In Bandits Below, Marine Air-Ground Team in Pursuit of the Bandit Sandino, author LtCol David Brown, USMC (Ret.) has penned a fast moving historical novel. Based on true historical events, Brown tells the story of the U.S. Marines early attempts at integrating air and ground forces. Set in the mountainous regions of northeastern Nicaragua, an expeditionary Marine force has been given the task of capturing the bandit, Augusto Caesar Sandino. Sandino declared himself a revolutionary leader and has set his sights not only on Nicaragua but a large portion of Latin America.
The author does a great job in describing the military units, tactics used, and then goes a step further in walking the reader through the learning curve of using early airpower effectively with ground troops. There were no study guides back then. Remember this is the day before radio communications, so the forces on the ground and in the air had to develop basic methods of communications with each other. Brown draws the reader into the story so you almost feel like you're watching the story unfold rather than reading about it.
Although the reader may have to overlook a few editing problems (especially in the Spanish language excerpts), this is a great read for anyone interested in military history or air power in general.
Review by Bob Doerr (July 2018)
Retired as a Lieutenant Colonel from the U.S. Marine Corps. 22-years of active duty. Two tours in Vietnam, serving both as an advisor and rifle company commander during 1967-1969 at height of the war. Earned Silver Star Medal. Instructed economics at the U.S. Naval Academy and headed the Marine Corps Procurement Budget. Upon retirement, consulted to the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Navy. Executive Director of the Second Marine Division Association and Chairman of the Board for the Carolina Museum of the Marine. Wrote published over 15 articles in the Marine Corps Gazette and Amphibious Warfare Review. Authored books on training, automated information systems, and logistics. First novel, Battlelines, is an historical fiction written about the gallant men of Fox Company, 2d Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment during their five-year deployment to Vietnam. Gold Award 2006 MWSA. Holds an MBA from George Washington University and a BA from Denison University.
Book Format(s): Soft cover, Kindle
Genre(s): Historical Fiction
Review Genre: Fiction—Historical Fiction
Number of Pages: 327