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Thread: GOOD BOOKS

  1. #106
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    Here are a few more books that may be of interest:

    HITLER: Joachim c. Fest. A rather academic and detailed book of Hitler’s life, that runs for about 800 pages. It’s hard going but if you have to read a biography about the man then you should get this one. The author by the way served in the German army during the war, and no, the book doesn’t glorify Hitler.

    HITLER: Norman Stone A good short, critical over-view of Hitler, of about 230 pages. An easier substitute to the one above.

    THE RISE AND FALL OF THE THIRD REICH: William L. Shirer. A terrific account of the Third Reich that (Even after 48 years,) still “stacks up” well .

    Wings of War: History of Airborne Warfare 1918-1945: Peter Harclerode. Covers Airborne operations of all the major forces on the Western and Eastern fronts and the Pacific and Asian fronts.

    BATTLE OF BRITAIN then and now: If you want a book that shows you the “Boys” that sacrificed ALL for the freedom of this world, then get this book, their photo’s look back at you, many from different nations. A very moving book.
    The book also shows the pieces of wreckage that have been recovered since the battle and are either in museums or private collections. There is also sections on the losses of pilots, aircraft, the order of battle of both sides . The list goes on and on. As for photos, they are countless, in this large book of over 800 pages.

    THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF TANKS OF WORLD WAR TWO: Peter Chamberlain, Hilary Doyle & Thomas L. Jentz.
    BRITISH AND AMERICAN TANKS OF WORLD WAR II: Peter Chamberlain, Chris Ellis.
    Both of the above books give a good, informative overview of the types of tanks and A.F.Vs in service, and are well illustrated.

    TAIL-END CHARLIES: John Nichol, Tony Rennell. A book about a most hazardous of wartime occupations; being a bomber crewman in both the R.A.F and U.S.AF over Europe. (John Nichol was one of the two man Tornado crew tortured and put on Iraqi T.V and made to confess all to the world during the first gulf war)

  2. #107
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    "The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors" by James D. Hornfischer is a must read. He had me feeling like I was on board while all the action was happening. Having served in the Coast Guard aboard two different Cutters (Duane-327' and Rush 378') I could really relate to the destroyers and the stories he told of life on board. This book is simply great.

  3. #108
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    My favorite is non Fiction
    it is Tigers In The Mud By Otto Carius
    Great read You should check it out
    i also enjoyed Micheal Whittmann Volume 1 by Patrick Agte
    "Which would your men rather be, tired, or dead?"
    German General Erwin Rommel

  4. #109
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    Having read about 50 books on ww2 i can recommend the following:
    Thunder in the East by Evan Mawdsley
    Wages of Destruction by Adam Tooze
    Brute Force by John Ellis
    Rising Sun by John Toland

  5. #110
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    I found Adolf Hitler by John Toland to be a really good read. I thoroughly recommend it.

  6. #111
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    Quote Originally Posted by Eismann View Post
    I found Adolf Hitler by John Toland to be a really good read. I thoroughly recommend it.
    I find any books by John Toland to be great. I read the Adolf Hitler book and the Rising Sun book by John Toland and must say that I found his books to be unbias and easy reading. I read them many years ago, but after hearing his name again, I think I'll re-read his books and maybe check out other books by him. I first became influenced about ww-2 stuff after reading his books. Without him, I probably wouldn't have such a keen interest in ww-2 events and who knows; maybe then I never would have hooked up with this great forum!
    Wiki is ok. History Channel is ok.
    But WW2 Forum is the BEST!


  7. #112
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    I would recommend:
    "Victory was beyond their grasp with the 272nd volks-grenadier division from the Hürtgen forest to the heart of the Reich" by Doug Nash.
    "When titans clashed,how the red army stopped Hitler" by House and Glantz

  8. #113

    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    Hope a general post on good books is allowed? I've been grabbing some excellent reading (and adding them to my online bookshelf) by going to google.com/books. If you select full text and then type in your topic---you will pull some GREAT out of print stuff. Just doing a general search on world war II brought me some titles like these:

    Eagles of the RAF: The World War II Eagle Squadrons‎

    Letters from the Pacific: A Combat Chaplain in World War II‎

    The Secret War: The Office of Strategic Services in World War II‎

    Baseball Digest 1946: Player talks about Hurtgen Forest

    I could go on forever....check it out!
    Like history? Me too!
    Updated often with cool vintage and history stuff: http://history.writingwithtony.com/

  9. #114
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    Quote Originally Posted by herman2 View Post
    I find any books by John Toland to be great. I read the Adolf Hitler book and the Rising Sun book by John Toland and must say that I found his books to be unbias and easy reading.
    My bold

    I wasn't aware Toland had written about me, but if it's true to life I'm sure it will be a hugely interesting book.

    Seriously, my recollection is that some of Toland's opinions are debatable, although more from his later work on Pearl Harbor, but he certainly gives a lot of accurate detail in Rising Sun, particularly from the Japanese side.

    I'd recommend reading Toland's Rising Sun first and then John Costello's The Pacific War next. The latter is probably the best book dealing with the Pacific War as a whole. It has the advantage of being written about a decade later than Toland's book, which gave Costello access to some papers not available to Toland. There are some deficiencies in minor detail in Costello's book on a few points I know something about, and therefore probably on many more, and probably the same in Toland's but it's too long since I read it to recall. A balanced reading of these two books gives anyone all they need to know about the Pacific War, unless they want to get into close detail about various events.

    As a side note, Costello's untimely death is seen by some as done to stop him revealing something significant about things which get the conspiracy theorists going. http://www.illuminati-news.com/091006b.htm
    ..
    A rational army would run away.
    Montesquieu

  10. #115
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    I doubt very much that anyone outside of Military forums even knows about the rape of Nanking let alone have read the book,a must read by all but not for the faint of heart.2 books that I have recently read and reccomend are"The unknown Battle of Midway"by Alvin Kernan and"Lightnig Strike"by Donald Davis.
    "Give me 26 soldiers of lead,and I will conquer the world" JOHANN GUTTENBURG

  11. #116
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    i am reading the forgotten soilder and it is amazing so far every war buff should read it
    "Which would your men rather be, tired, or dead?"
    German General Erwin Rommel

  12. #117
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    My short list of favourite books probably reveals me as an intellectual lightweight, but here goes:

    Fiction:

    Easter Day 1941’ by GF Borden

    Tramp in Armour’ by Colin Forbes

    Empire of the Sun’by J G Ballard

    Pretty much anything by John Harris

    Pretty much anything by Douglas Reeman


    Non-fiction:

    'D-Day: Spearhead of invasion’ by RW Thompson (Pan/Ballantine Illustrated history of WW2)

    ‘The Great World War 1914-1945’ by Bourne, Liddle, & Whitehead (I only have volume 2, still looking for vol 1)

    The Other Hundred Years War’ by Russell Braddon

    Japan’s Imperial Conspiracy’ by David Bergamini*

    Kokoda: The Bloody Track’ by Patrick Lindsay**


    Not strictly WW2, but good non-fiction books that deal in passing with WW2:

    Modern Times –The World from the twenties to the nineties’ by Paul Johnson

    Why the West has Won’ (American title: ‘Carnage and Culture’) by Victor Davis Hanson

    The Guinness Book of Military Blunders’ by Geoffrey Regan

    A History of Warfare’ by John Keegan


    *I know that Bergamini's book was roundly panned by critics and academics, but I liked it and think he was probably correct.

    **I have a (rather tenuous) link with this book - I did the interpreting when the author visited Japan to interview Japanese veterans of Kokoda for a TV documentary of the same name (Kokoda: The Bloody Track). The book was based on the documentary.

  13. #118
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    My absolute favourite WW2 novel is ‘Easter Day 1941’ by G F Borden (which is why it sits at the top of my list above).

    I cannot reccomend this book enough. I have read and re-read it until my copy (a Penguin paperback published in 1987) is beginning to fall apart.

    It is the story of a lone tank behind enemy lines in the Western desert. In this case, the enemy are the Italians and Germans, and the tank crew are British tankers, plus a couple of wandering infantrymen from the Indian Army who are picked up by the tank, and an American veteran of the Spanish Civil War (he is the tank commander and also the narrator of the tale).

    The tank is a captured Italian M13/40. Borden must have done some intense research in order to write this brilliant story. He presents the M13/40 warts and all, comparing it unfavourably with the British and German tanks in the desert, but shows that it was still capable of dishing out some serious damage. I suppose there could have been M13/40 variants with different armament configurations, but the one in the story has a 47mm main gun in the turret, able to fire HE or AP, with a coaxial 8mm Breda machine gun. There are also two more 8mm Breda MGs in a ball mounting below the turret next to the driver.

    Just to give you a taste of the book, I have typed out the beginning of the story and a couple of other passages. Please forgive any weird spelling mistakes; I am not a great typist.

    This is how the book begins:
    “Up on the hull of the M13/40, his back to the barrel of the 47mm gun, Mackeson sees the rising trail of dust first. He pounds his fist against the slabbed armor of the turret, points southwest across the desert and shouts “Something’s coming.”
    We stop considering morning tea and start thinking of danger; for in the desert any unidentified movement is potent, and during this retreat, movement to the west is hostile. We are in our second confused week of the great withdrawal to the east. The 2nd Armoured Division is dead, shot down in the afternoon at El Agheila and at dawn nine days later at Agedabia. We are a cast off remnant, a single armored fighting vehicle far out in the sand, equally distant from the Gulf of Sirte to the west, the Mediterranean to the north, and the Egyptian border to the east.”

    A little further on, Smythe the machine gunner points out to Mackeson the driver that they are not in a Panzer III:
    “Don’t I bloody well know it,” Smythe says. He is aggrieved and deflated by the mention of the Panzer III, a German armored fighting vehicle of efficient design employed with dash and cunning by the Germans. But then the Panzer III aggrieves and deflates us all, for we ride and fight in an M13/40. The M13/40 is an Italian armored fighting vehicle dragooned into the 2nd Armoured Division after the great desert victories against the Italians. So many M13/40s were captured, the powers that be thought they might as well be put to use. It wouldn’t have been such a bad thought except that the M13/40 isn’t worth much. For although it has lines reminiscent of the Russian T34/76, that faint similarity, and the diesel engines, are all the two AFVs have in common. The M13/40 has a poor power to weight ratio and is slow off the road. It is also poorly gunned and mechanically unsound. It has a high silhouette, which in armored warfare means death. Its plates are held together with rivets. Rivets are unnerving: any solid shot striking the M13/40, even if it does not penetrate, may pound a rivet into the fighting compartment; and any such rivet will be moving almost as fast as the shot that struck the tank’s carapace. We are told we are to get tanks with welded plates, but that possibility is meaningless now. We are in the desert, alone, in an M13/40 and we must rely on Italian design and Italian workmanship to see us through. We aren’t required to be happy about it, but the M13/40 is all we have.”

    Having given the M13/40 a thorough shellacking (above), Borden describes some very good action scenes where the M13/40 and its unhappy crew destroy pretty much all before them.

    Later they are spotted by Italian aircraft:
    “As Chowduri straightens, his back stiffens and he says ”Aircraft”. At first I do not understand: he speaks with the same tone he might use had he said “Sand” or “Water”.
    Mackeson slams the faceplate shut and I hear his hoarse voice call out, “Oh, Christ now.”
    I vault onto the hull of the M13/40, scramble up onto the turret. I take the field glasses from Chowduri and say, “Where?” He points his arm northwest and I see three shapes moving against the sky. They are close to the earth and they are angling toward us. As I raise the glasses I tell Chowduri to get inside. He slips down through the hatch and flattens himself against the wall of the fighting compartment in front of Mohammed’s knees. He says something to Mohammed I do not understand.
    Through the glasses I see the aircraft are Savoia SM-79s: more Italian equipment. But Italian aircraft are better than Italian armor, and Italian pilots are good. I have seen the Savoia before: it was the standard bomber aircraft used by the Fascists in Spain. It is a trimotor and it carries more than two thousand pounds of bombs. It also carries five machine guns, but these do not worry me. Machine gun fire is not a problem unless the gunner is very lucky and is able to shy rounds through an open port. But here we have warning and can button up like a tortoise. Unfortunately, no one can button up against bombs. A good pilot in an SM-79 can end our journey to the east right here.”

    Again, I suppose there were variants of the SM-79, with different armament configurations, but while Borden says the SM-79 had five machine guns, one of my most treasured reference books says they only had 4 machine guns. On the other hand, it gives the SM-79 a really good rating as one of the best bombers of the war:

    Info from page 19 of Bombers 1939 ~ 1945 (Purnell’s History of the World Wars Special):

    Savoia-Marchetti SM79
    Armament: 3x 7.7mm; 1x 12.7mm machine guns
    Bomb load: 2,750 lb
    Not only the best Italian but one of the best of any land-based bombers used during the Second World War. Developed in 1936 from a commercial airliner design and later active on virtually every battlefront involving the Regia Aeronautica.

    Sorry if this post was too long winded.
    Cheers,
    Pete

  14. #119
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    FLY BOYS its about Chichi Jima in the Pacific and all the flier who were shot down including George Bush Sr. and how the Japs canibalized some of our men...Read it you won t believe it till you sit there and read it in firsthand reports

  15. #120
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    Default Re: GOOD BOOKS

    Try this..

    REVIEWS on 'The Cockleshell Canoes'

    This from Prof. Eric Grove - Review in Navy News May 2009.

    ' this volume really is one of the most original, interesting and informative to have appeared recently'

    'an excellent and ground breaking work',

    'described in great detail'.

    From 'The Croaker' April 2009 issue by M.J.A.

    'Clarity of delivery'.

    'Rees writes well and his narrative flows'

    'a stimulating and revealing tract'

    'fascinating and detailed accounts'

    Globe and Laurel - March - April 2009 issue by G.A.D

    'remarkable book',

    ' this great and important military and maritime story - which he tells very well',

    'good looking and man sized book' with 'stunning photographs'


    'Navy News' is a Uk based magazine highly rated. highly subscribed.
    'The Croaker' is a Subscription only magazine especially for Special Forces past and present ONLY.
    'The Globe and Laurel' is a magazine of the Royal Marines.

    The Navy News does a free on line edition - review is on page 44.

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