Still looking for a stocking stuffer for the history buff in your life? Give them a book by a Stephen Ambrose Historical Tours historian!
Atomic Bomb Island by Don Farrell
Don Farrell’s book is a detailed story about the important and often overlooked role Tinian played in the Pacific Theatre of WWII—especially regarding the atom bomb and ending the war with Japan. Tinian, a small island in the Marianas, was an integral part of the Manhattan Project and associated operations that dealt with the dropping of atomic bombs on Japan.
As Richard Frank, author of Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire, says of Don’s book:
“Atomic Bomb Island is a triumph. It is based on extremely deep research that provides a new and vivid account of the servicemen and scientists who prepared and delivered of the atomic bombs to Hiroshima and Nagasaki from Tinian. It is packed with details and important insights about this vital, but little understood component of the Manhattan Project. The narrative makes many individual participants come to life and devolves into some highly fraught clashes among them that had material consequences in the course of history.”
A Mortal Blow to the Confederacy by Mark F. Bielski, Ph.D.
As noted by Civil War Books and Authors: “As both a popular first-line approach to the topic as well as a solid historical summary for readers of all backgrounds to consider, Mark Bielski’s A Mortal Blow to the Confederacy is highly recommended reading for those seeking modern answers to the many how and why questions attached to Union triumph and Confederate failure in the critical New Orleans campaign of 1862.”
Patton’s War by Kevin Hymel
Patton’s War, the first of two volumes, follows the general from the beaches of Morocco to the fields of France, right before the birth of Third Army on the continent.
In highly engaging fashion, Hymel uncovers new facts and challenges long-held beliefs about the mercurial Patton, not only examining his relationships with his superiors and fellow generals and colonels, but also with the soldiers of all ranks whom he led. Through extensive research of soldiers’ memoirs and interviews, Hymel adds a new dimension to the telling of Patton’s WWII story. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in America’s iconic WWII general.
Predicting Pearl Harbor by Ronald Drez
Gen. Billy Mitchell recognized the signs and foresaw the eventual showdown between the two nations―eighteen years before the tragedy of Pearl Harbor. Yet his predictions were dismissed out of hand. Mitchell’s attempts to have his theories taken seriously led to scorn and a subsequent court martialing.
Primary-source documents, memoirs, and firsthand testimonies deliver an exhaustive background to Mitchell’s prescient reports. Historian Ron Drez finally gives credence to the man called the “Cassandra General.”
The Ghost Army of World War II by Rick Beyer and Elizabeth Sayles
Rick Beyer’s book that he co-wrote with Elizabeth Sayles, about the unsung WWII heroes of the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops and the 3133rd Signal Company Special, known as “the Ghost Army,” received a glowing review from none other than Tom Brokaw!
“The Ghost Army of World War II describes a perfect example of a little-known, highly imaginative, and daring maneuver that helped open the way for the final drive to Germany. It is a riveting tale told through personal accounts and sketches along the way—ultimately, a story of success against great odds. I enjoyed it enormously.” – Tom Brokaw