Book Review: Day of Infamy

dayinfamyI’ve never really been a fan of History, it was never one of my strong subject in school. But when I saw “Day of Infamy” by Walter Lord available on NetGalley I decided to check it out.  I’ve seen the blockbuster movie about Pearl Harbor many, many times (3 of which were at the theater which is rare for me – I barely go to the movies at all let alone 3 times to see the same movie, but I do love Ben Affleck) but never really read up on the attack before, aside from whatever may have been in a text book.

Day of Infamy explained the day really well.  It also explained everything in such a way that it didn’t occur to me I was reading up on history, just that I was reading a book.  I can see why the book has been a best seller and I think that teachers should consider using this book in class because had I read it in school I think I would have retained a lot more information than I did from History class.

The book is relatively short, only 12 chapters and about 300 pages of content with extra pages for acknowledgments and the like. I had no trouble reading it in one evening, probably because it was so engaging.

I definitely recommend this book for history buffs and someone just looking for an interesting non fiction read.

I received a free e-copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.

About the Book

Lord’s classic, bestselling account of the bombing of Pearl Harbor

The Day of Infamy began as a quiet morning on the American naval base at Pearl Harbor. But as Japan’s deadly torpedoes suddenly rained down on the Pacific fleet, soldiers, generals, and civilians alike felt shock, then fear, then rage. From the chaos, a thousand personal stories of courage emerged. Drawn from hundreds of interviews, letters, and diaries, Walter Lord recounts the many tales of heroism and tragedy by those who experienced the attack firsthand. From the musicians of the USS Nevada who insisted on finishing “The Star Spangled Banner” before taking cover, to the men trapped in the capsized USS Oklahoma who methodically voted on the best means of escape, each story conveys the terror and confusion of the raid, as well as the fortitude of those who survived.
Walter Lord (1917-2002) was an acclaimed and bestselling author of literary nonfiction best known for his gripping and meticulously researched accounts of watershed historical events. Born in Baltimore, Lord went to work for the Office of Strategic Services during World War II. After the war’s end, Lord joined a New York advertising firm, and began writing nonfiction in his spare time. His first book was The Fremantle Diary (1954), a volume of Civil War diaries that became a surprising success. But it was Lord’s next book, A Night to Remember (1955), that made him famous. The bestseller caused a new flurry of interest in the Titanic and inspired the 1958 film of the same name. Lord went on to use the book’s interview-heavy format as a template for most of his following works, which included detailed reconstructions of the Pearl Harbor attack in Day of Infamy (1957), the battle of Midway in Incredible Victory (1967), and the integration of the University of Mississippi in The Past That Would Not Die (1965). In all, he published a dozen books.

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