Dog Company: The Boys of Pointe du Hoc--the Rangers Who Accomplished D-Day's Toughest Mission and Led the Way across Europe by Patrick K. O'Donnell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Wants to be Band of Brothers and doesn't quite get there.
First off, I have the greatest respect for what these soldiers went through. It's because of that respect that I give my honest opinion of this book. Those who served in WWII deserve recognition for all they did. The men of Dog Company deserve a better book than Dog Company: The Boys of Pointe du Hoc--the Rangers Who Accomplished D-Day's Toughest Mission and Led the Way across Europe .
That's not to say this is a bad book. However, the legacy of Dog Company could have been better preserved. The writing herein is at times mediocre. Most of the time it's adequate.
The lay-out of the story is what suffers the most. O'Donnell repeatedly points to Pointe du Hoc as the pinnacle of Dog Company's accomplishments during the war. REPEATEDLY. And then he describes the Pointe du Hoc event in the middle of the book and then goes on to tell the reader what D Company did for the rest of the war in Europe. Putting the climax in the middle of the book makes for a second half that drags. It seems like O'Donnell was stuck in the linear storytelling mindset and didn't know how to tell the tale otherwise.
His characterization falls short of Band of Brothers as well. I didn't get the sense that I really knew these guys. O'Donnell tried to make them feel like old friends, but it never clicked.
However, the subject matter itself provided the bond needed to make one feel heartbreak upon reading of the death of one of these valiant soldiers. It truly was an amazingly horrific time in recent history. If nothing else, Dog Company is yet another testament to the valor and horror.
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