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Retreat, Hell! (The Corps, #10)
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Retreat, Hell! (The Corps #10)

4.3  ·  Rating Details ·  2,510 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
It is the fall of 1950. The Marines have made a pivotal breakthrough at Inchon, but a roller coaster awaits them. The bit in his teeth, Douglas MacArthur is intent on surging across the 38th parallel toward the Yalu River, where he is certain no Chinese are waiting for him, while Major Ken McCoy, operating undercover, hears a different story entirely, and is just as intent ...more
Hardcover, 512 pages
Published 2004 by Penguin Group (first published December 28th 2003)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Valerie Curtis
At first I was just going to say that I didn’t enjoy this. It was totally unbelievable the way that all the military people were being disrespectful, etc., etc. But then, I started thinking – all the books have been like that. The only problem with this book is that the story line sucked. I really didn’t “feel” with the characters. I read for entertainment and this book made me feel like I was working to get through the chapters.

Okay, I've finished the book and I'm still not "satisfied". This is
J.W. Thompson
Dec 30, 2009 J.W. Thompson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
one of my favorite in the series---being a Marine Veteran I really enjoyed this series of his books. read it years ago
Fred Bayley
Jun 14, 2010 Fred Bayley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this series. I wished some of the story lines were tied together a little tighter at the end.
James J gallmanSr
Another great WEB Griffen saga!

Great chacters weaved with true historical figures and events. Griffen is the best writer of historical fiction. A must read if you like military history and historical fiction.
Sep 29, 2016 Byron rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I actually loved the book as a conclusion of the Korean War story. As always Mr. Griffin told a compelling story. As with the earlier books I think he spent way too much time rehashing the previous parts of the series. Some review is needed if a reader is picking up the series somewhere other than the beginning but Mr. Griffin seems to go a bit overboard and his ardent fans have to slog through the better part of half the book to get to the new story line. But all of this is minor when you're a ...more
Oct 03, 2016 Terri rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kudos! (Audiobook)
The Corps Series is superb! I didn’t want to put it down (figuratively, actually I didn’t want to remove the earphones). The next book in the Corps series was being purchased before the one prior ended and I even had to go to the library & actually read the 2 books that were missing from audible (I got absolutely nothing done for 4 days while I was consumed in the pages).

This series inserts several fictional characters in the middle of historical events & people. My dad
Cedar Bristol
Jan 15, 2015 Cedar Bristol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military-fiction
I had spent a year in Korea with the 503rd Infantry at Camp Casey before I read this book, and I knew the bullet points of that war, ROK (Republic of Korea) + Task Force Smith pushed back to the Naktong river aka Pusan Perimeter, Macarthur lands at Incheon destroying the Nork army then racing up the peninsula and then stopped and pushed back by the Chinese counter-offensive. I did not understand the details of how daring an operation the Incheon landing was, or how much it depended on secrecy to ...more
Bob Conner
Mar 24, 2015 Bob Conner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I fell in love with Griffin's series about the Corps and have read all his awesome works. I can't recall reading a more engaging series with characters all so rich and colorful each of them could be an awesome novel of their own. But Griffin smashes them all together into one nuclear story.

Amazingly colorful characters - Kenneth "Killer" Kelley and his gorgeous wife Ernestine Sage, Jack "NMI" Stecker, Pick Pickering, Sgt Zimmerman, etc....... The list just goes on and on and they never lose thei
Benjamin Thomas
This is the 10th book in WEB Griffin's fictional series involving the US Marine Corps. I almost always enjoy Griffin's work, especially the historical tidbits that make it all interesting. He takes ordinary people and thrusts them into extraordinary historical circumstances, a technique which alows us to go along for the ride and see perspectives on events that you wouldn't normally experience in history textbooks.

This particular entry in the series was one of the best of the entire Corps serie
The Pusan Breakout and China Enters Korean War. Slow but building maximum violence sees Pick running and hiding behind NK lines as Killer and company desperately seek him out. Fleming and the CIA find themselves in a titanic struggle to convince MacArthur that the Chinese are about to enter the war as the US mops up the NK invasion force. Pick stumbles on a lost US truck convoy and is flown out by Killer's guys to safety, only to reach Sasebo Hospital and learn that Jeanette Priestly was killed ...more
Nov 11, 2013 Andy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A satisfying and fitting ending to the Corps series, if somewhat rushed and clunky near the end. I really enjoyed the sections that dealt with the rescue of Pick Pickering and his recuperation in San Diego, as well as Killer McCoy's exposure of Douglas MacArthur's faulty Korean intelligence where China's involvement was concerned. This one flowed much like the previous nine Corps novels, tracking multiple well-developed characters across history, but I get the sense Griffin tried to kind of wrap ...more
Sep 18, 2014 Keith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read this entire series and I'm still not sure what exactly has drawn me in. I came expecting stories about the battle, instead found behind-the-scenes intrigue. That being said, I couldn't walk away from these books. I read Semper Fi in May, and just finished Retreat Hell!, the last in the series. I feel like I've devoured these books this summer. And I'm not satisfied. I want more. I wish Griffin hadn't skipped the last couple of years of World War II. I wanted to know what happened to so ...more
Mar 16, 2012 George rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is the last of "The Corps" series. It's full of action with plenty of human interest events in it. Wish I had started this series with the first of "The Corps" series (Semper Fi) and continued down the series instead reading the last first. Griffin is pretty much into keeping the same characters in his novels, and makes you look forward to following the characters from book to book.

Griffin has a way of making you feel you are part of the plot. His description of the characters make you
Jeffrey Ogden Thomas
A stirring romp through the early days of the Korean War, with interesting characters and apparent verisimilitude. The semi-fictional characters and discussions appear realistic, except for the miraculously (unnecessarily) multilingual hero. Unfortunately (spoiler alert) the plot never really gets to the historical point exemplified in the title... there's not even much actual fighting described. But Marines will love it for the banter and political infighting and descriptions of protocol observ ...more
Sep 28, 2015 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Vintage W.E.B. Griffin. I thought I had read all of his CORPS series, but I missed a couple of them. It took a couple of chapters to get back into the swing of the story and the characters, but they are all there, as rowdy, flamboyant, and irreverent to brass as always, but still, the best of the best. They are able to get the job done, despite the military and political bureaucracy and infighting. The action has moved from Seoul, Korea to the 38th Parallel, the dividing line between North and S ...more
Aug 24, 2009 Fracro rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I guess I learned a little about the beginning of the Korean War, but this book had too too much trivial trivial detail that was constantly constantly repeated repeated over and over. For example, calling Gen. Douglas MacArthur, "Supreme Commander, General of the Army", maybe 476 times. If he was trying it for effect or getting paid by the word, it began to distract from the story. The main story was interesting, but finished with a half hearted attempt at beginning a romance in the last 50 page ...more
Aug 05, 2012 Katie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This lost a star because of the abrupt ending. Here I've gone ten books following the exploits of a handful of awesome Marines, but mostly of Ken McCoy and Pick Pickering, and W.E.B. cuts off before Korea is resolved! Does Pick stick with this latest greatest girl? Does McCoy get to stay a Marine or do he and Ernie get into the Hilton Head development scheme? Is their baby okay? SO MANY QUESTIONS. As with the rest of the series though, there is plenty of excitement, humor, and for me, historical ...more
Apr 02, 2010 Kevin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book 10 of the Corps covered the time period between the invasion of Inchon and the battle of the Chosin Resevoir or the Frozen Chosin as it is referred to in Marine Corps Lore.

I liked the development of longtime characters and the introduction of many new ones. My favorite parts were the evolution of warfare due to technological advances (helicopters) and the early evolution of spec ops (both military and CIA).

A great read that I recommend to military buffs and fans of historical fiction.
Dec 14, 2010 Bjoern rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So this is the end.

It was all in all an entertaining book series, even if the author completelly missed his own premise to tell something about "the Corps". If you get over that expectation and read it as a mixture of a James Bond novel and a historical fiction set in wartimes (WW2 & Korea) then it's highly enjoyable.

Sadly all the volumes don't even paint half an image of the decade and a half the action is set in, but then there never was the label "precise history of the War". And at the e
Feb 26, 2014 George rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
Every month, I found myself wanting to read the book in this series first. The characters are familiar and the plot is fun, if repeatable. Set in the Korean conflict, it's got all the elements of a fast paced, enjoyable novel. It is very long; almost 18 hours. I particularly enjoyed Griffin's interpretation of Truman's impressions of MacArthur. This is the end of the series and there are so many unfinished threads. It feels like there ought to be another novel.
Oct 25, 2012 Paula rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: miitary-fiction
I'm glad this was the last one. My attachment to the characters was quite strong through the first few books, but by the end of this one I was pretty much over it. It's an entertaining way to learn a bit of the history of some of these events, but the first five books were definitely the cream of the crop.
Jan 26, 2015 Thom rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was all the more interesting having already read David Halberstam's 'Coldest Winter' which goes into more historical detail. The Griffin book uses story telling to convey the early days of the Korean War. Much of the enjoyment was in the pitting of giant egos against each other. Dick Hill's skill at effecting different voices was a treat.
Sep 10, 2010 John rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This series stunk! I read the entire series hoping for some kind of combat action, but was disappointed time after time. The main character seemed to miss every major action of WWII...the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the invasion of the Philippines, etc. I would not recommend this series to anyone I liked!
James Burns
Apr 26, 2013 James Burns rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-librairy, fiction
This Was a surprise, this the first web Griffin biik that I had read, It was superb,history in novel form. It may be fictin but has historical accruacy and truth. It describes fictional events with historical to describe events leading to the Chinese intervention in the Korean War. The Patrayel of the Historical Characters was Right on.
This concludes Griffin's series on the Marine Corps during WWII and Korea. I think I liked this series better than his Army series because I was able to get closer to the characters. Not that they were necessarily more likeable but there was more to them. A very enjoyable series and I highly recommend Griffin's books to anyone who enjoys a good read.
Kent Nelson
Apr 27, 2016 Kent Nelson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have finished Re READING all 10 of the CORPS series and will again.

History tends to overlook the U.S. military in the 1930s. The CORPS starts a good saga at the end of them and a build up to WW II. Characters are interesting and realistic. Start enjoying with #1.. Sempre Fi !
Jan 11, 2009 Paul rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The only reason I gave this book 4 stars instead of 5 is because I loved the series so much when it was set in WWII. Mr. Griffin threw me a curve when this one came out. After saying this, most of my favorite characters are back and better than ever. A great read.
Mar 26, 2010 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Was a great way to wrap up the series.....I was hoping for more details on the characters as they move on in life.....but I will not go into details as I do not want to let anything out.....I did find it a great read and loved it.....wished that there were move in the series.
Brian Rueger
I'm not a great book reviewer, but I try to say something about really outstanding books.

The entire "The Corps" series was extremely outstanding I have EVER read. I 'marathoned' this series having started "Semper Fi" on Nov 21 and finished it today - Dec 20.
Jan 13, 2017 Ethan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good book. Look at my reviews for books 2 and 3 for more details as to why. This seems to be the last book in the series, but I hope there will be more, as there are several unfinished plot threads remaining.
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W.E.B. Griffin is one of several pseudonyms for William E. Butterworth III.

From the Authors Website:

W.E.B. Griffin is the #1 best-selling author of more than fifty epic novels in seven series, all of which have made The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Publishers Weekly, and other best-seller lists. More than fifty million of the books are in print in more than ten languages, including Heb
More about W.E.B. Griffin...

Other Books in the Series

The Corps (10 books)
  • Semper Fi (The Corps, #1)
  • Call To Arms (The Corps, #2)
  • Counterattack (The Corps, #3)
  • Battleground (The Corps, #4)
  • Line of Fire (The Corps, #5)
  • Close Combat (The Corps, #6)
  • Behind the Lines (The Corps, #7)
  • In Danger's Path (The Corps, #8)
  • Under Fire (The Corps, #9)

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“January 1950, Secretary of” 0 likes
“[THREE] As the staff car carrying Generals Almond and Howe started down the road beside the runway, McCoy paused long enough to wonder where they were going, then turned and motioned to Jeanette Priestly to get out of the Russian jeep. He had given a lot of thought to Jeanette and to her relationship with Pickering. Pick Pickering—a really legendary swordsman, of whom it was more or less honestly said he had two girls and often more in every port—had taken one look at Jeanette Priestly just over two months before and fallen in love with her.” 0 likes
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