Saturday, April 22, 2017

Review of The Road to Guilford Courthouse by John Buchanan

Author:  John Buchanan.
Title:  The Road to Guilford Courthouse:  The American Revolution in the Carolinas.
Publisher:  John Wiley & Sons.
Copyright:  1997.
Pages:  452.
Price:  $19.95 (US).

Overview and Impressions:

This book took a while to read.  The author packed lots of information into few pages. 

The Road to Guilford Courthouse covers the American Revolution in the Carolinas starting in Charleston, South Carolina and ending with General Greene's defeat at Guilford Courthouse.  That paved the while for General Cornwallis's surrender at Yorktown.  Cornwallis took the cream of his army through the Caolinas chasing after General Morgan's irregulars and General Greene's Continentals.  Corwallis destroyed his army in the process.  Thus, setting the stage for the British loss of her thirteen colonies.

Recommended.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Mid-April 2017 reading....

Here's a section of books that I'm reading....

1)  The Lost Stars:  Shattered Spear by Jack Campbell.  I'm about 2/3 way through this last The Lost Stars novel.  It's been entertaining so far.  I'm curious to see how everything ends next week....

2)  The Road to Guilford Courthouse:  The American Revolution in the Carolinas by Buchanan.  It's hard to remember that the American Revolution was really a civil between loyalist Tories and Patriot Whigs for control of the continent.  Interesting read.  I'm at the point of Cowpens, which I already read about.  It's been a hard read to digest all the information that the author provides, however.

3)  I finished Posiedon's Wake by Alastair Reynolds.  Interesting story about space explorers from Africa coming back home to Earth centuries later...

4)  I also finished The Madness of Alexander the Great:  And the Myth of Military Genius by Gabriel.  See previous blog entry for comprehensive review.

5)  I recently started was Such Men as These:  US Naval Aviators During the Korean War by Sears.  Starts in with Mitcher and his posting on the USS Valley Forge in 1952 in the Sea of Japan.

6)  My final book was Green Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson.  I barely started it before putting it down last Easter....

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Review of The Madness of Alexander the Great: And the Myth of Military Genius by Richard A. Gabriel

Author:  Richard A. Gabriel.
Title:  The Madness of Alexander the Great:  And the Myth of Military Genius.
Publisher:  Pen and Sword.
Copyright:  2015.
Pages:  224.

Overview and Impressions:
I'm no fan of Alexander the Great.  He died like most tyrants drinking himself to death.  According to the author, Alexander had a lot of emotional baggage that eventually unhinged him.  He couldn't trust anyone and saw conspiracies around him.  Alexander only felt relief in combat and wanted a heroic death in place of his miserable existence.

I'll give the author that Alexander was brave and reckless.  However, he didn't plan out his strategies too well.  Once he couldn't conquer the known world, Alexander turned his back on the people that help put him in power.  I could go on....

However, I won't.  The book is interested to think that Alexander the Great suffered from PTSD.  It's a better theory that someone inner city high teacher saying Alexander the Great died from AIDS!

Friday, March 31, 2017

Review of The Expanse #1: Leviathan Wakes by James S. A. Corey

Author:  James S. A. Corey.
Title:  The Expanse #1:  Leviathan Wakes.
Publisher:  Orbit.
Copyright:  2011.
Pages:  582.
Price:  $17.00 (US).

Overview and Impressions:
James S.A. Corey is the pseudonym for fantasy authors Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck.  They wrote The Expanse series.  Its about humanity's expansion into the stars from Sol.  The Expanse #1:  Leviathan Wakes was the basis for the first season of SyFy's The Expanse. 

The premise is that an alien pathogen is made to infect human beings by an evil Terran company.  The rest revolves around power politics, revolution, and war throughout Sol between the Belters, Earth, and Mars.  The scene is set several hundred years in the future, however, once the inner planets have been settled.  The alien pathogen turns out to be an unknown stargate once the infected asteroid of Eros is hurtled into the clouds of Venus. 

The book is well written.  It had me turning every page.  Recommended.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Review of Eden to Armageddon by Roger Ford

Author:  Roger Ford.
Title:  Eden to Armageddon:  The First World War in the Middle East.
Publisher:  Pegasus Book.
Copyright:  2010.
Pages:  667.

Overview and Impressions:
"Our fathers lost the First World War on the Tigres' shores..."  Johnny Turk, 1918.

The stupidity of advancing into machine gun fire by battalion, artillery barrages, and incompetent generals massacring generations of men on both sides.  I just want to take a hot shower and forget what I read.  I used to have the stomach for WWI histories.  I no longer do...

The Allies lost as many men as the Turks, the British were able to out general them on two fronts:  Palestine and Mesopotamia.  The war was won on those fronts.  Massacres and subsequent massacres cover every one's hands in blood.  No one was clean.

I could go on.  I won't.  I'm too disgusted with the whole thing.  One can see where the twilight zone political reality of today's Middle East came from.  Allah Akbar!  Ugh...

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Early March 2017 book review....

I've been reading the following book this past week:

1)  Hammer's Slammers by David Drake.  See previous blog entry.

2)  The Road to Guilford Courthouse by Buchanan.  Still working on reading about the American Revolution in the Carolinas.  It will take me a while to get through it.

3)  The Lost Stars:  Shattered Spear by Jack Campbell.  This is the fourth installment in The Lost Stars series.  It's been an interesting run so far.  I like the characters and the battle scenes are worth the reading...

4)  Eden to Armageddon by Ford.  I'm still reading read about the First World War in the Middle East.  Finished the section on Gallipolli.  Rather depressing reading in general...

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Review of Hammer's Slammers by David Drake

Author:  David Drake.
Title:  Hammer's Slammers.
Publisher:  Ace Books.
Copyright:  1979, 1985.
Price:  $2.95 (US).

Overview and Impressions:
Easy to read military sci-fi involved armored actions in the 26th century of the mercenary group, Hammer's Slammers.  It's always fun to read about them.  Fast read.  Recommended.