- Hardcover: 752 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers; edition edition (20 September 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0008132984
- ISBN-13: 978-0008132989
- Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 5.2 x 24 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 1.2 Kg
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,615 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ FREE Delivery
+ FREE Delivery
+ FREE Delivery
Vietnam: An Epic History of a Divisive War 1945-1975 Hardcover – 24 Sep 2018
|New from||Used from|
MP3 CD, Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Super Audio CD - DSD
Digital, Unabridged, WAV
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Customers who bought this item also bought
‘Masterpiece … manages with great skill to combine the accumulation of strategic and political disaster with the real experience of those fighting on the ground’ Antony Beevor, Spectator
‘Will surely set the benchmark for years to come… This may be his best… Exhaustively researched and superbly written, it is both a balanced account of how and why the war unfolded as it did, and a gripping narrative on what it was like to take part…History as it should be: objective, immersive and compelling’ Daily Telegraph, 5*
‘Magnificent… One by one, the sacred canons of right and left are obliterated. The war is laid bare, with all its uncomfortable truths exposed’ The Times
‘Powerful and chilling… Hastings is masterful at describing the conditions faced by young American soldiers… [he] is second to none in his ability to describe military strategy with a clarity that makes things entirely understandable to the layman’ Mail on Sunday, 5*
‘An altogether magnificent historical narrative’ Tim O’Brien
‘A masterpiece’ Frank Scotton
‘Magnificent, his best work … full of extraordinary and compelling detail and thoroughly informed by his own personal experience of so much of the war. It's written in unputdownable style, with a dispassionate, liberal-minded understanding of the detail of the war, which draws on testimony from every side and doesn't favour anyone. I've never read a better history of the wars in Vietnam, and it’s hard to see how anyone will be able to improve on this’ John Simpson
‘Neophytes and experts alike will find Hastings’s book stimulating, informative – and above all, riveting’ New Statesman
‘This fabulous work offers up a gut-wrenching glimpse of the reality of war’ The Sun, 5*
‘Impressive… A fast-paced, poignant and eye-opening read’ Literary Review
‘A work of considerable quality, marked by a possibly unique combination of military expertise, historical grasp and journalistic skill’ Observer
About the Author
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Showing 1-2 of 2 reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Di-spite the NVA, the conflict was lost not on the battlefield but at home (USA) amid the cant and rubbish of the late sixties and early seventies.
This is an outstanding book and I congratulate Max Hastings on another best seller meticulous researched and wonderfully written.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The Communists buried people alive who resisted them to save bullets. They hacked people to death. Summary executions of "enemies of the revolution" were done in order to create a Stalinist society. Westerners sometimes of a romantic view of the Davidian "freedom fighters" throwing off the Goliaths of the west, and label Ho Chi Minh as a Nationalist rather than a Communist. But the North Vietnamese policies were Stalinist policies, and no one but the most ardent Communists today would call Stalin anything other than a ruthless butcher. Hastings did well in discussing Ho's commitment to the Comintern even before WWII, and his purges of the Vietnamese peoples of the various nationalist groups who also fought the French. There were dozens of Nationalists striving for an independent Vietnam. The Viet Minh butchered them all. Americans who remember Afghanistan in the 80s will remember that we did not aid the Taliban, but rather a fractured network of Mudjahideen fighting against Soviet troops. However, the Taliban won the scramble for power in the post-war period and destroyed all other opposition groups. The Viet Minh had done the same thing 30 years earlier.
I believe Hastings put it best when he said something along the lines of "Those who feel like America was wrong had a tendency to take the extra step, and assume that their enemies were right" and that South Vietnam and North Vietnam embarked a bloody conflict that neither "deserved" to win.
Hastings frames it as a tragedy, so the language and prose he uses stir the heart and the stories he collected are truly heartbreaking. As a journalist, he knows how to write in a manner that a more perhaps "dry" history does not fully capture. Since he is a Brit, I felt that Hastings approached this story with less bias that Vietnamese or American historians tend to. American historians understandably tend to frame it as an American history. Hastings takes a more Vietnamese-centric angle with this work. We also see perspectives from the British officials throughout the work. I simply could not put this book down, because it is so well written.
Overall, I greatly enjoyed this book, and recommend it to anyone who liked Ken Burns' documentary and would like to flesh out their understanding of the conflict.
Hastings faces head on the lingering questions about the war, gives the reader the facts as he found them and then his conclusions based on those facts. He finds few generals worthy of the name on either side. On the other hand he also recites in detail the actions of these generals that led to those conclusions. You can chose a differing opinion if you want.
The Vietnam War for Hastings was a 30 year tragedy, interspersed with courage, stupidity alternating with brilliance, and some humor as well. Thirty years is a lot to cover even in 752 pages. The beauty of the book is that Hastings succeeds in telling the larger story of the war along with many of the smaller ones as well. Like Cornelius Ryan, in his books, “The Longest Day” and a “Bridge Too Far”, Hastings is a former newspaper reporter, actually a war reporter that reported on the Vietnam War. What that means for the reader is mostly short well thought out sentences that tell an understandable story about a complex subject. The fact that the war itself changed every year and that a soldier’s experience depended a great deal on the unit he was with and the Area of Operations that the unit was responsible for is well told, well explained. Even more important Hastings finally gets the battles of Tet ’68 right. It was a massive victory completely misreported at home.
You can read my book, “Steel Rain, the Tet Offensive 1968” to find out what being an elite paratrooper was like in the late 1960's, when the country had a draft and well over five hundred thousand Americans were serving one year tours in Vietnam, or Frank Boccia’s book “Crouching Beast” to learn what happened at the battle of Hamburger Hill, but if you want to know what happened during the entire Vietnam War including more than a bit about the French debacle and lead in to America’s involvement, then read “Vietnam, an Epic Tragedy, 1945-1975”, by Max Hastings.
I should disclose that I was one of those interviewed by the author and I am quoted a couple of times in the book but that was the only time I ever met him.
Look for similar items by category
- Books > History > Asia > Southeast Asia
- Books > History > Asia > Vietnam
- Books > History > Military > Vietnam War
- Books > History > Military > World War II
- Books > History > Modern (16th-21st Centuries) > 20th Century
- Books > History > World
- Books > Politics, Philosophy & Social Sciences > Politics & Government > International & World Politics > Asia
- Books > Politics, Philosophy & Social Sciences > Politics & Government > Military Affairs
- Books > Textbooks & Study Guides