Peter Roach's Reviews > Neptune's Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal

Neptune's Inferno by James D. Hornfischer
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's review
Oct 26, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: nautical, war

Fascinating book, that spared very little (at least as far I could tell) on the naval battles over Guadalcanal, while the marines fought theirs ashore. At the very beginning of the book, it bought to your attention that 3 times as many US sailors died than that of the marines and army personnel ashore.

Hollywood movies had left me with the impression that Midway was the beginning of the end of the Pacific War. However, it does appear that at Guadalcanal, Japan had the US Navy on the ropes, and that the US Navy had an awful lot to learn if it was to win the war. Eventually Japan was itself surprised to learn that the US Navy was willing to give as much as it had taken, and subsequently backed off.

I learnt alot from this book, very descriptive on the individual perspectives of the battles - engagements, and the big picture from the upper ranks. Not a boring history lesson at all. Excellently written. USA/Japanese mistakes and wins laid bare to see by all. Glad I was not there.

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