The Korean War - by Max Hastings - 99p for Kindle, Monthly deal October 2019 Only

Auld-Yin

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Fill yer boots:

@Auld-Yin as Mod you may have magic wayz than I ken to spread this tiding more widely across the few Arrserati that like to read.
This is as good a way to highlight it as any other. The reviews section is maintained for new books supplied by publishers/authors but posting about books that take your interest and you want to pass that on - here is as good as any.

I have to say I am not a fan of Hastings. I don't rate him as an historian and he is prone to sloppy errors. He also does not tell the history but tries to bring it in to the modern world complete with the mores of modern society. I just read his book on the Dambusters Raid, Op CHASTISE and while he praised the courage of the flyers there is always a 'but' following it. He uses the book to denigrate AVM Arthur "Bomber" Harris and his bombing campaign. There were times the book nearly got launched across the room!

I mentioned schoolboy errors, at the start of Op CHASTISE, Hastings for some reason I can't remember, tells us about the defence of Rorke's Drift by C Company 24th Foot whereas as we all know it was B Company. Small error but they are there and annoying especially from someone like him with his research teams. Anyway, did I say I don't rate Hastings? ;)
 
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This is as good a way to highlight it as any other. The reviews section is maintained for new books supplied by publishers/authors but posting about books that take your interest and you want to pass that on - here is as good as any.

I have to say I am not a fan of Hastings. I don't rate him as an historian and he is prone to sloppy errors. He also does not tell the history but tries to bring it in to the modern world complete with the mores of modern society. I just read his book on the Dambusters Raid, Op CHASTISE and while he praised the courage of the flyers there is always a 'but' following it. He uses the book to denigrate AVM Arthur "Bomber" Harris and his bombing campaign. There were times the book nearly got launched across the room!

I mentioned schoolboy errors, at the start of Op CHASTISE, Hastings for some reason I can't remember, tells us about the defence of Rorke's Drift by C Company 24th Foot whereas as we all know it was B Company. Small error but they are there and annoying especially from someone like him with his research teams. Anyway, did I say I don't rate Hastings? ;)
Quite agree as to your assessment of the author.
 
I didn't know much about the Korean war and so I read this book about a year ago. I found it so interesting and informative that I followed it up with 'To The Last Round' which concerned itself with British forces.

As an aside, to anyone who feels that the Belgians have gone the way of the Greeks in warfare, the Belgians in Korea had big brass ones.
 
I didn't know much about the Korean war and so I read this book about a year ago. I found it so interesting and informative that I followed it up with 'To The Last Round' which concerned itself with British forces.

As an aside, to anyone who feels that the Belgians have gone the way of the Greeks in warfare, the Belgians in Korea had big brass ones.
I worked with the Belgian Para-Commandos in the '70s shortly after they had returned from sorting out a bit of a problem in Kolwezi - good bunch of guys, nutters to a man. Such a pity that the Belgians have such crap politicians, but then again, ours are nothing to write home about.
 
I was going to ask if any of the FFL guys had been with them in Kolweizi.

As for politicians.............. the English speaking countries will be remembered at this time for having the most self-serving, pompous, spineless..............carry on in your own time.
 

Nemesis44UK

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Book Reviewer
I have to say I am not a fan of Hastings. I don't rate him as an historian and he is prone to sloppy errors. He also does not tell the history but tries to bring it in to the modern world complete with the mores of modern society. I just read his book on the Dambusters Raid, Op CHASTISE and while he praised the courage of the flyers there is always a 'but' following it. He uses the book to denigrate AVM Arthur "Bomber" Harris and his bombing campaign. There were times the book nearly got launched across the room!

I mentioned schoolboy errors, at the start of Op CHASTISE, Hastings for some reason I can't remember, tells us about the defence of Rorke's Drift by C Company 24th Foot whereas as we all know it was B Company. Small error but they are there and annoying especially from someone like him with his research teams. Anyway, did I say I don't rate Hastings? ;)
Agreed. Whilst he's a prolific author, he has a certain.....distaste.....for his fellow countrymen that seems to bleed through into his writing. I understand not wishing to be biased, but sometimes he swings too far the other way for my liking.

You are bang on about his transplanting of modern sensibilities. There was something that bothered me about him that you just put your finger on.

However, 99p for a book on Korea - a subject I know nothing about - is still a bargain, even if I won't get to read it for another six months.
 
Hastings for some reason I can't remember, tells us about the defence of Rorke's Drift by C Company 24th Foot whereas as we all know it was B Company.
Ahem. The 96 men of B Coy accounted for 61% of the force (a mere 95 more than C Coy :) ) but it was a very mixed bag, was that little garrison.

A count of those listed as present at Rorke's Drift 22/23 January, 1879. From research by Julian Whybra and Norman Holme and largely based on the Chard and Bourne Rolls:

UNIT/SUBUNIT vs Strength
1st Battalion 3rd Regiment Natal Native Contingent 3​
1st Battalion, 24th (2nd Warwickshire) Regiment of Foot 11​
2nd Battalion 3rd Regiment Natal Native Contingent 5​
2nd Battalion, 24th Regiment (2nd Warwickshire)
A Company 5​
B Company 96
C Company 1​
D Company 4​
E Company 2​
F Company 2​
G Company 2​
H Company 1​
Not specified 1​
Unit Total 114
2nd Battalion, 3rd (East Kent) Regiment of Foot (The Buffs) 1​
90th Light Infantry 1​
Acting Chaplain to the Volunteers 2​
Army Commissariat and Transport Department 3​
Army Medical Department and Army Hospital Corps 5​
Army Service Corps 1​
General's Staff 1​
Natal Mounted Police 3​
Royal Artillery N Battery 5th Brigade 4​
Royal Engineers 5th Company 2​
Grand Total 156

E.T.A: It's worth looking at the source site, simply for the potted biographies of the VC winners - with a close eye on their places of origin. You won't find many Welshmen, and you might want to bear that in mind when next you watch the movie, and you hear Ivor Emmanuel piping up with Men Of Harlech.

In truth the bloke he was playing would more likely have sounded like one of the Peaky Blinders :thumleft:
 
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I didn't know much about the Korean war and so I read this book about a year ago. I found it so interesting and informative that I followed it up with 'To The Last Round' which concerned itself with British forces.

As an aside, to anyone who feels that the Belgians have gone the way of the Greeks in warfare, the Belgians in Korea had big brass ones.
Scorched Earth Black Snow by the same author is a very good read about 27 Brigade.
 
Quite agree as to your assessment of the author.
Me also, I am struggling my way through his book on Vietnam which is just a mass of unconnected soundbites. I should have learned after All Hell Let Loose.

Rumour has it he doesn't write the books and simply employs a group of researchers and editors.

Have seen him give two talks and he also bores for England when speaking.
 
Me also, I am struggling my way through his book on Vietnam which is just a mass of unconnected soundbites. I should have learned after All Hell Let Loose.

Rumour has it he doesn't write the books and simply employs a group of researchers and editors.

Have seen him give two talks and he also bores for England when speaking.
His books give the impression that they are written by committee.
 

Themanwho

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Book Reviewer
I have to disagree with the opinions expressed of Hastings' writing style; in my opinion he's an excellent writer, and reading his books is a breeze in comparison to most history books. However, as I droned on about in my review of his "Vietnam" on here, Hastings isn't a historian -he's an author of books about history.

He has many faults as a writer: arrogance and unwillingness to countenance or explain any point of view other than his own, a tendency to ascribe the worst possible motives and performance to British & to a lesser extent American Forces, uberfandom of the Nazi war machine, and arrogance. Twice.

However , Hastings is also excellent at painting a comprehensive and comprehensible picture of huge courses of events. I find his writing style well paced and engaging, and the level of detail fascinating. The first book of his I read was "Bomber Command", which whilst I disagreed with his central argument (that it was wrong to bomb Germany), I still believe to be the best written history of the British and US European bomber campaign available. The same can be said of "Vietnam", and to an extent "Nemesis". In my opinion, obviously!;)
 
I have to disagree with the opinions expressed of Hastings' writing style; in my opinion he's an excellent writer, and reading his books is a breeze in comparison to most history books. However, as I droned on about in my review of his "Vietnam" on here, Hastings isn't a historian -he's an author of books about history.

He has many faults as a writer: arrogance and unwillingness to countenance or explain any point of view other than his own, a tendency to ascribe the worst possible motives and performance to British & to a lesser extent American Forces, uberfandom of the Nazi war machine, and arrogance. Twice.

However , Hastings is also excellent at painting a comprehensive and comprehensible picture of huge courses of events. I find his writing style well paced and engaging, and the level of detail fascinating. The first book of his I read was "Bomber Command", which whilst I disagreed with his central argument (that it was wrong to bomb Germany), I still believe to be the best written history of the British and US European bomber campaign available. The same can be said of "Vietnam", and to an extent "Nemesis". In my opinion, obviously!;)
Very balanced post, quite unusual for today's ARRSE. Well done sir. ;-)
 

Auld-Yin

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Ahem. The 96 men of B Coy accounted for 61% of the force (a mere 95 more than C Coy :) ) but it was a very mixed bag, was that little garrison.

A count of those listed as present at Rorke's Drift 22/23 January, 1879. From research by Julian Whybra and Norman Holme and largely based on the Chard and Bourne Rolls:

UNIT/SUBUNIT vs Strength
1st Battalion 3rd Regiment Natal Native Contingent 3​
1st Battalion, 24th (2nd Warwickshire) Regiment of Foot 11​
2nd Battalion 3rd Regiment Natal Native Contingent 5​
2nd Battalion, 24th Regiment (2nd Warwickshire)
A Company 5​
B Company 96
C Company 1​
D Company 4​
E Company 2​
F Company 2​
G Company 2​
H Company 1​
Not specified 1​
Unit Total 114
2nd Battalion, 3rd (East Kent) Regiment of Foot (The Buffs) 1​
90th Light Infantry 1​
Acting Chaplain to the Volunteers 2​
Army Commissariat and Transport Department 3​
Army Medical Department and Army Hospital Corps 5​
Army Service Corps 1​
General's Staff 1​
Natal Mounted Police 3​
Royal Artillery N Battery 5th Brigade 4​
Royal Engineers 5th Company 2​
Grand Total 156

E.T.A: It's worth looking at the source site, simply for the piotted biographies of the VC winners - with a close eye on their places of origin. You won't find many Welshmen, and you might want to bear that in mind when next you watch the movie, and you hear Ivor Emmanuel piping up with Men Of Harlech.

In truth the bloke he was playing would more likely have sounded like one of the Peaky Blinders :thumleft:
Yep, I think that shows it was B Company, with some attachments. Company officers were B Company, until a Sapper poked his nose in! Still shows Hastings f*cked up.
 

Themanwho

LE
Book Reviewer
Yep, I think that shows it was B Company, with some attachments. Company officers were B Company, until a Sapper poked his nose in! Still shows Hastings f*cked up.
“Even great Homer nods” (or something like that)
 
Company officers were B Company,
Singular, not plural.

Company officer was Bromhead - left out of battle (LOOB), and given the jiff detail of securing the Drift, so the story goes, because his CO thought him a bit slow, and something of a liability: contemporary theory has it this was due to him being hard of hearing from spending so much of his free time shootin' game. All the other B Company officers copped it at Isandhlwana.
 

Auld-Yin

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Singular, not plural.

Company officer was Bromhead - left out of battle (LOOB), and given the jiff detail of securing the Drift, so the story goes, because his CO thought him a bit slow, and something of a liability: contemporary theory has it this was due to him being hard of hearing from spending so much of his free time shootin' game. All the other B Company officers copped it at Isandhlwana.
A/OC B Coy still the same :)
 

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