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?
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?
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.
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.
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
"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.
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...