opinion: Flyboys

This book is ostensibly about the attack on Chichi Jima by a squadron
of Avengers (among which was Bush sr's plane). It has a huge amount of
background information on atrocities from various sources.
The author (Bradley; he also wrote Flags of Our Fathers) nearly always
refers to any pilots etc, as Flyboys. He constantly refers to the
Japanese forces during WWII at the Spirit Warriors. Also constantly
refers to B25 Mitchells as "Billys". Where does he get this nonsense?
Anyone want to comment on this book? I'm having a difficult time not
putting it aside as the atrocities are definitely PG13 or even NC17 in
some areas while the rest of it seems to be written at a 4th grade
level. I find it very annoying that his historical research seems
extensive while his use of jargon shows very little rigor if any at
What a disappointment. Am I missing the boat here?
Many thanks
Reply to
Stephen Tontoni
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Haven't read the book but, by what you state the man is slightly biassed. Something wrong with the elevator not reaching the penthouse ?... heh.
Reply to
Kitt Walker
It looks like another one of those books explaining facts to an audience that either forgot them, or never heard of them. I mean, I read Newcomb's "Abandon Ship!" in paperback when it first came out. It seems that every five years lately, another author comes out with a new version of the same story--and as time goes by, a layer of weight drops off. Same with "Ghost Soldiers", a story told often before and in more detail. There's a new book out about the Poles who fought in the RAF. Good, but the reviewers seem to amazed to learn that these guys got the shaft after the war. Is that news to anyone here?
Reply to
Tom Cervo
I thought 'Ghost Soldiers' was pretty good.
Scott G. Welch
Reply to
Sounds like a couple of books I have. Oe is about Air Commandos in Viet Nam. Not a novel, but a "factual" book, written by some retired General I think. Among his 'facts', he keeps calling T-28Ds, "TF-28"s, among other things. Now you see why I don't recall much about the book. IIRC, it was put out by Schiffer, which mst of the books put out by them are full of typos & mistakes. There's another titled "Chino" covering the airport at Chino, Ca.'s, history. Full of typos & mistakes. The guy even talks about the modified T-6s made in to Zeros & Kates for the movie, "Toro, Toro, Toro"! I think I missed that one! I emailed the author pointing ot his serious typos & mistakes like that & all he could say was that if I'm not happy with the purchase, I could return it. I have another book, on the C-124-same deal, full of typos. I do remember that the guy has absolutely no idea about when & where to properly use an 's. That sort of junk really hurts any kind of book, IMO.
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Reply to
Tom Cervo
Bradley quotes heavily from a book called "The First Heroes" by Craig Nelson. Nelson, who admits he had hardly heard of the Doolittle Mission until he started researching his book (?!?), refers to B-25s as "Billys" throughout his book. Unfortunately, this looks like a case of errors being perpetuated by authors who don't really understand their subject.
Reply to
AV8R Jim
Maybe both authors have discovered a market that they decided to mine rather than have an enduring passionate interest in aviation. I find that sad as there are so many people out there with terrific stockpiles of accurate information and anecdotes whose stories are left untold.
"Billys" is a term which shows lack of research and exposure on the author's part. It also show little interest in thorough research before committing the book to print (another atrocity).
The terms "Flyboys" and "Spirit Warriors" (capital letters just like in the book) are mildly offensive to me. Not that I am either, but it feels extremely condescending. This guy should realize that there are a lot of *amateur* historians out here who know so much more than he.
Ah well; my two cents on the matter: if you're considering purchasing this book, think again.
Reply to
Stephen Tontoni
I am waiting for these spin doctor authors to begin re writing the Vietnam War. Probably the same lot who came up with 'weapons of mass destruction' and 'able to deploy in 45 minutes' where fathered by mentors of the 'Tonkin Bay' ( it worked once...why not again?) school of 'damn the facts...sell the story' Let me go get my medicine and settle down... Mike IPMS
Reply to
Mike Keown

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