Enter your mobile phone or email address
By pressing "Send link," you agree to Amazon's Conditions of Use.
You consent to receive an automated text message from or on behalf of Amazon about the Kindle App at your mobile number above. Consent is not a condition of any purchase. Message & data rates may apply.
Follow the Author
Utmost Savagery: The Three Days of Tarawa Hardcover – September 1, 1995
|New from||Used from|
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
- Publisher : Naval Institute Press; 1st edition (September 1, 1995)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 304 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1557500312
- ISBN-13 : 978-1557500311
- Item Weight : 1.55 pounds
- Dimensions : 6 x 1.25 x 9.5 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #444,256 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I had a client tell me he had been at Tarawa. That stopped the interview. He was in the second wave. so had a better chance of survival, but still waded past the dead Marines to get to the beach.
I had a great uncle that fought there too. He had joined the Seabees thinking he would only be in a construction battalion. Not at Tarawa.
This book makes it so terribly intimate, like the stories of the survivors I have met.
Tarawa was a huge learning experience for the Americans and they paid a high price. The Japanese also learn to dig in deep but their cost was almost all of their troops. The author has done excellent job describing the battle both the heroism and errors.
These background and concordant discussions place the battle in as clear a light as can be had by a non-participant. It is thorough, detailed and provides an excellent analysis. Interesting decisions regarding timing (and the discussion of do you wait until everything is perfect or until you can go if time in not on your side) and command structure illuminate the battle that unfolds. The author does an excellent job discussing the Japanese preparations and actions/reactions during the battle (limited by the near total lack of first-hand accounts due to the Japanese fighting forces being wiped out almost to a man - by their own choice.)
The battle itself is well described at both the soldier and command levels. The savagery and terror come through. Warfare is brutal, particularly in the Pacific and especially at Tarawa. It is a small island and the combatants were yards if not feet away from each other most of the three days of the contest.
The only nits in my review are first, the maps. The few that are there are simple and don't give nearly enough detail to locate lines and positions mentioned in the book. The writing is somewhat academic. It is straightforward, but lacks the narrative style that one finds in an Ian Toll or Richard Atkinson war story. It reads somewhat like a study that's been turned into a book. Not a major impediment to enjoying the work or gaining a lot of insight into the battle thought.
The book is excellent on analysis and completeness in terms of giving the reader a lot surrounding planning and execution of the battle as well lessons learned. If you are interested in military history beyond just the battle itself, this is an excellent choice.
The author does a good job of detailing events from both the American and the Japanese sides. This includes preliminary planning, the three+ days of the battle for Betio (Tarawa is the name of the entire atoll, but Betio Island is where the battle occurred) and the mop-up operations in the rest of the atoll and the Gilbert Islands.
Added note: After Tarawa, my father-in-law and his colleagues spent several month in Hawaii, training for what would turn out to be the invasion of Saipan. I have copies of a weekly newspaper published by the Marines while they were in Hawaii. It was titled 'Tarawa BOOM De-Ay'.
Top reviews from other countries
L'auteur est un ancien colonel de Marines : il sait de quoi il parle et toutes les sources sont fiables.
Nombreuses anecdotes et témoignages viennent enrichir la narration des évènements.