Without a doubt my favourite book about aviation in WW2.
For someone who is perpetually intrigued by the combat that took place in the Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II, it was very interesting to read a book from the perspective of a Japanese fighter ace I had previously read Oba The Last Samurai, but this was an entirely different reading experience for some reason Overall, Saburo Sakai s story is a gripping one He experienced some of the most intense aerial combat of the entire war, from his early days flying in China to the hairy combat over Lai and Rabaul to the final days of the war on the Japanese homeland As with many pilot memoirs, the aerial accomplishments of Saburo and his fellow Japanese pilots seem over exaggerated, but this is too be expected Also, the multiple love interests he speaks of throughout the narrative, while adding a human element to the sto This was always one of my favorite books as a younger reader I finally met and came to know Saburo Sakai, and he was one of the most entertaining interviews I ever conducted and published This book is 100% true, no embellishment, and if you want to see the mind of a young man who became a national hero, in a war he hated, read this book.
The first person story of Japan s greatest flying ace in World War II Explosive action Excruciatingly painful wounds, and the stubborn pride of a man who refuses to be defeated One thing that makes this book fun is that if you have a lot of romantic illusions about Japan or the samurai class this book will cure them Not that Saburo Sakai isn t a class act, and a gentleman, but that he grew up very poor in spite of his samurai ancestry I mean like on the farm, dirt poor It s also interesting that though he s a tough guy and a born fighter there s nothing macho about his outlook Indeed, he makes it clear his role model for enduring agony is his mother Last of all, the love story he tells about meeting his wife and surviving the last desperate weeks of the war is truly inspiring This is a great book for anyone who likes World War II, flying aces, history, and Japanese culture.
½ Samurai! ô Saburo Sakain Samurai WSOY, 1958 on tunnetuimpiin japanilaisiin h vitt j ssiin kuuluvan lent j n muistelmateos, jossa h n kertoo v rikk sti kokemuksistaan Tyynenmeren rintamalla vuosina 1938 1945 Sakai tarinoi mielenkiintoisesti my s japanilaisesta yhteiskunnasta ja tapakulttuurista, ja onpa mukana my s tunteisiin vetoava rakkaustarina Huomasin ajattelevani monta kertaa, ett t ss olisi sellaisenaan kaikki ainekset hyv ksi elokuvaksi Lent j muistelmia varjostaa kyll ep ily siit , ett osa kirjassa esiintyvist tarinoista olisi mielikuvituksen tuotetta Sakain kirjassa esitt m v ite kuudestakymmenest nelj st ilmavoitosta on my s asetettu kyseenalaiseksi, ja esimerkiksi Wikipedian mukaan tuossa luvussa saattaa olla yli puolet il
Saburo Sakai gives a no nonsense look behind the curtain of the IJN air corp For those of us who have studied the training techniques the Japanese used on their trainees, there will be little surprise at the brutality they dished out to new recruits No matter how harsh we in the West view these tactics, Saburo constantly goes back to how it saved his lifethan once For some of us it might be hard to enjoy this story when he starts describing his and his wing s accomplishments against the British, Australian, Chinese and American pilots who are being shot down in droves I didn t feel the same animosity when reading about the German fighter pilots who downed scores and scores of fighters and bombers Is it because the Japanese had the surprise attack at Pearl Harbor or the fact we know how barbaric the IJA treated our prisoners of war Perhaps it a combination of the two That aside, it A very interesting biography of a WWII Japanese fighter pilot and his experiences during the war He was one of Japan s leading aces.
At the outset of the war, the Japanese flew the Zero, a fighter that was superior to US fighters, and Sakai downed many US fighters Later, as the US introduced superior plans, the Japanese new, faster planes came too late.
Sakai s heroism and dedication are impressive Reading this book, I m impressed that there are skilled, principled, heroic fighters on both sides of a war It s such a tragedy that their skills are used just to attempt to kill one another.
The book provides interesting insight into the psychology of a fighter pilot as well as a small but interesting window into Japanese culture.
This is the autobiography of Japan s greatest ace pilot to survive WWII Saburo Sakai became a hero in his homeland and his account of his place in the Pacific War is even handed and illuminating In the early days of the war, victory seems to come relatively easy to him and the other pilots in his fighter group due to their superior training and the excellence of the Mitsubishi Zero fighter As the war wears on, however, and the United States becomesfully engaged on its Western front, the tide turns and the situation becomes increasingly desperate for Sakai and his compatriots, until the inevitable crushing defeat Sakai, along with his co authors Martin Caidin and Fred Saito, presents exciting accounts of air battles and Sakai s harrowing experience piloting his aircraft back to base after sustaining injuries that should have killed him As good as this stuff is,