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Publisher's Summary

June 14, 1944, just nine days after the D-Day invasion of Normandy, another mighty fleet steamed towards its own D-Day landing. A huge U.S. flotilla of 800 ships carrying 162,000 men was about to attempt to smash into the outer defenses of the Japanese Empire. Their target was the Marianas Island group, which included Saipan, home to an important Japanese base and a large population of Japanese civilians, and Guam, the first American territory captured in the aftermath of Pearl Harbor.

During the next eight weeks, tens of thousands of men, hundreds of airplanes, and dozens of major warships were locked in mortal combat. When it was over, 60,000 Japanese ground troops and most of the carrier air power of the Imperial Navy were annihilated; Japan's leader, Tojo, was thrown out of office in disgrace; and the newly captured enemy airfields were being transformed into launching bases for the B-29s that would carry the conventional and, later, atomic bombs to Japan, turning the land of the Rising Sun into a charred cinder. After the U.S. victory in the Marianas campaign, the road to Tokyo was clearly in sight.

©2007 Victor Brooks; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"This opinionated, profane, and confrontational sailor was a brilliant naval strategist who has rarely received the acclaim he deserves. This is an excellent account of a campaign that guaranteed final victory in the Pacific theater." (Booklist)

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Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall

Great story of an important battle

Brooks account of the various battles in the Marianas is compelling and well researched. And very readable. I highly recommend this to anyone interested in the Pacific campaigns.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Good, but Not Great, Story of Little Known Invasio

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

It was a more in-depth look at the invasions and the fact that Adm King focused on the Marianas early on in the war. It is pretty disjointed in the beginning. There is not much about the individuals involved in the fighting. The book talks about them and their situations, but not much about any one. You need stamina to get through the whole book.

What aspect of Peter Ganim’s performance would you have changed?

He is pretty monotone in the beginning. He got better as time went on, or I got more used to it.

Was Hell Is Upon Us worth the listening time?

Yes, if you need in-depth information about these invasions, though you will be tempted to quit listening.

Any additional comments?

The pronunciation of the town and geographic names on Saipan is atrocious. I don't know if this is due to the narrator or the author. If it is from the author, he might have used a Japanese map. Its not anything you might notice unless you lived there, but it drove me nuts.

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  • Story
  • Charles
  • LYNDON STATION, WISCONSIN, United States
  • 11-18-12

Hell is Upon Us.

A Great story of WW ll in the Pacific. I loved this Book and would highly recommend this to anyone. The War in the Pacific was so different from Europe. It is a must to listen to.

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Bradford
  • Heath, Texas, United States
  • 01-12-12

Adequate

Would you try another book from Victor Brooks and/or Peter Ganim?

If another book were offered by this author, I would definitely make it a point to listen to the preview in its' entirety before purchasing. I found a few of the historical facts to be incorrect, such as referring to Herman Kossler (the captain of the USS Cavalla which sunk the Japanese carrier Shokoku) as James Kossler. Mistakes like this bother me on two levels: first and foremost, this gentleman was awarded the Navy Cross for this fantastic battle action, the least we can do is get his name correct. Secondly, when I see such a glaring error that is easy to research it leads me to wonder what other inaccuracies are contained in the work.<br/><br/>Another aspect I did not care for was the constant comparisons of segments of this battle to the American Civil War. One or two references was sufficient; after the first dozen or so I found myself starting to laugh as yet another comparison would be made in this regard. It got to the point of enough already, I can't believe he's trying to draw this comparison again!

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The tone of the narrators voice was pleasant enough, but his overall speech was so robotic it sounded like it could have been a synthesized computer voice.

Any additional comments?

I am sure that this author is a fine man, but I would submit that perhaps he could research and produce his books more carefully and that he should refrain from overly tiresome references to another war or time period.

3 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Glad I wasn't there...

What did you love best about Hell Is Upon Us?

You could feel the stress.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Hell Is Upon Us?

The descriptions of conditions, and sites,smell, and mind set.

What about Peter Ganim’s performance did you like?

A good story teller with a 40's kind of way.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I like to strech it out over a couple days. I look forward to sitting back closing my eyes and let my ears fill my mind.

Any additional comments?

I wish there was a movie

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
  • Richard
  • 12-07-10

An Excellent account

This is a well written and narrated account of war in the pacific following Pearl Harbour (Harbor) up to the atomic bomb. It is a balanced account highlighting US mistakes and internal politics alongside successes. Apart from the continual use of the word 'However' and many comparisons to the American civil war which seem out of place I would thoroughly recommend this book to anybody who wishes to know about war in the pacific. Fascinating.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful