Book Review: “Killing the Rising Sun”

killing-the-rising-sunBill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard have another successful addition to the “Killing” series. I have read all six of the books in this series, and it is difficult to select a favorite. Written in a way that gives the reader a birds eye view of the unfolding story, their style of writing is pure genius. “Killing the Rising Sun” transports the reader to one of the most pivotal periods in world history and to the second deadliest war for Americans. The detailed description of the torment and torture that our patriots suffered at the hands of the Japanese is almost beyond comprehension.

Every American should know the supreme sacrifice these brave men made on our behalf. Many of them were still teenagers when they were sent thousands of miles from their home and family to fight a brutal enemy. They earned the distinction of the “greatest generation” because they had no sense of entitlement. They were honored to serve their country and to fight for something they believed was larger than their own life.

High Schools throughout the United States should make this book required reading. Then, perhaps, we might see an end to the current trend where the self-centered denigrate the memory of our fine men and women in uniform every time they burn a flag or take a knee during our national anthem.

Anyone with an interest in history or in World War II will enjoy the book’s unique insight into the minds and character of world leaders as well as lesser known individuals who had influential roles in the war and its outcome. Sincere thanks to Mr. O’Reilly and Mr. Dugard for their time and effort in bringing this historical period back to life for current and future generations.


Book Review….

imageJust finished Dana Perino’s book, “And The Good News Is…”, and I highly recommend it. As always, Dana’s optimism is evident throughout the book. She gives a detailed account of her family background, youth, and the career path that led her to the White House with a front-row seat to the George W. Bush presidency.

I especially enjoyed her personal stories about President Bush and the inside look into the character of a remarkable man. Her role as Press Secretary gave her an enviable vantage point into the Bush Administration at a pivotal time in our history.

Throughout the book she shares career advice with her readers and passes along valuable life lessons learned along the way. A great read!

Remembering Reagan

ReaganI just finished reading Craig Shirley’s book, Last Act: The Final Years and Emerging Legacy of Ronald Reagan, and it is amazing! I am a huge fan of Ronald Reagan, and a huge fan of Craig Shirley’s writing, so it was a win/win for me.

This book does a wonderful job of filling in for the reader those 10 years between President Reagan’s announcement of his Alzheimer’s diagnosis in 1994, and his death in 2004. The book provides a lot of interesting background information on the planning and implementation of President Reagan’s state funeral, and his burial at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley.

Shirley reports directly from Reagan’s closest friends, and the aides who knew him better than anyone else, save Nancy. To read the description of the hundreds of thousands of everyday Americans who lined the streets to watch the motorcade bearing the body of the late President make its way through the streets of Washington, D. C., and California, is to remember what it was like to have a true statesman as our President. To hear of the thousands of people who waited long hours in the hot June sun just to walk past the casket of President Reagan, is to realize the love and respect that Americans had for this extraordinary man.

Craig Shirley also authored, Rendezvous with Destiny: Ronald Reagan and the Campaign That Changed America, again a fabulous book that gives an in-depth look at the effect that the “citizen President” had on a nation experiencing the malaise of the Carter Years. In order to really appreciate the character of Ronald Reagan, it is well worth the time to read about his life as told by those who had an up close and personal view.

Ronald Reagan penned his autobiography, An American Life, after he left the White House, and in it he gives a fascinating account of his journey from a child in Dixon, Illinois, through his college years at Eureka College and ultimately Hollywood and the White House. In reading the book, and hearing him tell the story of the events and changes of fortune that ultimately led him to politics, I believe I was most overcome by his humility.

One of my favorite anecdotes about President Reagan took place when he was in the hospital recuperating from the assassination attempt in 1981. He had spilled some water on the floor in the bathroom of his hospital room, and he got down on his hands and knees with paper towels to clean it up. About that time an aide came in and said, “Mr. President, what are you doing? We have people for that.” President Reagan said, “No, it’s my mess, I don’t want a nurse to have clean it up.”

Bill O’Reilly’s, Killing Reagan,  has been in the news and at the top of the bestseller’s list since its publication a few months ago, but after reading it, I can honestly say that it pales in comparison with these other books. Do yourself a favor, and take the time to read about one of our greatest presidents, and what he accomplished out of a sincere love of country, and belief in American exceptionalism.

Warning: After reading about Ronald Reagan, and remembering the pride and prestige that he brought to the office of the presidency, Barack Obama will seem even more ignominious.