The Burma Campaign by Frank McLynn
Disaster into Triumph, 1942-45 (Yale Library of Military History)

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"The Burma Campaign" will make absorbing reading for those unacquainted with the "forgotten war" or simply interested in refreshing their memories...But the major attraction in this hard-hitting and intensely readable book is its focus on the often fractious relations between the British, American and Chinese high commands.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

This book, in essence a quadruple biography, tells the story of the four larger-than-life Allied commanders whose lives collided in the Burma campaign, one of the most punishing and protracted military adventures of World War II. Ranging from 1942, when the British suffered the greatest defeat in the history of the Empire, through the crucial battles of Imphal and Kohima ("the Stalingrad of the East"), and on to ultimate victory in 1945, this account is vivid, brutal, and enthralling.

Frank McLynn opens a new window on the Burma Campaign, focusing on the interactions and antagonisms of its principal players: William Slim, the brilliant general commanding the British 14th Army; Orde Wingate, the ambitious and idiosyncratic commander of the Chindits, a British force of irregulars; Louis Mountbatten, one of Churchill's favorites, overpromoted to the position of Supreme Commander, S.E. Asia; and Joseph Stilwell ("Vinegar Joe"), a hard-line U.S. general, also a martinet and Anglophobe. McLynn draws careful portraits of each of these men, neglecting neither strengths nor flaws, and shows with new clarity how the plans, designs, and strategies of generals and politicians were translated into a hideous reality for soldiers on the ground.

 

About Frank McLynn

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Frank McLynn has over twenty books to his name, including his acclaimed biographies of Napoleon and Richard the Lionhearted. His other books include Richard and John: Kings at War; Villa and Zapata; 1066; Heroes & Villains; and Napoleon: A Biography. McLynn is a graduate of Oxford and London University. He lives in London.
 
Published October 4, 2011 by Yale University Press. 545 pages
Genres: History, Travel, War. Non-fiction
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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Andrew Roberts on Oct 15 2011

"The Burma Campaign" will make absorbing reading for those unacquainted with the "forgotten war" or simply interested in refreshing their memories...But the major attraction in this hard-hitting and intensely readable book is its focus on the often fractious relations between the British, American and Chinese high commands.

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