I should love this book. Why? Well, i love the subject of Stalingrad, am an Eastern front armour addict, and i think Jasons book "Island of Fire", the first of his i read, is brilliant. But i found that everytime i tried to start reading my copy of "Death of..." I just kept putting it down and starting something else. I had it for 3 yrs before i managed to finish it. After finishing, I felt deflated; the book hadnt impressed me at all.
Then a year later i happened to read the Amz.com review by M.Pitcavage, and i realised he was correct in his 2-stars critique (read his review!!) and why i hadnt enjoyed the book.
This book is a huge assemblage of data, interviews, the usual brilliant Leaping Horseman style maps & photo combinations, but it is BORING. The author doesnt know what to do with all the info, doesnt know whats irrelevant, doesnt analyse or put into any context. Doesnt say which decisions were good or bad. We get nothing from the russian side, nothing. We dont know who the opponents were, what their equipment was like, and what they thought of the 24th PzD. The book just becomes a list of each days action, a sort of calendar, with lists of wounded, map areas conquered, tanks used etc. But its just a big list, no flowing narrative connection, no heart.
So dont be fooled by the hype....this should be a great book, but its not. Read Pitcavage's review, he has it right, even though most other reviewers vehemently deny him. As he says: "This book is almost a perfect example of how flawed a book can be when a non-historian tries to write history." It fails to tell a story, it becomes "just data for the sake of data".
I will say its worth buying the cheap edition of the book for its superb maps and images. But dont worry if you find you cant read through all the text. I sold my original for a profit, just before the reprint emerged, so i cant complain too much...