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Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Final Storm: A Novel of the War in the Pacific by Jeff Shaara

A bit disappointing.

Jeff Shaara's European Theater World War II trilogy covered America's participation in that theater completely - from before the invasion of North Africa to the occupation of Germany. All of my reviews of those books can be seen by clicking here. He did a great job of discussing the grand strategies and showing the view from the trenches.

I really was hoping for the same treatment here. Shaara alludes to problems with his publisher in an introduction, but the reader is left with a truncated version of the war in the Pacific Theater. Shaara picks up this story with the dates he left off in his European Theater trilogy - Spring of 1945.So, no Pearl Harbor, Battle of Midway or threat of invasion of Australia. No occupation of the Aleutian Islands. No Bataan Death March.

The B-29 bomber Enola Gay
Instead, we are told the story of one major campaign (Okinawa) and the story of the Enola Gay and the bombing of Hiroshima. Those stories are told well. In fact, they are told brilliantly. The fighting in Okinawa was horrific and so different than the fighting in Europe that I was struck over and over again by how much the whole story needed to be told - not just the end of the story.

Reviewed May 7, 2011.

This book can be found on Amazon.com here: The Final Storm: A Novel of the War in the Pacific by Jeff Shaara.

I rate this book 3 stars out of 5 for failing to deliver the goods as they deserved to have been delivered.

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