“Eugene Sledge became more than a legend with his memoir, With The Old Breed. He became a chronicler, a historian, a storyteller who turns the extremes of the war in the Pacific—the terror, the camaraderie, the banal and the extraordinary—into terms we mortals can grasp.”—Tom Hanks
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
In The Wall Street Journal, Victor Davis Hanson named With the Old Breed one of the top five books on epic twentieth-century battles. Studs Terkel interviewed the author for his definitive oral history, The Good War. Now E. B. Sledge’s acclaimed first-person account of fighting at Peleliu and Okinawa returns to thrill, edify, and inspire a new generation.
An Alabama boy steeped in American history and enamored of such heroes as George Washington and Daniel Boone, Eugene B. Sledge became part of the war’s famous 1st Marine Division—3rd Battalion, 5th Marines. Even after intense training, he was shocked to be thrown into the battle of Peleliu, where “the world was a nightmare of flashes, explosions, and snapping bullets.” By the time Sledge hit the hell of Okinawa, he was a combat vet, still filled with fear but no longer with panic.
Based on notes Sledge secretly kept in a copy of the New Testament, With the Old Breed captures with utter simplicity and searing honesty the experience of a soldier in the fierce Pacific Theater. Here is what saved, threatened, and changed his life. Here, too, is the story of how he learned to hate and kill—and came to love—his fellow man.
“In all the literature on the Second World War, there is not a more honest, realistic or moving memoir than Eugene Sledge’s. This is the real deal, the real war: unvarnished, brutal, without a shred of sentimentality or false patriotism, a profound primer on what it actually was like to be in that war. It is a classic that will outlive all the armchair generals’ safe accounts of—not the ‘good war’—but the worst war ever.”—Ken Burns
This is truly one of the best books I have EVER read in my life. I felt as if I was right there with them through it all.55
After reading, I now understand how easy it was for Tom Hanks and HBO to team up and create the mini series on the War in the Pacific.55
I think every American should read this book.55
Great book-glad I was not part of the action- this book is why they describe the marines and other veterans as the Greatest Generation. I doubt that the current crop of teenagers could even come close to what they endured and accomplished in the war and then came home and started a new life. I saw the series “Pacific” and still don’t know how they made thru and were still sane. .55
This book is like starring out the window of your house watching this unfold. So descriptive to the point to make you realize how painful it is.55
I served in submarines for twenty years. I know the brotherhood of which he wrote. He is correct today as then training is everything. We are the best military in the world because of our military training. This book is a fantastic read. I only wish I could have shaken the author’s hand. Semper Fi my bother. We are all brothers.55
As a Marine that served with 2/4 (attached to 5th Marines) I know its history very well. I’m a Iraq/Afghanistan veteran and I’m a huge WW2 history buff I have read many book about the Pacific Campaigns but this is by far one of the best. In my opinion personal accounts are always better then historical event books. It’s more graphical and less blurred for the average reader. Sledge did a outstanding job making you feel like you where next to him. Thank you to all Marines of WW2 and Semper Fi Marines55
It must have been a tremendous ordeal to put all of these memories on paper. So glad Mr. Sledge was able to do it. I will never think about war in the same way again.55
Important to read is an understatement. Fantastic book.55
Raw, Riveting, and Reality at its best. Thank you veterans - for your service and personal sacrifice. We are a grateful nation.55