A True Story of Courage

Large Print - 2003
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Over the remote Pacific island of Chichi Jima, nine American flyers-Navy and Marine pilots sent to bomb Japanese communications towers there-were shot down. Flyboys , a story of war and horror but also of friendship and honor, tells the story of those men.
Over the remote Pacific island of Chichi Jima, nine American flyers-Navy and Marine pilots sent to bomb Japanese communications towers there-were shot down. One of those nine was miraculously rescued by a U.S. Navy submarine. The others were captured by Japanese soldiers on Chichi Jima and held prisoner. Then they disappeared. When the war was over, the American government, along with the Japanese, covered up everything that had happened on Chichi Jima. The records of a top-secret military tribunal were sealed, the lives of the eight Flyboys were erased, and the parents, brothers, sisters, and sweethearts they left behind were left to wonder.

Flyboys reveals for the first time ever the extraordinary story of those men. Bradley's quest for the truth took him from dusty attics in American small towns, to untapped government archives containing classified documents, to the heart of Japan, and finally to Chichi Jima itself. What he discovered was a mystery that dated back far before World War II-back 150 years, to America's westward expansion and Japan's first confrontation with the western world. Bradley brings into vivid focus these brave young men who went to war for their country, and through their lives he also tells the larger story of two nations in a hellish war.

With no easy moralizing, Bradley presents history in all its savage complexity, including the Japanese warrior mentality that fostered inhuman brutality and the U.S. military strategy that justified attacks on millions of civilians. And, after almost sixty years of mystery, Bradley finally reveals the fate of the eight American Flyboys, all of whom would ultimately face a moment and a decision that few of us can even imagine.

Flyboys is a story of war and horror but also of friendship and honor. It is about how we die, and how we live-including the tale of the Flyboy who escaped capture, a young Navy pilot named George H. W. Bush who would one day become president of the United States. A masterpiece of historical narrative, Flyboys will change forever our understanding of the Pacific war and the very things we fight for.
Publisher: Boston : Little, Brown, c2003.
Edition: Large print ed.
ISBN: 9780316743792
Branch Call Number: L.P. 940.5405 Bra
Characteristics: 701 p. (large print), [32] p. of plates : ill., map ; 25 cm.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Sep 03, 2019

My book

Mar 26, 2019

My book

May 21, 2018

This is a good book, not a great book, but a book well worth reading nonetheless.

It is only merely good because the author tries to do too many things at once: tell how the U.S. foresaw that air power would be key to winning World War II and the story of eight airmen who were murdered by the Japanese on Chichi Jima. Mixed in, just for good measure, is the story of how George H.W. Bush was shot down over Chichi Jima and rescued. If the author had simply told the story of how the U.S. developed their air force during the period leading up to World War II, and during World War II, it might have been a great book. Or if the author had concentrated on the story of the seven airmen and their experiences, it might have been a great book. As it is, it is just good. Read it. You will learn things you perhaps didn't want to know, but should know.

Not to be confused with the movie of the same name, which was about World War I pilots.

Jun 24, 2016

Very well written. Details of many aspects of WWII that most people never learned about. Very interesting to learn more about the mindset of both sides in this horrible war.

Feb 15, 2010

good insight into the horror of the war with Japan, balanced and well researched as usual from this author, but parts of this book are grotesque


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at STPL

To Top