Halsey's Typhoon Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
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Only now, thanks to documents that have been declassified after 60 years and scores of firsthand accounts from survivors, can the story finally be told. Informed by years of rigorous research and narrated with the immediacy of an action movie, Halsey's Typhoon is an enthralling true tale of courage and survival against impossible odds and one of the finest untold World War II sagas of our time.
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|Listening Length||10 hours and 38 minutes|
|Author||Bob Drury, Tom Clavin|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||January 12, 2007|
|Publisher||HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #101,509 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#135 in Naval Forces Military History
#687 in World War II History (Audible Books & Originals)
#751 in Naval Military History
Top reviews from the United States
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His father owned a shipping company. The day after graduation I shipped out on one of his tankers.
In July 1961 , I left Baytown Texas for Fort Lauderdale. By lunch, I could see ugly green water rising and falling through the port holes in the officer's saloon mess. When I finished there I went on deck to see what was happening. As I opened the watertight door I could see a grey stormy sky. Suddenly dirty green water came rushing up the hull at such a rate that I thought we would sink in the next few seconds . The water stopped abruptly a foot below where I was standing. After a very few seconds it fell away just as quickly. I had never seen water move up and down so far so fast . It was 50 feet down when it stopped. After the evening meal I went out again, only I went out on the boat deck two decks up. From this higher view, I could see forward past the ship's bow. We were surrounded by waves the size of city blocks. During the night it got much worse. The next morning I could see the bow dive into a wave and disappear back to the midship house under solid grey-green water. This continued for the next 3 days. We were sailing through a tropical depression. The wind didn't get much over 35 knots.
Later, on oil & gas boats, I sailed out of the Gulf of Mexico in a "small" hurricane. The wind only got up to 80 knots or so. Still later, I sailed through the Straights of Yucatan at night. On a 12 to 4 watch as I was on duty as helmsman, I could only see the sea as the boat surfed down one mountain of water after a other. The faint glow from the masthead and navigation lights would show the next wave at the bottom of the trough seconds before the boat's bow cut into it like it was a water wall standing straight up and down. The boat would shudder like it had hit a building. This went on all night. At 4:00 A.M. I went below and climbed into my rack fully clothed and exhausted. I had to use both hands, both feet and a knee to stay in the rack.
During all these times I was sick and weak from being so for days. The only thing I could eat was a nibble of a saltine cracker and a lick of fresh lemon. I couldn't drink. I'd wet my tongue and try to swallow without throwing up.
This a true description of being at sea in a storm. But, Bob Drury does it better - the only one I've read that does.
Read it. You won't be able to put it down,
Bob Drury and Tom Clavin excel in describing the personality of a man, who was driven by the wish to take revenge for the Pearl Harbor attack, who was haunted by that he could not participate in the Battle of Midway, in short, a man, who had a ‘personal agenda’ with Japanese Admiral Yamamoto. His reaction to Yamamoto’s assassination,
“… Halsey silenced him with a wave and a scowl. “What’s good about it?” he demanded. “I’d hoped to lead that scoundrel up Pennsylvania Avenue in chains, with the rest of you kicking him where it would do the most good.”…”
The authors also give credit to Yamamoto’s skills,
“… The Japanese navy never won another major sea battle…”
The decisive language of the book makes it memorable. I also liked how the authors managed to sum up military events in short precise sentences every reader can remember, forever.
“… The American victory in the Battle for Leyte Gulf was, and remains to this day, the largest naval engagement in the history of the world…”
Most American students do even not know where Leyte Gulf is located, so this short crisp sentence can be understood as an encouragement to look it up to know this one very important historic event. I liked that a lot. Bob Drury and Tom Clavin also excelled in explaining concepts in a colorful and outspoken way that makes them more real than some of the abstract writings I have read.
[Kamikaze] “… But it was not the ancient Japanese Bushido – the “way of the warrior” code of conduct and moral principles – that concerned Halsey. It was this bomb-laden steel hurtling from the skies and sending his vessels to the bottom of the sea…. Even the Marines charging into the meat grinders of Guadalcanal and Tarawa believed they had a fighting chance to come out alive…”
Most interestingly the first time I had heard about Halsey’s typhoon was in middle school, in biology class. The teacher showed a picture of hundreds of stranded sailors who treaded water waiting to be rescued. Around them swam in circles hundreds of sharks ready to devour the helpless sailors. (This picture was supposed illustrate that sharks are vicious predators.) Reading ‘Halsey’s Typhoon’ told a totally a different story. There were no hundreds of sailors swimming together. Few sailors, who managed to survive the going down of their vessels found creative ways to stay alive (or not). Their ‘little stories’ matter in this huge story of big fleets, driven admirals, bad weather forecasting, a vicious typhoon on a unusual path, and the bad luck of these forces colliding. By bringing them together Bob Drury and Tom Clavin have created a fantastic book, which I can highly recommend to everybody who is interested in history, psychology, and strategy.
Readers who are interested in politics will be delighted to find detailed information about Vice Admiral John Sidney McCain, the senator’s father, and Gerald Ford, the future president, whose bravery shone during the dramatic events.
Loved the book, 5 stars,
Gisela Hausmann, author & blogger