Synopses & Reviews
They came together, citizen soldiers, in the summer of 1942, drawn to Airborne by the $50 monthly bonus and a desire to be better than the other guy. And at its peak -- in Holland and the Ardennes -- Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Divison, U.S. Army, was as good a rifle company as any in the world.
From the rigorous training in Georgia in 1942 to the disbanding in 1945, Stephen Ambrose tells the story of this remarkable company. In combat, the reward for a job well done is the next tough assignment, and as they advanced through Europe, the men of Easy kept getting the tough assignments.
They parachuted into France early D-Day morning and knocked out a battery of four 105 mm cannon looking down Utah Beach; they parachuted into Holland during the Arnhem campaign; they were the Battered Bastards of the Bastion of Bastogne, brought in to hold the line, although surrounded, in the Battle of the Bulge; and then they spearheaded the counteroffensive. Finally, they captured Hitler's Bavarian outpost, his Eagle's Nest at Berchtesgaden.
They were rough-and-ready guys, battered by the Depression, mistrustful and suspicious. They drank too much French wine, looted too many German cameras and watches, and fought too often with other GIs. But in training and combat they learned selflessness and found the closest brotherhood they ever knew. They discovered that in war, men who loved life would give their lives for them.
This is the story of the men who fought, of the martinet they hated who trained them well, and of the captain they loved who led them. E Company was a company of men who went hungry, froze, and died for each other, a company that took 150 percent casualties, a company where the Purple Heart was not a medal -- it was a badge of office.
"Ambrose narrates in vivid detail the adventures, misadventures, triumphs and tragedies of a single U.S. Army infantry company over its span of organizational life....This is a terrific read for WW II actions buffs." Publishers Weekly
"Full of insights into the nature of comradeship, as well as brutally frank description: noise, stench, discomfort, hunger and fear are all there, tied together in a masterly narrative flow." The Times Literary Supplement
"If a library could make only one purchase covering the American soldier in combat during World War II in Europe, this would be the book." Library Journal
They came together in the summer of 1942. At its peak, Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, U.S. Army was as good a rifle company as any in the world.
From their rigorous training in Georgia to D-Day and on to victory in World War II, Ambrose tells the story of this remarkable company. Their only reward for a job well done is another tough assignment. Finally, they captured Hitler's Bavarian outpost -- his Eagle's Nest in Berchtesgaden.
Drawing on hours of interviews with survivors as well as the soldiers' journals and letters, Ambrose recounts the stories, often in the men's own words, of these American heroes.
On the bloody battlefields of World War II Europe, Easy Company, 506th Airborne Division, U.S. Army, got the toughest missions. As good a rifle company as any in the world, Easy was always in the thick of the fight -- from parachuting into France under a hellish crossfire early D-Day morning, to the final capture of Hitler's supposedly impregnable Eagle's Nest at Berchtesgaden.
"New York Times" bestselling author Stephen E. Ambrose tells of the men in this brave unit who fought, went hungry, froze, and died for their country, and for one another -- taking 150 percent casualties and earning Purple Hearts as combat pay. Drawing on interviews with survivors as well as the soldiers' journals and letters, Ambrose chronicles the gripping true stories of these American heroes.