News and Reviews
"Told with rich layers of perspective and cinematic immediacy that transports the reader to the streets of Manila, this is a gut-wrenching and rewarding reading experience."
— Publisher's Weekly (starred review)
"Painful but necessary reading for students of World War II."
— Kirkus (starred review)
"[A] riveting, often shocking, and defining account of the Battle of Manila."
"What Iris Chang did for our understanding of the Rape of Nanking, James M. Scott has now done for the Battle of Manila. Here is a sweeping tale of frenzied fighting and heartbreaking devastation, written by a meticulous historian who has unflinchingly probed the truth of this largely forgotten episode from the Pacific."
— Hampton Sides, New York Times bestselling author of Ghost Soldiers and On Desperate Ground
"This is General Douglas MacArthur as you have not heard him, this is World War II as you have not seen it before, this is history written with a wide sweep and deep focus, the prose and reporting falling in aching rhythms on scenes of beauty, despair, definance, the terrible tresspasses people make, and their striving to endure. James Scott's skill as a reporter and his precision as a stylist make this story unstoppable from the very first scene. Across these pages falls the shadow of a story we thought we knew well, but in Scott's telling, so much is revealed and illuminated. A bold surprise of a history book. A treasure for lovers of stories beautifully told. Transcendent."
— Doug Stanton, New York Times bestselling author of 12 Strong and The Odyssey of Echo Company
"James M. Scott knows how to search long and hard for the personal details that make up a gripping narrative. Admirers of his Target Tokyo will find the same skills at work in Rampage. And parts of the story he tells, particularly about the Battle of Manila, are little known, even to those of us who can never stop reading about World War II."
— Adam Hochschild, New York Times bestselling author of Spain in Our Hearts
"Rampage confirms Scott's place in the first rank of American World War II historians."
— Nigel Hamilton, National Book Award finalist and author of Commander in Chief and The Mantle of Command
"A masterpiece of historical reportage, brilliantly bringing to life the savage battle for Manila — one of the most dramatic and disturbing episodes of World War II."
— Alex Kershaw, New York Times bestselling author of Avenue of Spies and The Liberator
"Rampage is a deeply researched and superbly written account of one of the darkest chapters of the Pacific War. I found it hard to read, but also hard to put down."
— Ian Toll, New York Times bestselling author of Pacific Crucible and The Conquering Tide
"In Rampage, James M. Scott tells a story of tenacity and heroism; but it is also a record of near-unbelievable savagery that would make hard reading were it not for the vivid, forceful prose and a narrative drive that never falters. Scott draws on hundreds of first-hand accounts to give life and urgency to a wholly engrossing tale freighted with the greatest moral and historical significance. When one civilian internee who survived the Battle of Manila toured the levelled city afterward, she wrote, 'I listened all those weeks to the guns. Now I see what they did. Everyone should see it and learn one lesson forever.' Scott's wrenching epic lets us see it with searing clarity."
— Richard Snow, author of Iron Dawn: The Monitor, The Merrimack, and the Civil War Sea Battle that Changed History
"A masterful re-telling of events and the people caught in a city that died. There are no embellishments in James Scott's account of the Battle of Manila: soldiers and civilians are allowed to speak about the horrors largely forgotten or unknown. The stories make for gruesome reading, but these stories have to be told, so that the suffering — and the tragedy — of the Philippines' capital city and its people may never be repeated. James Scott is to be congratulated for giving the vicitms a chance to speak. It is high time that the tragedy that befell Manila in 1945 be made known to a larger audience. Rampage does this."
— Dr. Ricardo Trota Jose, Professor of History, University of the Philippines
"As president of an organization of survivors and their descendants of the Battle of Manila, I found Rampage to be not just history, but a very personal story, one through which I learned about the incredible struggles of some of my own family members during that tragic 29-day fight... A must read."
— Jose M. Cabarrus, president of the Memorare Manila 1945 Foundation
"February 3, 1945, was already an unusual day for we prisoners of the Japanese in the Santo Tomas Internment Camp in Manila, with low flying American aircraft and a message of hope. But little did we dream, when the tanks burst through the gates to rescue us, that we were not only celebrating our long-awaited liberation, but also the start of the most intense urban battle fought by the U.S. Army during WWII, which left Manila a sea of rubble with 100,000 civilians dead. For a month we were only a little over a mile from the most intense fighting and watched as the detritus of war streamed through our camp gates to the Army hospitals and temporary graveyards set up within the walls. James Scott's book, Rampage, tells us of the human tragedy taking place so nearby. It is an epic work that summarizes the extent of atrocities when Japanese troops turned on the civilian population to exact retribution for its loyalty to America, and we must never forget what barbarity Imperial Japan inflicted on humanity."
— Angus Lorenzen, Santo Tomas survivor and author of A Lovely Little War
Praise for Target Tokyo
"A spellbinding narrative that uses Chinese, Russian and Japanese sources to expand the story of the first American attack on Japan during World War II."
— The Pulitzer Prize Committee
"In Target Tokyo, James M. Scott, an accomplished naval historian, vividly narrates the saga of Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle's audacious raid, undoubtedly one of the greatest exploits of World War II... the story has been covered many times before, but never so fully as here."
— Alexander Rose, Wall Street Journal
"Marvelous... undoubtedly the most comprehensive account yet... [A] page turner."
— Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times
"The Doolittle Raid and its effects need to be remembered. Target Tokyo will make them hard to forget."
— Ray Locker, USA Today
"Scott's tight prose and meticulous research provide a gripping and at times heartbreaking account of the raid."
— Bob Carden, Philadelphia Inquirer
"[A] breakthrough work of popular history."
— Michael Glitz, Huffington Post