The Pacific War: From Pearl Harbor to Hiroshima
ISBN: 978 1 84908 382 9
Contributor: Jimmy Lebel
Review Date: 26 Feb 2011
I enjoyed the content of The Pacific War. It was detailed and informative on all of the topics that they had decided to cover. The book was not written by Daniel Marston, but by a group of professors, retired military, and military historians. The book was put together well, each small group of contributors wrote certain chapters, and then you would move onto the next chapter and group of historians. I liked all of the detail that you normally wouldn't get studying the Pacific Theater such as the socioeconomic state of Japan in the 20's and 30's and their ongoing conflict with China. It really helped put into context how we got to December 7th 1941. Most memoirs or books that I had picked up to date seem to focus on the Pacific Theater starting at Pearl Harbor.
On that note, there were some areas that I would have enjoyed, and wished were covered in greater detail. For instance, there was only one chapter covering the island experience that was such a big part of the Pacific Theater. The book really did not cover any battles, or island hopping done by the USMC specifically, rather than just giving a high-level on the certain operations that these battles were fought in, and what the troops typically experienced overall during this intense jungle warfare. Perhaps there was just way too much data to cover there.
Other than that, I really enjoyed this book. It has really helped my overall understanding of Japan as a country before the war. This almost makes the IJA and IJN not seem so fanatically crazy for "no reason" to me now. It was different to see the Pacific Theater from that perspective.
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