on 12 October 2013
I am sorry, but I believe the men of George company deserve better. Theirs is a truly heroic story, and one is delighted that the spotlight of history has shone on them. However, one wishes that they had a better proponent for their story.
I have any number of issues, but chief among them are the following:
1) Right at the start of the book, Mr. O'Donnell makes the unpardonable error of making himself central to the narrative.
2) His representation of Don Carlos Faith seemed extremely churlish. Col. Faith was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions, but reading this book you would have never known it.
3) The backdrop of events and the historic detail associated with those events were off - particularly in the case of Taskforce Drysdale.
4) The devil is in the detail and the accuracy of the fact checking around those details really wasn't great - George Company's comrades in arms, for instance, were Royal Marines; not hard to get right, but Mr. O'Donnell persistently gets it wrong.
5) There were a number of peculiar footnotes, which were repetitious in nature, especially when compared to the text itself - why weren't these properly edited? This sloppiness smacks of filler when none is required in a set of stories so gripping in nature.
6) The "where are they now section" seemed sadly lacking - these are heroic men, and to know more about them and their lives would have been an honour.
In short, in my opinion, Mr. O'Donnell has taken the lazy man's approach to this book - he has simply let his heroic subjects do all the work through the brush strokes of their words alone. What he has failed to do is provide them, as was his reponsibilty as the named author, with the accurate, unobtrusive and reflective canvas on which their deeds deserve to have been painted.
on 4 March 2016
I think that few people today know much about the war in Korea, not even Americans, who contributed the most number of soldiers and resources to the UN led force that fought the N Korean and Chinese attack on S Korea. This is a hearth wrenching eye witness account of the sufferings, but also bravery, as seen through the eyes of an American marine commando soldier. I visited S Korea recently, and realised I didn't know much about this war, and through this book I now have a new perspective on this. And it helps me understan, at least to try and understand, the tension that is still there, today, between North and South Korea.