In this Pulitzer Prize-winning biography, Barbara Tuchman explores American relations with China through the experiences of one of our men on the ground. In the cantankerous but level-headed "Vinegar Joe," Tuchman found a subject who allowed her to perform, in the words of the National Review, "one of the historian's most envied magic acts: conjoining a fine biography of a man with a fascinating epic story." Joseph Stilwell was the military attache to China from 1935 to 1939, commander of United States forces, and allied chief of staff to Chiang Kai-shek from 1942 to 1944. His story unfolds against the background of China's history, from the revolution of 1911 to the turmoil of World War II, when China's Nationalist government faced attack from Japanese invaders and Communist insurgents.
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by Barbara W. Tuchman
by Mel C. Miskimen
by Barbara Ehrenreich
"Pam Ward is certainly listenable during this lengthy history of American relations with China through the end of WWII. However, fans of Blackstone's productions of other Tuchman works, read with sublime simpatico by Nadia May, may find this title a letdown. Tuchman is the most articulate and nuanced of popular historians, and this biography of "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell, head of American forces in China during WWII, is a thorough critique of American policy in China and of the Chiang Kai-shek regime--still controversial topics when this book was published in 1970. Ward misses Tuchman's fine edges, and her vocal renderings are not good. Her Vinegar Joe sounds improbable, and rather like her FDR, and, thankfully, Gandhi appears only for a sentence or two. Despite these shortcomings, the quality of the text and its foreshadowing of American-Chinese relations today recommend this title. D.A.W. (c) AudioFile 2009, Portland, Maine"
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