Rising Sun (Military Classics) Paperback – 30 Jul 2005
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"'Unbelievably rich... Readable and exciting' Newsweek 'The most readable, yet informative account of the Pacific War' Chicago Sunday Times"
From the Inside Flap
This Pulitzer Prize-winning history of World War II chronicles the dramatic rise and fall of the Japanese empire, from the invasion of Manchuria and China to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Told from the Japanese perspective, "The Rising Sun is, in the author's words, "a factual saga of people caught up in the flood of the most overwhelming war of mankind, told as it happened--muddled, ennobling, disgraceful, frustrating, full of paradox."
In weaving together the historical facts and human drama leading up to and culminating in the war in the Pacific, Toland crafts a riveting and unbiased narrative history. In his Foreword, Toland says that if we are to draw any conclusion from "The Rising Sun, it is "that there are no simple lessons in history, that it is human nature that repeats itself, not history." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
As history, I think it needs to be taken rather cautiously as it is clearly pro-Japanese. It does however also try to convey the mindset of the ordinary Japanese and their justifications for their part in these events. It depicts the very curious relationship between the Emperor and his household and the cabal of militant warlords who governed on his apparent behalf. Issues of taboo, honour and obligation, having no parallel in Western political structures led to a complex situation whereby the militarist elite could claim to be operating in the service of the Emperor's divine will and with his blessing. Meanwhile the same conventions rendered the Emperor and the moderates around him impotent to materially influence the course of affairs.Read more ›
No, I'm afraid that this book isn't even pro-Japanese as some reviewers have said. Yes, it's ten years of Japanese history with a lot of the nasty bits left out, hardly a mention of the massacres of POWs and civilians for example, but this book is really about how the Japanese were inferior to the might of the Americans. The point of the book seems to be to tell them that they should have stayed at home.
Roosevelt was anxious to avoid any actions that would be seen as aggressive and that might precipitate war but, unfortunately, American commanders don't seem to have been briefed explicitly to prepare adequately for the eventuality of war should the diplomacy fail.
The Japanese cultural view of the shame of capture and their resulting fanatical defence is well portrayed. Japanese atrocities are not dwelt upon but nor are they ignored.
As defeat stared the Japanese in the face, the peace party, and its feelers to the Allies, was rather lame, even convincing themselves that the Soviet Union would make an honest broker.
All in all, a good history showing more of the "other side of the hill" than many Pacific War histories and how cultural differences had such an influential role..
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent popular history of the Pacific War. It is a bit dated now, but holds up pretty well considering how long ago it was written.Published 7 months ago by Reader
If you only have time for one book on the Japanese perspective of the Pacific War then this is the book you should choose. Read morePublished 11 months ago by George Reid
Extremely easy to read compared to a lot of MilHist litterature. Brung home some points I haven't heard before, such as the many valorous japanese commanders who misplaced and... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Matias Jensen
Toland can't do any wrong another excellent book by this serious author.Published 16 months ago by VIC
I would give this book 10 stars if I could. I first read it way back in the 1970s. And am glad it is on kindle. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Jane Phillips
This is one of the most impressive and most readable books I have come across about the second world war. Read morePublished 23 months ago by David Rowland
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