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The Admirals: Nimitz, Halsey, Leahy, and King--The Five-Star Admirals Who Won the War at Sea

Average Rating 4.5
( 44 )
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5 Star

(28)

4 Star

(10)

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(4)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

This book provides a perfect balance of both the personal lives

This book provides a perfect balance of both the personal lives and professional lives of Nimitz, Halsey, Leahy and King. Learning about each of the four admirals from birth to death allows the reader to see what led to these larger-than-life legends.

Mr. Borneman prov...
This book provides a perfect balance of both the personal lives and professional lives of Nimitz, Halsey, Leahy and King. Learning about each of the four admirals from birth to death allows the reader to see what led to these larger-than-life legends.

Mr. Borneman provides detailed accounts of great naval battles as well as other behind-the-scenes action including typhoons, mishaps, and the growing pains that accompanied the US Navy as it grew dramatically over a short period of time. Equally interesting, he also covers the politics of the time, as military leaders jockeyed for power and became crucial advisors to Presidents Roosevelt and Truman.

The technical descriptions of the ships, submarines and aircraft are detailed yet appropriate for a casual reader. This book is an excellent read for anyone interested in the rising role of sea power and, above all, four of America's heroes that made victory in WWII possible.

posted by Anonymous on May 23, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Buy the Book, not for a Nook.

I enjoyed it for the most part, I learned a lot about Leahy and King, about whom I had known very little. I was also surprised to learn that Halsey was not the greatest Admiral I thought he was. His mistakes in the typhoons were a revelation.

The maps were very diffi...
I enjoyed it for the most part, I learned a lot about Leahy and King, about whom I had known very little. I was also surprised to learn that Halsey was not the greatest Admiral I thought he was. His mistakes in the typhoons were a revelation.

The maps were very difficult to read and absorb on a Nook and I would not buy another book wit illustrations for a Nook.

posted by 562452 on June 21, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    This book provides a perfect balance of both the personal lives

    This book provides a perfect balance of both the personal lives and professional lives of Nimitz, Halsey, Leahy and King. Learning about each of the four admirals from birth to death allows the reader to see what led to these larger-than-life legends.

    Mr. Borneman provides detailed accounts of great naval battles as well as other behind-the-scenes action including typhoons, mishaps, and the growing pains that accompanied the US Navy as it grew dramatically over a short period of time. Equally interesting, he also covers the politics of the time, as military leaders jockeyed for power and became crucial advisors to Presidents Roosevelt and Truman.

    The technical descriptions of the ships, submarines and aircraft are detailed yet appropriate for a casual reader. This book is an excellent read for anyone interested in the rising role of sea power and, above all, four of America's heroes that made victory in WWII possible.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    A Masterful Blend of Biography and Military History

    Walter Borneman has produced a thoroughly engaging blend of naval history and biography in this account of the lives of America's four five-star admirals. Merging the biographies of Admirals Halsey, Nimitz, King and Leahy, Borneman paints a colorful panorama of United States naval history from the late 19th century through the mid-20th century. The chapters detailing the emergence of submarine and airpower in the Navy and how the lives of these men intertwined with these technologies are particularly intriguing. Although Borneman gives a fine overview of the military conflicts during the lives of these men, in the end, the book revolves around the admirals themselves. With a refined ability to develop character, Borneman helps us know the hard-drinking Ernest King, the statesman-like William Leahy, the grandfatherly Chester Nimitz, and the full-steam-ahead William Halsey in depth. Their unique personalities shaped their careers, and to some degree, the world-changing events of the Second World War. Great "supporting character" roles in the persons of Franklin Roosevelt and Douglas MacArthur add additional color and depth to the story. The book should appeal both to those with little military history background as well as those well-versed in WWII history, especially the Pacific Theatre. This work is a fine tribute to these men, who, despite their personality differences, all understood and exemplified the meaning of duty, service and honor.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2013

    Five Stars for the Admirals!

    This book does a good job of integrating the lives and events and personalities of the five star admirals of WWII. The book includes some great insights into FDR and an ‘interesting’ look at General MacArthur. Well done! Carry on…

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2013

    An excellent read...

    Most military enthusiasts know of Nimitz and Halsey, but hardly anyone's heard the names of Ernest King who was above them in the chain of command. Likewise, even fewer people have heard the name of William Leahy who was America's highest ranking military officer during WWII and who even Gen. Marshall reported to. "The Admirals" goes into wonderful detail about all four men, their lives and careers, their collaboration (and disagreements) during WWII, and is as enjoyable and interesting to read as it is insightful.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 8, 2013

    A superb history of a time long gone.

    This book covers the life of four men, and with it everything from the battleship Oregon's dash around the cape to the death of the last of the five star admirals. I know this period well, but learned a lot about how they got to where they were and why. Adm Leahy's roll at the elbow of Roosevelt surprised me. His role was very under the radar. Another book I was reading mentioned him with a comment that he was a minor character. He wasn't. A very good read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 18, 2013

    Recommended; naval professionals should find this tought provoking; also suggested as a general read for anyone interested in military or naval history.

    Insightful exploration of top-level naval leadership during the Second World War. No big surprises, but plenty of enlightening observations on how the "big names" approached leadership.

    I observe that this book appears to have been written for a general audience. It cannot take the place of detailed biographies on these leaders that are available to us all via the Naval Institute Press. Regardless, this is an excellent introduction to the topic.

    Recommended to junior officers who are encountering different and often contradictory approaches to leadership from their seniors. This study provides insight into how our most famous Admirals succeeded (and failed) as leaders. I found the author's emphases on personal initiative and personal responsibility to be especially important to a young leader.

    Senior officers will find this book enlightening in how our fleet and service commanders accommodated the necessity for detailed knowledge of subordinates' intent against the latitude they had to allow for devolved command and control. Left me pondering how, given the "God's Eye" of modern C4I, I could/should have better balanced command and delegation.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 22, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Superb book about a fine group of Sailors!

    If you liked "Commander in Chief", by Eric Larrabee, you will certainly enjoy this well written account of our leading World War Two Admirals! Mr. Borneman's narrative flows like a novel, bringing us into contact with the people and events of that crucial time in American history. This well researched book brings us along on a journey, through the early rise of the American Navy,as it emerged on the world stage. We accompany the "Great White Fleet",attend the Naval Academy and climb aboard Submarines,Destroyers and Battleships, with young men, working they way up the ladder of success in their illustrious careers. We are given a comprehensive in depth look into the workings of the command structure, and operational aspects of the Wartime US Navy. Whether you are new to the subject of Naval History, or an "Old Hand", "The Admirals" will bring you along on a fascinating cruise through history!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2012

    Buy the Book, not for a Nook.

    I enjoyed it for the most part, I learned a lot about Leahy and King, about whom I had known very little. I was also surprised to learn that Halsey was not the greatest Admiral I thought he was. His mistakes in the typhoons were a revelation.

    The maps were very difficult to read and absorb on a Nook and I would not buy another book wit illustrations for a Nook.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 21, 2014

    Excellent & Easy Read

    Fully enjoyed thjs historical account of these WWII Admirals; many intimate details and interesting facts - had a hard time putting it down!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    Nothing new 

    Nothing new 

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2013

    The Blending of Unique Leadership Styles

    You could now invent a more unique set of personalities than this group of admirals. Not even if you were Tom Clancy.

    They blended to create a team that worked well to keep Americas Forces on task to defeat the largest threat the US had ever seen. In addition the analysis of Douglas MacArthur is fascinating.

    Ya Gotta Read It!

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  • Posted January 18, 2013

    Not Just About WWII

    This is a fascinating story about how the U.S. Navy evolved into the premier force it is today. The history behind the Navy, especially during WWII, brought some revelations probably not known or realized by the average reader. It also delves somewhat into political intrigue(who was who's favorite etc.). I found this to be a very easy read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2013

    Excellent history glad i read it

    Liked it a lot mc

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  • Posted September 24, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent

    War with all of its defeats & triumphs led indviduals in command whose personalities sometimes clashed over who was the greatest.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2012

    Fantastic! Bravo!

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is immediately obvious that the content was researched and well written. I came away feeling like I knew these men. But more importantly, I came away with a great understanding of their contributions to history, and to the United States. Great reading for anyone interested in WWII history.

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  • Posted September 16, 2012

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I had previously only h

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I had previously only heard their names, but after finishing, I feel I have a greater sense of who these men were. I always remember my father telling me the story about how his aircraft carrier, the U.S.S. Bennington, was caught in a typhoon. How exciting to actually read about it in this book. I've been trying to research his ship, and this was wonderful to discover. I recommend this book very highly.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2012

    I found one glaring mistake. while everyone knows that Admiral N

    I found one glaring mistake. while everyone knows that Admiral Nimitz took command of the Pacific fleet on the submarine USS Grayling, on page 370 the author mistakenly identifys it as the USS Growler. Otherwise the book is a wonderful read

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2012

    WOW!

    Never learned so much about these four great men as I did with this book. My neighbor served under Adm. Halsey and he bought this book on my recommendation. He loves it and you will too. Smashing and revealing.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2012

    Excellent Book

    One of the finest history books I have read about the only 5 star Admirals we had during WWII. A must read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2012

    Fantastic view of Pacific War from the angle of those making th

    Fantastic view of Pacific War from the angle of those making the decisions. The book focuses on the admirals more so than the battles. Intriguing view of the different personalities that came together to win the war.

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