A better view of Susie-Q’s attack on Akagi

The hardback version of "Midway Bravery" is now in its third edition, a little more than a month after the initial release. Such is the freedom and flexibility of self-publishing.

The second edition corrected a passel of typos that I discovered in the first edition. Repeating myself, these were not the fault of my editor, who I hired for developmental editing. That is, he took a high-level view of the book, helping to improve narrative flow, suggesting "wordy" parts that didn't help the story that could be cut to meet my word-count goal, etc. Given the press of a deadline imposed by an external event and my need to concentrate on my wife's care during her serious illness, the book simply didn't get the line editing that it should have gotten. And that I strive for, based on a quarter-century of experience as a newspaper reporter, 20 years of which were in the Billings Gazette newsroom where copy editors put a fine polish on my articles.

"Midway Bravery" got further refinement in its third edition, which corrected style issues, the kinds of things that journalists worry about and probably most readers don't notice. For example: both Associated Press style (the newspaper bedrock) and the Chicago Manual of Style (which guides authors and their editors working with most types of nonfiction) specific how newspaper names are to be displayed. They are supposed to appear in italic type. I missed some of those italic instances through two editions and hope that's fixed now.

Soon, the paperback version of the book will come out. It has one improvement, a larger image of Jim Muri's drawing of his plane's attack on the Japanese carrier Akagi. No photographs were taken, and Japanese eyewitness accounts sometimes confused the four B-26s that hugged the ocean as they approached Admiral Nagumo's fleet. Thus, Jim's drawing and his description of the event in after-battle interviews have provided the basis for artistic depictions of Susie-Q's flight ever since. Including Robert Perry's artwork for the "Midway Bravery" cover.

For the benefit of those who've purchased earlier editions of the book, here's Jim's drawing in a size that should allow you to better visualize the valor of his attack.

After the Battle of Midway, Jim Muri used his memory to draw this depiction of Susie-Q’s attack against Akagi, which as “Midway Bravery” explains, helped win one of the greatest battles in world naval history.

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