The Battle of Leyte Gulf - October 22-28, 1944 - was the greatest naval engagement in history. In fact the battle was four separate actions, none of which were fought in the Gulf itself, and the result was the destruction of Japanese naval power in the Pacific. This book is a detailed and comprehensive account of the fighting from both sides. It provides the context of the battle, most obviously in terms of Japanese calculations and the search for "a fitting place to die" and "the chance to bloom as flowers of death." Using Japanese material never previously noted in western accounts, H.P. Willmott provides new perspectives on the unfolding of the battle and very deliberately seeks to give readers a proper understanding of the importance of this battle for American naval operations in the following month. This careful interrogation of the accounts of "the last fleet action" is a significant contribution to military history.
Winner, Society for Military history Distinguished Book Award.
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Leyte Gulf - Textbook . . . Boring!
This book sounds like a historical textbook of facts and sizes of the many ships in the conflict. This book had little of no characters and was more of a report than any kind of story.
His writing may have been fully correct in historical account as any textbook should be. The telling of the book had zero story and felt like he took no liberty to add enjoyment to the actions. There was no personal insight to any of the people who took part in the actions of the Battles throughout the book.Novels like this come alive to the reader when they feel they can relate to those within the story. This book took no license to give the reader any personal accounts of the warriors who no doubt have an infinite number of experiences that would make the book great.
Narrator read account of the book in near mono-tone, but what he was reading gave little room for him to use any license to make story more fun.
As with many other accounts of military action, this one stuck straight to the text book figures that put us all to sleep if we were trying to read an encyclopedia for enjoyment.
- Brian S. Moore