Chester Nez, the only surviving member of the original 29 Navajo code talkers, shares the fascinating inside story of his life and service during World War II.
©2011 Chester Nez and Judith Avila (P)2011 Tantor
"A unique, inspiring story by a member of the Greatest Generation." (Kirkus)
What a fantastic book! This was a significant part of WWII that many do not know and these men played an important role in our victory.
Tip: The narrator spoke slower than I liked so I listened to it at 2x the speed.
It is a fascinating story about a man who experienced a unique and pivotal part of our history. However, the dialogue as written by the Ms. Avila reflects the her voice rather than that of Chester Nez and serves to make this book feel quite fictionalized.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I particularly enjoyed the telling of his youthful years in school where he was not allowed to speak Navajo. I also thought it was interesting how they came up with the code. I enjoyed the reading of this book and will recommend it.
The story is fascinating and simply spoken. I knew of The Code Talkers but not of the dangers they faced. Of particular sociological interest and biases in this country, they came home from Dangerous and honorable service in the marines and did not have the right to vote.
I loved Chester's simple way of communicating his life experiences, interposed with Native spirituality, neither glossing over bad parts nor glorifying their horror. The complex relationship between a Navajo and the US Government is complex and sticky, and I never once considered it, even though we have similar concerns with First Nations people here in Canada.
His narration neither dramatizes nor monotone, he was a fantastic narrative choice for this book.
Well worth your time, money and/or credit; I like this man's outlook, his faith, his courage.
An often overlooked part of American history
Unbroken, because it covers the same time period. Both men were shaped by their work in the war, although in drastically different ways
This was an engaging book. We not only get a very interesting history of the Code Talkers of WW2, we also get lots of great insight to the lives of Navajos in that same period. Both are very interesting, and the main character is likeable and has such a great story. The reader was very good as well, and captured the friendly tone of the author quite well. I found the whole book very good.
I very rarely read nonfiction but stories I had heard of the Code Talkers were so intriguing that I really wanted to read this book. The book was incredibly interesting as Mr. Nez shared not only his story of being a code talker but also of his upbringing, how his Navajo traditions and beliefs often conflicted with his military duties.
This is a great story filled with pride, sadness and compassion. A wonderful memoir rich in tradition and history.
This is a cross between a history book and an autobiography. They did a great job of making it interesting. The pace was so slow I listened at 1.5 speed. Definitely recommended.
Retired high school English teacher. I liked and worked with the at-risk student. Interested in about everything, but I love a good story.
Because of the secrecy surrounding the services of the Code-Talkers after WWII, these faithful soldiers didn't get the recognition they deserved. It's more than past time for this book and it's a pity that it shows up after the death of Chester Nez.
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