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Fire and Water: The Art of Incendiary and Aquatic Warfare in China Hardcover – 18 Dec 2003

4.7 out of 5 stars
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4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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About the Author

Ralph D. Sawyer, one of America's leading scholars in Chinese warfare, has worked extensively with major intelligence and defense agencies. After studying at MIT and Harvard and a brief stint of university teaching, Sawyer has spent the past thirty years lecturing and doing international consulting work focused on China.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In-depth and exhaustively researched 22 May 2004
By A. Liebling - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This is everything you've ever wanted to know about how fire and water (mostly fire) was used in warfare in ancient China. How much could be said about it? Oh man... a lot. The level of detail in this book is astounding. Culling information from seemingly hundreds of ancient Chinese texts, Sawyer (who is best known for his best-selling translation of Sun-Tzu's Art of War) gives an in-depth play-by-play account of thousands of years of tribal battles.
The stories behind the creative implementations of the elements themselves are fascinating; even in this age of hi-tech gizmo warfare, there are new tricks I've learned from this book-and they were done thousands of years ago! But the actual historical background is scholarly and detailed to the point of academic overload, and it could probably only be followed (let alone remembered) by the most passionate of Sinophiles.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing Scholarly Piece 23 Feb. 2004
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a huge fan of military history, I found this book a fascinating, well written, read. The illustrations (taken from ancient chinese texts) are not florid and are there to enhance the text, the huo-shen (spirit fire) looked extremely deadly.
4.0 out of 5 stars Book was what I expected, but took longer to ... 15 Feb. 2015
By Tom Allen - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Book was what I expected, but took longer to get than I thought and for NEW it has a few parts under lined in pencil.
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