1942: The year the war came to Australia


1942: the year the war came to Australia

The bombing of Darwin and the attack on Sydney by the Japanese

By Peter Grose

Published by Allen & Unwin

RRP $32.99 in paperback | ISBN 9781761066641

Nearly eighty years on, two momentous events of 1942 continue to echo down the years: the bombing of Darwin in February 1942 and the Japanese midget submarine attack on Sydney Harbour in May 1942.

Peter Grose’s two memorable books on these subjects – A Very Rude Awakening (2007) and An Awkward Truth (2009) – have now been brought together in one volume.

In the first book, Grose questions many of the myths surrounding the night of 31 May 1942 when three Japanese midget submarines crept into the harbour past Australian defences, exposing intelligence blunders that allowed the subs to pass through unnoticed.

It was a thought-provoking study of that fateful night.

Similarly, in An Awkward Truth, he exploded some of the myths surrounding the bombing raids on Darwin.

The town sustained heavy damage with an estimated loss of 300 lives.

Despite the chaos that followed, Grose believed that the Australian and American servicemen performed heroically in difficult circumstances.

The re-release of the books is timely and welcome.

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