Retreat, Hell!: We're Just Attacking in Another Direction

Jim Wilson, Author William Morrow & Company $19.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-688-07576-7
In Nov.-Dec. 1950, the 1st Marine Division and part of the 7th Army Division were surrounded and vastly outnumbered at the Chosin Reservoir in northeast Korea by Chinese Communist forces, but managed to fight their way to Hungnam where an armada of ships took survivors to safety. Wilson offers a simplified, journalistic version of this complex campaign. Drawing on veterans' reminiscences, he stitches together a traditional gung-ho account of Marine operations but has little to say about the Army battalions whose sacrifice, according to some historians, enabled the Marines to escape. The book is marred by the author's descriptive inadequacies (``Boom!'' appears six times on one page, for instance) and excessive reliance on stiff-upper-lip dialogue recalled over a span of nearly four decades. Wilson is photo editor for the Los Angeles Times. Photos. Military Book Club dual main selection. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 11/03/1988
Release date: 11/01/1988
Mass Market Paperbound - 340 pages - 978-0-671-67866-1
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