Category Archives: Books

Luftwaffe X-Planes: German Experimental and Prototype Planes of World War II

by Manfred Griehl

Renowned German aviation specialist Manfred Griehl has collected a unique and valuable selection of photographs of Luftwaffe projects that never made it into battle. They remained on the drawing board or at prototype stage because either they were deemed unsuitable or, as is the case with most of those in this selection, the developers simply ran out of time and the projects never went into production. This fascinating insight into the aviation science of the Third Reich includes rare photographs of Germany’s secret planes.

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Armored Champion: The Top Tanks of World War II

 

 

 

 

 

by Steven J. Zaloga

Armor expert Zaloga enters the battle over the best tanks of World War II with this heavy-caliber blast of a book armed with more than forty years of research. Provocative but fact-based rankings of the tanks that fought the Second World War. Breaks the war into eight periods and declares Tanker’s Choice and Commander’s Choice for each. Champions include the German Panzer IV and Tiger, Soviet T-34, American Pershing, and a few surprises. Compares tanks’ firepower, armor protection, and mobility as well as dependability, affordability, tactics, training, and overall combat performance. Relies on extensive documentation from archives, government studies, and published sources–much of which has never been published in English before. Supported by dozens of charts and diagrams and hundreds of photos.

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Race to the Rhine: Liberating France and the Low Countries 1944-45

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by Leo Marriott, Simon Forty

The speed of the German Blitzkrieg in 1940 and the relative ease with which they brushed aside Allied defenses meant four years of occupation. But in June 1944—this time with American forces—the Allies finally returned for a rematch. The destruction of German forces in Normandy’s Falaise pocket, on August 14,was as quick as the Blitzkrieg had been: by September British troops were in Ghent and Liege; Canadian forces liberated Ostend, and in northeast France Patton’s Third Army was moving rapidly to the German border, taking Rheims on August 29 and Verdun on the 30th. Paris was liberated on August 25th.

The liberation of the Low Countries would not prove as straightforward, however. Operation Market Garden—Montgomery’s brave thrust toward the Rhine at Arnhem—started on September 17 and hoped to end German resistance at a stroke. But it ended in failure on the 25th with over 6,000 paratroopers captured.

V-1 flying bombs had meantime been launched from northern France and the Low Countries from August 1944. During September the more frightening German V-2s began raining in. In late October, belated operations began to clear the Scheldt Estuary and open the port of Antwerp to the Allies, and took nearly a month. Belgium was almost free of the Nazi yoke and the Netherlands looked likely to be cleared before Christmas.

Then, on December 16, came Hitler’s last roll of the dice: a major German counter-offensive in the Ardennes aiming to split the Allied armies and retake Antwerp. It turned out to be their last try: the American defenders held, and finally with better weather, Patton’s army and Allied air superiority told. With the Germans having shot their last bolt, in the spring the Rhine was gained.

Race to the Rhine, a companion volume to The Normandy Battlefields, links modern aerial photography with contemporary illustrations to provide a modern interpretation of the battles, replete with maps, diagrams and photos. It is now 70 years since Western Europe was freed from its occupation, and this book provides a graphic view of how it was accomplished. For those interested in visiting the sites, it supplies a guide to the places that best represent the battles today.

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Atlas of the Eastern Front: 1941-45

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by Robert Kirchubel

The Eastern Front of World War II was a nightmarish episode of human history, on a scale the like of which the world had never seen, and most likely never will see again. This expansive collection of maps offers a visual guide to the theater that decided the fate of the war, spanning the thousands of miles from Berlin to the outskirts of Moscow, Stalingrad, East Prussia and all the way back. The accuracy and detail of the military cartography found in this volume illuminates the enormity of the campaign, revealing the staggering dimensions of distance covered and human losses suffered by both sides.

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The Third Reich in History and Memory

9780190228392

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Third Reich in History and Memory

by Richard J. Evans

In the seventy years since the demise of the Third Reich, there has been a significant transformation in the ways in which the modern world understands Nazism. In this brilliant and eye-opening collection, Richard J. Evans, the acclaimed author of the Third Reich trilogy, offers a critical commentary on that transformation, exploring how major changes in perspective have informed research and writing on the Third Reich in recent years.

Drawing on his most notable writings from the last two decades, Evans reveals the shifting perspectives on Nazism’s rise to political power, its economic intricacies, and its subterranean extension into postwar Germany. Evans considers how the Third Reich is increasingly viewed in a broader international context, as part of the age of imperialism; discusses the growing emphasis on the larger economic and cultural circumstances of the era; and emphasizes the development of research into Nazi society, particularly in the understanding of Nazi Germany as a political system based on popular approval and consent. Exploring the complex relationship between memory and history, Evans also points out the places where the growing need to confront the misdeeds of Nazism and expose the complicity of those who participated has led to crude and sweeping condemnation, when instead historians should be making careful distinctions.

Written with Evans’ sharp-eyed insight and characteristically compelling style, these essays offer a summation of the collective cultural memory of Nazism in the present, and suggest the degree to which memory must be subjected to the close scrutiny of history.

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Soldat: Reflections of a German Soldier 1936-1949

Siegfried Knappe's book with Ted Brusaw.
Siegfried Knappe’s book with Ted Brusaw.

by Siegfried Knappe with Ted Brusaw

A German soldier during World War II offers an inside look at the Nazi war machine, using his wartime diaries to describe how a ruthless psychopath motivated an entire generation of ordinary Germans to carry out his monstrous schemes.

Siegfried Knappe
Siegfried Knappe
Siegfried Knappe's book with Ted Brusaw.
Siegfried Knappe’s book with Ted Brusaw.
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Goebbels

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by Peter Longerich

As a young man, Joseph Goebbels was a budding narcissist with a constant need of approval. Through political involvement, he found personal affirmation within the German National Socialist Party. In this comprehensive volume, Peter Longerich documents Goebbels’ descent into anti-Semitism and ideology and ascent through the ranks of the Nazi party, where he became an integral member Hitler’s inner circle and where he shaped a brutal campaign of Nazi propaganda.

In life and in his grisly family suicide, Goebbels was one of Hitler’s most loyal acolytes. Though powerful in the party and in wartime Germany, Longerich’s Goebbels is a man dogged by insecurities and consumed by his fierce adherence to the Nazi cause. Longerich engages and challenges the careful self—portrait that Goebbels left behind in his diaries, and, as he delves deep into the mind of Hitler’s master propagandist, Longerich discovers first—hand how the Nazi message was conceived. This complete portrait of the man behind the message is sure to become a standard for historians and students of the holocaust for years to come.

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