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With the Old Breed
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With the Old Breed (original 1981; edition 1990)

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1,418435,339 (4.41)48
Member:Ronrose1
Title:With the Old Breed
Authors:
Info:Oxford Univ Pr (Trade) (1990), Paperback
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:war, World War II, Marines

Work details

With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa by E.B. Sledge (Author) (1981)

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» See also 48 mentions

English (42)  Italian (1)  All (43)
Showing 1-5 of 42 (next | show all)
Much praise has - rightfully - been given to this book. And I can't add more to what has already been said and written about it.

What I can say is that it is one of those books that leaves me with a lasting impression

I can only recommend it as a 'must read' to any who study the Pacific War - any war, for that matter - as a reminder that 'War is brutish, inglorious, and a terrible waste' (Page 317) and to carry out most of the overall land war strategy was the 'boots on the ground', the rifleman.

( )
  JesperCFS2 | Mar 13, 2017 |
This is a first-hand account of Eugene Bondurant Sledge a Mortarman for the
K company,3rd Battalion,5th Marines,1st Division. Since diaries weren't allowed he wrote all of his entries in a bible. If a soldier died and a diary was part of his possessions then the diary could compromise operation security. The first-hand accounts show how he started at Georgia Tech in the officer candidacy school, to becoming a Mortarmen to the Battle of Peleliu to, The Battle of Okinawa. Sledge talks about the hardships of war and how he copes and his thoughts during combat.

This is the normal foot soldier's view just war in general. There are accounts from when serving on the frontlines and being in the rear and not in combat. He talks about the pacific island hopping, heat rain, and the banzai attacks that were common on the island of Peleliu. This is a completely honest view on World War 2 and a memoir of E.B Sledge.
  Nathan.AG1 | Jan 12, 2017 |
I learned a little about Peleliu and Okinawa - the most interesting bits were actually in the introduction regarding the timeline of events. I wasn't aware so much occurred in such a short space of time. The rest of the book is largely a collection of interesting anecdotes about the evils of war mixed in with mundane details of the battles. A quick read, I did a lot of skimming since I don't care about which marine group took which ridge, etc.

It bothers me a little that Sledge seems to have totally dehumanized the Japanese (with a few exceptions) and didn't examine this further. ( )
  bzbooks | Jan 4, 2017 |
The strength of this memoir rests on three pillars. One, Eugene Sledge's memory for detail is so vivid that I wonder if he had that rare condition known as autobiographical memory. Two, he had a masterful ability to put his detailed memories into words. Three, he experienced actual hell and lived to tell about it.

The mud was knee deep in some places, probably deeper in others if one dared venture there. For several feet around every corpse, maggots crawled around in the muck and then were washed away by the runoff of the rain. There wasn't a tree or bush left. All was open country. Shells had torn up the turf so completely that ground cover was nonexistent. The rain poured down on us as evening approached. The scene was nothing but mud; shell fire; flooded craters with their silent, pathetic, rotting occupants; knocked-out tanks and amtracs; and discarded equipment--utter desolation. The stench of death was overpowering. The only way I could bear the monstrous horror of it all was to look upward away from the earthly reality surrounding us, watch the leaden gray clouds go scudding over, and repeat over and over to myself that the situation was unreal--just a nightmare--that I would soon awake and find myself somewhere else. But the ever-present smell of death saturated my nostrils. It was there with every breath I took. I existed from moment to moment, sometimes thinking death would have been preferable. During the fighting around the Umurbrogol Pocket on Peleliu, I had been depressed by the wastage of human lives. But in the mud and driving rain before Shuri, we were surrounded by maggots and decay. Men struggled and fought and bled in an environment so degrading I believed we had been flung into hell's own cesspool. ( )
1 vote read.to.live | Dec 30, 2015 |
Loyalty to each other and to country in the face of certain death, miserable conditions, constant adjustment to miscues from command and control - the true heroes are on the front lines. ( )
  mielniczuk | Apr 13, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 42 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sledge, E.B.Authorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Alexander, Joseph H.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ødegaard, RogerTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Crown, John A.Forewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fussell, PaulIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hanks, TomNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hanson, Victor DavisIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mazzello, JoeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McIlhenny, Walter S.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vietor, MarcNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilson, George K.Narratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
The deaths ye died I have watched beside
and the lives ye led were mine

- Rudyard Kipling
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In memory of Capt. Andrew A. Haldane, beloved company commander of K/3/5, and to the Old Breed
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I enlisted in the Marine Corps on 3 December 1942 at Marion, Alabama.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0891419063, Paperback)

In The Wall Street Journal, Victor Davis Hanson named With the Old Breed one of the top five books on epic twentieth-century battles. Studs Terkel interviewed the author for his definitive oral history, The Good War. Now E. B. Sledge’s acclaimed first-person account of fighting at Peleliu and Okinawa returns to thrill, edify, and inspire a new generation.

An Alabama boy steeped in American history and enamored of such heroes as George Washington and Daniel Boone, Eugene B. Sledge became part of the war’s famous 1st Marine Division–3d Battalion, 5th Marines. Even after intense training, he was shocked to be thrown into the battle of Peleliu, where “the world was a nightmare of flashes, explosions, and snapping bullets.” By the time Sledge hit the hell of Okinawa, he was a combat vet, still filled with fear but no longer with panic.

Based on notes Sledge secretly kept in a copy of the New Testament, With the Old Breed captures with utter simplicity and searing honesty the experience of a soldier in the fierce Pacific Theater. Here is what saved, threatened, and changed his life. Here, too, is the story of how he learned to hate and kill–and came to love–his fellow man.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:53 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

A former member of the First Marine Division gives a front line description of two World War II Pacific campaigns.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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