kush rice paddy navy china

BOOK REVIEW – The Rice Paddy Navy: U.S. Sailors Undercover in China

By Linda Kush, Osprey Publishing, (2012) Reviewed by David Kronenfeld The Rice Paddy Navy relates the unique story of the Sino-American Cooperation Organization (SACO), an intelligence and special operations unit of the US Navy in China during World War II. Author Linda Kush has expended significant research in the writing of her first book length

stille usn ijn destroyer

BOOK REVIEW – USN Destroyer VS IJN Destroyer: The Pacific 1943

By Mark E. Stille, with contributors, Osprey Publishing, Long Island City, NY (2012) Reviewed by Michael F. Solecki The naval frigates known as “destroyers” first came into their own in the Pacific Theater of World War II. These ships evolved out of the 1890s from the need to counter smaller torpedo boats used to attack

larson seabee story tinian saipan

BOOK REVIEW – A Seabee’s Story: Tinian and Okinawa, B-29s and the Air War Against Japan

By Lt. Col. George A. Larson (USAF Ret.), Merriam Press, (2012). Reviewed by Jan Churchill The author says this book “is based, 50 per cent, on my father George W. Larson’s World War II service with the 135th United States Naval Construction Battalion or Seabees.” It combines personal biography, first-hand accounts, military assessment, documents and

lloyds register logo

BOOK REVIEW – Lloyd’s Register: 250 Years of Service

By Nigel Watson, Lloyd’s Register, 2010 Reviewed by Mark Lardas In 1760, the Register Society was formed in Lloyd’s Coffee House. That organization is today’s Lloyd’s Register, one of the world’s most influential classification societies.  To celebrate 250 years of existence, Lloyd’s Registry published an official history of the organization, Lloyd’s Register: 250 Years of

mansell captured guam

BOOK REVIEW – Captured: The Forgotten Men of Guam

By Roger Mansell, Edited by Linda Goetz Holmes, Naval Institute Press, 2012. Reviewed by Nathan Albright A labor of love for Roger Mansell that extended ten years, edited after his death by historian Linda Goetz (known for her writings on the POW experience in the Pacific War), this book stands as a harrowing tale of

gilbert building for war wake

BOOK REVIEW – Building for War: The Epic Saga of the Civilian Contractors and Marines of Wake Island in World War II

By Bonita Gilbert, Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia (2012). Reviewed by Richard P. Hallion, Ph.D. Wake Island is justly remembered in the military history of the United States for the heroic stand made by its few defenders against the might of the Japanese empire. But while the exploits of the Navy and Marine personnel assigned to that

symonds midway

BOOK REVIEW – The Battle of Midway

By Craig L. Symonds, Oxford University Press, Oxford & New York (2011). Reviewed by Rear Admiral William J. Holland Jr. U.S. Navy (Retired) Though titled after the single battle, the book’s narrative begins at the planning of the attack on Pearl Harbor, covers the activities and planning of both sides leading to the decisions to

Venomous

BOOK REVIEW – A Hard Fought Ship, The Story of HMS Venomous

By Robert J.Moore and John A. Rodgaard;  Holywell Publishing,  St. Albans, Hertfordshire, UK, (2010). Reviewed by Thomas C. Hone, Ph.D. This well-illustrated paperback book covers the career of a Royal Navy destroyer commissioned in 1919 and the experiences of the men who served in her. The book does a splendid job of giving the reader

palmer george washingtons military genius

BOOK REVIEW – George Washington’s Military Genius

By Dave R. Palmer, Regnery Publishing, Washington, DC. (2012). Reviewed by Captain Roger F. Jones, U.S.Navy (Retired) This small book (only 230 pages of text) is a gem, in that it takes a brief premise which is developed simply, elegantly, and completely. One of the most enjoyable aspects is General Palmer’s masterly writing style, which

jordan warships after washington

BOOK REVIEW – Warships After Washington: The Development of the Five Major Fleets 1922-1930

By John Jordan, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD. (2011). Reviewed by Larry A. Grant Warships After Washington: The Development of the Five Major Fleets 1922-1930 tells the story of the impact of the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 on warship construction as the victorious nations tried to modernize their navies while facing financial strain, national

symonds civil war at sea

BOOK REVIEW – The Civil War at Sea

By Craig L. Symonds. Oxford University Press, New York, NY. (2012) Reviewed by William Whyte Renowned historian Craig Symonds, Professor of History Emeritus at the U.S. Naval Academy, has penned a compact, topical overview of the naval effects on the U.S. Civil War. Symonds has written a number of works on the Civil War, most

shenk americas black sea fleet

BOOK REVIEW – America’s Black Sea Fleet: The U.S. Navy Amidst War and Revolution, 1919-1923

By Robert Shenk, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD. (2012). Reviewed by David F. Winkler, Ph.D. I wrote the dust-jacket promotion blurb for this book where I suggested this book be considered for the CNO’s reading list – for good reasons – this book provides a historical account of the post-World War I history where revolutionary

mcknight pirate alley

BOOK REVIEW – Pirate Alley: Commanding Task Force 151 Off Somalia

By Rear Adm. Terry McKnight, USN (Ret.) and Michael Hirsh, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD. (2012) Reviewed By Nathan Albright Retired Rear Admiral Terry McKnight and Michael Hirsh have written a book about Somali piracy that is both of topical interest and designed to provide a lasting influence on future policy for the United States,

swanson plain sailorman in china

BOOK REVIEW – A Plain Sailorman in China: The Life and Times of Cdr. I. V. Gillis, USN, 1875-1948

By Bruce Swanson with Vance H. Morrison, Don H. McDowell, and Nancy N. Tomasko, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD. (2012) Reviewed by Diana L. Ahmad, Ph.D. A Plain Sailorman in China by Bruce Swanson discussed the life of I. V. Gillis, part of a multigenerational Navy family, who became the first United States naval attaché

prados normandy crucible

BOOK REVIEW – Normandy Crucible: The Decisive Battle that Shaped World War II in Europe

By John Prados, NAK Caliber Division of New American Library, New York, NY (2011) Reviewed by Captain Roger F. Jones, USN (Ret.) One of the meanings of the word “crucible” is “severe test,” and the Allied invasion of France in WW II was certainly every bit of that for each side. Prados draws on both