Category Archives: Military

Review of “Tidal Wave”

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Book ReviewsWWII – “Tidal Wave” eBook was published in 2018 and was written Thomas McKelvey Cleaver. Mr. Cleaver has published eight books.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The book covers action in the Pacific Theatre during the period in World War II from the fall of 1944 until the end of the war.

This is a detailed account of action, primarily naval air warfare carried out by both sides. There are many individuals, aircraft and ships named, along with their activities. This is not a book that is easy to read due to all the facts laid out. I do think this would be a good read for the serious student of World War II history. I did find the 10 hours I spent reading this 320 page non-fiction history interesting. The cover art is a good selection. I give this novel a 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

Those interested in this book may also find my “World War II Timeline” and “World War II Sources” pages of interest.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

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Review of “SEAL Team Six: Hunt the Viper”

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Book Reviews – “SEAL Team Six: Hunt the Viper” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Don Mann (http://usfrogmann.comand) and Ralph Pezzullo (http://ralphpezzullo.com).  Mr. Mann has authored or co-authored a dozen books, while Mr. Pezzullo has authored or co-authored seventeen. This is the seventh novel in their “SEAL Team Six” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set mostly in the Middle East. The primary character is US Navy SEAL Thomas Crocker.

Crocker and his team are in Syria and are confronted with ISIS combatants. While defending a Syrian city from attack, he meets the young French epidemiologist Severine Tessier risking her life there as a volunteer with Doctors Without Borders. She and Crocker connect.

Months later, a colleague of Tessier’s is kidnapped by ISIS forces. Her imminent execution is announced. Tessier reached out to Crocker for help to rescue her colleague. While officially told NO, Crocker and his team make a desperate attempt to rescue the girl before she is executed. Tessier mounts her own search for her young colleague. It is a race to see if either will find the girl before she is executed.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 6.4 hours I spent reading this 320 page modern Special Ops thriller.  I liked this novel as the story had more of a realistic feel to it than many of this genre. I like the cover art. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Some World War II Information

WWII – Today being 4th of July, 2018 I thought it was an appropriate time to introduce two pages that I have been working on.

The first is “World War II Sources“. This page is really an on-going collection of both social media and physical sites that have information or photos relevant to the World War II period of history. As you might expect, this is a work-in-progress and is changing every week as of the date of this article.

The second page is my “World War II Timeline“. While this page is far from complete at this point, I have tried to note significant events leading up to or during the World War II period of history. As I have read either fiction on non-fiction on the World War II period, I have often found myself unclear on the timing of events. I started this timeline more as a tool to keep things straight in my own mind as to when events happened. As it grew, I decided that it might be of interest to others so made it this public web page.

Please enjoy both and I look forward to any feedback.

Short WWII Film – “Unintended”

Short FilmsWWIIWWII Timeline – I have come across many short films, but this is the first set during World War II. This short (13:14) film is named “Unintended” and you will see why as you watch it. It was published to YouTube in December of 2011 by Ben Hector.

It is not the best film and the special effects are minimal. It does have an interesting story though and it is fairly well acted.

Remembering D-Day 2018

WWII – WWII Timeline – It is that time of year again when I make an effort to see some of the movies that depict D-Day, June 6, 1944 or that period in history. I watched “Darkest Hour” recently on the long flight home from Singapore. Not D-Day but certainly an interesting look at the war. I will watch “The Longest Day“,  “Saving Private Ryan” and the “Band of Brothers” series over the next couple of weeks.

74 years have past since D-Day and a shrinking number are left today that experienced it. I’m surprised as how many of today’s youth do not even understand the significance of June 6 or December 7.

I am glad to see the film, “Dunkirk” come out last year. I think that there are WWII period films in production that will depict the Battle of Britain and one with Tom Hanks as a destroyer Captain. With 2019 being the 75th anniversary, I suspect we will see a lot more in the media looking back at this important date in our history.

I have an interest in history, particular of that period. I had hoped to visit the “National World War II Museum” in New Orleans again this year, but that has now been delayed. I have been there twice now but I am ready to visit again. They have done a superb job of telling the story of both the European and Pacific Theaters in World War II.

Locally in Austin, Texas there is the Texas State Military Forces Museum that covers that period in history as well, though it is not nearly as large.

Review of “The Flying Tigers”

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Book ReviewsWWIIWWII Timeline – “The Flying Tigers” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Sam Kleiner. This is Mr. Kleiner’s first publication.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story begins just before World War II and lasts until just after it ends. While the primary character is US Army Colonel Claire L. Chennault leader of the Flying Tigers, there are many others whose story is told.

China had been at war with Japan for years and it was suffering. The Chinese leader Chiang Kai-shek and his wife approached Chennault in the late 30’s to leave the US and form up a volunteer group to train Chinese pilots. This group eventually evolved into what is now known as the Flying Tigers (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flying_Tigers), an all-volunteer combat fighter group. They got their name from the from the shark face painted on the nose of the P-40 fighters that the group flew. This group was recruited before Perl Harbor but flew their first combat mission only a few days later on December 20, 1941. The Flying Tigers did not last long, being disbanded in July of 1942, but it had a significant role in the early months of the war.

While this is not the first book on the Flying Tigers that I have read, I did enjoy the 7+ hours I spent reading this 304 page history. I liked the deep backgrounds that were given on many of the important personalities. I like the cover art. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Morning Star, Midnight Sun”

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Book ReviewsWWII – “Morning Star, Midnight Sun” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Jeffrey Cox. Mr. Cox has published two non-fiction books on World War II.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The book tells the story of the first campaign in the Pacific Theater by the Allies – the invasion of Guadalcanal. The story documents the many mistakes made by both sides during the conflict and emphasizes how important communications is.

I enjoyed the 16 hours I spent reading this 466 page World War II history. I found this book gave me a better understanding of what went on during this first campaign in the Pacific. Given the challenges that faced US forces, I am amazed that the invasion was successful. The book is a little dry and is filled with the numerous names of military personnel and ships on both sides of the conflict. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Points of Impact”

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Book Reviews – “Points of Impact” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Marko Kloos (http://www.markokloos.com). Mr. Kloos has published six novels in his “The Frontlines” series. This is the 6th in that series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in the far future. Humanity has expanded into the stars, but now they are struggling against the alien “Lankies”. The primary character is Andrew Grayson.

Grayson is part of the crew of the first of a new generation of warships designed to specifically combat the Lanky advances. While on their shakedown cruise, the ship is directed to a colony on a distant moon that is under Lanky attack. Will the new weapons be enough to stem the Lanky incursion?

I thoroughly enjoyed the 8+ hours I spent reading this 297 page military science fiction tale. I have read three of the novels in this series now and have enjoyed all of them. I like the characters and the world created for this series. the cover art is OK, but I would have preferred something displaying combat with the Lankies. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “The Last Squadron”

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Book Reviews – “The Last Squadron” eBook was published in 2017 and was written by Dan Jayson. This is Mr. Jayson’s first novel.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence, Mature Language, and Mature Situations. The story is set in Europe in the near future. The primary character is Air Force Captain Natasha Kavolsky.

A war has been brewing for some time along ethnic and religious lines – the Allied Forces against The Brotherhood. As the multinational Allied 9th Mountain Squadron heads for some much needed R & R in a plane flown by Kavolsky, the war suddenly intensifies. Communications is disrupted and the plane is shot down somewhere over a remote area of Norway.

The survivors struggle in the severe winter. As they slowly make their way to civilization they encounter Brotherhood troops and must battle their way south. Kavolsky slowly transitions from pilot to one of the leading officers of the Squadron. The Brotherhood has surprised the Allied Forces with advanced technology, nuclear weapons, and biological weapons. The Brotherhood has escalated the war and is now trying to “cleanse the Earth” of all Allied Forces and their civilian populations.

The squadron must overcome many obstacles in this post-apocalypse world if it wants to survive. The casualties mount up as the Squadron travels through Europe. A base is established by those that remain in France. There they make a stand against a much larger Brotherhood force.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 11 hours I spent reading this 480 page military thriller. I liked the many characters that the story includes. I also liked seeing the military technology which the author predicts for 15 or so years in our future. While Kavolsky is the primary character, there are many others that have significant roles in the story, many of which do not survive to the end. I liked this more realistic attrition of characters. I can easily see sequels to this story and if they appear I will be interested in reading them. The cover art is OK, but I think something could have been chosen to better represent the story. I give this novel a 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “The Steel Fist”

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Book Reviews – “The Steel Fist” eBook was published in 2014 (original paper edition was published in 1984) and was written by Richard Townshend Bickers (https://www.fantasticfiction.com/b/richard-townshend-bickers/). Mr. Bickers published more than 45 novels and a dozen non-fiction books.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Situations. The story is set during World War II. The story follows British Officer Taggert as he fights the Germans during the early months of World War II. He is part of the British Expeditionary Force who have been dispatched to France in 1940 to help fortify the Maginot Line. He has more than once scrape with the Germans and finally must evacuate France with the lucky others from Dunkirk.

Once back in England, he is volunteers for a new fighting force, the Commandos. He and his men go through extensive training and raid France to harass the Germans.

I enjoyed the 3.5 hours I spent reading this 178 page novel of World War II. Even though it was written more than 30 years ago, it still reads well. I have read quite a few of Bicker’s novels and have enjoyed them all. While the cover art depicts World War II, I am not sure it relates well to the story. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).