World War II

Chappie: America's First Black Four-Star General: The Life and Times of Daniel James, Jr.

By J. Alfred Phelps

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Read about James' inspiring life, from his days as a pioneering Tuskegee airman to the stratosphere of command of NORAD.

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The English Patient

By Michael Ondaatje

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With unsettling beauty and intelligence, Michael Ondaatje's Booker Prize-winning novel traces the intersection of four damaged lives in an abandoned Italian villa at the end of World War II. The nurse Hana, exhausted by death, obsessively tends to her last surviving patient. Caravaggio, the thief, tries to reimagine who he is, now that his hands are hopelessly maimed. The Indian sapper Kip searches for hidden bombs in a landscape where nothing is safe but himself. And at the center of his labyrinth lies the English patient, nameless and hideously burned, a man who is both a riddle and a provocation to his companions—and whose memories of suffering, rescue, and betrayal illuminate this book like flashes of heat lightning. (Catalog summary)
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I'm Staying with My Boys: The Heroic Life of Sgt. John Basilone, USMC

By Jim Proser with Jerry Cutter

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A profile of the only World War II Marine to win the Medal of Honor, the Navy Cross, and a Purple Heart parallels his career with notable World War II memoirists while tracing his significant achievements at Guadalcanal and Iwo Jima.
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The Few and the Proud: From the Sands of Iwo Jima to the Deserts of Iraq: Marine Corps Drill Instructors in Their Own Words

By Larry Smith

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Beginning with interviews with the last surviving drill instructors of World War II, this oral history offers the voices of veterans from every major war of the last sixty years, concluding with accounts of what it takes to train marines for Iraq today. It contains revelatory details about the vicious training techniques used to prepare marines for the great battles against Japan in the Pacific; the Ribbon Creek training disaster of the 1950s; and legendary stories by the likes of Iwo Jima veteran "Iron" Mike Mervosh and R. Lee Ermey, the infamous drill instructor from Full Metal Jacket.

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Goodbye, Darkness: A Memoir of the Pacific War

By William Manchester

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The nightmares began for William Manchester 23 years after WW II. In his dreams he lived with the recurring image of a battle-weary youth (himself), "angrily demanding to know what had happened to the three decades since he had laid down his arms."

To find out, Manchester visited those places in the Pacific where as a young Marine he fought the Japanese, and in this book examines his experiences in the line with his fellow soldiers (his "brothers"). He gives us an honest and unabashedly emotional account of his part in the war in the Pacific.

(From the publisher's description)

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Flags of Our Fathers

By James Bradley

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The stories behind the famous photo that inspired the American public during World War II. Written by the son of one of the photographed men, it examines who the men were and what became of them as a result of their celebrity status. Also available on audiocassette and in an edition for younger readers.

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China Marine

By E.B. Sledge

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This sequel to With the Old Breed at Peleliu picks up with Sledge's tour of duty at ancient Peiping (Beijing) and follows him home to Alabama where the memories of the horrors of war threaten his civilian life.

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Brotherhood of Heroes: The Marines at Peleliu, 1944 : The Bloodiest Battle of the Pacific War

By Bill Sloan

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"This is the gut-wrenching but ultimately triumphant story of the Marines' most ferocious-yet largely forgotten-battle of World War II. Between September 15 and October 15, 1944, the First Marine Division suffered more than 6,500 casualties fighting on a hellish little island in the Pacific. The author follows the men of K/3/5 and a handful of others throughout the campaign and rescues the Corp's bloodiest battle from obscurity." Also available as an audiobook.

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The Canadian Army & the Normandy Campaign

By John A. English

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"Honest reappraisal of the Canadian experience in Normandy. Special focus on the struggle to close the Falaise Gap. Relies on archival records, including Bernard Montgomery's personal correspondence. John A. English presents a detailed examination of the role of the Canadian Army in Normandy from the D-Day landings in June 1944 though the closing of the Falaise Gap in August."

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The Jedburghs: The Secret History of the Allied Special Forces, France 1944

By Will Irwin

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"The story of the Special Forces in World War II has never fully been told before. Information about them began to be declassified only in the 1980s. Known as the Jedburghs, these Special Forces were selected from members of the British, American, and Free French armies to be dropped in teams of three deep behind German lines. There, in preparation for D-Day, they carried out what we now know as unconventional warfare: supporting the French Resistance in guerrilla attacks, supply-route disruption, and the harassment and obstruction of German reinforcements. Always, they operated against extraordinary odds. They had to be prepared to survive pitched battles with German troops and Gestapo manhunts for weeks and months while awaiting the arrival of Allied ground forces. They were, in short, heroes."

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