Billy Mitchell and the Path to War

By Ronald J. Drez, Pelican Press, New York, NY (2017) Reviewed by Charles C. Kolb, Ph.D. In my assessment of Attack on Pearl Harbor: Strategy, Combat, Myths, Deceptions (Alan D. Zimm, Philadelphia and Oxford: Casemate Publishers, 2014), I pointed out that “WorldCat (an international library catalog) listed 18,353 publications and other media on the Japanese

BOOK REVIEW – Soldiers and Civilization: How the Profession of Arms Thought and Fought the Modern World into Existence

By Reed Robert Bonadonna, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD (2017) Reviewed by John R. Satterfield, DBA No one disputes that the growth and development of warfare have been functions of the advance of civilization, but the contributions of war to human progress may be less obvious.  Many argue that violent conflict reflects little more than

BOOK REVIEW – Knickerbocker Commodore: The Life and Times of John Drake Sloat 1781-1867

By Bruce A. Castleman, State University Press, Albany, NY (2016) Reviewed by Charles Bogart The reviewer doubts that today even one in a million Americans could identify Commodore John David Sloat; however, there was a time when he was well-known across the country. Depending on one’s political views, Commodore Sloat was praised or damned. This

BOOK REVIEW – Margaret Thatcher: A Life and Legacy

By David Cannadine, Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK (2017) Reviewed by John Grady This to-the-point, short biography of Margaret Thatcher, the United Kingdom’s longest-serving prime minister, provides some interesting political parallels to today’s United States — the rise of populism to give voice to those left behind, cries to scale back government, demands to unleash

BOOK REVIEW – Strategy: Context and Adaptation from Archidamus to Airpower

Edited by Richard J. Bailey, Jr., James W. Forsyth, Jr., and Mark O. Yesley, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD (2016) Reviewed by Steven K. Stein, Ph.D. This collection of eleven essays by current or former faculty of the School of Advanced Air and Space Studies (SAASS) at Maxwell Air Force Base explores linkages between modern

BOOK REVIEW – Under a Blood Red Sun: The Remarkable Story of PT Boats in the Philippines and the Rescue of General MacArthur

By John J. Domagalski, Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia, PA (2016) Reviewed by John R. Satterfield, DBA Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron Three (MTB-3) joined the U.S. Navy’s Asiatic Fleet in the Philippines just three months before Japan attacked the islands on December 8, 1941.  Six boats and 82 sailors under Lt. John D. Bulkeley’s command performed remarkably

BOOK REVIEW – Fw 200 Condor Units of World War 2

By Chris Goss, Osprey Publishing, New York, NY (2016) Reviewed by Cdr. Peter Mersky, USNR (Ret.) This new book details one of World War II’s least known but, at the time, most efficient aircraft, if only for its psychological effect on allied, especially British, morale. For approximately three years, the Condor patrolled the convoy routes