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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16114998 05/25/21
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The Chief Culprit by Suvorov

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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115116 05/25/21
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"Company Commander" by Charles B. MacDonald

On the ground with a young captain as he learns his trade in the Battle of the Bulge.

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jerseyboy] #16115165 05/25/21
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Originally Posted by Remington40x
Victor Davis Hanson's "The Second World Wars" is a very good overview of the entire WWII era, including the events leading up to the "war" as Americans understand it.

Originally Posted by Jerseyboy
I like Victor Davis Hanson. Here's a link to one of his books entitled The Second World Wars:



Another vote for the Second World Wars. I'm almost finished with it. Very, very good. But it may be more conceptional than what the OP is seeking.

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115178 05/25/21
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My favorite book covering all of WWII is “Inferno” by Max Hastings.

Two of the best on the gritty details of the entire European aspect of the war, if that’s what you’re looking for are: “The Storm of War” by Andrew Roberts and “The Second World War” by Anthony Beevor.

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: kaywoodie] #16115187 05/25/21
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Originally Posted by kaywoodie
The Fall Of France by Dr. Julian Jackson.

A concise and clear understanding of just exactly what happen in May, June 1940 without all the stereotypical BS. If you are interested in understanding history get the complete story.


I haven't read that, but my favorite book covering that, or any other, single WWII campaign is "To Lose A Battle" by Alistair Horne.

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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: JeffyD] #16115203 05/25/21
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Originally Posted by JeffyD
The best book I have read about WW II in Europe is "The Last 100 Days" by John Toland. It was published in 1964, and the author interviewed many of the men involved, including Generals and Field Marshals from both sides of the conflict.


I agree. It's very, very good. My favorite Toland book, though, probably is "Battle: The Story of the Bulge." It's right up the OP's alley with incredible and very interesting details of the tactics and operational developments in the BoB.

Another superb one with similarly-excellent tactical detail. is John Keegan's "Six Armies in Normandy"--about D-Day and the rest of the 1944 campaign.

The best WWII book I ever read, in terms of making you feel like you actually were there, is "Islands of the Damned: A Marine at War in the Pacific" by Romus Valton "R.V." Burgin. But, obviously, that's not about Europe.

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115212 05/25/21
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Two books by Robert Leckie, neither analytical but personal to some extent:

Helmet for My Pillow, personal account of the author's experience on Guadalcanal, Peleliu, and more.

Strong Men Armed, accounts of all the Marine and Navy Corpsmen Medal of Honor recipients.


Last edited by Son_of_the_Gael; 05/25/21.

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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115214 05/25/21
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Any of the After the Battle Then & Now series are well done. J.P. Pallud & Jeff Plowman are the better authors but all the books are interesting.

Here's the catalog.

https://www.afterthebattle.com/books/books.html

You can likely get them cheaper from your favorite bookseller.

This guy has lots of good stuff at fair prices...

http://www.aberdeenbookstore.com/


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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: GunGeek] #16115296 05/25/21
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Originally Posted by GunGeek
Two best WWII books (for overall war, rather than specific battles).

The Second World War, John Keegan
The Second World War, Martin Gilbert

Two of the UK's finest historian, both give great coverage. Gilbert's book gives a lot more detail and it's about twice as thick.

John Keegan, unlike many other authors, includes the effect of the Allies breaking the Axis codes in his analysis. And Keegan's writing is terrifically readable.

Pat Buchanan's work is indispensable
:Churchill, Hitler, and "The Unnecessary War": How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World
https://www.amazon.com/Churchill-Hitler-Unnecessary-War-Britain/dp/0307405168

And if you really want some of the real, primary sources, David Irving is the man who dug them up.
http://fpp.co.uk/
https://irvingbooks.com/xcart/

An example is HItler's War
https://irvingbooks.com/xcart/product.php?productid=18101&cat=0&bestseller=Y

Churchill's War, vol i: The Struggle for Power
https://irvingbooks.com/xcart/product.php?productid=17896&cat=0&bestseller=Y


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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: jfruser] #16115332 05/25/21
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Originally Posted by jfruser
... John Keegan, unlike many other authors, includes the effect of the Allies breaking the Axis codes in his analysis. And Keegan's writing is terrifically readable.


I completely agree wholeheartedly, but I think VDH's "The Second World Wars" may be the most articulate in making the case for how and why the code breaking was so immensely material to the outcome. He spends a fair amount of time on it and gives the accurate picture of how the bad guys were fighting blind, and we weren't. Keegan's books all are awesome though, no doubt.

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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115825 05/25/21
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Thanks for all of the recommendations so far. Obviously I can't read these all at once but this will make good list to start working through.


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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115937 05/25/21
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Louisiana legislature just passed an act that WW 2 and the Holocaust will be taught in Louisiana high schools.


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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16115987 05/25/21
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I second Company Commander by Charles Macdonald and The Second World Wars by Victor Davis Hanson, both excellent books although very different in approach. Company Commander is a description of Macdonalds's personal experiences commanding a rifle company in Europe while Hanson's book is a high level analysis of the war in all aspects.

I would also recommend A War to be Won by Williamson Murray and Allan Millet, another high level analysis of the war.

Perhaps the best personal narratives I have read of the war in Europe are four books by Donald Burgett. Perhaps the best of these is Seven Roads to Hell which deals with his experiences in the Battle of the Bulge as a member of the 101st Airborne. These are great and sometimes hair raising books.

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16116214 05/25/21
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Here are two great books about the Guadalcanal campaign which was the turning point of the war in the Pacific.

Guadalcanal: The Definitive Account of the Landmark Battle. By Richard Frank

Neptunes Inferno by James Hornfischer

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16116233 05/25/21
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Anthony Beevor. has written a number of great books on the war

https://www.amazon.com/Stalingrad-F...ngrad+book&qid=1621998641&sr=8-1


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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16116335 05/25/21
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Should be a good one on how the “canucks” won the war. whistle


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Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16116370 05/25/21
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"Quartered Safe Out Here" 2007, George MacDonald Fraser. He wrote the Flashman series. This is about his experience as an enlisted British infantry soldier in Burma fighting the Japanese to the end of the WWII. He thought the old Enfield SMLE was a great rifle and shot some of the enemy with it. A lot of what the people in his squad, England and the world were like then compared to what it was 60 years later.

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16120621 05/27/21
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https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7694525-the-peenem-nde-wind-tunnels

A friend who is a history buff recomended this book .

Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16162615 06/11/21
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Originally Posted by Jim in Idaho
Looking for some quality reading material about WWII. Mostly interested in the ground war in Europe but any decent historical account is good.

Looking for good analytical history with a good strategic and especially tactical overview that also gets into the personal experiences of the participants. Stephen Ambrose's "Citizen Soldiers" and "Band of Brothers" are decent examples.

Sledge's "With the Old Breed" and George's "Shots Fired In Anger" are good personal accounts (great personal account in the former) but I'd like to get into more big picture type material while trying to avoid books like one about which this reviewer states, "This is a very difficult book to review. Because there is some really good wheat buried in some really uninspiring chaff. I agree with other reviewers that the writing style is dry and reeks of bureaucratic military lifelessness..."

I know there are at least one or two history buffs here so let me know what you recommend.



Added: I'm trying to remember the title of one book mentioned here a while ago - "The Army Learns to Fight" or "An Army Goes to War", something like that, about lessons learned by our inexperienced forces in North Africa and how those were applied later on. That's a general idea of what I'm looking for.


An Army at Dawn

Quote
The liberation of Europe and the destruction of the Third Reich is a story of courage and enduring triumph, of calamity and miscalculation. In this first volume of the Liberation Trilogy, Rick Atkinson shows why no modern reader can understand the ultimate victory of the Allied powers without a grasp of the great drama that unfolded in North Africa in 1942 and 1943. That first year of the Allied war was a pivotal point in American history, the moment when the United States began to act like a great power.

Beginning with the daring amphibious invasion in November 1942, An Army at Dawn follows the American and British armies as they fight the French in Morocco and Algeria, and then take on the Germans and Italians in Tunisia. Battle by battle, an inexperienced and sometimes poorly led army gradually becomes a superb fighting force. Central to the tale are the extraordinary but fallible commanders who come to dominate the battlefield: Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley, Montgomery, and Rommel.

Brilliantly researched, rich with new material and vivid insights, Atkinson's narrative provides the definitive history of the war in North Africa.


Originally Posted by jorgeI
...Actually Sycamore, you are sort of right....
Re: Good WWII history books [Re: Jim in Idaho] #16162680 06/11/21
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All 4 books by Donald R. Burgett of the 101st:
Normandy
Holland
Bastogne
Germany

https://www.amazon.com/Donald-R-Burgett/e/B001HPCVZO/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_book_1

Band of Brothers
Steven Ambrose's D-Day


As mentioned earlier:
Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors
Shattered Sword


Moe

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