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James D. Hornfischer Books In Order

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Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Ship of Ghosts (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Neptune's Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Service: A Navy SEAL at War (With: Marcus Luttrell) (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Fleet at Flood Tide (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
Who Can Hold the Sea (2022)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of James D. Hornfischer Political Books

Right Thinking (With: Sue Carswell) (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hate is Not a Family Value (1997)Description / Buy at Amazon

James D Hornfischer is a nonfiction, history and military history author from Austin Texas. His writings are informed by a lifelong interest in the Pacific War during the Second World War. Due to his expertise, he has been on “BookTV” on C-Span, “War Stories with Oliver North” on Fox News, and The History Channel. He is also a frequent speaker on the US Navy, the Pacific war and American sailor experience during the Second World War. He frequently gives talks to civic and youth groups, veterans’ organizations and professional naval organizations many of whom read his inspirational works.

Hornfischer was born in Massachusetts and went to the School of Law of the University of Texas and Colgate University for his bachelor’s degree. He was appointed Admiral in the Texas Navy by Rick Perry the Texas Governor and is a member of the Navy League as well as the Naval Order of the United States. He is also a former book editor and is currently the president of the Austin Texas based Hornfischer Literary Management agency. He was motivated to write from a very young age when he started exploring US military history in elementary school. As a preteen, he explored the Dewey Decimal Section and watched kids programs on NBC while building Revell and Monogram model aircraft and ships. He was also a huge fan of PBS’s The World at war and especially Sir Laurence Olivier’s intonations. He currently lives with his wife and children in Austin, Texas.

James D Hornfischer’s novels have been critically acclaimed works that have resulted in him being called one of the most authoritative naval historians in the world. For his endeavors, he has won several awards over the years including the Board of Trustees Samuel Eliot Morison Award in 2018. He was given the award for portraying eclectic interest in things maritime and the sea, patriotic pride and artful scholarship as reflected in Admiral Morison of the USS Constitution. He was also feted for his work to foster interest and preserve the best the US has to offer for future generations. All of his works have been selected as compulsory reads at the US Naval War College. He regularly contributes to publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Naval Institute Proceedings, Snithsonian, and Naval History. He has also been a regular speaker at the National WWII Museum, the US Naval Academy, the National Museum of the Pacific War, and the Marine Corps University at Quantico.
James Hornfischer’s novel “The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors” is the story of the three pronged attack on the Leyte Gulf by the Japanese. The Japanese were determined to stop the Americans from discharging their troops on the beaches and aimed all they had at the transport ships. Admiral Ozawa feinted his small force in the north and managed to entice William Halsey an admiral known for being too aggressive. While he is chasing Ozawa on his fast battleships and carriers, two columns of the Japanese are trying to force the Surigao and San Bernardino Straits. American ships managed to stop the Japanese at Surigao but Admiral Takeo took advantage of American mistakes to pass through the San Bernardino Straits and were almost within range of an important Task Unit before some hawk eyed lookouts spotted them. The Japanese ships are faster and the escort carriers of the Americans start taking heavy fire. Desperate, the destroyer escorts try launching torpedo runs which means sailing right into the Japanese. Once they are out of ammo, they realize the futility of their attempt and watch as two American escort carriers are sunk by naval and kamikaze gunfire.

“Neptune’s Inferno” by James D Hornfischer is an enduring and essential narrative of the United States’ Navy during the Second World War. Focusing on Guadalcanal, the most pivotal and deadliest campaign of the war in the pacific, he writes unique and rich portraits of ordinary men doing extraordinary things. The story is an intimate and epic account of the battle for the control of the Solomon Islands. It was the first concerted effort to expel the Japanese juggernaut from a critical position that would turn out to be the turning point in the war in the Pacific. The man in charge is Admiral Norman Scott who has the advantage of fighting with radar as opposed to the IJN. Just before the battle, the US Navy combines the forces of Admiral Callaghan with those belonging to Norman Scott. The problem was that since Callaghan was untested in battle radar was not something he had experience with. But since he was senior to Scott having been promoted fifteen days earlier, he takes command of the fleet. Despite losing both admirals, the US Navy is successful and is now led by Admiral Lee who understands all about radar. Under the new commander, they won a decisive victory against the Japanese. Nonetheless, they would later lose several cruisers when they sent an inexperienced commander who did not understand radar. Luckily, the Japanese lost their confidence after Guadalcanal and pulled out.

James D Hornfischer’s “Ship of Ghosts” is the story of the USS Houston, which was the favorite warship of president FDR. After the events at Pearl Harbor, the ship which would be an excellent target is stuck in the pacific. They do not have any hope of reinforcement and they have to face off with ruthless and determined Japanese who intend to sink the ship. While they were inferior to the Japanese force, they intended to fight a war to the death. James brings to life the terror of naval battles as the decks on ships became slaughterhouses. The crew did all they could in the midst of deadly fire from strobe lit Japanese bombers. Time and again they escape disaster until their luck runs out and the Houston is sunk and the remaining sailors taken as prisoners of war. In the brutal prisoner of war camps the struggle for survival of the sailors of the Houston continues as they face psychological torture, forced labor, disease and starvation. It is an unvarnished and gritty story of the Thailand-Burma Death Railway that has over the years been an object glamorized in Hollywood film. In reality, the men of the Houston were made nothing better than beasts as they fought against dehumanization with undying faith, dignity, willpower, sabotage and ingenuity.

Book Series In Order » Authors » James D. Hornfischer

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