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  • Recommended WWII Readings

    Please list your favorite WWII readings.
    "So little pains do the vulgar take in the investigation of truth, accepting readily the first story that comes to hand." Thucydides 1.20.3

  • #2
    The shattered Sword..The true tales of Midway
    Seas of Thunder........Coral Sea and Gaudalcanal
    Lost subs of WWII..... Detailing Axis and Allied Subs
    Cities of Steel............Rise of the Dreadnoughts
    Full Fathom Five.........Allied sumariners

    Just a few.:)
    Fortitude.....The strength to persist...The courage to endure.

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    • #3
      for a broad overview of the war, a great, great book is:

      Amazon.com: A War To Be Won: Fighting the Second World War: Books: Williamson Murray,Allan R. Millett

      it includes a lot of new information gleaned from the opening of the imperial japanese and russian archives.
      There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

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      • #5
        "There's a War to be Won! The U.S. Army in WWII" - Geoffrey Perret
        "Company Commander" - Charles B. MacDonald
        "Blood, Tears, and Folly" - Len Deighton
        "A Bridge Too Far" - Cornelius Ryan
        "Stumbling Colossus" - Glantz

        I have many more, but these come to mind first.

        -dale

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        • #6
          Band Of Brothers -Stephen Ambrose.

          Biggest Brother: The Story of Easy Company. Major Dick Winters & Larry Alexander. Recommended reading by Larry Alexander.

          The Malmedy Massacre. John M. Bauserman.

          Recommended reading by Robert "Sketch" Mearig. A WW2 Veteran and survivor of the Malmedy massacre.

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          • #7
            "It Never Snows in December" by Robert Kershaw. Market Garden from German side.

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            • #8
              Another Bowl Of Kaputska -Lt. Gottfried Dulias.

              Autobiographical book by Lt. Dulias. He reccomended it when I met him last August (But he didn't feel the least bit sorry for my broke ass and only gave me a flyer in return for the portrait I snapped of him )

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              • #9
                With our backs to Berlin, Tony LeTissier
                The Greatest War, Gerald Astor
                Fire in the sky, air war in the s pacific, Eric M. Bergerud
                Panzer battles, Mellenthin
                German Genrals of WW2, Mellenthin
                Panzer Commander, Von Luck
                Panzer Leader, Guderian
                German Generals talk, Liddel Hart

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                • #10
                  "Inside The Third Reich" by Albert Speer.

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                  • #11
                    The Fighting Captain - Alan Burn
                    Walker RN - Terrence Robertson
                    Battleship Bismarck A Survivors Story - Baron Burkhard Von Mullenhein-Rechberg
                    Oradour - Massacre & Aftermath - Robin Mackness
                    On A Sailors Grave (No Roses Grow) - Mike Kemble
                    The Battle of The Atlantic - Andrew Williams
                    Scourge of The Swastika - Lord Russell of Liverpool
                    The Knights of Bushido - Lord Russell of Liverpool
                    The Battle of the Narrow Seas - Lt Comdr Peter Scott

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                    • #12
                      Guadal Canal-Richard Frank
                      Adolf Hitler-John Toland
                      The Rising Sun-John Toland
                      Rise and Fall Of the Third Reich-William Shirer
                      Two Ocean War-Samuel Elliott Morrison
                      Desert Foxes-Paul Carrel
                      Scorched Earth-Paul Carrel
                      Panzer Leader-Heinz Guderian

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                      • #13
                        1. Citizen Soldiers-Stephen Ambrose
                        2. The Wild Blue-Stephen Ambrose
                        3. Battle-John Toland
                        4. Company Commander-Charles B. MacDonald
                        5. Biggest Brother-Larry Alexander
                        6. Beyond Band of Brothers-Major Dick Winters/Colonel Cole C. Kingseed
                        7. Enemy at the Gates-William Craig
                        8. Brothers in Arms-Kareem Abdul-Jabbar/Anthony Walton
                        9. War in the Boats-Captain William J.Ruhe
                        10. Blood on the Sea-Robert Sinclair Parkin
                        11. The Victors-Stephen Ambrose
                        12. The Mighty Endeavor-Charles B. MacDonald
                        "Every government degenerates when trusted to the rulers of the people alone. The people themselves, therefore, are its only safe depositories." Thomas Jefferson

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                        • #14
                          Not WW2, but describes the days in August that led directly to WW2.

                          The Guns of August, Barbara Tuchman

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                          • #15
                            Big picture

                            In general: The best one-volume history of the war is probably Keegan's The Second World War. Keegan provides a list of further reading, which includes very good books on most aspects of the war.

                            Good overview also provided by Richard Overy's Why the Allies Won.

                            The most important single campaign of course was in Russia, and unfortunately a really authoritative history of that campaign has not yet been written, although during the '90's much more archival material became available.

                            --Standard works, based mostly on German sources, are Earl Ziemke's and Paul Carrill's. Liddell-Hart's chapters of analysis in Strategy are also in this school, and are still worth reading today.
                            --Until recent years John Erickson's volumes (Soviet High Command, The Road to Stalingrad and The Road to Berlin) were the only widely available English works based on Soviet sources.
                            --But now David Glantz has produced a number of books, such as When Titans Clashed and Colossus Reborn, which while stylistically mediocre, are very important works simply because no one else has yet closely studied that body of data.


                            War economics: old but good is Alan S. Milward's The German Economy at War. Also good is the British Official History by M.M. Postan, Design and Development of Weapons for its insight on the overall nature and course of procurement decisions and criteria.

                            The vogue in economic history has now gone radically monetarist, but I'm no longer up-to-date on this, and need to do more reading myself. The thing to bear in mind, however, is that the writing of economic history tends to track contemporary economic thought, and thus like so much historiography, tells us as much about the historian's own age as it ever does about the subject itself!

                            The climax of the postwar, command-view, economics is perhaps Georgi Ranki's Economics of the Second World War which while published posthumously and unfinished, is nevertheless important for the light shed on the economics of German-occupied Europe, and for its consideration of oft-overlooked matters, such as agriculture during the war.

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