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Author Topic: WWII Book Review  (Read 19034 times)

Offline Helen

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WWII Book Review
« on: September 10, 2011, 11:49:26 PM »
Hello fellow adventurers. I was asked if I could start a new sticky with the above title.

So we can get the ball rolling so to speak we need to have a few guidelines.

Books that are reviewed must have mainly WWII content or be strongly related to WWII in a way that it would benefit the readers of this sub-section.

Wierd War II and What If stuff have its own section on the forum.

Books that are furthering revisionism or the like are not allowed. Moreover, books with a political content and in a WWII historical context are allowed.

Examples of interesting books that would be allowed: Uniform literature, Armoured Battles of WWII, Osprey series, WWII Battle Sites of Europa, Spanish Voulenteers on the Eastern Front, Historical OOB's etc.

Please remember if posting pictures you must insure you follow the guidlines set out in the use of symbols:

http://leadadventureforum.com/index.php?topic=9125.0

I hope you will find this thread informative as reviews are submitted for comment.

Cheers,

Helen


Offline Anatoli

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2011, 06:42:16 PM »
Great idea  :)

Offline Jim French

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2011, 09:56:39 PM »
Okay.  A quick review of Gordon Rottman's US Combat Engineer in Osprey's Warrior Series.
As a WWII gamer, I found Rottman's book to be an excellent source on the organization, equipment, and capabilities of the WWII US combat engineer.
Our group recently ran a NWE game and deployed two US engineer squads.  They were not organized as they shiould have been, but now with the new information they will be.
We found the list of MOSes and the different sets of equipment for Construction and demolition most useful for future planning. 

Offline Arrigo

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2011, 09:49:44 PM »
Very quick review of a book I recently read.

Attack on Pearl Harbor by Alan D. Zimm

The author is a former Operational Researcher for the US Navy the attack is dissected in planning, execution, objective and evaluation. Lot of wargaming stuff like damage modelling, attack procedures and hit percentage. He also discuss japanese wargaming prior to the operation and his points have much more sense than Fuchida and Prange (and he completes Parshall and Tully exposure of Fuchida the liar...).

He made interesting comment about selection of targets (BBs were the main objective Carriers were just an after tought), lack of proficency by Japanese pilots and lot of problem in the entire operation. Also defective and wrong japanese loads (Egusa's 16 Val wasted their non armor piercing bombs on the Nevada, several torpedo planes fixated on the target  ship Utah).

All in all a very interesting reading and a perfect primer to WW2 naval combat for the wargamer.


Note: as an historian I would call it "revisionist" because he challenge several accepted "truth" about pearl harbor, but every new historical research is a revision of previous knowledge. I fear a certain british author has tainted the term as can we, please please, switch from "revisionist" (itself a neutral term) to a better definition of what cannot be posted? 
"Put Grant straight in"

Offline Keith

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2011, 11:54:39 PM »
I'll start with one of my absolute favourites.

'With The Jocks' - A Soldiers Struggle For Europe 1944-45. Peter White.

A vivid and graphic account written by an officer at the sharp end of the KOSB actions, from the battle for Walcheren right through to the bitter end at Bremen. Very readable, full of detail, sad, gripping and very worthwhile. Lots of details of the actions and people involved.

The original manuscript was apparently hidden away for 50 years.

Highly recommended. A book that I come back to often.
An infrequent Blog http://small-wars.com

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Offline Arrigo

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2011, 07:57:41 PM »
Two other interesting read thanks to SOAS library:

"The Battle for Wau" and "On To Salamua" by Mark Philip Bradley. Cracking good stuff. They have to be read in roder and you get a feeling of the Salamua campaign. First class historical writing with awesome maps (especially in Wau) and good referencing. You have also one action involving the Papuan Regiment.

Have to say I am really impressed by the book published by the Australian Army Historical Unit.

Arrigo

Offline H.M.Stanley

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2011, 08:31:53 PM »
"Quartered Safe out here" George MacDonald Fraser

The Flashman Chronicles author's experiences with the Northumbrian Reg't against the Japanese
"Ho, ho, ho! Well, if it isn't fat stinking billy goat Billy Boy in poison! How art thou, thou globby bottle of cheap, stinking chip oil? Come and get one in the yarbles, if ya have any yarbles, you eunuch jelly thou!"

Offline Jim French

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2011, 10:04:47 PM »
If you can find a copy, I highly recommend Behind the Burma Road, by Peers and Brelis.  This is the story of OSS Detachment 101.  Showing how they worked with the local populations, e.g., the Kachins, against the Japanese.  An excellent read.

Offline Cubs

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2013, 09:32:27 AM »
In the same vein, 'Beyond the Chindwin' by Bernard Fergusson is a superb, first-hand account of the first major Chindit operation, 'Operation Longcloth'. It is written by the column commander, from diary notes his own recollection and, unusually, was written just days after the operation itself in 1943, so the information is still fresh in the author's mind.

It is not a balanced view of the Chindits or the war, it is an unapologetically subjective story of one column's experiences and I found it completely absorbing. It's not in print any more, but second hand copies can be picked up for under a tenner.
'Sir John ejaculated explosively, sitting up in his chair.' ... 'The Black Gang'.

Paul Cubbin Miniature Painter

Offline Cubs

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2013, 05:22:09 PM »
As a reference book, undoubtably the best I've ever come across is - 'For King and Country: British Airborne Uniforms, Insignia and Equipment in World War II'. It's not cheap (I got mine for a bargain price of £25), but is the single most comprehensive guide I've ever encountered, in any genre.

Offline Londoncopper

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2013, 10:24:23 PM »
Still reading 'Crucible of Fate' by Andy Johnson. It is set in and around Sword beach on D-Day, written by an ex-soldier it is a cracking read featuring both British and German points of view from a number of characters whose stories intertwine.

Offline Helen

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2013, 01:25:34 AM »
"The Last Battle" by Stephen Harding

A well written book by the author detailing an unusual episode during the very last days of the war set in the Austrian Alps in which French honor VIPs are being held in a castle aptly named Schloss itter by SS guards.

The setting is played out in the castle being defended by members of the Austrian resistance, Austrian soldiers in Wehrmacht service, one SS officer, one American Sherman Tank plus crew with four US tank riders and the French honor VIPs against elements  (approx company plus support elements) of the 17th SS Panzer Grenadier Division "Götz von Berlichingen."

This could easily be turned into a scenario for wargamers wishing to game something a little different.



Offline Kane

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2013, 06:38:02 PM »
"The Last Battle" by Stephen Harding

A well written book by the author detailing an unusual episode during the very last days of the war set in the Austrian Alps in which French honor VIPs are being held in a castle aptly named Schloss itter by SS guards.

The setting is played out in the castle being defended by members of the Austrian resistance, Austrian soldiers in Wehrmacht service, one SS officer, one American Sherman Tank plus crew with four US tank riders and the French honor VIPs against elements  (approx company plus support elements) of the 17th SS Panzer Grenadier Division "Götz von Berlichingen."

This could easily be turned into a scenario for wargamers wishing to game something a little different.




I heard about this history. The only time in WWII when Germans fought Germans. Would make an absolutely awesome movie, too.
Daaaaaaaaaaaaah !

Offline dm

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2013, 08:27:42 PM »
Just finished Berlin by Antony Bever and found it a superb read.

Had expected when i first picked it up to be yet another history of the fall of Berlin in 1945 but the book is much,much more than that and covers the late stages of WW2 in Europe in a manner which is hard to put down and covers both the Western and Eastern fronts. Along with the broad sweep of history you are also given individual eye witness accounts of the events from all the nationalities involved in the final stages of the war in Europe from the High command, individual soldiers, through to civillian population.

Well worth a read

Offline manchesterreg

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Re: WWII Book Review
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2016, 06:55:29 PM »
Whilst i realise this is an old post, if anyone wants a PDF copy of my book 'The Holland Patch' about the 2nd Battalion the South Staffordshire Regiment at Arnhem, send me a message with your email, its been published once about 13 years ago, and i was going to republish it, but ill health etc etc kicked it into touch, one thing no maps or pics in the PDF, just a damn good read, if i say so myself.

 

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