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Tuesday, May 9, 2023


Jimmy Propfield joined the army for two reasons: to get out of Mobile, Alabama, with his best friends Hank and Billy and to forget his high school sweetheart, Claire. 

Life in the Philippines seems like paradise--until the morning of December 8, 1941, when news comes from Manila: Imperial Japan has bombed Pearl Harbor. Within hours, the teenage friends are plunged into war as enemy warplanes attack Luzon, beginning a battle for control of the Pacific Theater that will culminate with a last stand on the Bataan Peninsula and end with the largest surrender of American troops in history. 

What follows will become known as one of the worst atrocities in modern warfare: the Bataan Death March. With no hope of rescue, the three friends vow to make it back home together. But the ordeal is only the beginning of their nearly four-year fight to survive. 

Inspired by true stories, The Long March Home is a gripping coming-of-age tale of friendship, sacrifice, and the power of unrelenting hope.


A gripping story of three  friends who face a war that brings them face to face with danger. I did like that we go from past to present and read how these four grew up together and how different their backgrounds  were. Several times I felt like crying as one of them faced the loss of a parent. The emotional journey is deep in this story as the authors slowly open each character with a look at their family life and how they changed as they went off to war. 

As we move forward to their time fighting against the enemy, we discover the pain of watching those they serve lose their lives. There were days when there was very little food to go around which made it difficult to keep their strength up. Can you imagine having to stand guard all night knowing that at any minute the enemy could take you out. I was surprised at how young most of them were. Parents back home were desperate for letters from their boys but the mail was sparse at times. I could hear  the continuous bullets in the air and planes that were able to destroy areas in minutes. 

I did find the book hard to read at times with graphic details of what they ate to survive. In dark times, they had to eat to keep up their strength but it was hard for me to get that picture out of my head. I have to say that war is not pretty and this book does a good job of showing  readers the truth of how it could be during this war that claimed many lives. Survival was the most important thing in those moments when faced with the enemy staring  right at you. The research done for this book is evident as details reflect what we have read in history books. 

The book does bring attention to what many people suffered as they became prisoners of war. The three friends are determined that they will all come home alive. Their journey is filled with pain, determination and hope. The authors give us a story that is realistic and a theme of never giving up. 

I received a copy of this book from Revell Reads. The review is my own opinion. 


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