72 books like In Enemy Hands

By Larry Zellers,

Here are 72 books that In Enemy Hands fans have personally recommended if you like In Enemy Hands. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of The Hunters

Roger Hermiston Author Of Two Minutes to Midnight: 1953 - The Year of Living Dangerously

From my list on understanding the Korean War.

Why am I passionate about this?

Roger Hermiston is a writer of contemporary history books that are underpinned by rigorous scholarship, enhanced by a journalist’s eye, and driven by exciting storytelling. One of his books – All Behind You, Winston – Churchill’s Great Coalition 1940-45 told the story of the often-overlooked men (and two women) who helped steer Britain to wartime victory on the Home Front. But two of his other books – The Greatest Traitor and, just out, Two Minutes to Midnight – explore the early years of the Cold War, in the 1950s. In both the Korean War features prominently – in the first, from the perspective of a group of ‘high value’ prisoners held captive by the North Koreans, and in the second, from the view of President Eisenhower and his colleagues as they contemplated using tactical A-bombs to hasten the end of the conflict.

Roger's book list on understanding the Korean War

Roger Hermiston Why did Roger love this book?

The best novel ever written about the Korean War by one of America’s greatest-ever stylists. Salter himself was a USAF fighter pilot in the conflict, flying over a hundred combat missions. His beautiful, crystalline prose captures the taut atmosphere of those dangerous days, and the central dilemma of the main character, Captain Cleve Connell – how to combine the daring required to shoot down Soviet MIGs with the sacred duty of the ‘wingman’ in ensuring the safety of his comrades.

By James Salter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Hunters as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Captain Cleve Connell arrives in Korea with a single goal: to become an ace, one of that elite fraternity of jet pilots who have downed five MIGs. But as his fellow airmen rack up kill after kill - sometimes under dubious circumstances - Cleve's luck runs bad. Other pilots question his guts. Cleve comes to question himself. And then in one icy instant 40,000 feet above the Yalu River, his luck changes forever. Filled with courage and despair, eerie beauty and corrosive rivalry, James Salter's luminous first novel is a landmark masterpiece in the literature of war.


Book cover of I was a captive in Korea

Roger Hermiston Author Of Two Minutes to Midnight: 1953 - The Year of Living Dangerously

From my list on understanding the Korean War.

Why am I passionate about this?

Roger Hermiston is a writer of contemporary history books that are underpinned by rigorous scholarship, enhanced by a journalist’s eye, and driven by exciting storytelling. One of his books – All Behind You, Winston – Churchill’s Great Coalition 1940-45 told the story of the often-overlooked men (and two women) who helped steer Britain to wartime victory on the Home Front. But two of his other books – The Greatest Traitor and, just out, Two Minutes to Midnight – explore the early years of the Cold War, in the 1950s. In both the Korean War features prominently – in the first, from the perspective of a group of ‘high value’ prisoners held captive by the North Koreans, and in the second, from the view of President Eisenhower and his colleagues as they contemplated using tactical A-bombs to hasten the end of the conflict.

Roger's book list on understanding the Korean War

Roger Hermiston Why did Roger love this book?

A riveting first-hand account of the war from the buccaneering foreign correspondent of The Observer. Greek-born Deane, who served nobly in the Royal Navy in WW2, was captured by the North Koreans in Seoul in July 1950 and spent the next 33 months in captivity. He vividly chronicles those grim days as a prisoner, enduring torture and surviving the infamous ‘Death March’. There is also a great insight into the character of George Blake, his fellow internee and British spy, who was (unbeknown to Deane) actually recruited by the KGB in their period of incarceration.

By Philip Deane,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I was a captive in Korea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Author Philip Dean is also known by the names Philippe Gigantès and Gerassimos Svoronos Gigantes


Book cover of The Korean War

James N. Butcher Author Of Korea: Traces of a Forgotten War

From my list on the Korean War from someone who served there.

Why am I passionate about this?

James Neal Butcher is a professor emeritus of the Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota. At age 17, he enlisted in the US Army during the Korean War. He served 2 years in a parachute infantry division (82nd Airborne). He volunteered for service in the Korean War and served one year as an infantry soldier in the 17th Infantry Regiment during the war including the battles for Jane Russell Hill in October 1952 and Pork Chop Hill in April 1953. In 2013 he published a memoir of his early life and his military experience Korea: Traces of a forgotten war. 

James' book list on the Korean War from someone who served there

James N. Butcher Why did James love this book?

Max Hasting’s book described the early days of the war, for example the actions of Task Force Smith. He provides a valuable perspective on the Korean War that includes an interesting balanced account of a war that is still considered by many to be controversial. Hastings considers the perspectives of all sides of the Korean conflict and examines the various motivations of their respective actions, such as the U.S. decision to send troops to Korea in September 1945, and to send them back in June 1950, to the Chinese decision to send their own troops into Korea in the fall of 1950.  He also provides a perspective on the important decision to participate in the signing of the armistice in July 1953.

By Max Hastings,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Korean War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Korean War is journalist and military historian Sir Max Hastings' compelling account of the forgotten war.

'The best narrative history of the Korean conflict' - Guardian

On 25 June 1950 the invasion of South Korea by the Communist North launched one of the bloodiest conflicts of the last century. The seemingly limitless power of the Chinese-backed North was thrown against the ferocious firepower of the UN-backed South in a war that can be seen today as the stark prelude to Vietnam.

Max Hastings draws on first-hand accounts of those who fought on both sides to produce this vivid and…


Book cover of The Korean War

Roger Hermiston Author Of Two Minutes to Midnight: 1953 - The Year of Living Dangerously

From my list on understanding the Korean War.

Why am I passionate about this?

Roger Hermiston is a writer of contemporary history books that are underpinned by rigorous scholarship, enhanced by a journalist’s eye, and driven by exciting storytelling. One of his books – All Behind You, Winston – Churchill’s Great Coalition 1940-45 told the story of the often-overlooked men (and two women) who helped steer Britain to wartime victory on the Home Front. But two of his other books – The Greatest Traitor and, just out, Two Minutes to Midnight – explore the early years of the Cold War, in the 1950s. In both the Korean War features prominently – in the first, from the perspective of a group of ‘high value’ prisoners held captive by the North Koreans, and in the second, from the view of President Eisenhower and his colleagues as they contemplated using tactical A-bombs to hasten the end of the conflict.

Roger's book list on understanding the Korean War

Roger Hermiston Why did Roger love this book?

This is the perfect primer for anyone trying to get an understanding of the Korean War. It is a concise history (just 96 pages) but is packed with essential information, laying out the background to the conflict before chronologically guiding the reader through the main battles, with clear portraits of the main protagonists along the way.

By Carter Malkasian,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Korean War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

The Korean War was a significant turning point in the Cold War. This volume explains how the conflict in a small peninsula in East Asia had a tremendous impact on the entire international system and the balance of power between the two superpowers, America and Russia.


Book cover of A Team of Their Own: How an International Sisterhood Made Olympic History

Elise Hooper Author Of Fast Girls: A Novel of the 1936 Women's Olympic Team

From my list on inspirational women athletes.

Why am I passionate about this?

My novels explore women whose contributions to culture have been relegated to the footnotes of mainstream history books, and in few areas have women been more overlooked than in sports. Because of the achievements of today’s female athletes, ranging from the many athletic opportunities available to our young daughters to the professional success of women like Serena Williams, it’s easy to think that progress for women’s sports has come a long way—and in many ways, it has, thanks to legislative protections like Title IX—but these achievements reflect over a century’s worth of sacrifice by many unheralded women athletes. Here are five books that highlight this journey.

Elise's book list on inspirational women athletes

Elise Hooper Why did Elise love this book?

A couple of weeks before the 2018 Olympics opened in Pyeongchang, an unlikely women’s South Korean hockey team hastily took shape. Why unlikely? Its roster, bolstered with women of Korean descent from the United States and Canada, suddenly added players from North Korea. Like most sports books, this isn’t really about sports; it’s about identity, belonging, sisterhood, and culture. Miracles on ice can take many forms.

By Seth Berkman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Team of Their Own as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A December Stephen Curry Book Club Pick

One of ESPN’s 25 Can’t Miss Books of 2019

“A feel-good story.”—New York Times Book Review

“This isn’t simply a sports book. Rather, it’s a book about inspiring and courageous women who just happened to be hockey players.”—Korea Times

The inspiring, unlikely story of the American, Canadian, South Korean and even North Korean women who joined together to form Korea’s first Olympic ice hockey team.

Two weeks before the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics, South Korea’s women’s hockey team was forced into a predicament that no president, ambassador or general had…


Book cover of Sgt. Reckless: America's War Horse

Valerie Ormond Author Of Believing In Horses Out West

From my list on horses and their humans.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been in love with horses since I was a toddler and have read more horse books than I can count. My favorite books are about horses and their humans – the bond that holds us together. No other animal reads a human’s soul like the horse does, and it’s one of the reasons for their success in equine-assisted activities and therapy programs. I’ve written horse stories since childhood and am proud of my three award-winning books in the Believing In Horses series featuring horse rescue, equine assisted activities, show competition, and dude ranches. I hope to create and inspire more horse and human connections through my stories.

Valerie's book list on horses and their humans

Valerie Ormond Why did Valerie love this book?

I love this book and true story commemorating an almost forgotten hero of the Korean War - a Thoroughbred mare. The author tells the tale with phenomenal detail, and her passion for the subject shines through. Robin Hutton’s thorough research and descriptions of first-hand accounts about the battles and the brave hero horse made this book rise to the top of my list. It may help that I am a Navy veteran (and Sgt. Reckless was a Marine), a horse enthusiast, and was stationed in Korea, where the war is not forgotten.

By Robin Hutton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sgt. Reckless as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New York Times Bestseller!

She wasn't a horse—she was a Marine.

She might not have been much to look at—a small "Mongolian mare," they called her—but she came from racing stock, and had the blood of a champion. Much more than that, Reckless became a war hero—in fact, she became a combat Marine, earning staff sergeant's stripes before her retirement to Camp Pendleton. This once famous horse, recognized as late as 1997 by Life Magazine as one of America's greatest heroes—the greatest war horse in American history, in fact—has unfortunately now been largely forgotten. But author Robin Hutton is set…


Book cover of Brother's Keeper

Alda P. Dobbs Author Of Barefoot Dreams of Petra Luna

From my list on kids in war.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m passionate about this topic because my own great-grandmother escaped a war, the Mexican Revolution of 1913, at the age of nine years old. Family stories described her journey of marching across the desert, almost dying, determined to reach the United States. I am also an immigrant myself and I enjoy relating to stories that depict the immigrant experience. 

Alda's book list on kids in war

Alda P. Dobbs Why did Alda love this book?

Stories that depict a child’s harsh journey of escaping war are heart-wrenching but when it involves siblings, especially one looking after the other, it really burrows into your soul. This story resembles that of my great-grandmother’s, but I learned so much about Korean culture and family dynamics in this gripping tale.

By Julie Lee,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Brother's Keeper as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

With war looming on the horizon and winter setting in, can two children escape North Korea on their own?

Winner of the Freeman Book Award!

North Korea. December, 1950.

Twelve-year-old Sora and her family live under an iron set of rules: No travel without a permit. No criticism of the government. No absences from Communist meetings. Wear red. Hang pictures of the Great Leader. Don't trust your neighbors. Don't speak your mind. You are being watched.

But war is coming, war between North and South Korea, between the Soviets and the Americans. War causes chaos--and war is the perfect time…


Book cover of Pork Chop Hill: The American Fighting Man in Action: Korea, Spring, 1953

Angel Giacomo Author Of The Jackson MacKenzie Chronicles: In the Eye of the Storm

From my list on war that go beyond the battles.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a retired police officer, except I don’t write about law enforcement. I write about the military. My degree is in Political Science and History. I am a meticulous researcher. My emphasis has been on the Vietnam War. My father served in both the U.S. Navy and the Army National Guard. One of my great uncles served in Africa during WWII. His brother during the Occupation of Germany. I have a step-uncle who spent time as a POW in Laos during the Vietnam War. My step-father served in the Army National Guard, and my step-brother in the U.S. Army, Korea and Ft. Hood.

Angel's book list on war that go beyond the battles

Angel Giacomo Why did Angel love this book?

This book is a detailed account of the fighting at Pork Chop Hill, aka Hill 255. It was aptly named because on the topographical map it resembled a pork chop. They call this the forgotten war. It is a gritty, blow-by-blow, extremely detailed account of the battle in April 1953. This book describes the incredible feat of bravery and heroism by the men of the 7th Infantry Division. Pork Chop Hill was not the only place of the combat as Old Baldy, Hill 266, was a short distance away.

By S.L.A. Marshall,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pork Chop Hill as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Battle of Pork Chop Hill fought during the Korean War, was made into a famous movie starring Gregory Peck. The outcome of this war and the tremendous loss of human life is what we have today. The war started on 25 June 1950 when North Korea invaded South Korea. The fighting war ended on 27 July 1953 when an armistice was concluded. However, the two sides never signed a peace treaty. The two sides are still technically at war. South Korea has prospered and it is one of the most advanced countries of the world. North Korea is in…


Book cover of Korea's Place in the Sun: A Modern History

Stephen Gowans Author Of Patriots, Traitors and Empires: The Story of Korea's Struggle for Freedom

From my list on to understand the DPRK.

Why am I passionate about this?

I became interested in North Korea in 2002 when the George W. Bush administration declared the country to be part of an Axis of Evil, along with Iraq and Iran. Bush had lied about Iraq, to justify a war against that country, and I wondered what evidence, if any, his administration had that North Korea was either evil or part of an axis. The answer was none. Bush was able to propagate one North Korean myth after another because the public knew very little about the country. I wished to give people some background so they could make sense of what they were reading and hearing about North Korea in the news and social media.

Stephen's book list on to understand the DPRK

Stephen Gowans Why did Stephen love this book?

Cumings’ books on Korea—there are a number of them—could fill every spot on a list of the five best books to understand the DPRK. Cumings is the leading Western expert on Korean modern history, and Korea’s Place in the Sun is the best place to start. I love every one of Cumings’ books, and this one especially. He is a superb writer and doesn’t pander to established opinions.

By Bruce Cumings,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Korea's Place in the Sun as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Korea has endured a "fractured, shattered twentieth century," and this updated edition brings Bruce Cumings's leading history of the modern era into the present. The small country, overshadowed in the imperial era, crammed against great powers during the Cold War, and divided and decimated by the Korean War, has recently seen the first real hints of reunification. But positive movements forward are tempered by frustrating steps backward. In the late 1990s South Korea survived its most severe economic crisis since the Korean War, forcing a successful restructuring of its political economy. Suffering through floods, droughts, and a famine that cost…


Book cover of White Badge

Martin Limón Author Of War Women

From my list on GI life as told by GIs.

Why am I passionate about this?

I spent 20 years in the US Army with 10 of those years in Korea. Everybody thought I was crazy. Why would you like being stationed in such an odd country as Korea? Whenever I tried to explain, their noses would crinkle and they’d stare at me as if I were mad. I started collecting books that explained better than I did. To supplement it I purchased a manual Smith Corona typewriter at the PX and to assuage my angst began writing mystery stories about two 8th Army investigators in Seoul, Korea. Fifteen novels and over 50 short stories later I’m still attempting to explain the odd beauty of GI life through the eyes of a GI.

Martin's book list on GI life as told by GIs

Martin Limón Why did Martin love this book?

White Badge was originally written in Korean and the title was Baegma (White Horse). The author, Ahn Junghyo, translated it into English himself and submitted it to an American publisher who changed the title to White Badge. White Horse referred to the White Horse Division, a unit of the South Korean army that was deployed to Vietnam during the 1960s. A force of 50,000 South Korean troops engaged in that war and saw some of the toughest fighting seen.

Ahn, an intellectual and a journalist, fictionalized his experiences brilliantly. Drafted at the age of 20, he was assigned to the White Horse Division and soon found himself in a military vehicle being chased by starving Vietnamese children. It was during a particularly brutal battle in the middle of dense jungle foliage that he says he thought of himself as an observer of the war rather than a participant. However,…

By Junghyo Ahn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked White Badge as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Han Kiju is an executive in modern Seoul, a Korean intellectual who has never adjusted to his postwar existence. When an old comrade-in-arms, a coward who crumpled in battle, begins to follow him, Han Kiju must finally deal with the ghosts of the past haunting his present.


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in the Korean War, South Korea, and presidential biography?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about the Korean War, South Korea, and presidential biography.

The Korean War Explore 50 books about the Korean War
South Korea Explore 36 books about South Korea
Presidential Biography Explore 18 books about presidential biography