Reviews

"I enjoyed this book immensely. It was fast-paced, exciting, filled with the untold yet in no way unglamorous adventures and perilous day-to-day existence of the United States Air Force ... This is one of the best historical books I have read."
The San Francisco Book Review (April 16, 2013)

"Keeney’s passion is to unearth the lost voices of American history  -- stories of unselfish sacrifice, as he calls them -- and through those voices bring out the character of the nation we live in today."

 

St. Martin's Press/Macmillan

15 Minutes: General Curtis LeMay and The Countdown to Nuclear Annihilation

(St.Martin's Press/Macmillan) 



“This is the best book ever written on the political and military influence that nuclear weapons have had on American policy.”—Col. Walter J. Boyne, USAF (Ret.), Former Director of the National Air & Space Museum

"A jolting year-by-year history of Strategic Air Command's transformation into a massive worldwide force primed to launch bombers within 15 minutes of the order."Publishers Weekly

"A chilling and unsettling account of accidents, oversights, errors in planning, and other mistakes and misjudgments by the military and its civilian masters...sobering and recommended."Library Journal

"Such dedication to dangerous work...deserves to be recognized and honored. Thanks to Mr. Keeney, it now is."The Wall Street Journal

One of the most revealing works on the atom bomb ever written.” The Sarasota Herald-Tribune

“In the midst of a new era of nuclear worry, the Cold War appears ever more surreal in  memory….therein lies the virtue of Keeney’s marvelous chronological account….the logic of the Cold War was cold indeed, but irrational it was not.” Maclean’s

 A fascinating look at the United States nuclear capabilities at a critical period.” The Courier-Journal

“Brilliantly written, and engrossing…Keeney’s book shows us the world beyond the press-releases of American propaganda…a must-read for anybody interested in the Cold War.” –Portland Book Review

“The power of Keeney’s book lies in his determination to avoid excess emotion and stick to the facts – facts that, God knows, are themselves emotive enough. You finish this book a little numbed, though with a strange sense of hope: If mankind can get through years like these and learn the lessons, perhaps it can get through anything.”Bloomberg News

“Along with David Hoffman’s The Dead Hand, Keeney’s book is yet another chilling reminder of the enormous gamble of Cold War deterrence.” Foreign Affairs

From the Publisher:

One of the most detailed pictures yet of the complex, ultra secret, ultra deadly world of nuclear war, 15 MINUTES shows how the bomb was used both as a tool of diplomacy and as a weapon to maintain a dangerous truce that lasted for almost fifty years. Based on 10 years of research and thousands of pages of formerly classified documents, the interrelated world of early warning, nuclear weapons testing, and instant retaliation with devastating lethality were connected in ways not previously documented, and not always with good results. But more than weapons and steel, here are the people of the Cold War – the bomber pilots, the radar navigators, the signal-ferreting ravens; the scientists, radar scope dopes and the thousands more that were tasked with testing, transporting, and delivering the bombs the scientists made. Based on formerly classified documents, military records, press accounts, interviews with participants conducted by the author and over 10 years of research and writing, this is one of the most important works on atom war ever written.




The Nile River and the Sinai Pennisula

Lights of Mankind: The Earth at Night As Seen From Space

 

(Lyons Press/Globe Pequot) 

 

“Earthbound folks rarely get the chance to see how the planet's city lights glow from space. Several years ago, however, author L. Douglas Keeney noticed pictures being tweeted by astronauts on the International Space Station. The clear images of Earth's city lights were made possible by new camera technology that was able to shoot high-resolution photos even as the station moved at a rapid 17,500 miles an hour some 240 miles above Earth's surface. Keeney then got to work, pouring through more than 300,000 unmarked NASA photo, choosing 400 of the best images for his book the Lights of Mankind: The Earth at Night as Seen from Space.” —BusinessInsider.com  

 

“A new book collects images that offer a different look at the Earth from space, when sunlight is replaced by the lights of human civilization. Lights of Mankind provides a sampling of some of the best such nighttime imagery from six continents. Many cities are visible in sharp detail, revealing their network of roads and patterns of development, from grids to hubs-and spokes to more irregular patterns, that are much harder to see during the day. Keeney matches the images with brief captions describing the images and including in many cases capsule histories of those cities. Included in the book are several essays from astronauts who have flown on the ISS, providing their views of what it was like to view, and photograph, the Earth at night.” —Space Review

“Imagining what Earth must look like from orbit leaves me almost breathless. And I had that feeling after looking through the amazing images in Lights of Mankind: The Earth at Night as Seen from Space.” —Kim D. Kolarik, The Courier-Journal (Louisville)

The books’s Earth-at-night photography as reviewed by the media:

“Stunning images.” —New York Daily News

"Earthlings are seeing their planet in a whole new light, thanks to NASA and its astronauts aboard the Internet-wired space station. They're beaming down dazzling images and guess-this-mystery-location photos via Twitter and have even launched a game. Landlubbers the world over are eating it up. From schoolchildren to grown-up business entrepreneurs and artists, the public is captivated and can't seem to get enough."  —Huffington Post

 

 

“Photos and thoughts beamed down from the International Space Station via Twitter are raising goose bumps across the planet.” —Daily Telegram

"For decades people have found themselves transixed by photos of Earth from space, enjoying a switch in perspective that stimulates the mind and awakens a sense of mystery."  —The Telegram

 

From the Publisher:

Lights of Mankind is the story of how we’ve populated our planet as told through inspiring, panoramic photographs of Earth at night, images made possible by the latest light-sensitive cameras and the newly installed Cupola observation module on the International Space Station. These photos, taken by astronauts from the largest window ever used in space, have already awed hundreds of thousands of people.

This book includes first-person perspectives by the astronauts themselves—Don Pettit, Douglas Wheelock, Mario Runco Jr., Clayton “Clay” Anderson, and Sandra Magnus.

 



The Pointblank Directive

(Osprey/London) 

 

  "A well written history..."  Publishers Weekly

"Keeney, a veteran author on WWII, relates the story of the successful air offensive that broke the back of the German air force in the spring of 1944 and paved the way for Allied victory in WWII. Keeney’s history of Operation Pointblank differs from others in his emphasis on the operation’s connection to the overall campaign against Germany in Western Europe. He demonstrates how the air victory enabled the successful landings on D-Day and further allowed the Allied armies to prosecute their land campaign with the comfortable knowledge that there was no threat to them from the air. Keeney explores how an Allied air campaign that was failing badly in November 1943 achieved total victory a mere five months later through new leadership, new technology, and most important, by jettisoning old tactics in favor of aggressive fighter sweeps that took the battle to the Luftwaffe everywhere. Among many personal stories of aerial combat, he makes the important point that victory in the air cannot be fully appreciated without understanding how critical it was to winning the decisive battle on the ground: D-Day. Keeney’s well-written history is aimed at a general audience, but experts will find it an enjoyable read." Publishers Weekly

"A thoroughly satisfying read: informative and entertaining. What is always mind-boggling is the sacrifice made in any war. Pointblank Directive shows quite clearly what the airwar leading up to D-Day cost both sides of the conflict. More importantly, it fills a needed gap in knowledge of exactly how critical the proper air campaign can be in determining the ground conflict. Historians and students of World War II history alike will be well-served reading this book." 
—Bernie Chowdhury, author of The Last Dive: A Father and Son's Fatal Descent into the Ocean's Depths (Harper)

"The Pointblank Directive is a richly textured portrait of air power and leadership, possibly the last untold story of D-Day. Using extensive new research, Keeney carefully reconstructs the events that led up to the success of that battle."
—Savannah Jones, www.sirreadalot.org

"...comes from a historian who considers the politics and personalities of The Pointblank Directive and how it become one of the most amazing military come-backs in history. By raid's end some forty percent of the Allied planes had been shot down. The story of how forces recovered from these heavy losses and flew to victory against impossible odds makes this a powerful account of strategic air command decision-making processes, battles, and close encounters, offering a fresh analysis of how The Pointblank Directive changed the world."
The Midwest Book Review (March 2013)

"I enjoyed this book immensely. It was fast-paced, exciting, filled with the untold yet in no way unglamorous adventures and perilous day-to-day existence of the United States Air Force ... This is one of the best historical books I have read."
The San Francisco Book Review (April 16, 2013)

 

LOST IN THE PACIFIC (Courier/Premier)

"Lost in the Pacific: Epic Firsthand Accounts of WWII Survival Against Impossible Odds" by L Douglas Keeney is an amazing account of several pilots who survived unthinkable conditions and odds after crashing with their planes.
As the foreword rightfully points out, these are not adventures but stories of hard battles against the elements, hostile wildlife and other factors. For every one of these lucky ones there are two dead pilots.

"Being told by the survivors themselves these stories are amazing reading, giving a gripping insight into the minds of these resilient, determined and ultimately lucky men.It serves as a great illustration of the state of aviation at the time and the kind of circumstances one actually finds in life threatening accidents.

"Very well written and edited this is extremely fascinating, eye opening and makes you appreciate how close to death those heroic pilots were all of the time. Very impressive."
ChristophFisherBooks, I reviewed this book for netgalley.

 “…captivating, real, human. Epic!"

Aviation News Journal

As a former fighter pilot, I couldn't put this book down!”  James Murphy, Author, Courage to Execute

"If you value courage and honor, you’ll love Keeney’s new page turner Lost in the Pacific. He’s collected for us, stories of true valor as told by our national treasure-the American warrior. While the tales are from one war in particular, the lessons and the show of determination can teach us for generations to come.This book is a must read book for all who value our freedom."

 Col. Walter Herd, USA (Ret.), Commander, Joint Special Operations Forces, Afghanistan,  Author Unconventional Warrior

 

From the Lost in the Pacific

Both wings of the aircraft were broken off when it hit the water and the cockpit was submerged instantly.  I pulled the canopy emergency release, which failed…”  - Capt. E.L. Davidson, Pilot

An instant after I had gotten in, I saw two fins sticking out of the water and heading directly for me.  I figured they were sharks but I couldn’t see them very well even though they passed so close to my boat that I could have touched them with my hand….” – Staff Sergeant W.I. Coffeen, Marine

 The constant pounding of the waves was nerve-wracking and I soon started cussing at them…and the cussing gave way to screaming, and then I got hold of myself.  I stopped and prayed for strength to withstand the merciless pounding.” – Lieut. G. Smith, USNR

 

The Eleventh Hour

The eleventh hour (Turner/Wiley)

"This is solid, revealing, well-researched history of a fascinating and pivotal period in WWII."

Booklist, March 2015

"In this brief volume, popular military-historian Keeney describes the discussions and negotiations leading up to the D-Day invasion. He focuses on internal disagreements within the American leadership, for example, on whether George Marshall or Dwight Eisenhower would command the invasion forces, and, even more compellingly, on differences between the Big Three—the U.S., England, and the Soviet Union—on how to conduct the war’s endgame. Describing the secret meetings aboard the U.S. battleship Iowa and the elaborate and perilous arrangements resulting in the summit at Tehran, Keeney provides both military and personal insight into FDR, Churchill, and Stalin. He offers abundant evidence of Churchill’s stubbornness in fighting for a second Mediterranean front, even if it were to delay the cross-channel invasion, and presents a convincing and revisionist view of Stalin as a reasonable and even jovial force in the discussions, though in no way minimizing the leadership of FDR and his military leaders. This is solid, revealing, well-researched history of a fascinating and pivotal period in WWII."

— Mark Levine