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Military & History Books - reviews

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  • Originally posted by Corrupt View Post
    I've read Guderian, he was very informative, but I was thinking of a postwar analysis of the doctrines employed by the various powers.
    GOD, cant you just say the name of the book??

    I have only read Fighting Power, but it is about organizational theory applied to armies.


    • From the city, from the plough - Alexander Baron.

      It's a book based on his experiences of world war two, it's not autobiographical, its fictional, but some events described were so true to life people have worked out who his fictional 5th Battalion of the Wessex regiment are meant to be. Think of it like a WW2 All Quiet on the Western Front. Excellent book,even if some of the behaviour and characters mentioned aren't exactly pleasant reading


      • Arnheim by Anthony Beevor

        A good read on the disastrously poorly planned and performed Market-Garden operation.


        • The Last Battle: The Classic History of the Battle for Berlin

          Cornelius Ryan

          Belated review for a semi-recent read. Was optimistic when grabbing this title due to Ryan's work with The Longest Day and A Bridge Too Far. However, this one left me feeling disappointed. Ryan does masterful work when delving into the complex end-stage political maneuvering between the Allies and German Reich. He draws upon many personal interviews with the involved parties, highlighting the frantic dash to Berlin by the West and then the final decision to let the Soviets take Berlin with thorough analysis on the reasoning. Where Ryan seems to struggle or underwhelm is in the telling of the battle itself, less detailed than his political storytelling the battle seems to rush by in a series of anecdotal account. There is some focus on the Seelow Heights but you really do not get a clear or engaging read on the battle. Overall a decent read on a subject I was interested in, but regretting making this my first choice for a title on the Battle for Berlin.

          Final Verdict:

          6 outta 10 Devil Horns


          • Looking forward to this one coming out:

            Although the French fielded the largest number of Allied troops on the Western Front in the First World War, the story of their soldiers is little known to English readers. The immense size of the French armies, the number of battles they fought, and the enormous losses they incurred, make it difficult for us to comprehend their experience. But we can gain a genuine insight by focusing on one of the defining battles of that war, at Verdun in 1916, and by looking at it through the eyes of a small group of soldiers who served there. That is what Johnathan Bracken does in this meticulously researched, detailed and vivid account. The French 151st Infantry Regiment spent fifty days under fire at Verdun in 1916 and another thirty-five in 1917, and lost 3,200 soldiers killed or wounded. Yet their ordeal was no different from that of hundreds of other infantry units that fought and endured in this meat-grinder of a battle. Their diaries and memoirs tell their story in the most compelling way, and through their words the larger human story of the French soldier during the war comes to life.



            • The French 151st Infantry Regiment spent fifty days under fire at Verdun
              My former regiment during National service
              Plenty of souvenirs and remembrance items in the mess
              Plenty of remembrance days and actions too back then to celebrate the deeds of their ancestors
              Thanks for the link Stonecutter


              • Sounds like this would make a good movie. The French need more such exposure, especially to the anglosphere.


                • Big Week by James Holland

                  An interesting read on the problems faced by the USAAF and RAF during the bombing campaign over Western Europe during late 1943/early 1944 climaxing in what came to be called "big week" - an all out aerial offensive by the USAAF that ended up wrecking the Luftwaffe in time for D-Day.

                  It covers the issues facing the Luftwaffe by that stage of the war - lack of fuel, lack of manpower, lack of training - along with the twin crisis's facing the USAAF and RAF's Bomber Command. Along with this it shows how the switch over to offensive operations by the Eight Air Force's fighter groups saved both allied forces from having to admit defeat.