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)
Chester Nez lays out an inspiring journey that took him from his Native American homeland to a key strategic role in World War II, and on to a life in pursuit of the American dream. One of the most enjoyable audiobooks I've listened to in over a decade as an AudibleListener. Narration was super too.
I loved this book. The native americans have been mistreated and treated unfairly, but when they had an opportunity to do so, they stepped forward without hesitation and made one of the biggest contributions to winning the war over Japan . I loved hearing the story of the life of this humble man. His story made me want to learn more about the navajo culture.
Montana wanna be
This is a tribute to the outstanding contribution the Code Talkers made to the war in the Pacific. Great job of integrating Navajo culture and history.
I had heard of the code talkers when the news was first released about their activities but had not given it much thought until I picked up this book.
They really WERE heroes. I had imagined them at a desk, talking into microphones. In this story I learn they were in the rot of the jungle, carrying rifles and fighting for their lives (and mine.) Most of my family were Marines that fought in that area so I thank them for their help in bringing those members of my family home.
Inspiring, interesting, fascinating
Chester's use of his heritage, the Sing, to deal with the trauma of war
It was amazing to see how these men grew despite difficulties at the Indian Schools then used that strength to benefit others
This book is the autobiography of one of the original Navajo code-talkers--the original group who invented the code that baffled Japanese cryptographers during World War II. Because the code remained classified until 1968, it's only recently that these men have received due credit for their remarkable achievement.
From life near the reservation in New Mexico, through a boarding school experience that can only be described as Dickensian, the story highlights the remarkable toughness and generosity of spirit of these young Navajo men. It's hard for most of us to imagine a childhood that involved being shipped away to boarding school--and at the end of the year, at the age of 8, with a 5-year-old sister in tow, having to walk home for three days with only a bag of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and being expected to find water along the way. But this toughness would stand Nez and his comrades in good stead during the war.
It's not surprising that these young men actually expressed delight at the quantity and quality of military rations.
I'd recommend this to anyone interested in the Pacific war, in the Native American experience, or in codes and cryptography. It could only have happened because a rather cruel experience produced people with just the right skills, who had the generosity of spirit to fight for a country that hadn't treated them well. Nez is in his 90's now, and is the last survivor of the original group. I'm glad that his story got written down.
I really liked the look into life before being a code talker and after.
Yes, this is a fantastic story and the performance was excellent.
I cant think of one. The style was very plain, which suited this book. I could imagine this being a conversation with the author
I enjoyed learning about some of the traditions
I was eager to get back to this story each time I had to take a break
This WWII true story of one of our real heros is better than all the "page turners" I've read all year. Chester gives us a clear picture of his childhood on the "res" and his challenges as a Native American in a white army corps. If your read no other WWII book read this one. Then look up Nez, he is still around.
Chester tells his own story in his own words
I just finished this today and have already recommended it. The first hand history. The openness of writer sharing his life story with us. His ability to paint pictures with his words is a true gift.
I love everything about this man. I love that Chester Nez forever put it all down for us. He never stopped giving of himself for his country for us to his very last days. I love that he shared so openly about his childhood. I was in awe of his sharing and description of the Navajo traditions that helped heal him from some of his war experiences. His ability to tell his story keeping the oral tradition of The People alive just overwhelms me. His battle descriptions were hard, but needing to be heard and somehow really came through to me, they were not over dramatized or elaborate, but I really, truly heard and felt the fear and the determination.This book helped me put together pieces of the some of the WWII puzzle, I never quite grasped before.
No, I have not.
I would like to say, for any boomers out there who may not have understood their fathers, please listen to this story. If helped me understand my father even though his war was was not in the South Pacific and he was not Native American. Chester Nez filled some blanks in for me, it may be one of the most important books I have read.I am once again filled with gratitude and awe. Hearing Chester Nez speak his beautiful language at the end repeating the very first code he spoke all that time ago made me weep.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.