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Wolfpack 351  By  cover art

Wolfpack 351

By: R. Cameron Cooke
Narrated by: Tim Campbell
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Publisher's Summary

After a harrowing war patrol in the Sea of Japan, the US submarines of Wolfpack 351 are low on fuel, torpedoes, and morale. Their only means of escape is a narrow passage teeming with enemy aircraft, mines, and coastal batteries - and guarded by a menacing Japanese fleet led by a legendary admiral hellbent on stopping them.  

Facing the imminent destruction of the entire wolfpack and with few options remaining, the American admirals in Pearl Harbor turn to an aging submarine, the only boat close enough to help. With time running out, the USS Aeneid - a V-boat from another era - must spring the trapped submarines from their watery prison before they meet their fates under the hull-shattering wrath of the enemy's depth charges.

©2019 R. Cameron Cooke (P)2020 Tantor

What listeners say about Wolfpack 351

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Good overall read

Very interesting, good progress, no boring or drab spots, enjoyed every minute of its precession and development of the story.

3 people found this helpful

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Great story!

I thoroughly enjoyed the telling of this tale. The narrator did a fine job of bringing the story to life. I highly recommend this book.

2 people found this helpful

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Not The Worst Book I've read...

...but not the best either. But it was nice to have J. Peterman from Seinfeld read it to me.

1 person found this helpful

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Excellent! Very Compelling Story

This book is the last of a series of three focusing on WW2 naval submarines. As were the previous two, it was both excellently written by R. Cameron Cooke and read by Tim Campbell. While each one shared a compelling story where you do not want the it to end, I found myself most mesmerized by “Wolfpack 351”. The author and reader saved the best one for last. I highly recommend it and hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

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  • Simon
  • 06-26-20

The Guns of Camerone!

Oh yes I did enjoy this one! If you're harking back to the days when one of the biggest things in your life was the release of the next Douglas Reeman paperback then this might be one for you. It's back to basics WWII storytelling with plenty of action and no little adventure. It's not quite so often that the allied submarine forces are highlighted but this story, based only loosely on actual events during WWII, does just that. An American wolfpack of submarines is stranded deep in hostile waters with seemingly no way out, one more sub is sent on a dangerous mission to provide the diversion that will help them escape the predatory Japanese Imperial Navy.

The story that follows is classic WWII writing and the last few hours of the book do a great job of bringing the story to an exciting conclusion. There is land action and sea action, pinging sonar and terrifying depth charges, gunfire and fighting and of course a fanatical Japanese navy vengefully trying to eliminate the US submarines. It's told from both sides of the story giving both the US forced and the Japanese ones depth and character.

Tim Campbell does a decent job of the narration, especially towards the end I thought bringing it to life nicely and even if he doesn't have the biggest variety of accents and character voices he has a rich voice which I enjoyed listening to.

So, if you want to relive the Guns of Navarone or other classic war stories through the medium of a more recent release this is a decent choice. There's nothing pretentious or complicated about it just what felt like well-researched classic WWII naval story-telling which, as it turned out, was just what I needed!

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  • S. Morris
  • 03-04-21

Satisfying

As someone who has been fascinated by submarines and therefore submarine warfare, I decided to go check out Audible to see what books they now had relating to submarines. It had been a while since I'd last checked, and sure enough, Audible had expanded their catalogue yet again to include more titles relating to my interest.

The U.S Pacific submarine campaign and its target rich environment as well as infiltrations into enemy waters offered the best promise for good fictional material. I was very impressed with my accidental find, over a year ago, of the Crash Dive series of books written by-Craig DiLouie that were set in the World War II Pacific campaign. Incidentally, I'd recommend anyone looking for such submarine fiction to check out his books. You can get all six in a single purchase here on Audible.

So, as I was searching for some fresh World War II submarine fiction, I decided to give Wolf pack 351 a go. I was glad I did.

Cooke has crafted a satisfying story here, basing elements of it on actual events, albeit-with some alterations. Where Cooke scored over the aforementioned DiLouie's books, was in the technical accuracy. Where Cooke loses out to DiLouie, I feel, is in the visceral action set pieces. That's not to say this story was deficient in that regard, no. I just think the Crash Dive series had the edge there. DiLouie made some glaring technical errors, nothing most people would probably notice, but which submarine geeks would. Cooke, on the other hand, has an understanding of the more technical aspects, which is satisfying to see for someone like me.

I also liked that Cooke represented the Japanese perspective in this story, giving us some solid characters to balance out the book. Too many such novels focus entirely on the "good guys" without allowing us to understand the antagonists. I wish there were more balanced stories like this. I find it makes for more interesting reading.

The story itself is also satisfying, if a little slow to really get going. It was clear to me that Cooke drew upon elements of the classic "Das Boot" in respect of some of the dire situations faced and the solutions used to deal with them from our submarine heroes.

The narrator, Tim Campbell, did a decent job. I was especially impressed with his proper pronunciation of all Japanese words. However, my only gripe with his otherwise competent reading was that he was too rushed. At times, he would accelerate into a near staccato of words, as if in a hurry to finish the sentence. This fast reading sometimes made for situations where I had to rewind a little as I missed what was being said while I absorbed the previous sentence. He tended to speed up during narrative sections and slow a little during dialogue. Also, he oddly pronounced the word "been" as "Ben" in his haste to get the words out, or so it sounded to me.

As usual in my reviews, I have to point out the small errors which always surprise me how they escape the proof reading process. Near the start of the story, a character lights a cigar and later puts out his cigarette. In the latter part of the book, one of our heroes is inside a small hut on a enemy held island and keeping down as Japanese soldiers outside riddle the hut with bullets. Then, they turn their fire away from him to deal with a new threat. However, the story states that they turned their fire away from the "sub". Yes, simple errors, I grant you, but there you go :)

I enjoyed Wolf pack 351. It lacked the gunng-ho overt all-American pie patriotism sometimes found in similar fictional war stories and I appreciate that. It was a story well told of fighting men on both sides of the war. I also appreciated the historical note at the end of the book. I would like to see another story featuring the same protagonists and perhaps even a rematch between the American and Japanese captains.

1 person found this helpful