U.S.S. Stevens: The Collected Stories Book Review

U.S.S. Stevens: The Collected Stories

By Sam Glanzman

Hardcover in dustjacket, 416 pages

Publisher: Dover Publications July 2016

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0486801586

ISBN-13: 978-0486801582

Dimensions: 7 x 1.6 x 10.5 inches

As a kid I obsessively collected DC war comics.  My allowance and yard mowing money was spent in fifteen (later twenty and then twenty-five) cent increments to eagerly obtain the latest issues of Our Army at War, G.I. Combat, Star Spangled War Stories, and Our Fighting Forces.  Each of these had a feature story detailing the latest heroic exploits of Sgt. Rock, the Haunted Tank, the Unknown Soldier, or the Losers, and one or two shorter stories to fill out the issue.  One of the best and most eagerly anticipated series of these short stories was Sam Glanzman’s USS Stevens.

I was delighted to discover this volume.  More than sixty of Glanzman’s Stevens stories are reproduced here.  These are not fictional stories, each are small tales from Glansman’s service as a destroyer engineer during WWII.  They are sometimes tales of combat, sometimes poignant personal tales of shipmates, always true sea stories told in just four pages.  As a kid they offered an insight into shipboard life and war at sea, re-reading them now as a Navy veteran they ring true and if anything are even more profound.

Don’t be dissuaded by the comic book format, Glanzman is a gifted story teller and artist.  This book is well worth reading for anyone with an interest in the US Navy during the Second World War.