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Battleground Pacific: A Marine Rifleman's Combat Odyssey in K/3/5
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Battleground Pacific: A Marine Rifleman's Combat Odyssey in K/3/5

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  171 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews

Sterling Mace's unit was the legendary “K-3-5” (for Company K, 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment of the 1st Marine Division) and his story takes readers through some of the most intense action of the Pacific War, from the seldom-seen perspective of a rifleman at the point of attack.

Battleground Pacific
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published May 8th 2012 by St. Martin's Press
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Jun 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
While not quite the masterpiece that E.B. Sledge's With the Old Breed is, this first person memoir of several battles of the Pacific theatre was very good. Taking nothing away from Mace's accomplishments, I simply think E.B. Sledge is a better writer. Sledge was able to add a bit more commentary on the psyche of battle than this book gave, but it was still a very good factual, battlefield, tip-of-the-spear memoir. I have a hard time giving anything dealing with this subject matter anything less ...more
Paul Pessolano
May 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
“Battleground Pacific” by Sterling Mace and Nick Allen, published by St. Martins Griffin.

Category – World War II

There have been many books written by soldiers who have gone through the horror of war. However, there are very few that give a “no holds barred”, down to earth, accurate account of what it is really like to go through a living hell, this is such a book.

Sterling Mace probably didn’t want to join the army let alone go to war, but a run in with the law put him in that situation. He gives
Zachary Wagoner
Jun 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was an amazing first person account of the fighting on the islands of Peleliu and Okinawa. Sterling Mace joins the Marines during World War 2 and soon finds himself heading into battle against the army of Imperial Japan. He shares his thoughts, fears, and laughs with us as he goes through one of the most trying experiences a human can go through, combat. This is a great book for anyone interested in the Pacific War. It will also appeal to anyone who enjoyed the TV miniseries The Pacific, as ...more
Joe Creason
Nov 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: war-memoirs
4 stars. Highly recommended!

Sterling Mace was a BAR man who fought in the PTO during WW2. He was a member of the famous K/3/5, a company that has produced several detailed and recommended memoirs, Mace's being the most recent. As a rifleman, Mace had a different experience from Sledge, which results in this unique personal story of combat in the brutal campaigns for Peleliu and Okinawa.

Mace chose to relay his experience through a more modern tone and from the perspective of a teenaged marine PFC
Mar 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
I originally read Eugene Sledge's "With the Old Breed" about 30 years ago, so when this book came out I thought at first it would be a sort of companion piece to Sledge's book. Not exactly.

Sterling Mace fought in the same two battles (Peleliu and Okinawa) as Sledge, but that's pretty much where the similarity ends. Sure, Sledge is mentioned once in this book, along with his friend "Snafu" Shelton, but since Mace was a rifleman and Sledge was a mortarman, they had very different expriences in the
N.N. Light
Apr 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
First off let me say I have read dozens of first hand accounts of infantry action from the Civil War, WW1, many theaters of WW2 - Battle of the Bulge/D-Day/Rhineland/Eastern Front/Italy/Africa, Korea, Vietnam, even Gulf War 1. This book was eye opening in regards to my understanding of the boot on the ground experience of U.S. Marines invading Peleliu and Okinawa. I was struck by the ferocity and utter futility of the marine experience on those battlefields. Mace brings forward such an honest po ...more
 Dr. Michael Galvin
Apr 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If Sledge's With The Old Breed and Overton's God Isn't Here interested you then you should run right out to your local bookseller and pick up a copy of Mace's Battleground Pacific. Like Sledge & Overton it is a first hand account of Mace's time on Peleliu & Okinawa. I've heard criticism of Mace's use of dialogue. Those critics may have a point regarding conversations held almost 70 years ago but this fact does not bother me. Whether or not Mace has the kind of memory that can remember, w ...more
Dec 20, 2012 rated it liked it
I picked up this book because of the AMA (Ask Me Anything) that the author did on Reddit. I thought it was well done, although not quite as well done as "With the old breed". I found many of the stories in this book very familiar, but I believe that is because the author was a consultant for "With the Old Breed", so the same stories were being told.

I wasn't a fan of the snide remarks throughout the book about how Mortar Squads and Machine Gun Squads were second class solders because they were no
Nov 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredible Story, Incredible Journey

I have read many books by combat veterans of WWII, but this one is written a bit differently. To my mind's eye, there is a trained writer's hand telling the story of Sterling Mace. My own father was a marine who fought in World War II, and to his dying day he wouldn't speak of what he went through, so I have to learn what that time in his life was like. These brave men were what is referred to as The Greatest Generation, and I only wish that more people alive
Leonard Romney
Mar 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
If you are interested in understanding the horrors of war, this book along with one by Eugene sledge, will easily fulfill that need. It is well-written and horribly descriptive of combat And it's effects on, in this case, young men. I think every leader in our country who is faced with the decision to send our young people to war must be required to read this book.
Dec 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
Good memoir of a rifleman's experience at Peleliu and Okinawa, two of the bloodiest and most terrible battles of WWII. Mace has a great voice and a keen eye for detail. That said, I think this book would be best served by reading an operational history of these two battles in addition to it; you will have a better sense of where to place him in the larger scheme of war.
Jul 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Great detailed story about what it was like to be on the front lines in the Pacific during WWII. The book does a good job of developing the characters in K/3/5 and describing the events that led them to lay their lives down for the grand old flag. Overall, it was a quick read with plenty of action that kept my attention from start to finish. Highly recommend it.
Christi Guess
Apr 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Well written. Reads like a novel in some ways. I felt it. I recommend it.
Feb 26, 2014 rated it liked it
An okay read - kind of a bumpy narrative, but appreciate the additional context for appreciating With the Old Breed, which is a much better read.
Sterling Morris
Aug 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Excellent/ God Bless America and its Freedom Fighters!
Sep 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Not as good as With the Old Breed by Eugene Sledge, But a great account of the horror of battle in Peleiu and Okinawa by a Marine infantryman.
Neill Tumulac
Jun 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Pretty intense book. Lots of stories, lots of people get killed, lots of things about bombs guns and jumping on beaches and wondering when it's all going to end.
Greg Canellis
Jul 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Gripping! Powerful! A must read! Beyond mere memoir, this book is literature! Best World War II memoir I have read in years!
John Kelly
Oct 12, 2012 rated it liked it
good book i believe that the writing is forced to change the typical military history book language. tries rewording too often.
David Alger
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Sep 18, 2012
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Ross Bushman
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