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The Burma Road: The Epic Story of the China-Burma-India Theater in World War II
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The Burma Road: The Epic Story of the China-Burma-India Theater in World War II

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  174 ratings  ·  22 reviews
As the Imperial Japanese Army swept across China and South Asia at World War II's outset, closing all of China's seaports, more than 200,000 Chinese laborers embarked on a seemingly impossible task: to cut a 700-mile overland route -- the Burma Road -- from the southwest Chinese city of Kunming to Lashio, Burma. But when Burma fell in 1942, the Burma Road was severed. As t ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published September 7th 2004 by Harper Perennial (first published 2003)
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The Burma Road is an extremely well written book that is narrated in a highly readable and fascinating way. Donovan Webster has an amazing way of explaining the strategic policy and tactical planning used by the American, British, and Chinese political and military leaders in Burma and China. Webster's easily weaves quotes from eye witnesses, excerpts from official documents, and his own conclusions into an important book that focuses on the South Asia campaign during the Second World War. The a ...more
A well-written book on the forgotten theatre of World War II: The China-Burma-India (CBI) theatre, where forgotten soldiers and generals of the Allied Forces defend China using India as a springboard to secure access to Japan; and Burma seemed to get stuck in the middle..

The book is incomparable to "Band of Brothers" TV series. The war scenes were horrifying, the hurdles and challenges went beyond "mission impossible". Although the book focused on the epic fightings of "Merrill's Marauders", "Wi
Kiran Majeti
The Burma Road was really interesting because you often hear about all of the other World War Two fronts, but most people don't even know where burma is or that we even fought there. The book was supposed to be about the road connecting japanese-held china to allied india. However, it really just followed the life of Joseph Stilwell, the general. Since the book is nonfiction, there was no theme. Out of 10 I would give it a seven.
I found this book dull and riveting by turns. Sometimes I just couldn't get through the details about certain battles and strategy without falling asleep, but other times, the writing about other battles was just completely gripping. It's not something I'd recommend for a casual read, but if you have an interest in WWII, or, like me, if you have a family member who fought in CBI, it's worth your time. Overall, Webster wrote a very readable account of the theater, though my traveler's heart wishe ...more
Very good book about one of the least known areas of operation in World War II. The author peppers the story with several first person accounts from both sides. My main complaint is that the author is a National Geographic writer and not a military historian, so he gets several points wrong in descriptions (eg. battalions, regiments, divisions).
I had never read anything on the battle between the Allies and the Japanese in Burma, and found the details of this part the war compelling. Anyone interested in the Pacific Theater in WWII will enjoy this book.
I liked it, could visualize it, have heard the stories my whole life.
James R.
When I was a kid 10 or 11 years old, the "Flying Tigers" were my and my buddies heros. I believed they were planes from the US Army Air Corps. Well I found out that they were American Volunteers from the US Army, Navy and Marines and was the creation of Claire L. Chennault, a retired U.S. Army Air Corps officer who had worked in China as military aviation advisor to Chiang Kai-shek in the early months of the Sino-Japanese War. So basically they were "Mercenaries"!
D. Ennis
I agree with lots of reviewers that point out that the book has little to do with the actual Burma Road. I guess you can take away points for that. However, that being said, it is a great book about the much ignored CBI theater of WWII. A great overview for someone who isn't familiar with the CBI. Enough detail without getting bogged down. Webster does a great job with the larger than life characters fighting for the Allied win.
I really enjoyed this one. I learned so much about General Stillwell and about the Burma campaign of WWII. I even learned about Japan's campaign into India, which I had never heard of. Lots of stuff in this one was incredibly interesting.
Apr 13, 2008 Bett rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone interested in WWII.
Recommended to Bett by: Co'worker whose father served in Burma.
Very detailed, yet entertaining tale of the CBI theatre, learn the truth about the bridge on the River Kwai and Merrill's Marauders. I like maps, annd this could have used a few more for my taste.
This was a good book. Not so much a direct history of the building of the Burma Road, but more as a general history of the India/Burma/China area of operations. A good read!
I read this because my maternal grandfather served here in WWII. It was a decent read, but it really needs more maps to help the reader follow the events described in the book.
My late father, John A. McNeil, was in the CBI Theater during WWII - he would have loved this book - I thoroughly enjoyed it!
so far extremely grandfather flew the hump and above the Burma Road so I wanted to know more about it.
After living in Myanmar, this was great reading. I know much of the geography and enjoyed the way the story was told.
Walter Mcwilliams
A superb narrative on perhaps the most brutal theater of WWII. I highly recommend this read!
Mark Cooper
[Audio] Enjoyable, detailed history of this important part of the Asian theater of WWII.
This book served as a fairly good general overview of the CBI Theatre.
This is the story of the China-Burma-India operations during WWII.
The road was an epic story, yes; the book was not.
Historically interesting.
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