War In the Pacific Volume II
MWSA 2006 Gold Medal for Best History Series
The absolute best history books I have ever read about any war. Author (and retired USMC Brigadier General) Jerome T. Hagen has put together a great series of books called War in the Pacific. His second volume of that series – People and Places is a real page turner and for a book on history, this is a rarity. He writes about the men behind the action and digs up some most interesting of facts in the process. I thoroughly enjoyed reading each chapter. His descriptions and narratives of events and people are done with the skill of a novelist and not just that of a military leader. This book series has been on the best selling list in Hawaii for several years and there is good reason for that which you will discover when you begin to read them.
Volume II deals with people whose names may famous to most and some who were certainly new to me. I enjoyed the background on one of my favorite aviation heroes, Major Gregory “Pappy” Boyington of the “Black Sheep" fame. The author not only provides the reader with many facts (much of which was new or unknown information to me) but General Hagen also gives a good emotional profile of the man. His second volume book of this three book series goes well beyond the basic facts and gives some very insightful observations which make the history of WWII come alive.
If you had a class of students and they could only read one set of history books about the War with Japan then this series of books would be the one that I would choose and recommend. There are great photos, maps, stories and background information to give any student or reader a good historic view of that conflict.
Reviewed by: Bill McDonald (2006)