Grainger was writing fiction but includes himself by name in the narrative. He did work as a lumberman and his experiences provided him with the details about life cutting timber in the British Columbia forests in the early years of the 20th Century. Try to imagine cutting down the monster Douglas Fir towering 200 feet into the sky and 15 feet in circumference with axes and a crosscut saw in rain & snow. Once it was down, you had to move it to the water by hand where you tied it with others into a boom for the tow down the coast to the mill in Vancouver. Truly the life lived by a hardy man.
Reads like fiction yet is true. Here we have the amazing story of how Ross Perot hired an ex Green Beret to lead some of his executives in an attempt to rescue two other executives who were being held illegality in a Tehran prison. At over 400 pages, there is a great deal of detail on how the various men were selected for the team and much more detail about the situation in Iran. Probably a little tighter editing would have made made this a more compact read.Fortunately, Follett has the ability to keep the narrative moving by changing from the various sites in Iran back to the USA so we are always aware what is happening. Not as well known as the more famous hostage taking at the Embassy, this was still an amazingly bold initiative which was successfully completed. This is the second rescue organized and led by "Bull" Simons that I have read about recently. He is famous for the Son Tay raid to rescue American POW's in North Vietnam. His attention to details is anal but sure prevents screw-ups.This is a very sympathetic view of Perot although his weakness and idiosyncrasies are indicated as well. Sure helps to have huge funds available when your employees get into trouble.
I rarely read this type of literature and this one I picked up because I was in a tropical resort and out of reading material. Found this item at the pool side book exchange amongst the German & Russian titles left by other guests. It turned out to be fortuitous for as you can see by my rating, this was a very good read.I wish I had had access to Google Maps as I was reading it for Crais gives turn by turn details of where he is going in the Los Angeles area. That in itself gave the story authenticity although there is the usual bad guys one can figure out quickly. The real police are treated with respect here and that isn't always the case. Recommended for a pleasant afternoon of escape.
Burgin joined the U.S. marines in November 1942 and served to the last battle on Okinawa. He served in Company K, Third Battalion, Fifth Marine Regiment, First Marine Division battling his way across the Pacific Islands of New Britain, Peleliu, and Okinawa. He found the Marine rest area on the pacific island of Pavuvu a very unpleasant place as well.if you have watched the TV series Pacific, you may recognize his name as he is depicted in the series because as the Sergeant in charge of mortars in Company K, he had Eugene Sledge as an ammo carrier. Sledge wrote With the Old Breed, one of the books used as the basis for the program.Life as a Marine fighting fanatical Japanese soldiers was full of terror, horror, and disgusting scenes but there were those humorous moments. He is candid about some of the accidents that occurred in the heat of battle. A very vivid picture of war in the Pacific as seen by the man on the ground.
The 50th wedding anniversary party of the Carpenters brings to a peak all the tensions and mystery that has built up during those years. It has not been a happy family- Elizabeth, an artist married to a stern, angry and frustrated school principal have raised three children: Jason, a selfish womanizing psychologist, Emily, a world renown concert violinist, and Victoria, a mental mess who resides in a mental institution. It is Emily's son who becomes the catalyst for reducing the tension and leading to some resolution of the family problems. A major irony in the plot is that the husband has always regretted not consummating the affair he imagined with a colleague's wife when we learn that the colleague & Elizabeth did have a consummated affair and the colleague's wife always thought that the Carpenters' son was her husband's. Slow to start as Hospital introduces the characters but concludes with a bang. We see some of the same parts of the story through the eyes of different characters which reveals the differing motivations for how they act.
To illustrate the development of the U.S. Special Forces, the authors tells us about seven missions that eventually confirmed that creating and funding such forces was necessary in the changing world of military conflict. The missions include Son Tay (attempted rescue of POW's in Vietnam), Rescue of BAT 21 (downed pilot in Vietnam), Operation Eagle Claw (disastrous attempt to rescue the American hostages in Tehran), rescue of Scott O'Grady (downed pilot in Serbia), and two behind the lines missions in Iraq.The authors describe the background for the mission, weapons involved, the planning, the mission itself and finally the consequences for the development of special forces. There was much resistance to special forces in the military hierarchy and this had to be over come by convincing the leaders that this was how military campaigns of the future will be fought. Very readable; in fact, one could be convinced one was reading fiction except this reader remembers the headlines. I have also read other accounts of most of these events.
An excellent page turner that I could not put down. Leckie spends a good deal of the book chronicling his training at Parris Island and New River. Through his eyes, we enjoy the many characters he met while training and with whom he fought his battles against the Japanese and the military establishment. Bloody battles at Guadalcanal, New Britain, and Peleliu are vividly described as is the R & R he spent in Melbourne, Australia. This is one of the memoirs upon which the TV series, The Pacific, is based.
This is a very readable account of Canada's contribution to the Korean War. 516 Canadians died serving in the Canadian Forces of which 312 were killed in the fighting. Using interviews and government sources, Melady gives us the personal toll of fighting that war. One interesting subject he covers is the M.A.S.H. units that were made famous by the TV series. According to medical personnel who were there, they were nothing like the TV series. Melady interviewed several Canadians who spent part of the war in North Korean prisoner of war camps. One of them was a Canadian pilot who was accidentally shot down by one of his own men.Many soldiers remember the poverty of the Korean civilians and some who have returned to modern Korea, could hardly believe the change they saw. One veteran said that it almost seemed to have made fighting the war worth the cost.
This is a detailed account of the Civil Rights movement by a reporter who lived through it in Montgomery. Alabama. The amount of detail is huge and all the famous names are present as well as many who made huge contributions but remained relatively unknown to those of us who live outside Alabama. If I have criticisms, it would be for the lack of dates when Greenshaw started a new section. This oversight meant that I had to go back over the last few pages to find dates that told me what year the incident took place.The author included photos of the important participants in the narrative which was very much appreciated when the individual was not well known.Reading this volume again leaves me in awe of those men and women who despite the fear that they must have felt, still went out and faced down the racists and bigots who lorded it over them just because their skin was not white. The hypocrisy of the religious leaders who preached the word of Christ and then could not see that they were not following it. Incidents such as that only confirm the validity of my decision to become an atheist.The book is also a good introduction to the Ku Klux Klan and the many crimes they committed against the Black population. As with any extremist group whether the Islamist of today or the Nazis of the 1930, most of them are criminals who take advantage of the opportunity to kill and maim those who they see as weak.