Guadalcanal: The Definitive Account of the Landmark Battle

Richard B. Frank, Author Random House (NY) $40 (800p) ISBN 978-0-394-58875-9
On August 7, 1942, the Marines landed on Guadalcanal in the Solomon islands, in the first major American offensive of the Pacific war. Days later, after the Japanese had sunk four cruisers of the escorting U.S. fleet, Admiral Robert Ghormley withdrew his ships from the area, leaving the Marines exposed to ground attack. Thus began one of the most decisive campaigns in history--lasting six months, comprising seven major naval engagements and including exhilarating victory. According to Frank, a former captain in the 101st Airborne, the campaign saw more sustained violence--by sea, land and air--than any other in WW II. Based partly on new translations of official Japanese accounts, recently declassified radio traffic records, diaries and other fresh sources, the book is a definitive critical account of strategic and tactical developments on both sides, examining command decisions and revealing in detail the realities of battle as experienced by marines, soldiers, airmen and sailors. This highly readable rendering of the critical campaign in the Pacific is first-rate military history. History Book Club, BOMC alternate. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 10/31/1990
Release date: 11/01/1990
Paperback - 848 pages - 978-0-14-016561-6
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