Honor, Valor, Courage. These are some words that you might use to describe the intense, exhilarating, and inspirational story of Hampton Sides "Ghost Soldiers". The story takes place in WWII where 121 soldiers from the 6th Ranger Battalion are selected to pull off one of the greatest rescue missions of all time, the rescue of American Soldiers at the Cabanatuan POW Camp. Cabanatuan was one of the most cruel, unforgiving, merciless hells ever conjured by Human Beings. Prisoners where brutally murdered and tortured horrendously every single day. Easily the Cabanatuan POW Camp was one of mans most shameful and abysmal acts. Many POW's in the camp where survivors of the Bataan Death March which was a march to move prisoners to Camp O'Donnell. The courage of the 121 Men of the 6th Ranger Brigade was unmistakable as the odds where greatly against them and the chance of success was little to none. Yet each soldier of the 6th knew that it was worth it to save their fellow man from the cruel, heartless, evil clutches of the Japanese soldiers who would behead a POW for looking at him funny or set a whole group of men ablaze, burning them alive just for the Hell of it. Hampton Sides does a miraculous job of describing the story of the Captured POW's at Cabanatuan and their rescue. Sides goes into great detail about the interactions between the prisoners and the Japanese which proved to be both intriguing and appalling. Hampton Sides also does a fantastic job of channeling a powerful feeling in his writing. He is able to make the reader really feel the pain and fear of the Cabanatuan POW's and the courage of the 6th Ranger Brigade. Over all, Hampton Side's "Ghost Soldiers" is one of the most inspiring, intriguing, and disturbing book ever written about WWII and possibly the most overall. It is a fantastic book about pain and triumph, suffering and courage, and fear and passion. If the book had a star rating I would give it a solid 7 out of 5. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a book that is harder to stop reading than it is to start. You will definitely love yet hate this book at the same time it is so good.
Ghost Soldiers by Hampton Sides
March 28, 2011