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  • Make a Recommendation!

    I thought it would be good to dedicate a thread to all books, fiction or non-fiction, military or non-military, you would highly recommend.

    As the OP, it is my duty to start off:

    The Beardless Warriors by Richard Matheson

    As one of many novels to come out of the war, it is sadly ignored. The author is well known for his works in science-fiction, but before this, he served with the 87th Infantry Division in World War Two.

    The novel is three things - a traditional war story, a character(s) study and an examination of the use of 18-year old's as infantrymen.

    Although written in the form of third person, the book is told from the point of view of Everett Hackermeyer, an 18 year old replacement.

    Hackermeyer is not your typical teenage replacement. He is a loner (a good word to describe him would be standoffish), humorless (which is played for laughs at times).

    He shows little empathy or understanding for others, as a child of a broken home and a rotten upbringing. Really, the novel is about how he grows not just as a combat soldier but as a human being.

    There is a lot of combat in the novel, but it doesn't distract from the story.

    Flaws? Well, the characters are fairly cliched, especially the grizzled, tobacco chewing Sergeant Cooley.

    However, it is an excellent read. Quick too, not like the gargantuan Naked and the Dead.

    So would I recommend it? Absolutely.
    You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace, after having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.

    -- Ataturk

  • #2
    With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa




    To date, my favorite combat memoir of all time. Sledge is such a modest man, and he has a style of writing and expression that eloquently conveys the feeling of weight that he carried with him throughout his life. He found it especially hard to move on after the war, and writing the book was one of his ways of dealing. The narrative is simple and straight-forward, but it does what many others fail to, and that is make you consider if you were in his shoes.

    His gentlemenly southern manner doesn't even allow him to put curse words in print, and he replaces most of the obvious ones with place holders; and yet, he doesn't shy away for an instant in describing in unflinching detail how a marine pries a gold tooth out of the jaw of a paralyzed, but living Japanese soldier with his K-Bar.

    At the conclusion of the book, you can share his sentiments. How can civilians walk around without appreciating the simple things in life? How could you ever possibly complain about walking in the rain, or your meal not being hot enough...ever again? You won't want to.

    I cannot rate this book highly enough. Do yourself a favor and give it a read. It unveils the grit and toil of the PTO, and makes you all the more grateful for the generation of men and women who suffered in it's hell.
    ...how useless it was to struggle against fortune, this being the burden of wisdom which the ages had bequeathed to him.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Lucky 6 View Post



      To date, my favorite combat memoir of all time. Sledge is such a modest man, and he has a style of writing and expression that eloquently conveys the feeling of weight that he carried with him throughout his life. He found it especially hard to move on after the war, and writing the book was one of his ways of dealing. The narrative is simple and straight-forward, but it does what many others fail to, and that is make you consider if you were in his shoes.

      His gentlemenly southern manner doesn't even allow him to put curse words in print, and he replaces most of the obvious ones with place holders; and yet, he doesn't shy away for an instant in describing in unflinching detail how a marine pries a gold tooth out of the jaw of a paralyzed, but living Japanese soldier with his K-Bar.

      At the conclusion of the book, you can share his sentiments. How can civilians walk around without appreciating the simple things in life? How could you ever possibly complain about walking in the rain, or your meal not being hot enough...ever again? You won't want to.

      I cannot rate this book highly enough. Do yourself a favor and give it a read. It unveils the grit and toil of the PTO, and makes you all the more grateful for the generation of men and women who suffered in it's hell.


      Agreed on all counts. A fantastic read.

      If you haven't already, I recommend Helmet for my Pillow by Robert Leckie. His memoirs are not as stark and gruesome as Sledge's, but they are beautifully written.
      You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace, after having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.

      -- Ataturk

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      • #4
        Peter Pinney's Signaller Johnston's Secret War is well worth the read, provided you can put up with Australianisms. Absolutely first rate depiction of the various breeds of men who made up Australia's Independent Infantry (read Commando) Companies in WWII. Published by Univ. of Queensland Press.

        And while I can't hold a candle to Sledge or Leckie or Larteguy, for anyone interested in a what the Vietnam War looked like from inside an American and Australian led Montagnard strike force, my novel The Dega: A MIKE Force Novel is now out and can be found on Amazon both U.S. and U.K., and from the publisher http://hellgatepress.com Perhaps I should add that it's published under the name Shaun Darragh, and that an e-book version will be out within weeks.
        dit: Lirelou

        Phong trần mi một lưỡi gươm, Những loi gi o ti cơm s g!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by lirelou View Post
          Perhaps I should add that it's published under the name Shaun Darragh, and that an e-book version will be out within weeks.
          What? No audio Book? I like to listen to books while I drive Colonel

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          • #6
            French And Indian War

            Probably the best one-volume history of the French and Indian War is Fred Anderson's Crucible Of War. It's mostly a political history from the English and colonial side but the military aspect is covered as well and also how this war figured into the wider conflict of the Seven Years War. It also goes into the aftermath of the war in the colonies and England and some of the political happenings that lead to the American Revolution. (my take on some of that is that England had a case for taxing the American colonists) All in all a must have if you're interested in this time period of American and English history.

            Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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            • #7
              Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway by Jonathan Parshall & Anthony Tully

              and

              Battle of Surigao Strait by Anthony Tully

              Two of the best WWII books I have ever read. A must-read for any student of the Pacific War.

              -Matt
              SGT, 210th MP Battalion, 2nd MP BDE, MSSG

              Fervently PRO-TRUMP, anti-Islam and anti-Steelers!

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              • #8
                for war fiction/sci-fi or whatever you want to call it. The books by John Birmingham World war 2.1, 2.2 and 2.3 were a great read, that crossed fact with fiction, History with future military advances and a great story line.

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                • #9
                  The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich



                  One of the most influential books that I have ever read. I read it pretty young, and it turned me upside down to a degree, leaving me with quite an impression. It was really the first political history that I had read of Hitler's rise; I had known about the war, but never the man and party behind it.

                  I will warn the reader that Shirer is of the opinion that authoritarianism is natural to the German race, and postulates that the rise of the Nazi party was a natural progression in the course of German history. Whatever your conclusions in regards to that, I urge you not to throw the baby out with the bathwater. This is the best single volume history of Hitler and the Nazi party that is available in my humble opinion. I strongly suggest that you read it at least once in your lifetime, which I can confidently guess that will result in you reading it time, and time again.
                  Last edited by Lucky 6; 17 Jul 11, 20:01.
                  ...how useless it was to struggle against fortune, this being the burden of wisdom which the ages had bequeathed to him.

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                  • #10
                    Read it...excellent book.

                    -Matt
                    SGT, 210th MP Battalion, 2nd MP BDE, MSSG

                    Fervently PRO-TRUMP, anti-Islam and anti-Steelers!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Wolf's Hour By Robert McCammon



                      "And then the clouds were coming after him, about to engulf him. He ran, but he couldn't run fast enough. Faster. Faster. The storm roaring on his heels. Faster. His heart, pounding. A banshee scream in his ears. Faster....
                      And a change exploded in him. Dark hairs burst from his hands and arms. He felt his spine contort, bowing his shoulders. His hands---no longer hands---touched the earth. He ran faster, his body whipsawing, and he began to rip from his clothes...."

                      It is 1944. A message from Paris warns Allied Intelligence of something big in the works---something which might have serious implications for D-Day. The only way to get more information from the agent in Paris---now closely watched by the Gestapo---is to send in a personal courier.

                      Russian migr Michael Gallatin is picked for the job. In retirement as a secret agent since a grisly episode in North Africa, Gallatin is parachuted into occupied France, on a mission which will take him to the festering heart of the Third Reich on the scent of doomsday.

                      As a master spy, Gallatin has proved he can take on formidable foes---and kill them. As a passionate lover, he attracts beautiful women. But there is one extra factor which makes Michael Gallatin a unique special agent---he is a werewolf, able to change form almost at will, able to assume the body of a wolf and its capacity to kill with savage, snarling fury.

                      In the madness of war, Gallatin hunts his prey---ready to out-think his opponents with his finely-tuned brain. Or tear their throats out with his finely-honed teeth....

                      He is Michael Gallatin, master spy, lover--and werewolf. Able to change shape with lightning speed, to kill silently or with savage, snarling fury, he proved his talents against Rommel in Africa. Now he faces his most delicate, dangerous mission: to unravel the secret Nazi plan known as Iron Fist. From a parachute jump into occupied France to the lush corruption of Berlin, from the arms of a beautiful spy to the cold embrace of a madman's death machine, Gallatin draws ever closer to the ghastly truth about Iron Fist. But with only hours to D-Day, he is trapped in the Nazis' web of destruction...

                      From wiki
                      The Wolf's Hour is a 1989 World War II adventure novel with a twist by Robert R. McCammon. A British secret agent goes behind German lines to stop a secret weapon from being launched against the Allies. The twist is that this agent is a werewolf. The book also includes some of the agent's history, namely how he became a werewolf.

                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wolf's_Hour


                      I give it 4 stars. It is from 1989.
                      This bass guitar kills TERRORISTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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                      • #12
                        Probably my favorite novel of all-time! It introduced me to the world of the samurai which led to history books, movies and even the Shogun Total War game. It's a stunning book and covers all aspects of life in medievel Japan. Toranaga, the man who becomes Shogun, is loosely based on Tokugawa Ieyasu as are other characters in book based on real life people. Just an amazing book.

                        Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

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                        • #13
                          Len Deighton's, 'Fighter,' a superb analysis of the BoB.

                          'The Other Battle,' The story of the Nachtjagd by Peter Hinchcliffe.
                          Indyref2 - still, "Yes."

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                          • #14
                            One Bullet Away by Nathaniel Fick
                            I've always tried to teach you two things 007. First, never let them see you bleed.
                            And the second?
                            Always have an escape plan.
                            -Q

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by VanguardFC007 View Post
                              One Bullet Away by Nathaniel Fick
                              On the subject of Iraq War memoirs, House to House by David Bellavia.

                              Great writing, excellent combat descriptions and very frank and honest.
                              You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace, after having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.

                              -- Ataturk

                              Comment

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