The best books on World War II in the Pacific

The Books I Picked & Why

History of United States Naval Operations in World War II

By Samuel Eliot Morison

History of United States Naval Operations in World War II

Why this book?

When I began researching and writing for my books this fifteen-volume set by distinguished historian Rear Admiral Samuel Eliot Morison, was one of my first purchases for my World War II library. I consider his series a must-have for any WWII researcher or history buff. I did much of my research and writing on freighters and always took selected volumes with me.


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The Two-Ocean War: A Short History of the United States Navy in the Second World War

By Samuel Eliot Morison

The Two-Ocean War: A Short History of the United States Navy in the Second World War

Why this book?

This book was published in 1963 on the heels of the fifteen-volume set by Rear Admiral Samuel Eliot Morison. I served in the U.S. Navy, Pacific theater of war, and found this supplemental work by Morison to complement particular portions of his fifteen-volume series.


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The Official Chronology of the U.S. Navy in World War II

By Robert J. Cressman

The Official Chronology of the U.S. Navy in World War II

Why this book?

Published in 2000, this reference book makes previous chronologies of the Navy at war out-of-date. My co-author and wife, Sandra McGee, uses this chronology to create social media posts, such as “On this day…” or “75 Years Ago Today…”.


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Ships for Victory: A History of Shipbuilding under the U.S. Maritime Commission in World War II

By Frederic Chapin Lane

Ships for Victory: A History of Shipbuilding under the U.S. Maritime Commission in World War II

Why this book?

This hefty 881-page book covers in detail the story of the greatest shipbuilding program in America’s history. When America entered WWII in December 1941, I was chomping at the bit to get in the action, but I had to wait a year until I turned seventeen. I applied for a job at the Kaiser Shipyard in Vancouver, Washington, and trained to be a welder on the big ships.


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Naval Institute Guide to Naval Writing

By Robert Shenk

Naval Institute Guide to Naval Writing

Why this book?

Every military historian and-or editor needs this manual on their bookshelf. My editor’s preference for my books is to use both the Naval style as well as writing out military acronyms or abbreviations for the convenience of the reader.


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