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Review for Yangtze Showdown. China and the ordeal of HMS Amethyst

Author/Director : Brian Izzard

Format : Book

Cover to cover a really good read. This is the story of the Yangtze incident in the round, the military and political machinations prior to, during and after the event. If you know the gung-ho 1957 film with hero Richard Todd then prepared to be shocked by the truth. There are action heroes a plenty but there are also ‘politicos’ who are anything but heroes.
The first sentence of the book is ‘A couple of shells whistled overhead and a group of sailors on board HMS Amethyst came to the same conclusion “They couldn’t hit a barn door”. The story goes on with the same engaging vitality. As for the Chinese hitting barn doors I remember newspaper photographs at the time rechristening HMS Amethyst as HMS Pepperpot.
Supporting the text are two useful maps and an informative set of photographs. Also the set of five appendices complete the information given in the story.
Well researched and beautifully written this book will be informative to military buffs and students of cold war politics. But more than those people we highly recommended it to the much wider audience of anyone who enjoy a good read.

Published by : Seaforth Publishing, 2020
ISBN : 978 1 5267 8207 6

Review last updated : 2020-10-08 08:04:28

See also : other "Later 20th Century and Modern" reviews