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Into the Rising Sun: In Their Own Words, World War II's Pacific Veterans Reveal the Heart of Combat
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Into the Rising Sun: In Their Own Words, World War II's Pacific Veterans Reveal the Heart of Combat

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4.14  ·  Rating details ·  166 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
Patrick O'Donnell has made a career of uncovering the hidden history of World War II by tracking down and interviewing its most elite troops: the Rangers, Airborne, Marines, and First Special Service Force, forerunners to America's Special Forces. These veterans were often the first in and the last out of every conflict, from Guadalcanal and Burma to the Philippines and th ...more
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Published July 1st 2005 by Blackstone Audiobooks (first published 2002)
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Don
Aug 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My dad served in the Pacific during World War II so I chose this book to give me a glimpse of what it was like for him. The book describes the war in the Pacific as “a war without mercy” and the accounts that the soldiers give of combat there prove that to be true. It was the most savage and brutal theater in World War II and it was the experience of the Pacific theater and the last battle of World War II in Okinawa that led to the decision to drop the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. My dad was ...more
Laura McGinley
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can’t call this a particularly enjoyable read which is why it took so long to finish. However these men are telling their stories, some for the first time, and they are stories that people need to hear about the realities and difficulties of war. This book is written as a series of stories that each veteran individually told as an interview with the author, who did a great job compiling the stories and giving us context. You can practically hear it in their voices. Many are disturbing and hard ...more
Will Radie
Aug 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: world-war-ii
Outstanding book about the war in the Pacific. The premise is simple but it works so well. The author sets up each chapter with a general overview of what the following pages will discuss and then he leaves it up to the words of the veterans to flesh out the details. This provides both a polished and raw account of the events. Having the words come directly from the men who were there is downright griping. The stories are quite powerful and hearing them from a first person perspective really con ...more
Ray Pierson
May 13, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the best oral histories of the war in the Pacific (WWII). The author interviewed servicemen from many branches and assignments. Of special interest to me were the comments of Merrill's Marauders. In the late 1950s I met the sister of one (he was killed by friendly fire when his column bumped into some Chinese troops mistaken for Japanese), and in the early 1960s I met a Marauder who had somehow survived the war. Rather than being the stereotypical "one-man army" you would expect o ...more
Adam Cox
May 13, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: war
An interesting book relating to the personal experiences of the soldiers in the Pacific Theatre during WWII. I went into the book knowing it was going to be anecdotal, so I was overall pleased with the layout as the book was laid out in chapters relating to the battles fought and the veterans memoirs on them. Some of the stories were rather gory, but it added to the realism of the book. Not so much of a read to gain the strategic scope of warfare in the Pacific, but rather to see some of the tri ...more
Stephanie
Feb 01, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you harbor any romantic notions about infantry combat, this book will pretty much dispel them. This is the history of the Pacific theater of World War II as told directly in the words of specially trained Marines who fought in it. Come prepared for a lot of bad language and scenes of real horrors, but also for a priceless glimpse into the minds and hearts of the men on the ground that will enrich your appreciation for them and the country we live in.
Hans S.
The memories of the veterans of the Pacific theatre of WW 2 give this book a very strong feeling of authenticity. However a serious historian cannot think that what the veterans remember after decades is always factually 100% correct. Nevertheless this is a pretty convincing book and many of the stories are quite gruesome. One gets a general feeling of how horrible the war was.
Michael Flanagan
Aug 25, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ww-2
A great book covering the U.S.A's marine's involvement in the Pacific theatre of war during WWII. Patrick O'Donnell has personally collected first hand accounts of those involved, some never told before. All the major battles are covered, with a great overview of each.

The individual stories overlap seamlessly to weave a timeless story of the horror’s, sorrow and courage of war.
Todd
Oct 06, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
A good read, but I wished the author spent a little more time with non-special forces Marines. I know this was his prerogative, but since most of the Raider units were folded into Marine infantry regiments and units, it would have been a little more consistent.

That said, it was a pretty intense look into the nightmare that was the Pacific theater.
Joel
Audiobook. Reader kind of ruined it. In print it may have been a 4 star or greater. It is a moving compilation of those who were front and center in the human hell known as World War II. Very humbling and awe inspiring.
William
May 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Straightforward and engrossing. The veterans speak their painful memories and recreate the misery and suffering they endured. Some details can be incredible as well as painful, which reinforces the true horrors of war.
David
Jul 21, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing view of WWII from the boots on the ground.
Steve
Jan 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book on accounts told by veterans who fought in the Pacific during WWII. They described the reality and horrors of the battles they fought.
Nick
Nov 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
An amazing account of the personal experiences of WWII vets in the Pacific Theater. If you like books about WWII, or personal accounts of combat related experiences, this book is for you.
Philip
Feb 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A good history of the Pacific Theater from the personal memories of those involved. Great stories from the Greatest Generation. Every person should know the realities of their sacrifice.
Mark Cooper
Oct 03, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mark-2008
[Audio] Unbelievable stories of the soldiers who began the attack in the Pacific. Incredibly humbling insight into what these men faced.
Carol
Nov 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hard read when you have a loved one who experienced the Pacific Theater. Great book.
Andy
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“When you go home
Tell them of us, and say
For your tomorrow,
We gave our today.”
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