• The Storm on Our Shores

  • One Island, Two Soldiers, and the Forgotten Battle of World War II
  • By: Mark Obmascik
  • Narrated by: John Bedford Lloyd
  • Length: 9 hrs and 2 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (180 ratings)

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The Storm on Our Shores  By  cover art

The Storm on Our Shores

By: Mark Obmascik
Narrated by: John Bedford Lloyd
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Publisher's summary

This “engrossing” (The Wall Street Journal) national best seller and true “heartbreaking tale of tragedy and redemption” (Hampton Sides, best-selling author of Ghost Soldiers) reveals how a discovered diary - found during a brutal World War II battle - changed our war-torn society’s perceptions of Japan. 

May 1943. The Battle of Attu - called “The Forgotten Battle” by World War II veterans - was raging on the Aleutian island with an Arctic cold, impenetrable fog, and rocketing winds that combined to create some of the worst weather on Earth. Both American and Japanese forces tirelessly fought in a yearlong campaign, with both sides suffering thousands of casualties. Included in this number was a Japanese medic whose war diary would lead a Silver Star-winning American soldier to find solace for his own tortured soul.

The doctor’s name was Paul Nobuo Tatsuguchi, a Hiroshima native who had graduated from college and medical school in California. He loved America, but was called to enlist in the Imperial Army of his native Japan. Heartsick, wary of war, yet devoted to Japan, Tatsuguchi performed his duties and kept a diary of events as they unfolded - never knowing it would be found by an American soldier named Dick Laird.

Laird, a hardy, resilient underground coal miner, enlisted in the US Army to escape the crushing poverty of his native Appalachia. In a devastating mountainside attack in Alaska, Laird was forced to make a fateful decision, one that saved him and his comrades but haunted him for years.

Tatsuguchi’s diary was later translated and distributed among US soldiers. It showed the common humanity on both sides of the battle. But it also ignited fierce controversy that is still debated today. After 40 years, Laird was determined to return it to the family and find peace with Tatsuguchi’s daughter, Laura Tatsuguchi Davis.

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Mark Obmascik “writes with tremendous grace about a forgotten part of our history, telling the same story from two opposing points of view - perhaps the only way warfare can truly be understood” (Helen Thorpe, author of Soldier Girls).  

©2019 Mark Obmascik (P)2019 Simon & Schuster

What listeners say about The Storm on Our Shores

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Finished in Two Days

I'm really not sure why I'm the first one on Audible and second on Goodreads to write a review on "The Storm on Our Shores". This book was recently released a few days ago and 60 Minutes even had a segment on Attu and the forgotten battle in World War II. Mark Obmascik is even a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and yet there is no solid reviews.

"The Storm on Our Shores" is one of the best history books that I've ever read on WWII. I've always had an instant infatuation on this war because no matter how much I read and studied, there is always untold stories to be told. Unlike other wars, WWII had two combat enemies. Germany and Japan. Hitler and his ruthlessness has been retold over and over, but there is very little information on the battle with the Japanese.

This book is awesome. Not only Mark Obmascik explains what happened on Attu island, but he also introduce the two soldiers on opposite side of the line and their life before the gun fire. This book is more about the diary that Tatsuguchi wrote while he was in combat. He only served in the Japanese military because he was called on. Tatsuguchi was an American at his heart because he had a life in California and went to medical school before he got enlisted.

I could had easily finish this book within a day. This was the most excellent information on Attu because Obmascik reported this forgotten war flawlessly. Excellent information on racism for the Japanese in the States after the war too.

If my review doesn't compels you to listen or read "The Storm on Our Shores", then I have failed to write a five star review. I wouldn't be surprise if Mark Obmascik will win another Pulitzer for this book.

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12 people found this helpful

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LOVE IT!

This is the BEST book I have read so far this year. I always knew that the Japanese invaded somewhere on the Aleutian islands during WWII. I had no idea the story behind what happened on ATTU and the fierce battle that was fought there. Its a great story of 2 men who both loved America but went to battle on ATTU against each other. The book is well written and narrated.

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8 people found this helpful

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Captivating story well told

Amazing true story
Narration excellent well written
Would highly recommend it to All

Who enjoy the genre

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3 people found this helpful

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History and 2 good stories

This book is great! I never knew about this battle. I also knew little about post war Japan, other than getting our boys out.

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3 people found this helpful

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So-So

Narration: Adequate but inflection could be more varied, less staid.

Story: Takes too long to get to the battle story. A bit labored in discussing biographies. Interesting but not that interesting.

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2 people found this helpful

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Outstanding - one of the best

This book will leave a lasting impression. It is not often that I am transported to another place to become engrossed in the story. This story easily swept me to another time and place. I hung on every word. I wanted all the individuals highlighted in this story to succeed. Living in Tucson, I’ll make a point to visit East Lawn Palms Cemetery to give thanks and respects to Dick Laird. I wish I could do the same for Paul Tatsuguchi. A great finish.

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Spellbinding

An incredible WW2 story that is not even really about the war. I could not stop listening

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Small World

This is a devastatingly beautiful story of two lives bound by fate to meet. They were born worlds apart, and brought together by the decisions of generals who never knew them as the men they were. They were only pawns in WWII. Yet, their lives have touched so many people. This is a true story of how small our world truly is.

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Superior Book

I have been an Audible member for a long time. This book is one of the best I have experienced.

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Powerful

Well written. This book converts a large series of battles into a personal saga. Fascinating and so well written!

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