MEN ON BATAAN by John Hersey
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This might perhaps better have been called Man of Bataan, for -- though it is the story of a gallant fight, it is first and last the story of General MacArthur. And a better one than has, so far, been available, more rounded, more objective, although the facts speak for themselves and -- in any biographer's hands -- he emerges as a magnificent figure. A portrait of our No. I general from his boyhood to his departure for Australia, with the background of the Philippines the dominant factor in his life. One sees MacArthur full-drawn, with his faults and his foibles. One sees how each step of his career built to the incredible brilliance of the defense of Bataan. And -- as part of this picture, there are stories of individual heroes who made the stand possible, of the various types of soldiers who fought with MacArthur and Wainright, of the Philippine army. Although the book appeals to the demand of the moment, it stands above the average ephemeral news story as a fine research job, which will live beyond the moment as a moving biography of a man and an epic siege. Hersey has first hand knowledge of the Far Eastern situation, and has handled that department for Time Magazine. He has done a better than average journalistic job here.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1942
Publisher: Knopf