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Allied Victory Over Japan 1945

...from Pen & Sword

Title: Allied Victory Over Japan 1945
Author: Jon Diamond
Publisher: Pen & Sword
ISBN: 978-1-39904-288-8

Another new addition to the huge Images of War series from Pen & Sword and another from author Jon Diamond. A 231-page soft-cover book.
This one is split across 5 chapters, plus an epilogue. The first starts us off with a good summary of the war from 1941, supported by maps of the Pacific. From the Allied advance across the Pacific towards the Japanese Home Islands, including their planned invasion. The maps and text are followed by a selection of photos showing us some of the significant Japanese leaders of the period, along with the attack on Pearl Harbor, the sinking of the Prince of Wales and the Repulse and much more. Then we get to the fight back and the planning for the final invasion of Japan, not only the allied plans, but the Japanese defensive plans as well. It followed the agreement to defeat Germany in Europe first and again includes many pictures of the different allied and Japanese commanders involved. Add others such as the late war Kamikaze designs for the Ohka flying bomb and suicide boats as well. Chapter 3 focuses on the progress towards Japan for the US heavy bombers, the B-29 especially, to not only disable the ships of the Imperial Japanese Navy but also to get close enough to raid Japan itself. I rather liked chapter 4 as it remembers the other elements of the war in the Pacific, notably the Australian-American invasion of Borneo, which was also carried out in 1945. That lead on to the Atomic Bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in the final numbered chapter. The book is rounded of though with an Epilogue, which rounds up archive photos of the Japanese surrenders in China, in Hong Kong and even Viet Nam, along with the famous surrender that took place on board the USS Missouri.
While some of the photos are well known, the bulk are not. They come from a selection of US archives and throughout the book they are provided with extensive and informative captions. While the atomic bombs capture so much of the story of the ending of the war in the Pacific, I particularly liked the inclusion of the separate endings of fighting in places like China, Singapore, Hong Kong and so on. Each chapter has a few pages of helpful text to start them off and overall a first class selection of archive images I felt. A reasonably priced book and of interest for all those with an interest in WW2 in the Pacific.
Thanks to Pen & Sword for the review copy.


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