“Its long but very interesting and detailed”Matt Lamb wrote this review Monday, June 10, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Having read the author's previous works on the Battle of Leyte Gulf and the U.S.S. Houston, I was definitely looking forward to reading this one. I was not disappointed.
The American victory at Guadalcanal was one of the most important in the war with Japan in that it not only taught American marines, pilots and sailors how to fight the Japanese, but also that the Japanese were not invincible. The learning curve was often quite steep but the lessons learned in the seas around Guadalcanal, and on the island itself, proved invaluable in later engagements and invasions.
Beginning with the planning stages of the invasion of Guadalcanal through the final evacuation of the island by the Japanese, this book covers all the main naval engagements of the campaign, and a few minor ones as well. Others have offered criticism that not enough detail is provided for some of the battles, and I'd agree. But this doesn't detract from the book's overall excellence. Using a variety of resources, including personal recollections from both American and Japanese participants, Hornfischer has woven together a fine history of the naval battles which were so vital to the possession of the island. Key figures such as Nimitz, King, Ghormley, Halsey, Scott, Callaghan and Lee are all examined, and some of them are found wanting.
While I still think Hornfischer's "Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors" is the best book on World War II naval combat I've ever read, this one can stand proudly beside it.”
“Riveting story of one of the epic naval battles of all time.”James Dixey wrote this review Monday, April 8, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Too few Americans know of the vicious fighting that took place in the waters around Guadalcanal. The Marines ability to win there was a direct result of the Navy combat ships learning how to fight the Japanese Imperial Navy and losing three times the men the Marines did.”Randy Moeller wrote this review Monday, February 25, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“The US surface fleets begins to learn how to fight the IJN.”TCroad wrote this review Monday, February 18, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“OK--what did you expect after "Pacific Crucible?" It's a great year for naval history books. Can't wait to see how this outing by Hornfischer compares to "Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors!" Update: Wow...just...wow. I did not realize how little I knew about the Navy's experience in Guadalcanal. While I had heard about various individual events--the USS Juneau and the "Fighting Sullivans for example--I had never read an end-to-end narrative. Not only is this book a superb history of this key six month period in the U.S. Navy's history, it is also an excellent case study in leadership at sea---or the lack of it. I was surprised at the lack of tactical proficiency demonstrated by several key leaders at sea---especially regarding the benefits that were available if only they would exploit the U.S. Navy's technical advantage through the "magic" of radar. Definitely a book worth reading and one I will recommend to others.”Mike Kelly wrote this review Saturday, January 26, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“The sea battles around the Solomon Islands were key to turning the tide in the Pacific War and Hornfischer does a wonderful job combining detail and readabiilty.”Vandy Fan wrote this review Friday, January 25, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“After reading "The Last Stand of Tin Can Sailors" I had to pick this one up. Looks as good at the other one! Very good history of the sea battles around Guadalcanal. Good maps. They are needed!”Jose Solera wrote this review Tuesday, January 22, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“For every American marine and soldier lost in the battle of Guadalcanal, three sailors died. Hornfischer tells the Navy's story of the naval engagements that allowed America to emerge triumphant at Guadalcanal, and perhaps made this island "the Stalingrad" of the Japanese during WWII.”Snailkite wrote this review Tuesday, January 22, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Well, insightfully-written account of the naval campaign centered on Guadalcanal in the summer of 1942. Excellent research, fine eye for detail and telling incident, and in particular a good analysis of the US Navyâs learning curve against a more skilled adversary in the only campaign where the USN and IJN faced each other as equals. The larger-then-life personalities of the campaign (Halsey, Nimitz, King, Fletcher, etc.) are well-portrayed. Excellent companion volume to the massive works of Richard Frank and Eric Hammell, and a pleasure to read. Iâm also listening to the audible.com audiobook of this; itâs perfect for commuting.”Miskatonic wrote this review Monday, January 21, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No