THE PACIFIC’s Robert Leckie

Like the movie The Titanic, the ten-part HBO series The Pacific, beginning March 14, is likely to make bestsellers of dozens of books by many publishers (as some said about The Titanic‘s effect on publishing, “it raised all boats”).

The producers based their earlier series, Band of Brothers, on the book of the same title by Stephen Ambrose. But they couldn’t find one single volume that gave them a story line that worked for The Pacific. According to the L.A. Times, screenwriter Bruce McKenna came up with the idea of following several main characters. He interviewed dozens of veterans and read nearly 50 books; one of the titles that emerged was the 1957 memoir by Robert Leckie, Helmet for My Pillow.

Leckie, who was a writer before the war, became one of the main characters in the series. ABC News singles out Leckie’s role as “perhaps the most pivotal… because of the insight the character brings to so many situations,” and gives actor James Badge Dale special note for his portrayal, “Not once does Dale falter.”

In the following, Tom Hanks calls Helmet for My Pillow “a magnificient piece of prose… almost like a long poem.”

Helmet for my Pillow, is being released as a tie-in (see earlier post, with other tie-ins and related titles).

Leckie went on to write 30 more books, including Okinawa, an account of that battle, which Penguin books is re-releasing to coincide with the series.

Okinawa: The Last Battle of World War II
Robert Leckie
Retail Price: $15.00
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Penguin (Non-Classics) – (1996-07-01)
ISBN 9780140173895

eBook available from OverDrive

DeCapo Press is also re-releasing his Strong Men Armed, which Library Journal described as his “carefully researched history of the Marines from Guadalcanal to Okinawa.”

Strong Men Armed: The United States Marines Against Japan
Robert Leckie
Retail Price: $17.95
Paperback: 600 pages
Publisher: Da Capo Press – (2010-02-09)
ISBN / EAN: 0306818876 / 9780306818875

ebook available from OverDrive

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