- Taschenbuch: 528 Seiten
- Verlag: Bantam; Auflage: Revised. (29. März 2005)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0553381482
- ISBN-13: 978-0553381481
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,6 x 2,8 x 23,4 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 1 Kundenrezension
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 109.515 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors: The Extraordinary World War II Story of the U.S. Navy's Finest Hour (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 29. März 2005
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"One of the finest WWII naval action narratives in recent years, this book follows in the footsteps of Flags of Our Fathers.... exalting American sailors and pilots as they richly deserve.... Reads like a very good action novel."—Publishers Weekly
"Reads as fresh as tomorrow's headlines.... Hornfischer's captivating narrative uses previously classified documents to reconstruct the epic battle and eyewitness accounts to bring the officers and sailors to life."—Texas Monthly
"Hornfischer is a powerful stylist whose explanations are clear as well as memorable.... a dire survival-at-sea saga."—Denver Post
"In The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors, James Hornfischer drops you right into the middle of this raging battle, with 5-inch guns blazing, torpedoes detonating and Navy fliers dive-bombing.... The overall story of the battle is one of American guts, glory and heroic sacrifice."—Omaha World Herald
From the Hardcover edition.
Based on eyewitness accounts, declassified Navy documents, and interviews and correspondence with veterans, this epic account chronicles the October 1944 battle off Samar between a vastly outnumbered fleet of American warships and a flotilla of the Japanese Navy, a struggle that changed the course of World War II in the Pacific. Reprint. 37,500 firAlle Produktbeschreibungen
In diesem Buch(Mehr dazu)
In einem Zug durchgearbeitet. Auf youtube "Battle off Samar" eingeben, einige der Männer sowie Hornfischer selbst kommen dort zu Wort.
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When I read the book for the first time I was back in time to October, 1944, when I was an eighteen year old kid, ready to take on the world, including the Japanese Navy - not realizing that I would soon have that opportunity. Hornfischer's accounts of the battles from the standpoint of each of the ships are wonderfully done. His stories of what it was like to be on life rafts with dying shipmates, sharks and unbelievable thirst, still bring tears to my eyes.
To gain a real understanding of what it was like to be a part of that Battle Off Samar, and in fact to be a sailor in World War II, read this book.
One of the saddest truths about the turn of the new Millennium is the realization that the veterans of the so-called "Greatest Generation," those who defeated Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, are now rapidly passing into history. As such, it has become even more important that the stories of their heroism and sacrifice be written down for posterity while the heroes themselves are still around to tell them. With his new book, "The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors," literary agent and author James D. Hornfischer has documented one such lesser-remembered World War Two tale with a reverence befitting the brave men who fought and died for America's freedom.
The events of the book take place during the Battle of Leyte Gulf, which stands as the largest naval engagement in world history, and was fought between the Japanese and American navies in the vicinity of the Philippines as General Douglas McArthur's forces were invading to take the archipelago back from the Japanese. The Leyte Gulf campaign has been well documented in other books about the Pacific war, so Hornfischer focuses most of his attention on one particular engagement off Samar Island. There, a small task force of American escort carriers and destroyers (the "Tin Cans" of the title), held off a far superior enemy fleet of battleships and cruisers with a combination of near-suicidal bravery and spectacular seamanship coupled with a healthy dose of sheer good fortune.
"Tin Can Sailors" is exhaustively researched, which gives the narrative the kind detailed nuance that elevates it above the level of mere reportage into inspired storytelling. Hornfischer sets the stage by introducing the main players, both the ships and the men who sailed on them. He gives an overall view of events leading up to the battle to assist the casual reader in placing it in context, and also presents enough of the Japanese point of view to give an appreciation of how desperate the forces of the Rising Sun were at this stage of the war. Desperate enough, in fact, to risk virtually their entire remaining surface fleet on a gamble, the success of which hinged on their ability to bluff hard-charging American Admiral William F. "Bull" Halsey. If not for the almost superhuman courage of the Tin Can Sailors, they might well have succeeded and seriously imperiled McArthur's invasion forces.
The battle scenes in the book are particularly well depicted; some of the first hand accounts are every bit as graphically disturbing as, say, the first half-hour of the movie "Saving Private Ryan." Such images are absolutely vital to the telling of the story, and the author handles them deftly, never lapsing into sensationalism. Hour-by-hour position maps showing the locations of the ships are helpfully provided to assist the reader along with a generous selection of photographs. The extras make "Tin Can Sailors" one of the best battle books I've read in terms of helping the reader see the action as it is taking place. The epilogue contains a list of those who died fighting the battle, and what's immediately striking is that America lost more fighting men in just over three hours in this one small corner of World War Two than it has during the entire nine-plus months of the Iraq war.
Overall, "The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors" is a first rate work of history that will be enjoyed equally by both military buffs and more casual readers. The book was obviously a labor of love for its author, and he should be saluted for his efforts in writing it.
Three small destroyers dashed into harm's way and leveled mortal blows before they succumbed to withering, overpowering -- but often inaccurate -- Japanese fire. While some would flinch at calling these acts 'suicidal' against cruisers and battleships, the sense of purpose and patriotism, combined with the small chance that a good offense is the best defense seemed to drive these men to heights of fury and fight against the thunderstorm of Japanese ships.
Storms actually played a positive role in this fight, hiding both the smaller American ships, sometimes at lucky moments, as well as those pesky American fighter planes darting in and out of the clouds. But what really seems to have mattered was accurate firing, productive -- if incomplete -- intelligence, good leadership, and the absolute audacity of the crews aboard the American ships and planes. And timidity on the part of the Japanese admiral, believing he had stumbled upon a superior force of sull-sized carriers and cruisers, helped turn the onslaught into a full-fledged diaster for the Japanese, who lost perhaps 11,000 men to terrible but lesser casualties of fewer than 1,000 for the inspired Americans.
The research is thorough, with fascinating detail and first-hand reports from the battle and the men who fought it. Maps detailing the progress of this brief but spectacular battle help guide the reader. Read it and respect the men who made this happen.
James Hornfischer didn't just find a great story to tell, he crafted it with a very skillful narration. A writer of non-fiction who can capture a reader and pull him into his story is rare and the author does this very well. He had me cheering as Ernest Evans led the Johnston on the attack against the entire Japanese fleet. He left me horrified by the effects of the pounding that the Tin Cans took and stunned by the heroism and sense of duty of those who manned their posts until the very end.
The book gives a nice overview of the Pacific Theater until the point of this battle. Hornfischer clearly explains what has happened so that you can understand the context of the Battle off of Samar. He does this without going too far in depth and losing the reader. The explanations of the development of the Navy and Naval Aviation were clear and concise. I learned quite a bit about the planes that were used and the men who piloted them. The same can be said for his explanations of the different naval vessels and what made them unique.
If you like books told from numerous first-person accounts that personalize a story and let you get to know those involved, then this book is for you. It is an honorable salute to those who survived and the heroes who did not.
Early on the morning of October 25, 1944 Taffy 3, made up of six U.S. escort carriers and a screen of eight destroyers stumbled into a vastly superior Japanese naval force made up of four battleships, eight cruisers, and eleven destroyers. The Japanese fleet was within range of the American force virtually before either group was aware of the presence of the other. The Japanese began bombarding Taffy 3 almost immediately. To save the carriers, the small force of American destroyers and destroyer escorts throw themselves at the Japanese task force believing that by sacrificing themselves they can buy precious time for the American carriers and allow them to flee southward toward another grouping of friendly ships. Naval aviators from Taffy 3 also do all they can to thwart the on rushing Japanese, but many planes are launched quickly from the carriers armed with the wrong type of ordinance. Still, between the attacking aircraft and destroyers, they manage to slow, at least temporarily, the Japanese fleet. In the end three American destroyers are sunk and nearly 1000 sailors and airmen die.
Though the battle was small two huge firsts took place on October 25, 1944. The first and only American aircraft carrier was sunk by enemy naval surface gun fire. Also, October 25 marked the first successful kamikaze attack of World War II.
Well written and well researched The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors will be an easy read...it is gripping and a page turner. One aspect that Hornfischer is clear on is the cause of the battle. He clearly feels that Halsey must bear most of the blame for this near disaster. Halsey was guarding the northern flank of Taffy 3. Though the attack that nearly distroyed Taffy 3 came from the West, Halsey was not in position to give assistance since he had run off to the north looking for a rumored grouping of Japanese aircraft carriers.
Disaster was averted to be sure, but only because of the heroism of the skippers of three destroyers and their crews.
If you're a history lover then you'll love this book.