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I have always been interested in China and find Barbara Tuchman's books on historic moments excellent. This one did not disappoint. She painted a fair portrait of Stilwell. Clearly she liked him, but she did not cover up his flaws - particularly those that impacted his work in China. The most fascinating part of the story covers the WWII period, but the earlier time periods cast useful illumination on the events. Chiang Kai Shek does not come off very well, but the Americans, including Stilwell, did not truly understand him or the Chinese viewpoint with regard to many things. Mme. Chiang, whose Western outlook was better understood, was mostly responsible for the level of backing the Americans gave to the Kuomintang.
I found this book well worth the time. For those who are interested in how fairly recent history has shaped our modern world, this book is strongly recommended.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
If you could sum up Stilwell and the American Experience in China, 1911-45 in three words, what would they be?
Great historical story-telling.
What did you like best about this story?
The central character, Joe Stilwell
Which scene was your favorite?
Any time he was speaking truth to power
If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
God, send us more of such men
Any additional comments?
Barbara Tuchman is a gifted teller of history, as everyone familiar with her work knows. But the narrator, identified by Audible as Pam Ward, who I think narrated Tuchman's Guns of August, is a perfect reader. Too often, narrators' voices, habits of speech, lack of interest and over-acting make Audible's books hard to listen to. Ms. Ward combines clear interpretive reading with just enough acting. She
3 of 3 people found this review helpful