For Australians, Kokoda is the iconic battle of World War II, yet few people know just what happened and just what our troops achieved. Now, best-selling author Peter FitzSimons tells the Kokoda story in a gripping, moving story for all Australians.
Conditions on the track were hellish - rain was constant, the terrain close to inhospitable, food and ammunition supplies were practically non-existent, and the men constantly battled malaria and dysentery, as well as the Japanese. Kokoda was a defining battle for Australia - a small force of young, ill-equipped Australians engaged a highly experienced and hitherto unstoppable Japanese force on a narrow, precarious jungle track - and defeated them.
©2005 Peter FitzSimons (P)2011 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
This audiobook is now in my top 5!
I'm pretty well versed with World War 2 from the European perspective and somewhat familiar with the US parts of the war in the Pacific, but this was my first exposure to the Australian perspective.
One of the great things about this book is how well written it is. The author zooms in to heart-wrenching accounts of individual experiences and the costs of war, zooms out to the international politics of the allied forces, and then back in again to the tactical decision making of the officers. All done effortlessly and captivatingly.
Narrator has a clear, solid voice and deliver the material effortlessly. I am very pleased the narrator is Australian. This is such a quintessentially Australian story with quintessentially Australian characters. Nothing else would do.
There were a great many. A few examples....
The pastor who decided to bury a killed soldier in mid combat as the bullets flew, and that both sides stopped and waited until he had completed his task.
The brothers singing together in camp, with one trying to shake off the sick feeling that his brother would soon be dead.
The soldier who after being shot badly in the belly, asks himself "Is this real, am I really going to die? Is there no way out?".
You'd be a fool to pass this one up!
A gripping tale wonderfully narrated that tells of the valiant efforts of the young Australians to stop the Japanese advance against Australia and reveals how they were poorly served by their senior commander and grossly underrated that foolish American Emperor Doug out MacArthur. Best story I have listened to this year.
The individual characters and their back stories, made it all so real & put me in their shoes
Has a great voice, changed tone and did slang and pronunciations great
The end of it, realising the toll it took not only with deathes, but mentally with the people that lived on
Tell us about yourself! 72 Years old, 4 years in the Navy, College Grad, still working full time,
The overall story
How the soldiers hate to fight in such horrible conditions
The book made me realize how difficult life is for the military
Cuz it was fair dinkum and even better
Strong men we don't build these guys anymore. Makes me want to cry and be proud at the same time.
yes. It goes into the story behind the war in a part of the world not often talked about...Australia.
The incredible down to earth courage of the Australian citizen soldier in the face incompetent leaders and geographical nightmares. It was disheartening to see such incredible efforts ignored by political and military leaders
This is just another work bringing to light the farce that Douglas McArthur was. I grew up thinking he was a war hero...well, time will eventually bring out the truth and it has
Dedicated, abandoned, victorious
All the moments describing individuals, their dreams, their pain.
I might have put the book down in tears, but the Mr. FitzGerald's performance lured me further into the story.
Little known story of bravery
This is not the sort of story I usually go for, but I was hooked by the second chapter. What a "Greatest Generation" these young Australians could have been.
Retired reading, English, & math teacher. Survivor of rear-ending on Channel 5 bridge in Florida Keys that resulted in 10 day coma&rehab,
Complete with details and people. This is about a part of WWII in Pacific that is not well known. It ties together many parts of the story and makes it real. Worthwhile listen/read with ears.
Among histories of valor, courage, tenacity, and endurance in battle I cannot think of any greater or more terrible.
One of the most outstanding things about this story was how completely ignorant, arrogant, and even criminal the top brass was in relation to the situation on the ground for these boys. These boys caught it from both sides, yet held up.
Mr. Fitzgerald does a great job reading. He is not given to melodramatic tones as some macho war story readers are. His is a masculine voice that does not lack and needs no overstatement. The recording studio makes use of some dramatic effects which are a little over done.
This is an amazing story of some of the greatest heroism of that generation who resisted the sinister, dreadful axis powers of WWII. These blokes embody the highest of warrior virtues. They simply would not quit and resisted death and surrender to the utmost. These guys were above and beyond heroic! Hats off to them.
The gritty fight by a vastly outnumbered Aussie militia to stop the Japs from crossing one of the worst jungles in the world to threaten Australia is one of the smaller battles of WWII. The day-by-day, person-by-person accounts from both sides keeps up interest in an obscure historical event. The Aussie fighters are occasionally portrayed a bit too heroically, bordering on wartime propaganda, but the scorn for distant and bungling military command rings true. Both sides lost more than half their men fighting for a tiny outpost on a footpath in the middle of New Guinea, a awesome example of men at war.
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