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Showing 1-10 of 496 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 984 reviews
on September 5, 2017
Amazing account of WWII
The author takes you on a tour through the lost of hope and struggles of each POW as well as the sadness and joy experienced by the liberating Rangers. You also feel each stage of fear, victory and setbacks throughout the rescue and journey to freedom.
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on September 12, 2016
Ghost Soldiers is a remarkable book by a remarkable author. Hampton Sides brings to life the courage and strength of the POWs from the U.S. and other countries in the face of shocking atrocities by the Japanese in the Philippines during WWII. Sides describes the daring rescue of more than 500 POWs at Cabanatuan prison camp in such detail that you almost feel that you are part of it. I couldn't put the book down.
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on May 15, 2016
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on January 17, 2014
I'm an American living in Philippines now, and I have visited the site of and memorial to the Cabanatuan POW camp that was liberated by brave US Rangers, supported by fearless Filipino soldiers. Around 500 already sick and dying American prisoners were freed from their brutal Japanese captors as the US began the re-taking of the Islands in Jan. 1945. With good reason, the US believed the Japanese would execute the prisoners, rather than allow for their liberation. They had slaughtered 150 Americans just a few weeks previous to this rescue mission, down on the island of Palawan. When MacArthur's command learned of this, it acted, and moved decisively.

So, this daring plan was pulled together in two short days, and successfully executed. Dozens of things COULD have gone wrong, as these brave men slipped into enemy territory to save their tortured brothers. It is a story that needs to be more widely known and honored, so I urge readers to get this book!
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on December 19, 2013
I read this on the heels of "My Hitch in Hell," by Lester Tenney. It is kind of a companion piece to that book, telling what finally happened to some of the men from the Bataan Death March. The author is very good at describing the various soldiers in the camp and we can see their various personalities to understand that people reacted differently to the same stressful situations, and they all survived in spite of - or because of - their individual characteristics. It made me realize that there is not a stereotypical prisoner of war out there, and sometimes the seemingly most frail, most damaged prisoners just simply survive by persevering, by just slogging onward, sometimes literally asleep on their feet as they march along. It was also a good depiction of the early Army Ranger corps, which the emaciated, sickly, crushed POWs saw as giants and he-men. It is a good telling of the Hell of war and well worth reading. I also liked how the officers were protrayed as normal men with feelings and misgivings, struggling under the pressure of leadership. They were human beings, too, and they also survived the long march out of hell with the souls they rescued. I liked this book very much. It was hard to "love" it, I think more to the subject matter than the writing, but I may end up loving it more as time goes on. It's a good story. You'll like it.
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on June 16, 2017
An amazing story. The lives and deaths of these men is made so real. Stories of real people, not just "a soldier" but a particular individual with a name, friends and a family.
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on August 23, 2017
Well written account of The Ghost Soldiers. These men should not be forgotten.
Can be uncomfortable to read at times but these men never stopped supporting each other.

The Rangers who lead the rescue were very heroic men. Bravo Zulu !!
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on February 18, 2017
Spoiler! I wished this account had been more about the Rangers and their rescue mission. The story bounces back and forth between the prisoners and the Rangers. I have already read stories about the March and pow camps in the Philippines, so I found that half of this book to be a little redundant. Don't get me wrong this a good book, and if you haven't read much about this chapter of the war, the part I had an issue with will probably be excellent background for you.
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on March 1, 2017
VERY informative! I love history books. This one kept me engrossed and appalled at the same time! God bless our troops (past and present)!!
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on July 2, 2015
I liked this book a lot. The story of an amazing rescue from a Japanese POW camp is fascinating, as are so many of the heroic characters, The first scene is one of the saddest and more gripping book starts ever. The end brought tears to my eyes. The chapters alternated between the story of the prisoners and the story of of the rescuers. The only thing keeping this below a 5 was the fact that vignettes of the prisoners did start to feel a bit repetitive. Sides is an amazing writer, and had this been edited by 20%, it would have been perfect. If this book is a triple, Hampton Sides' Blood and Thunder is a home run, and Into the Kingdom of Ice is a grand slam. What an amazing writer.
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