Best-selling oral historian Larry Smith dug deep for exclusive stories from Iwo Jima veterans, including the last surviving flag raiser on Mount Suribachi, a Navajo "code talker", a retired general, two Medal of Honor recipients, B-29 flyers, and other die-hard Marines who secured the island.
Along the way, Smith investigates the controversy surrounding the famous photograph by Joe Rosenthal and presents the groundbreaking story of Japanese General Tadamichi Kuribayashi, rumored to have committed suicide rather than submit to capture.
Iwo Jima is an unprecedented look at this pivotal battle and an inspiring study in courage, perseverance, and humanity.
©2008 Larry Smith; (P)2008 Tantor
"Exemplary oral history." (Kirkus)
"A unique and compelling book." (Library Journal)
Iwo Jima is a rich compilation of memories from the men who took part in various aspects of the battle. It takes the listener along and at times lets you fight your way through the gritty volcanic sand that makes up the island.
My only annoyance (and it isn't really a complaint) is the narrator is the same reader who did "Brothers in Battle, Best of Friends" which I recently listened too. Hearing the same voice on two completely different books that are oral histories is distracting. This is not the fault of the book, just bad timing on my part. That said I do wish more than one reader would be used in books presenting oral histories of multiple individuals. A lone reader can only do so much to alter their voice.
Yet another good book ruined by the reader. In this case, the reader tries to tell the story with the voice of an eighty year old man and fails miserably. I do wish that if Audible provides a sample of the book before we purchase it,then that sample be an accurate representation of what he majority of the book sounds like, not just the introduction. The introduction alone never is enough to know how the reader treats the material. In my case, I know the book interests me, the reason for the sample is to judge if the reader is tolerable. I do feel that non fiction should just be read, no theatrics.
This has been one of my favorite WWII books because it brings the view of this historical battle to a personal level with the veteran's own words. I also enjoyed the narrator very much.
I have visited Iwo Jima and can relate to the accounts included in this book. I concur with other reviewers that the attempt to replicate speaking accents of the men interviewed is somewhat lacking.
As with any Book about Iwo Jima you have to find it very interesting. I would recommend it to anyone. A Good Book.
The stories of the Iwo Jima veterans are amazing. I've been to Iwo Jima myself (its only open 1 day a year for the rest of the world to see) and its amazing to see the places that these events took place and try and imagine how anyone made it out alive.
Unfortunately, the reader tries to read these stories as if he was the vet telling them. So he reads in the voices of several different 80 something year old men and it kinda kills it. Just read in a normal voice and I'll get it. Its still worth the listen, but it would be great if they'd redo it with a normal voice.
I was touched by the lose and sacrifice of all those that fought in this war. The individual stories put a face and a name to what is best in all of us. From story to story, by the end I understood better the words "courage" and "duty".
A very interesting and worth while read. We forget with so much ease. Twenty WWII real heroes tell their own stories in a very down to earth and real manner. It could not have been an easy task for the narrater to become each of these service men.He did more than a respectable job of it.
Larry Smith has turned his exceptional research and writing skills to "Iwo Jima" and the listener is all the better for it. He incorporates the telling of the story by over 20 participants who lived it and have relieved Iwo, no doubt, many times since then. These Marines are worthy of our respect and Smith has aptly helped us to remember more clearly.
This book is well written and well read. We should all be happy these stories have been so well treated and preserved given the ages of the participants.
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