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Islands of the Damned Audiobook

Islands of the Damned: A Marine at War in the Pacific

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Publisher's Summary

This is an eyewitness - and eye-opening - account of some of the most savage and brutal fighting in the war against Japan, told from the perspective of a young Texan who volunteered for the Marine Corps to escape a life as a traveling salesman.

R. V. Burgin enlisted at the age of 20 and, with his sharp intelligence and earnest work ethic, climbed the ranks from a green private to a seasoned sergeant. Along the way, he shouldered a rifle as a member of a mortar squad. He saw friends die and enemies killed. He saw scenes he wanted to forget but never did - from enemy snipers who tied themselves to branches in the highest trees, to ambushes along narrow jungle trails, to the abandoned corpses of hara kiri victims, to the final howling banzai attacks as the Japanese embraced their inevitable defeat.

An unforgettable narrative of a young Marine in combat, Islands of the Damned brings to life the hell that was the Pacific War.

©2010 R.V. Burgin and William Marvel (P)2010 Tantor

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (175 )
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4.6 (141 )
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Performance
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  •  
    J. Biallas 08-17-12
    J. Biallas 08-17-12

    lawyerjohnb

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sledge's Squad Leader"

    If you appreciated "With the Old Breed" by E.B.Sledge, this Book is an essential read to flesh out the same story from a related perspective. This is the understated story of a Marine mortar man fighting through a Pacific hell that we today can only dimly imagine. Well Done!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeffery Lee 05-27-15
    Jeffery Lee 05-27-15
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    "island of the damned. the untild story"

    great first hand experience. goes along with history books. RV Burgin is an exampke for all Marines.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gerald 05-12-10
    Gerald 05-12-10 Listener Since 2009
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    "Jerry"

    I am sooo disappointed with this book. I have great respect for all of the troops that have served and will serve. But Burgin seems to have a very self-centered and high opinion of himself. He spends a lot of time telling the listener how great he was. Burgin seems to have a deep seated dislike for Sledge due to the number of negative comments he makes about Sledge.

    12 of 19 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joseph 11-18-15
    Joseph 11-18-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Remembering my Dad"

    It was like listening to my Dad tell some of his war stories. He fought with the 1st Marine. He couldn't talk about the war until just before his death in 1997 I miss him every day. Thank you for this book. I wanted him to put his experiences, In a book but he died before we could.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B-House 05-09-17
    B-House 05-09-17

    Married with five kids. Professional military & Sports photographer.

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    "Excellent"

    Excellent recount of a soldiers experience. It's much shorter than other similar books but it compliments With the Old Breed well. The author isn't dramatic but tells the story well. Given the Texas focus it might have been good to have a reader with a Texan accent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Frankie 02-16-17
    Frankie 02-16-17
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    "Great story on the Pacific campaign"

    Mr. Burgin's story talks to the forgotten Pacific battles and the spirit that is Semper Fidelis!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ismaila Bah 11-10-16
    Ismaila Bah 11-10-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Really great story"

    absolutely worth the money great story and very informative. takes you on a trip through time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allen 07-06-16
    Allen 07-06-16
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    "Outstanding. Nothing like listening to an old vet."

    I think I'll listen to it again in a couple weeks. No point in the entire book was boring or uninteresting. Burgin's stories were incredible. Makes me feel small listening to what he had done and accomplished so many years before I was even born. This book accurately portrays the heart and mind of a "Marine's Marine". Something we Marines say about someone that truly cares for that Marine to his right and left and honestly would give his life to defend his brother and his country. A Marine's Marine.. R.V. Burgin. There's no doubt.
    What I wouldn't give to have served along side a man like that.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Harry C. SC 02-10-16
    Harry C. SC 02-10-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Good history"

    This is no a novel; but, a good recounting of one combat veterans experiences. Well told!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TOM SHERIDAN 12-22-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Excellent Reality From One Who Lived It"
    Where does Islands of the Damned rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Tied for # 1 ( This book is comparable to With the Old Breed by E.B. Sledge)


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The book in whole is a picture of the brutal situation that US Marines on the front faced and a glimpse on how some sought to hold on to their own humanity.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is a Must Read for anyone who knows or knew a Veteran of the WW2 Pacific Infantry. USMC & US ARMY. <br/>While growing up, I knew men who were WW2 Pacific Vets.<br/>I Saw them try to live struggling with their ghosts following them. Some were lost to the demons. Some overcame the demons. I never saw a Vet that did not struggle.<br/>I never understood what they saw and went through. <br/>If you want to partly understand - Islands of The damned - along with- "With the Old Breed" by E.B. Sledge tells the actual story of the men who endured the Pacific Front and the price they paid to allow us our Freedom.<br/>I can not say enough good things. I express my gratitude to these men who fought and have been forgotten and thanks to these 2 authors who tell their story.**These two books should be mandatory in every History Curriculum.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Stephen
    London, United Kingdom
    10/14/10
    Overall
    "Compelling reading"

    'Islands of The Dammed' offers an account of three of the Pacific wars most hard fought battles from a U.S Marine who was there. The Cape Gloucester, Peleliu and Okinawa campaigns are described as seen through the eyes of R.V Burgin, a U.S Marine from the same K35 unit as Eugene Sledge was.

    This book complements the excellent 'With The Old Breed' written by the aforementioned E.B.Sledge. It is particularly interesting to read accounts of the same incidents mentioned in both books and compare the slightly different perspectives shared by two men who fought alongside one another during the Peleliu and Okinawa battles. There are incidents mentioned in one account and not in the other which allow the readers of both books to build a more complete version of events as seen through the eyes of two men. Given this, I would urge anyone who has not read 'With The Old Breed' to also consider reading this too and vice-versa.

    It is interesting to note that Burgin mentions on more than one occasion within his book how he had differing opinions on certain views held by Sledge in his account.

    'Islands of the Dammed' covers more of Burgin's pre and post war life than Sledge's own account does of his, but it must be said that Sledge's writings go into generally far more detail and as such fill his book primarily with his experiences of war.

    Nevertheless, I would recommend 'Islands of The Dammed' to anyone interested in the Pacific battles of world war two and the personal experiences of a man who lived through them.

    As a footnote, I would also like to add that the narration of this title is excellent throughout and makes you feel as if Burgin himself was the narrator.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • James
    4/2/15
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    "Buy this book"

    Moving and very descriptive, a must for those interested in the Pacific theatre. I'm very glad I bought this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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