BOOK REVIEW – Destroyerman

By John T. Pigott, (2006) Reviewed by Rear Admiral Peter B. Booth, U.S. Navy (Retired) The whaleboat was deep in the water, grossly overloaded with sailors hauled from the ocean. I grabbed the oil-soaked life jacket of the sailor who would have brought our total to thirty-five, and had started to heave him aboard when

defender dolphins goforth

BOOK REVIEW – Defender Dolphins: The Story of Project Short Time, A Brief History of the U.S. Navy’s First Marine Mammal Swimmer Defense System

By Harold Goforth, Fortis Publications, United Kingdom, (2013). Reviewed by Stephen Phillips Asymmetric tactics are the hallmark of battlefield victory for an insurgency. In the Vietnam War, the Viet Cong employed sappers – those who use explosives to destroy a specified target – to great effect. In his book Defender Dolphins: The Story of Project

childs invading america english assault

BOOK REVIEW – Invading America: The British Assault on the New World, 1497-1630

By David Childs, Seaforth Publishing, South Yorkshire, UK, (2012). Reviewed by Thomas Sheppard The arrival of British settlers in the so-called “New World” has been characterized at various times as a discovery, an encounter, or even a clash of civilizations. All these descriptions have merit, but David Childs contends that perhaps the century of English

cropsey mayday decline navy

BOOK REVIEW – Mayday: The Decline of American Naval Supremacy

By Seth Cropsey, Overlook Duckworth, New York, NY, (2013). Reviewed by Harvey M. Sapolsky, Ph.D. Seth Cropsey, a Navy secretariat official in Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush administrations and currently a Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, is worried about the future of the U.S. Navy and the fate of the nation. Because

monroe jones green silent service ww2

BOOK REVIEW – The Silent Service in World War II: The Story of the U.S. Navy Submarine Force in the Words of the Men Who Lived It

By Edward Monroe-Jones and Michael Green, eds., Havertown, PA, Casemate (2012). Reviewed by Charles C. Kolb, Ph.D. The editors have assembled an anthology of 46 oral histories of variable lengths that focus on stories of men as well as old S- and newer fleet-type boats that fought against the Japanese during World War II in

stevens fatal dive grunion

BOOK REVIEW – Fatal Dive: Solving the World War II Mystery of the USS Grunion

By Peter F. Stevens, Regnery History, Washington, DC, (2012). Reviewed by Greg Stitz USS Grunion (SS 216) was already under construction when the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor thrust America into World War II. Her keel had been laid at the Electric Boat Company shipyard in Groton, CT on 1 March 1941. Christened and launched

bishop hitlers warships

BOOK REVIEW – The Hunt for Hitler’s Warship

By Patrick Bishop, Regnery History, Washington, DC, (2013) Reviewed by Stephen Phillips The very presence of a capital ship can often create strategic importance. Today, aircraft carriers exert this influence, but prior to the Second World War, it was battleships that were known by name that caused concern or even fear. The Hunt for Hitler’s

stille IJN destroyers

BOOK REVIEW – Imperial Japanese Navy Destroyers 1919-45 (1): Minekaze to Shiratsuyu Classes

By Mark Stille, Osprey Publishing, Oxford, United Kingdom (2013) Reviewed by Diana L. Ahmad, Ph.D., Missouri University of Science and Technology As with other Osprey publications, this volume packs a lot of information into a small space and completes its discussion of Japanese destroyers with excellent illustrations by Paul Wright and photographs from the collections

dovkants combat of devils

BOOK REVIEW – A Combat of Devils

By Keith Dovkants, Matador, Troubador Publishing, Ltd. Leicestershire, UK (2012) Reviewed by James C. Quinn A Combat of Devils takes place during the First World War in the English Channel between a Royal Navy officer and his crew and a German U-boat, but I find it hard to call it a war novel. It opens

stewart orr love first flight

BOOK REVIEW – Love at First Flight

By W. Stewart and Fran E. Orr, Astor and Blue Editions, New York, NY (2012). Reviewed by Captain Roger F. Jones, U,S, Navy (Retired) “Bud” and Fran Orr, husband and wife, write alternating sections in this book, telling the story of their lives – his as a naval aviator, starting in the Viet Nam era

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BOOK REVIEW – Elizabeth’s Sea Dogs: How the English Became the Scourge of the Sea

By Hugh Bicheno, Conway Press, United Kingdom, (2012). Reviewed by Mark Lardas Up to the last 50 years or so Britannia ruled the waves.  It remains able to project naval power. Many assume it was always that way, yet reality is different.  Britain’s naval dominance dates only to early modern times. From Roman times to

vogel perilous fight

BOOK REVIEW – Through the Perilous Fight: Six Weeks that Saved the Nation

By Steve Vogel, Random House, New York, NY, (2013). Reviewed by John Grady Through the Perilous Fight is a wonderful and most welcome addition to the books commemorating the bicentennial of the War of 1812. Steve Vogel, veteran defense reporter for the Washington Post and author of The Pentagon: A History several years ago, tells the story of

budiansky blacketts war

BOOK REVIEW – Blackett’s War: The Men Who Defeated the Nazi U-Boats and Brought Science to the Art of Warfare

By Stephen Budiansky.  Alfred A. Knopf, New York, NY, (2013) Reviewed by John R. Satterfield, DBA. September 1, 2013 will mark the 74th anniversary of Hitler’s invasion of Poland and the start of World War II. Just two percent of the U.S. population is old enough to remember the war’s early years, so most Americans know

rigby allied master strategists

BOOK REVIEW – Allied Master Strategists: The Combined Chiefs of Staff in World War II

By David Rigby, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD: (2012). Reviewed by Joseph Moretz, Ph.D. Though the historiography of the Second World War is vast, it is remarkable how few works have examined the actual higher direction of war as practiced by the Anglo-American alliance. That partnership at a political level is reflected in the close

satterfield saving big ben

BOOK REVIEW – Saving Big Ben: the USS Franklin and Father Joseph T. O’Callahan

By John R. Satterfield, Naval Institute Press: Annapolis, MD (2011) Reviewed by Commander Paul W. Murphey, CHC, USNR (Ret.) Appearance wise, Saving Big Ben is an impressive book. Beautifully bound with an appealing jacket, featuring a pleasant type and format, and having enticing blurbs on the back cover, the book brings a sense of anticipation