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The Final Storm: A Novel of the War in the Pacific (World War II: 1939-1945 #4)

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  2,443 Ratings  ·  248 Reviews
With the war in Europe winding down in the spring of 1945, the United States turns its vast military resources toward a furious assault on the last great stepping-stone to Japan—the heavily fortified island of Okinawa. The three-month battle in the Pacific theater will feature some of the most vicious combat of the entire Second World War, as Amer
Paperback, 446 pages
Published January 10th 2012 by Ballantine Books (first published May 17th 2011)
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Jul 09, 2011 Ben rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As per usual, a generally well-written, well-thought out book about an American war from Mr. Shaara. While I disagree with his assertion at the beginning of the book that he is not trying to promote any point of view or political position, one would be hard-pressed to find someone who wouldn't see his book as promoting the view that the dropping of the two atomic bombs on Japan was an abhorrent necessity that avoided hundreds of thousands of American casualties, and millions of Japanese (a viewp ...more
James Korsmo
This novel, The Final Storm, is a follow-up volume to Shaara's very good trilogy focusing on World War 2 as it developed in Africa and in Europe. Once the victory occurred there, the Allies shifted their full attention to the Pacific, and Shaara does likewise. He doesn't tell the whole story of the Pacific, but instead picks up the story in mid-stream, focusing on the final months of the conflict and the lead-up to the dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Like the earlier tril ...more
Steven Peterson
Jan 07, 2012 Steven Peterson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jeff Shaara has added another powerful work to his oeuvre. He (and his father) have developed an approach to historical fiction that is quite effective. They juxtapose the actions and thoughts of key characters in an unfolding drama.

This work focuses on the battle for Okinawa. It adopts the perspectives, in a fictional framework, of various characters in the fight for this island. The actors include "grunt," foot soldiers, generals (including the Japanese commander Mitsuru Ushijima), and other k
May 19, 2011 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read every one of Jeff Shaara’s historical fiction books, from the Revolutionary War and Civil War to the Mexican American War and the WWII Battles in Europe. As Shaara says in his prologue, he had left off the Pacific Action during WWII. For the first time, I was disappointed with Shaara's book, The Final Storm, as the characters and dialogue seemed to pale compared to his other works. The story begins where the European action ends with the battle of Okinawa. That said, it is still a go ...more
Fred Forbes
Dec 11, 2011 Fred Forbes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have long been a fan of Jeff's work and have met him at several signings. I think it interesting that he is beginning a series of Civil War books - 3 on the Western theater but manages to cram the entire WW II Pacific War into this one book. Actually, not crammed. Quick summary to start and then a long story on Okinawa finally winding up with the dropping of the atom bombs (which I thought was actually the strongest part of the book). Handled with his characteristic jumping between the viewpoi ...more
Jul 04, 2014 Frank rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Pacific Theater of war as seen through the eyes of the admirals, politicians, seaman, and soldier.
The narrative picks up with the war and closing the noose on the Japanese. Partically interesting is the narratives dealing with Okinawa and the decisions that lead to the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Once again Shaara does a fine job in narrating this conflict through these figures.
Geoffrey Miller
May 31, 2011 Geoffrey Miller rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book, although it didn't pick up until half way through. I've read most, if not all, of Shaara's work and I liked this the least. It just seemed like he short changed the subject considering the depth in which he covered other conflicts. Despite what this review might seem, I did enjoy the book - I think I have high expectations for his work.
Hannes Schneider
Another great offering from Shaara.

Anyone with an interest in history should read this book and all others penned by Shaara. His unique style of historical fiction makes learning history more like living history.
Charles Gluck
Nov 11, 2014 Charles Gluck rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this appropriate for leading up to Veterans Day. A very somber and real account of battle and how it affects people.
Francis Gahren
My Take
Once again I am left in awe of the one of the greatest generations of America to ever live – my parent’s generation. The sacrifices made by the Marines, soldiers, and Navy men are vividly described in this novel by one of my favorite authors, Jeff Shaara.

This is now my favorite Jeff Shaara book (that’s saying a lot) – lots of character development (both with admirals/generals and privates) combined with the massive research that I’ve come to appreciate that he does for each of his books.
Karan  Dilawari
The Final Storm by Jeff Shaara is about the war in the Pacific between the Americans and the Japanese. It switches perspectives between the two armies, giving better knowledge about each army. Shaara does a great job describing the American's tendencies in battle from the viewpoint of the Japanese, and vise versa. But the Final Storm's biggest flaw was too much background information. I would have preferred a more deeper, and detailed depiction of war. But overall The Final Storm is a good book.
Eric Ling
Dec 13, 2016 Eric Ling rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a book about the fight over Okinawa during World War 2. This book describes the conflict in the point of view of the US Marines and also in the point of view of a Japanese General. Personally, I liked this book very much because the battles in the story were well described so it felt very vivid and detailed.
Roberto Chavez
Not well written. No dramatic tension. It became obvious early on that the main character would survive all the way through to the end.

My copy (from the local library) also included handwritten corrections from a zealous Marine historian. I appreciate the attempt at accuracy, but those comments should be sent to the publisher, where they could be included in a future edition.
Dec 13, 2016 Marcus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My studies of WWII have focused far more on the European Theater, so to take a closer look at the Pacific Theater (specifically, in this book, Okinawa) was refreshing. I enjoyed Jeff Shaara's day to day approach to covering the battle.
Nov 03, 2016 Stacey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The very last chapter was a bit sappy, but it doesn't take anything at all away from the intensity of this story. I have hindsight on my side and still was completely stressed in some scenes. Well done, Shaara.
Spring, 1945. With the war in Europe beginning to stagger to a conclusion, attention is turned to the Pacific Theater. The empire of Japan had been overtaking segments of southeast Asia and islands throughout the Pacific since before World War II was officially launched, but the tide was starting to turn. U.S. forces under the command of folks such as Nimitz, Buckner and MacArthur were beginning to drive Japan back toward their homeland, and all that was needed for a proper assault was a secure ...more
Jan 08, 2014 Eli rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Susan in NC
Mar 30, 2011 Susan in NC rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Devastating doesn't begin to describe this story of the terror, filth, gore and brutality faced by the Marines attempting to secure the Japanese-held island of Okinawa at the close of World War Two. Jeff Shaara uses several points of view to illustrate the Herculean task the American forces faced fighting the Japanese island by island in the Pacific theater: Admiral Nimitz, General Ushijima, the Japanese commander on Okinawa, and most powerfully for me, Clay Adams, a young Marine. In the final p ...more
Jul 22, 2012 Scott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We should all be thankful that Jeff Shaara can succumb to a bit of pressure from his readers.

In a brief introductory note to "The Final Storm," Shaara writes that he didn't really intend to write a novel about America's war in the Pacific, but in large part due to the letters from indignant WWII vets who fought there he and his publisher relented. We're lucky he did.

Picking up where Shaara's European WWII trilogy left off, America's war against Japan rages on even as Germany and Italy surrender.
Zohar -
May 09, 2011 Zohar - rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
"The Final Storm: A Novel of the War in the Pacific" by Jeff Shaara is a historical fiction novel which focuses on America's war in the Pacific instead of Europe. Mr. Shaara points out that he didn't intend to write this book but got many letters for fans and WWII veterans who fought there.
Good for us!

The book follows the battle of Okinawa through the eyes of the grunts on the ground and the commanders of both the American and Japanese forces.
The last part of the book follows the days leading to
"Ushijima knew that the American commanders would be agonizing over their lack of progress, that surely no American general had the stomach for such a high casualty rate. Unlike the Japanese, who fed their people only what the Imperial High Command chose to reveal, he knew that the American newspapers were sure to announce openly the kinds of losses their soldiers were suffering. It is astounding, he thought, that they believe such openness is a positive thing. War is not about truth. it is ab ...more
Jul 27, 2011 Adam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While the world celebrated it's liberation of Nazi controlled Europe the war rages onward in the Pacific. Although he says it was not his intent, Shaara sets the tone that explains the case for the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Japanese just as sick as Germany with their own agenda of world conquest have continued the massacre of soldiers as well as citizens both Japanes and of other Asian nations. Using their own innocent civilians...women and children as decoys, employing the gue ...more
Joel Margolese
Oct 29, 2012 Joel Margolese rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a bit of a misfit from the other three books in the series, yet in many ways its the best one. With only one book to work with, and some sort of trouble with his publisher, Shaara focuses mostly on the brutal battle for Okinawa and with a brief foray in the dropping of the atomic bomb. But the battle scenes are among the best I've read. We get a compelling view of Adams' war. (The actual brother of Jesse Adams profiled in the Europe books). Along with the dread of anticipation and t ...more
Casey Harris
Apr 01, 2011 Casey Harris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I was able to review this book over a month in advance of publication by winning a drawing through Goodreads, so I need to (and want to) thank them and Ballantine, the publisher, for allowing me to receive an advance copy of the book. Jeff Shaara is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors, and this third novel of his that I've now read is no exception.

Historical fiction has always been kind of a weird genre to me; how accurate can it really be if it's fictionalized? But the best authors of t
Steve Shea
Mar 14, 2016 Steve Shea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Readers who appreciate realistic and gritty depictions of modern warfare will have much to like in Shaara's concluding volume covering the second World War. While the first three cover the war in Europe - a wide swath of the conflict - this fourth book focuses on the US capture of Okinawa and the bombing of Hiroshima. Much of the book follows the real Marine Pvt. Clay Adams and several of his comrades (and antagonists), but a submarine crew makes a vivid appearance early on, and Adm. Chester Nim ...more
Apr 07, 2013 Roland rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I never thought anything would beat the quality of the writing in Michael Shaara's "The Killer Angels," Jeff Shaara's father's Pulitzer-Prize winning novel about the Battle of Gettysburg.

After Michael Shaara's death of a heart attack in 1988, his son Jeff took up the family business, writing novels in the same genre and with much the same style. He wrote a prequel to The Killer Angels, titled Gods and Generals, as well as a sequel, The Last Full Measure. He has since gone on to write books set i
Apr 30, 2014 Brian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The fourth and final book in Shaara's WWII series. Epic in scope, unflinchingly brutal, often tragic. As with the other books in the series Shaara switches effortlessly between presidents and privates, the Oval Office and muddy foxholes, the grand sweep of history and the tiny intimacies of rank and file soldiers. Most of the book takes place during the battle for Okinawa, possibly one of the most savage and bloody battles of the entire war -- and that includes Stalingrad. Any doubts that a conv ...more
Feb 19, 2012 Mike rated it it was amazing
Picture yourself on a small island thousands of miles from home. Now picture yourself as a U.S. Marine or any other Soldier or Sailor, and you are facing and relentless enemy in the time of war. That is exactly what will happen to you as you read Jeff Shaara's novel "The Final Storm". As soon as you open this book, you will become completely and thoroughly engrossed in the story.
Shaara has chosen only a few main characters for his novel, but these characters tell the whole story of the war in
Tremendous if horrifying and disturbing novel that takes the reader on a bloody and demoralising journey across the heavily-defended island of Okinawa - particuarly over the infamous Sugar Loaf Hill - that will be remembered as being the final campaign in the Pacific War. Shortly afterward, of course, comes the twin detonations of atomic bombs on the Japanese cities Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

As with Shaara's previously excellent work, the points of view switch from Admiral Nimitz, to the commanding
Ronald Roseborough
This story of the last two years of the war in the Pacific is embodied in the brutal struggle for Okinawa and the fateful use of the two atomic bombs to end the war with Japan. The voices in this historical novel are representative of those who were there. The commanders on both sides as well as the average fighting men are represented by major characters in the book. The strongest story follows Marine Private Clay Adams through the horrific fighting on Okinawa. As in any book of history, it is ...more
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The Final Storm 1 10 Mar 02, 2014 01:33PM  
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Jeff Shaara, a descendant of Italian immigrants, was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey ("Shaara" was originally spelled "Sciarra"). He grew up in Tallahassee, Florida, and graduated from Florida State University with a degree in Criminology. From age 16, Jeff operated a rare coin business, first out of his home, then in a retail store. After moving to Tampa, Jeff became one of the most widely know ...more
More about Jeff Shaara...

Other Books in the Series

World War II: 1939-1945 (4 books)
  • The Rising Tide (World War II: 1939-1945, #1)
  • The Steel Wave (World War II: 1939-1945, #2)
  • No Less Than Victory (World War II: 1939-1945, #3)

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