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Extended Audio Sample The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors, by James D. Hornfischer Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (1,911 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: James D. Hornfischer Narrator: Grover Gardner Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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“This will be a fight against overwhelming odds from which survival cannot be expected. We will do what damage we can.”

With these words, Lieutenant Commander Robert W. Copeland addressed the crew of the destroyer escort USS Samuel B. Roberts on the morning of October 25, 1944, off the Philippine Island of Samar. On the horizon loomed the mightiest ships of the Japanese navy, a massive fleet that represented the last hope of a staggering empire. All that stood between it and Douglas MacArthur’s vulnerable invasion force were the Roberts and the other small ships of a tiny American flotilla poised to charge into history.

In the tradition of the #1 New York Times bestseller Flags of Our Fathers, James D. Hornfischer paints an unprecedented portrait of the Battle of Samar, a naval engagement unlike any other in U.S. history—and captures with unforgettable intensity the men, the strategies, and the sacrifices that turned certain defeat into a legendary victory. Download and start listening now!


Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Paulmbauer | 1/10/2014

    " This is the most gripping story I've EVER read. If it were offered as fiction, nobody would believe it. It's the story of how a small group of small ships held back a huge Japanese armada that could have completely devastated the allied war effort in the Pacific. The skill and determination of these mostly very young sailors is almost incredible. As part of the research on my Civil War novel, I have read probably over a hundred books about soldiers and sailors and war. "Last Stand" has very few peers, both in the story and how it's told. I regret giving away my copy, but will buy and read this book again, and make room for it in my "permanent collection." "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Jill | 1/5/2014

    " This was a great telling of a battle that I have somehow never heard about. I'm sure he was speculating as to what the Japanese officers were thinking for the most part, but it made it read more as a story than a listing of military facts. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Dad Bowers | 12/31/2013

    " Hornfisher gives a moving tale of the brave sailors in small ships in a great but little known battle or WW2. He makes you feel there, and gives great detail of how a sea battle worked, how the US won, and how the sailors struggled after the battle. We should read such books to keep in mind how such men strove to defeat the enemy and how much they suffered for our nation. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Debbie | 12/27/2013

    " My dad served on the USS Gamibier Bay which was sunk in the Battle of Leyte Gulf. "

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