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RUSI Victoria / (03)9282 5918/ secretary@rusivic.org.au/ © 2019 RUSI Victoria

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Book Reviews

These reviews represent the personal opinion of the reviewer and do not reflect the official position of the Royal United Services Institute of Victoria Inc. They are presented to allow readers to evaluate readings on defence, both past and current.

Click on the book cover to get to the Book Review.

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A Game of Birds and Wolves

The Secret Game that Won the War

 

Simon Parkin

Hachette,    2019

Paperback    320pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Bob Hart, November 2019

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After the War

Returned soldiers and the mental

and physical scars of World War I

 

Leigh Straw

University of Western Australia Publishing 2017

Paperback   229pp   RRP: $39.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, October 2019

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Answering the Call

Life of a Helicopter pilot in Vietnam and beyond

 

Bob Grandin

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Paperback   263pp   RRP $29.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, September 2019

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Anzac & Aviator

The remarkable story of Sir Ross Smith

 and the 1919 England to Australia Air Race

 

Michael Molkentin

Allen and Unwin   October 2019

Paperback   424pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, October 2019

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Aussie Soldier:

Up Close and Personal

 

Denny Neave, Craig Smith

Big Sky Publishing   2008

Paperback   314pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, November 2019

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Battle on 42nd Street

War in Crete and the Anzac’s bloody last stand

 

Peter Monteath

NewSouth Publishing   2019

Paperback    272pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, October 2019

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Buckley’s Chance

The incredible true story of William Buckley

and how he conquered a new world

 

Garry Linnell

Penguin Books   October 2019

Paperback   368pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, November 2019

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Convict Colony

The remarkable story of the fledgling settlement

that survived against the odds

 

David Hill

Allen and Unwin   October 2019

Paperback   368pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, November 2019

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Fatal Mission

The Life and Death of the crew of

Naughty Nan 467 Sqn RAAF

 

Mal Elliott

Big Sky Publishing, 2019

Paperback   224pp   RRP $29.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, October 2019

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The Catastrophe of 8 August 1918

 

Thilo von Bose

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Hardback   456pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, November 2019

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The Diggers of Colditz

The classic Australian POW story

about escape from the impossible

 

Jack Champ and Colin Burgess

Simon & Shuster, Sydney 2019

Paperback   307pp   RRP $35.00

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, October 2019

 

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The Last Cruise of a German Raider

The Destruction of SMS Emden

 

Ben Olsen

Seaforth Publishing, Barnesly UK  2018

Hardback   289pp   RRP $45.75

 

Reviewer: Kevan Sanderson, November 2019

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The Nameless Names

Recovering the Missing ANZACs

 

Scott Bennett

Scribe Publications   2018

Hardback   384pp   RRP $49.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, September 2019

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A History of the Australian Military

From the First Fleet to the Modern Day

 

Jonathan J Moore

New Holland Publishers 2018

Paperback   256pp   RRP: $32.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, August 2019

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. It's easy.

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ANZAC Sniper

 

Roland Perry

Harper Collins    2018

Paperback   400pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, August 2019

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Military Virtues

Practical guidance for service personnel at every career stage

 

Michael Skerker, David Whetham and Don Carrick (Eds)­­­­

Howgate Publishing, UK    2019

Paperback   382pp   RRP $53.10

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, September 2019

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Mission Improbable

The Transformation of the British Army Reserve

 

Patrick  Bury                                                                                                                

Howgate Publishing Limited, UK   2019  

Paperback    226 pp    RRP $81.25

 

Reviewer: Jim Barry, September 2019

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Our Great Hearted Men:

The Australian Corps and the 100 Days

 

Peter Brune

Harper Collins, Sydney   2019

Hardback   464pp   RRP $49.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, September 2019

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Painting War

A History of Australia’s First World War Art Scheme

Australian Army History Series

 

Margaret Hutchinson

Cambridge University Press   2018

Hardback   284pp   RRP $59.95

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, July 2019

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RAAF Black Cats

The Secret History of the covert Catalina mine-laying

operations to cripple Japan's war machine

 

Robert Cleworth and John Suter Linton

Allen & Unwin    2019

Paperback   288pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, August 2019

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The Empire has an Answer

The Empire Air Training Scheme

as reported in the Australian Press 1939-1945

 

Tony James Brady

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Paperback   340pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, September 2019

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The Australian War Memorial

A Century on from the Vision

 

Steven Gower

Wakefield Press   2019

Hardback   440pp   RRP $59.95

 

Reviewer: Michael O’Brien, August 2019

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The Last Battle

Endgame on the Western Front, 1918

 

Peter Hart

Profile Books, UK 2018

Hardback   420pp   RRP: $49.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, September 2019

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The Hindenberg Line 1918

Australian Army History Series

 

Adam Rankin

Big Sky Publishing 2019

Paperback   180pp   RRP: $19.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, August 2019

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The Mighty Krait

The little boat that pulled off

Australia’s most daring commando raid of WWII

 

Ian McPhedran

Harper Collins   2018

Paperback   244pp   RRP $35.00

 

Reviewer: Roger Buxton, September 2019

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The Music Maker

One POW provided hope for thousands

 

Jaci Byrne

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Hardback   239pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, August 2019

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The Soldiers’ Peace

Demobilizing the British Army 1919

 

Michael Senior

Pen & Sword Military, UK  2018

Hardback   192pp   RRP $44.85

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, September 2019

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Turning Point

The Battle for Milne Bay 1942 –

Japan's first land defeat in World War II

 

Michael Veitch

Hachette   2019

Paperback   336pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, August 2019

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The US Lobby and Australian Defence Policy

 

Vince Scappatura

Monash University Publishing    2019

Paperback   156pp   RRP $39.95

 

Reviewer:  Bruce Brown, September 2019

Vietnam

An Epic Tragedy 1945-1975

 

Max Hastings

Harper Collins   2018

Paperback   752pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Michael Hili, August 2019

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. It's easy.

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Women to the Front

The Extraordinary Australian Women Doctors of the Great War

 

Heather Sheard and Ruth Lee

Ebury Press 2019

Paperback   305pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, August 2019

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The First World War

The Universities and the Professions in Australia 1914-1939

 

Kate Darian-Smith & James Waghorne (Eds)

Melbourne University Press Academic 2019

Paperback   277pp   RRP $49.99

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, July 2019

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Beyond Combat

Australian Military Activity away from the Battlefields

 

Tristan Moss and Tom Richardson (Eds)

NewSouth Publishing 2018

Paperback   256pp   RRP: $39.99

 

Reviewer: Kevan Sanderson, April 2019

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The Man Inside

The Bloodiest Outbreak

 

Graham Apthorpe

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Paperback   296pp   RRP $29.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, September 2019

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The Civilisation of Port Phillip

Settler ideology, violence, and rhetorical possession

Thomas James Rogers

Melbourne University Press Academic   2018

Paperback   254pp   RRP: $44.99

 

Reviewer: Roger Buxton, April 2019

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Duty Nobly Done

An extraordinary account of 11 family members in the Great War

Adam Holloway

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Paperback   528pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, May 2018

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Unconquered: Our Wounded Warriors

 

Denny Neave et al (Eds)

Big Sky Publishing 2019

Hardback 264pp  $69.99   

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, May 2019

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The Limits of Peacekeeping

Australian Missions in Africa and the Americas, 1992–2005

[The Official History of Australian Peacekeeping - Vol 4]

 

Jean Bou, Bob Breen et al (Eds)

Cambridge University Press, Port Melbourne Vic 2018

Hardback   743pp   RRP: $179.00

 

Reviewer:  Neville Taylor, May 2019

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Australia’s Vietnam

Myth vs History

Mark Dapin

NewSouth Books   2019

Paperback   272pp   RRP $32.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, June 2019

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Ypres

Great Battles Series

 

Mark Connelly and Stefan Goebel

Oxford University Press, Oxford UK 2018

Hardback   288pp   RRP: $56.99

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, April 2019

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Hell of a Time

An Australian Soldier’s Diary of the Great War

 

Philip Owen Ayton (Elvala Ayton, Ed)

Text Publishing Company 2018

Paperback   287pp   RRP $49.99

 

 Reviewer:  Neville Taylor, July 2019

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Beat PTSD

How a Combat Soldier Conquered Chronic PTSD to Live a Life that Truly Matters,

and How You Can Too

 

Kevin Lloyd-Thomas

Global Publishing Group, 2018

Paperback   240pp   RRP: $29.95

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, June 2019

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No Less Worthy

Acknowledging Western Australian Aboriginal Men in World War

Second Edition

 

Aboriginal History WA

Western Australia Museum    2019

Paperback   156pp   RRP $35.00

 

Reviewer:  Neville Taylor, July 2019

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Intelligence and the Function of Government

 

Daniel Baldino and Rhys Crowley (Eds)

Melbourne University Press Academic   2018

Paperback   295pp   RRP $49.99

 

Reviewer:  Tim Cook, June 2019

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Politics of Forgetting:

New Zealand, Greece and Britain at War

 

Martyn Brown

Australian Scholarly Publishing   2019

Paperback   432 pp    RRP $49.95

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, June 2019

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Playing Soldier:

The books and toys that prepared children for war, 1871-1918

 

Richard Cheek

The Groller Club, New York 2018

Hardcover  471pp   RRP $86.88

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, June 2019

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Shadows on the Track

Australia’s Medical War in Papua 1942 - 1943

 

Jan McLeod

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Hardback   396pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Robert Dixon, June 2019

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Purple Patch

 

History of the 3rd Field Company Engineers in World War One

Darren Prickett

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Hardback   324pp   RRP $34.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, June 2019

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The Hell Pits of Sendryu

A POW story of survival on the Death Railway and Nagasaki

 

Jim Brigginshaw

Big Sky Publishing, 2018

Paperback   188pp   RRP: $29.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, June 2019

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The Battle of the Lys

 

April 1918

 

Australian Army Campaign Series

Colin Mattey

Big Sky Publishing   2019

Paperback   160pp   RRP $19.99

 

Reviewer: Richard Batley, June 2019

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The Battle of the Atlantic

How the Allies won the War

 

Jonathan Dimbleby

Viking (Penguin) London 2016

Paperback   584pp   RRP: $24.99

 

Reviewer: Roger Buxton, January 2019

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Australia Remembers

Anzac Day, Remembrance Day, War Memorials

 

Allison Paterson

Big Sky Publishing 2018

Hardback   64pp   RRP: $24.99

 

Reviewer:  Neville Taylor, February 2019

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Australia’s First Spies

The remarkable story of

Australia’s intelligence operations, 1901-45

 

John Fahey

Allen and Unwin 2018

Paperback   456pp   RRP: $34.99

 

Reviewer: Bob Hart, February 2019

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Dear Grandpa, Why?

Reflections from Kokoda to Hiroshima

 

John L Read

Wakefield Press, Adelaide 2018

Paperback   192pp   RRP: $24.95

 

Reviewer: Ian Freer, January 2019

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First and Foremost

A Concise Illustrated History of

1st Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment,

1945-2018

 

Bob Breen

Big Sky Publishing 2018

Hardback   164pp   RRP: $34.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, February 2019

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Frederick Whirlpool VC

Australia’s Hidden Victoria Cross

 

Alan Leek

Big Sky Publishing 2018

Paperback   265pp   RRP: $29.99

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, February 2019

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Military Law in Colonial Australia

 

Neil Preston

The Federation Press, Annandale NSW 2016

Paperback    344pp   RRP  $89.95

 

Reviewer:  Paul Willie, January 2019

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Only One Place:

A man, a family, a war and a homecoming …

 an Australian story of virtue and renewal

 

Robyn Whinfield

Robyn Whinfield, Darwin  2018

Paperback   398pp   RRP: $30.00

 

Reviewer: Mike O’Brien, February 2019

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Our Corner of the Somme

Australia at Villers-Bretonneux

Australian Army History Series

 

Romain Fathi

Cambridge University Press, Port Melbourne Vic 2019

Hardback   270pp   RRP: $59.95

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, February 2019

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Pine Gap

The inside story of the NSA in Australia

 

David Rosenberg

Hardie Grant Books 2018

Paperback   288pp   RRP: $29.99

 

Reviewer: Neville Taylor, January 2019