What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Discussions on all aspects of the Japanese Empire, from the capture of Taiwan until the end of the Second World War.
Eugen Pinak
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by Eugen Pinak » 02 Apr 2020 07:54

genstab wrote:
30 Mar 2020 18:32
I'm looking for an authoritative picture history of the Japanese aircraft carriers. in English. I don't want something small like "Japanese Aircraft Carriers and Destroyers" or the ridiculously short Osprey book (as theirs all are) but a full size history of each class with photos like Polmar and Friedman have done with US battleships and cruisers or the suburb "Japanese Cruisers of the Pacific War".
Unfortunately, no such book exists. Hans Lengerer's "opus magnus" on IJN CVs is the book you want, but it has only first volume published. You can buy it here, for example. Don't fear the title in German - it's bi-lingual.
There are also books on some individual classes.

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genstab
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by genstab » 02 Apr 2020 13:09

Thanks- I appreciate the information. I see that 89 Euros equals $1.09 US.
Best,
Bill

john_smith
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by john_smith » 26 May 2020 08:24

hi,
ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE BY ANTHONY DOERR, i suggest this book that is essential about ww2 japan.

lunamina
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by lunamina » 21 Nov 2020 04:28

"Touched with Fire: The Land War in the South Pacific" gooosh




Kodi nox

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Akira Takizawa
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Rikusentai: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Japanese Naval Landing Forces 1927-1945

Post by Akira Takizawa » 08 Jan 2021 09:08

New book about Japanese Naval Landing Forces - Rikusentai. The author can speak both English and Japanese. He well wrote the history and organization of Rikusentai according to Japanese primary sources. The book have many unpublished photos of Rikusentai soldiers which he collected. The complete list of SNLF units and Guard Units in the book is very helpful.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/177753240X

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Saratoga
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by Saratoga » 03 Feb 2021 03:47

"Japan's Pacific War: Personal Accounts of the Emperor's Warriors." This will be good. You can preorder here
https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Japans- ... ck/p/18979

Rob Stuart
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by Rob Stuart » 05 Feb 2021 23:52

Tower of Skulls: A History of the Asia-Pacific War, Volume I: July 1937-May 1942, by Richard Frank.

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TheMarcksPlan
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by TheMarcksPlan » 24 Feb 2021 14:58

Did a search for "economy" in this thread but haven't read the whole thing...

Are there any good (translated) books on the Japanese late-Empire economy?
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Eugen Pinak
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by Eugen Pinak » 10 Jun 2021 12:04

TheMarcksPlan wrote:
24 Feb 2021 14:58
Did a search for "economy" in this thread but haven't read the whole thing...

Are there any good (translated) books on the Japanese late-Empire economy?
I know only one book on topic: BISSON, T. A. Japan's War Economy. Pp. xv, 267. New York: International Secretariat, Institute of Pacific Relations; distributed by The Macmillan Co., 1945.
Unfortunately, I haven't read it myself, so can't say anything about its quality.

daisy1942
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by daisy1942 » 28 Aug 2021 12:50

I am hoping someone on here knows about a book I read many years ago - pre 1988.

In it there is a description of a Japanese tank moving out onto the Singapore Causeway and being blown apart. My father in law saw this happen and I should love to be able to find the book angain or any written record of the event.

Thanks

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mikegriffith1
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by mikegriffith1 » 08 Jan 2022 12:28

Emperor Hirohito and the Pacific War (University of Washington Press, 2015), by Noriko Kawamura. Using previously unavailable Japanese sources, Dr. Kawamura, a professor of history at Washington State University, paints a fair and even-handed picture of Hirohito and provides an eye-opening look at the efforts of Japanese moderates to avoid war with the U.S. and to end the war as soon as possible. The information she presents shows that any attempt to equate Hirohito with Hitler is baseless.

The Rising Sun: The Decline and Fall of the Japanese Empire, 1936-1945 (Modern Library, 2003, reprint edition), by John Toland. This is one of the most balanced books on Imperial Japan ever written. On many key subjects, the book presents information that most other books leave out, including such topics as Japan’s efforts to avoid war with the U.S., the Bataan Death March, the Sino-Japanese War, and the events that led to Japan’s surrender.

The Cause of Japan (Simon & Schuster, 1956), by Shigenori Togo. This is one of the few books in English written by a Japanese author that presents Japan’s side of the story. Togo was Japan’s Foreign Minister from October 1941 through the end of the war. He was a lifetime foe of the militarists. He ardently opposed war with the U.S. and strongly supported surrendering on the terms outlined in the Potsdam Declaration. Incredibly, in a shameful display of revenge and injustice, the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal prosecuted him as a war criminal and sentenced him to 20 years in prison.

The Case of General Yamashita (Kessinger Publishing, 2010), by A. Frank Reel. By order of General Douglas MacArthur, General Yamashita was hastily tried and executed for war crimes that occurred in Manila in late 1944, even though he had ordered his troops to evacuate the city, and even though he had been unaware of what was happening there. General Yamashita’s trial was so unfair and irregular that two U.S. Supreme Court justices condemned it in harsh terms. As historian Lawrence Taylor has noted about Yamashita’s case, “Never has a military leader been prosecuted for an incident when he has neither ordered, condoned, nor even been aware of the atrocity in question.”

Victors' Justice: Tokyo War Crimes Trial (Princeton Legacy Library, 2016, reprint edition), by Richard H. Minear. Minear shows that the Tokyo Tribunal relied on deeply flawed legal concepts and violated basic rules of justice. For example, in most civilized nations, a death sentence requires a unanimous verdict, but the Tokyo Tribunal imposed its death sentences by narrow votes of 6-5 and 7-4. Minear provides an excellent discussion on the reasons for Japan’s intervention in China and its attack on Pearl Harbor. Minear discusses the fact that the tribunal could produce no evidence that any Japanese civilian leader or senior military official had ordered any officer or unit to commit war crimes. And, Minear makes the point that the tribunal ignored American and Allied war crimes in the Pacific:
There can be no doubt that the victor nations in the Pacific war committed many of the acts for which the Japanese stood indicted at Tokyo. For our present purposes it will suffice to consider two such acts: the Soviet Union's declaration of war on Japan; and the American dropping of the atomic bombs. . . .

By the standard of the Pact of Paris—at least as construed by the Nuremberg judgment and the majority judgment at Tokyo—the Soviet Union was guilty of the "crime against peace." Similarly, the United States had come under grave suspicion of guilt for a "crime against humanity." The Tokyo Charter defined that crime as ". . . inhumane acts against any civilian population." Did this definition not apply to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

Consider the setting. Japan was prostrate. The American Government knew that Japan had asked the Soviet Union to mediate an end to the war. There could be no plea of military necessity. Nor could military necessity justify wholesale slaughter of civilians. (Minear 94-95, 99)
Four Samurai: A Quartet of Japanese Army Commanders in the Second World War (Hutchinson, 1968), by Arthur Swinson. Drawing extensively on Japanese sources, Swinson provides a Japanese perspective on the war, especially on the major campaigns. He also discusses the surprising internal disputes within the Japanese army and the negative impact they had on military operations. And, he offers a valuable look at Generals Homma, Yamashita, Mutaguchi, and Honda.

Some Survived: An Eyewitness Account of the Bataan Death March and the Men Who Lived Through It (Algonquin Books, 2004), by Manny Lawton. Lawton pulled no punches in describing numerous instances of brutal treatment by some Japanese soldiers. However, Lawton did not allow his horrible experiences to prevent him from also describing many cases of humane and even kind treatment by other Japanese soldiers. In reading Lawton’s book, one discovers that many of the Japanese soldiers Lawton encountered did not treat him and other POWs harshly, and that during some parts of his captivity the living conditions were tolerable and even mild.

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Jack Nisley
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by Jack Nisley » 09 Feb 2022 00:37

Re: Posts 192, 193, 196:

This may not be exactly what you want, but may be helpful and is available (If you are willing to spend $$): https://www.usni.org/press/books/aircra ... e-carriers

Jack Nisley

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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by jbroshot » 22 Feb 2022 04:49

Belatedly, since I just re-enrolled for this board after a very long absence.

Some more books about WWII Japan (I've read all the postings and I don't think they have been mentioned, I hope)

SUNK, by Mochitsura Hashimoto (1954), author was the commander of I-55 and sank the USS Indianapolis, the book is his account of IJN submarine operations during the entire war
[my copy is a somewhat battered paperback, price 35 cents]

I-BOAT CAPTAIN, by Zenji Orita with Joseph D. Harrington (1976), another account by a former IJN submarine commander of IJN submarine operations in WWII

THE JAPANESE NAVY IN WORLD WAR II IN THE WORDS OF FORMER JAPANESE NAVAL OFFICERS, Editor David C. Evans (Second Edition, 1986), a collection of articles that originally appeared in various publications and journals, including the U S Naval Institute PROCEEDINGS

SUNBURST THE RISE OF JAPANESE NAVAL AIR POWER, 1909 - 1941, by Mark R. Peattie (2001), sort of a sequel to KAIGUN written by the surviving co-author of that book

RIKUGUN GUIDE TO JAPANESE GROUND FORCES 1937-1945, by Leland Ness
VOLUME I: TACTICAL ORGANIZATION OF IMPERIAL JAPANESE ARMY & NAVY GROUND FORCES (2014)
VOLUME II: WEAPONS OF THE IMPERIAL JAPANESE ARMY & NAVY GROUND FORCES (2015)
very detailed and original, not just a reprint of wartime Allied intelligence manuals

and concerning the war in Burma

THE ROAD PAST MANDALAY A PERSONAL NARRATIVE, by John Masters (1961), the famous novelist was one of the Chindit commanders and later was a senior staff officer in 19th Indian Infantry Division

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mikegriffith1
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Re: What Books do you Think are Essential About WWII Japan?

Post by mikegriffith1 » 22 May 2022 22:07

Emperor Hirohito and the Pacific War (University of Washington Press, 2015), by Dr. Noriko Kawamura.

Imperial Eclipse: Japan's Strategic Thinking about Continental Asia before August 1945 (Cornell University Press, 2013), by Yokiko Koshiro.

Infamy: Pearl Harbor and Its Aftermath (Doubleday, 1982), by John Toland.

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