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Trio of Guadalcanal books

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I've been re-reading three memoirs lately, and while these works also include other campaigns, they all have a lot about Guadalcanal. The first is Shots Fired in Anger by Col John George, who was at the time a lieutenant with a weapons company in the 132nd Infantry of the Americal Division. George was a rifle marksman who won many awards at Camp Perry; the book (which in fact was re-printed by the NRA) has some observations about the equipment and weapons on both sides, with nice line drawings. But it is a personal memoir and is well-written. He also writes a little about his time in Burma with Merrill's Marauders. George was very observant and this book is a good document, most of which was written while the events were fresh in his mind. Very little action, if that's what you're looking for. Highly recommended to militaria types.


Another is Combat Officer by Charles Walker. Walker also was a lieutenant and captain with a weapons company and rifle company in the 164th Infantry of the Americal Div., and has a tell-it-like-it-is attitude. He comes across as a very competent officer. It covers Guadalcanal, Bougainville and the Philippines. This book is probably the most readable of the three.


The third is Across the Dark Islands by Brigadier General Floyd Radike who has an even more overall critical attitude than Walker. Radike was a junior officer with the 161st Infantry of the 25th Division and gives an unvarnished view of things. The book spans the 'Canal and also the Philippines.


Walker and Radike both repeatedly excoriate certain officers; Walker in particular singles out West Pointers.


Anyway, I recommend all three.


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