When the Shooting Stopped: August 1945 (Paperback)
Victory in Japan Day on August 15, 1945 officially marked the end of World War II, but in fact conflict continued throughout the month. This history details the true final weeks of the war.
Despite the Allied grand strategy of “Germany first,” after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. especially was committed to confronting Tokyo as a matter of urgent priority.
But from Oahu to Tokyo was a long, sanguinary slog, averaging an advance of just three miles per day. The U.S. human toll paid on that road reached some 108,000 battle deaths. But by the summer of 1945 on both the American homefront and on the frontline there was hope. The stunning announcements of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9 seemed sure to force Tokyo over the tipping point. In fact, most of the Japanese cabinet refused to surrender and vicious dogfights still raged in the skies above Japan.
This fascinating history tells the story of the final weeks of the war, detailing the last brutal battles on air, land and sea with first-hand accounts from pilots and sailors caught up in these extraordinary events. Barrett Tillman expertly details the first weeks of a tenuous peace and the drawing of Cold War battle lines as Soviet forces concluded their invasion of Manchuria. When the Shooting Stopped draws on accounts from all sides to relive the days when the war finally ended and the world was forever changed.
“A superb achievement. This fast-paced and riveting account of the final weeks of the Pacific War is filled with fresh material, including personal stories and vivid historical detail. Another Barrett Tillman triumph.” —Robert J. Mrazek, award-winning author of 'The Indomitable Florence Finch: The Untold Story of a War Widow Turned Resistance Fighter and Savior of American POW's'
“[A] shrewd, fast-paced, and wide-angle account exploring one of the most intriguing but seldom pursued topics about all of World War II: the ragged ending of the Asia Pacific War. There was no neat finale on the decks of the Missouri in Tokyo Bay. This work musters the full panorama of days, weeks, and longer that shaped the fates of nations and peoples, but colors it brightly with well-chosen stories of individuals in combat, in liberation, in defeat, in tragedy, and in joy.” —Richard B. Frank, author of Downfall: The End of the Japanese Empire
“It's all here in this excellent account of the last month of WWII.” —The Armourer
“This is an excellent study of the last few weeks of the Second World War, showing that the surrender of Japan was a rather more complex and confused affair than the earlier collapse of Nazi Germany.”” —John Rickard, Historyofwar.org