The Hooligans

The Hooligans

Book - 2020
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"A gripping and authentic World War II naval adventure by a master storyteller The Hooligans fictionalizes the little-known but remarkable exploits of "The Hooligan Navy" that fought in the Pacific theatre of World War II. Loosely-organized in fast moving squadrons, PT (patrol torpedo) boats were the pesky nemesis of the formidable Japanese navy, dubbed "the mosquito fleet" and "devil boats" for their daring raids against warships, tankers, and transport ships. After the Pearl Harbor raid plunges America into war, young surgical resident Lincoln Anderson enlists in the Navy medical corps. His first deployment comes in August 1942 at Guadalcanal, when after a brutal sea battle and the landing of Marines on the island, Anderson finds himself triaging hundreds of casualties under relentless Japanese air and land attacks. But with the navy short of doctors, soon Anderson is transferred to serve aboard a PT boat. From Guadalcanal to the Solomon Islands to the climactic, tide-turning battle of Leyte Gulf, Anderson and the crew members of his boat confront submarines and surface ships, are attacked from air by the dreaded Kawanishi flying boats, and hunted by destroyers. In the end, Anderson must lead a division of boats in a seemingly-impossible mission against a Japanese battleship formation-and learn the true nature of his character. Informed by P. T. Deutermann's own experience as a commander of a patrol gunboat in Vietnam, The Hooligans is first-rate military adventure fiction"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 2020.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781250263094
Characteristics: 313 pages ; 25 cm


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Jan 19, 2021

Think as hot mess precursor to M.A.S.H.

Dec 27, 2020

This is the 7th book in a series by this author of what I call historical fiction. I have read all 7 of them in order. It is not necessary to read them in order because the history in each roughly covers the same time period but from different perspectives. They all center around the American WWII effort (mostly Navy and Marines) in the Solomans and finally in this book, a little of the Phillipines campaign. They all follow a protaganist first person through a particular role in the war (i.e. Navy destroyer officer, Navy submarine commander, fighter pilot, Navy surgeon). They are WW2 pulp fiction so anyone trying to critique the writing style is missing the point somewhat. I enjoyed them all but I would agree that the first 5 (particularly 2 through 5) were a little stronger than the last 2 (the Nugget and Hooligans). I thought the first 5 (Pacific Glory, Ghosts of Bungo Suido, Sentinals of Fire, The Commodore and the Ice Man) felt most realistic - i.e. it was just possible that the collection of events described could have actually happened to 1 person. There was no way that a navy pilot could have been in all the places and on all the ships that are part of the plot of the Nugget plot but it was still fun to read. Same thing, with The Hooligans - no way a precious navy doctor/surgeon would be allowed out into the middle of PT boat assaults the way book describes (but Deutermann uses this as a device to describe the operation of front line medical care and tactics of a PT squadron in the same book). The superfluous war romance/love interest thrown into each books is a little schlocky and probably unnecessary and reminds me of the old war movies of the 1940s and 1950s that hollywood produced like flapjacks.

All in all I really enjoyed them. If Deutermann has any more books left in him, it would be nice to see the next ones based on the WWII navy in the North Atlantic or Mediterranean.

Oct 13, 2020

Managed to make it through the first 6 chapters, 27% of the book. The writing style is not one that would make me think twice about picking up another book by this author. World War II in the Pacific, the story of PT boats through the experiences of a Navy doctor, it is like the water boy at a football game describing the action on the field. Time to move on to something more compelling.


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