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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Won't be bettered, 30 Dec 2009
This review is from: The Sinking of the Prince of Wales & Repulse: The End of a Battleship Era? (Paperback)
A detailed, well written and authoritative account of the events of 10 December 1941 when Prince of Wales and Repulse were sunk by Japanese naval aircraft off the coast of Malaya.

Middlebrook and Mahoney have succeeded in weaving together a vast wealth of information into a compact and compelling narrative that tells the story of that day from both the British and Japanese viewpoints. Moving at a steady and workmanlike pace they introduce all the necessary evidence without ever becoming dull.

One of the great strengths of the book is the strictly impartial approach the authors have adopted, never taking sides as they follow the events leading up to the fateful day, and always ready to give credit where it is due - for example to I-58, which did such good work in tracking Force Z early on.

Another strength is the way that the authors have skilfully integrated official sources and eyewitness testimony into their narrative, the latter often giving the text a great deal of poignancy.

While the book makes no sensational claims about unearthing new evidence, I suspect most readers will learn something new: for example, how Force Z unwittingly passed within a few miles of heavy cruiser Chokai and her force yet failed to notice anything - surely one of the major 'ifs' of the story.

At the end of the book there is also an interesting 'alternative ending', which suggests how even the modest allied air cover available in the Malayan theatre might have made all the difference - if only it had been requested sooner.

All in all a 'must buy' for anyone interested in the Pacific war, and a book which seems almost certain to stand the test of time.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 28 Oct 2010 09:34:48 BDT
Joe Bloggs says:
And the fact that it was a British battleship that was sunk no doubt over-joys you, doesn't it? Reading through all your other nonsense just shows that you have more than a passing admiration for the enemy. A modern-day Lord Haw Haw.
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