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D-Day: The Battle for Normandyby Antony Beevor
Synopses & Reviews
The prizewinning historian and bestselling author of D-Day and Stalingrad reconstructs the Battle of the Bulge in World War II, in this riveting new account
On December 16, 1944, Hitler launched his last gamble in the snow-covered forests and gorges of the Ardennes in Belgium, believing he could split the Allies by driving all the way to Antwerp and forcing the Canadians and the British out of the war. Although his generals were doubtful of success, younger officers and NCOs were desperate to believe that their homes and families could be saved from the vengeful Red Army approaching from the east. Many were exultant at the prospect of striking back.
The allies, taken by surprise, found themselves fighting two panzer armies. Belgian civilians abandoned their homes, justifiably afraid of German revenge. Panic spread even to Paris. While some American soldiers, overwhelmed by the German onslaught, fled or surrendered, others held on heroically, creating breakwaters which slowed the German advance.
The harsh winter conditions and the savagery of the battle became comparable to the Eastern Front. In fact the Ardennes became the Western Fronts counterpart to Stalingrad. There was terrible ferocity on both sides, driven by desperation and revenge, in which the normal rules of combat were breached. The Ardennes—involving more than a million men—would prove to be the battle which finally broke the back of the Wehrmacht.
In this deeply researched work, with striking insights into the major players on both sides, Antony Beevor gives us the definitive account of the Ardennes offensive which was to become the greatest battle of World War II.
"Beevor has established a solid reputation as a chronicler of WWII's great eastern front battles: Stalingrad and Berlin. In addressing D-Day, he faces much wider competition with historians like Stephen Ambrose and Max Hastings, who also use his method of integrating personal experiences, tactical engagements, operational intentions and strategic plans. Beevor combines extensive archival research with a remarkable sense of the telling anecdote: he quotes, for example, an officer's description of the 'bloody mass of arms and legs and heads, [and] cremated corpses' created by artillery fire as the Germans tried to escape the Allied breakout. He is sharply critical of senior commanders on both sides: Bernard Montgomery's conceit; Adolf Hitler's self-delusion; Dwight Eisenhower's mediocrity. His heroes are the men who took the invasion ashore and carried it forward into Normandy in the teeth of a German defense whose skill and determination deserved a better cause. The result was a battle of attrition: a 'bloody slog' that tested British and American fighting power to the limit — but not beyond. Beevor says that it wasn't Allied forces' material superiority but their successful use of combined arms and their high learning curve that were decisive in a victory that shaped postwar Europe. Maps, illus." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
From critically acclaimed world historian Beevor comes the first major account in more than 20 years to cover the whole Normandy invasion, from June 6, 1944, right up to the liberation of Paris on August 25 of the same year. b&w photo insert; 17 maps.
The Penguin History of Europe series reaches the twentieth century with acclaimed scholar Ian Kershawand#8217;s long-anticipated analysis of the pivotal years of World War I and World War II
The European catastrophe, the long continuous period from 1914 to1949, was unprecedented in human historyand#151;an extraordinarily dramatic, often traumatic, and endlessly fascinating period of upheaval and transformation. This new volume in the Penguin History of Europe series offers comprehensive coverage of this tumultuous era. Beginning with the outbreak of World War I through the rise of Hitler and the aftermath of the Second World War, award-winning British historian Ian Kershaw combines his characteristic original scholarship and gripping prose as he profiles the key decision makers and the violent shocks of war as they affected the entire European continent and radically altered the course of European history. Kershaw identifies four major causes for this catastrophe: an explosion of ethnic-racist nationalism, bitter and irreconcilable demands for territorial revisionism, acute class conflict given concrete focus through the Bolshevik Revolution, and a protracted crisis of capitalism.
Incisive, brilliantly written, and filled with penetrating insights, To Hell and Back offers an indispensable study of a period in European history whose effects are still being felt today.and#160;
Unabridged CDs ? 14 CDs, 18 hours
The definitive account of the Normandy invasion by the bestselling author of Stalingrad and The Fall of Berlin 1945.
About the Author
Antony Beevor is the bestselling author of five nonfiction books, including The Battle for Spain, which won the La Vanguardia Prize, Paris After the Liberation: 1944-1949, Stalingrad, which won the Samuel Johnson Prize, the Wolfson Prize for History, and the Hawthornden Prize for Literature, and The Fall of Berlin 1945, which received the first Longman-History Today Trustees' Award.
Table of Contents
D-Day List of Illustrations and Maps
1. The Decision
2. Bearing the Cross of Lorraine
3. Watch on the Channel
4. Sealing off the Invasion Area
5. The Airborne Assault
6. The Armada Crosses
8. Utah and the Airborne
9. Gold and Juno
11. Securing the Beachheads
12. Failure at Caen
14. The Americans on the Cotentin Peninsula
15. Operation Epsom
16. The Battle of the Bocage
17. Caen and the Hill of Calvary
18. The Final Battle for Saint-Lô
19. Operation Goodwood
20. The Plot Against Hitler
21. Operation Cobra - Breakthrough
22. Operation Cobra - Breakout
23. Brittany and Operation Bluecoat
24. The Mortain Counter-attack
25. Operation Totalize
26. The Hammer and Anvil
27. The Killing Ground of the Falaise Pocket
28. The Paris Uprising and the Race for the Seine
29. The Liberation of Paris
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