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King Tiger vs IS-2 (Duel)

King Tiger vs IS-2 (Duel) [Kindle Edition]

David R. Higgins
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £12.99
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Product Description


The illustrations of the armoured formations used during the course of the battle are fascinating --Airfix Model World

First rate --Military Modelcraft International


The illustrations of the armoured formations used during the course of the battle are fascinating -- Airfix Model World First rate -- Military Modelcraft International

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 11741 KB
  • Print Length: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing (20 July 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005MQB5QU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #206,419 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

In addition to "The Roer River Battles" I've written a book for Osprey Publishing on the German Tiger II and Soviet IS-2 tanks (due out in early 2011). Additional published works include some 22 articles for several magazines on military subjects ranging from the ancient to modern eras (i.e. Strategy & Tactics, Armchair General, and World at War). An additional piece was done on modern Middle East capabilities for MCSGroup, a conflict simulation provider for the US DoD, and other clients.

My primary military interest is on the Second World War (Europe), First World War, American Civil War, and Thirty Years' War.

Some of the "vacations" I've taken in the last few years:

2010- Pennsylvania (Hanover, Gettysburg, and Chambersburg), Ft. Knox (where I was granted access to the interior of their Tiger II for research)

2009- Assistant Restoration Technician (replacing a brake line on a Panzer III L and various work on a Panzer IV F2) (U.S. Army Cavalry and Armor Museum, Ft. Knox)

2008- Ft. Riley, Kansas, Civil War cites in Missouri (Mt. Zion Church, Roan's Tan Yard, Glasgow, Booneville, Little Blue River, Lexington, Liberty, Westport, Byram's Ford, Lone Jack, Ft Davidson, Fredericktown, and Cape Girardeau), Tennessee (Shiloh/Iuka, Jackson, Parker's Cross Roads, Johnsonville, Dover, and Forts Pillow, Donelson, and Henry), Indiana (Corydon), Kentucky (Middle Creek, Ivy Mtn., Mill Springs, Camp Wildcat), Kentucky Machine Gun Shoot, and the Patton Museum

2007- Danville Tank Museum, final Confederate capital, and Virginia battlefields (Lynchburg, Port Royal, Winchester, Manasas, Cross Keys, Kernstown, New Market, Fischer's Hill, Tom's Brook, Thoroughfare Gap, and Ball's Bluff), Washington D.C. forts, Smithsonian

2006- Flight on the B-17G "Liberty Bell," Central Kentucky (Perryville, Cynthiana, and Richmond), South Carolina (Honey Hill, Beaufort, Grimball's Island, Secessionville, and Forts Wagner, Walker, and Moultrie), Parris Island, and 8th Air Force Museum, Georgia

2005- Virginia (Yorktown, Big Bethel, Hampton Roads, Ft. Norfolk, Suffolk, and Swell's Point), Virginia War Museum, and USS Wisconsin

2004- Maryland (Folcks Mill, Hancock, Williamsport, Boonsboro, Harper's Ferry, South Mtn, Antietam, Monocacy), Ft Frederick, and Aberdeen Proving Grounds where I was able to meet with Thomas Jentz (armor historian/author)

2003- Georgia (Forts McAllister, Jackson, and Pulaski, as well as "off the beaten trail" sites found by referencing period and modern maps i.e. Forts Thunderbolt and Lee)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good history, little data 19 Sep 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a well set out book which gives very good information on these two combat types. I found the accounts of a part of WWII with which I was unfamiliar very interesting. The description of the internals of the two vehicles and their armour was very useful. However, there was little actual analysis of combat between the two rival vehicles and the section on statistics was particularly weak. Some picture descriptions were doubtful: can bombs/artillery really blow a tank on its side without leaving a large crater? The details of the effects of the HE round from the 122 mm on armour needed more than the speculation supplied- the effect would be highly variable with the fuzing time, which was not discussed. Overall I thought the book was fascinating and a good read but didn't give me all the information the that title suggested.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Improper title 26 Sep 2011
I was disappointed (deceived ?) by what the title entitled to. I expected more of an action account with veterans' experiences and testimonies. I thought I'd get the feel of what it was like to serve in one of these two emblematic machines.

Instead I found myself amidst the obscure meanders of operation "Sonnenwende". My interest in the Tiger II and its opponent quickly dissolved into the encirclement of Arnswalde and its disencirclement.
The expected and heralded tank duel is replaced by tank corps battles, Germanic corps against Guards corps, attacks and counter-attacks.
I do not see how General Wenck's tactics and the confrontation between King Tigers and IS-2s corroborate.

The choice of photos is modest to say the least. Also I do not see the relation between the title of the book and the publication of three photos depicting "Panzerknacker" combat techniques. What's more, against T-34s.

Four stars is generous in my view. Four not to encourage the author to keep up his standards but to ameliorate them in respect to avid but nonetheless demanding readers.

Bon courage.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By T. D. Welsh TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I ordered this book because of the title's promise: "King Tiger vs IS-2". There is frustratingly little literature on the Joseph Stalin series of tanks, and especially on their battles with the Tiger B (Royal or King Tiger). In its 80 pages, as far as I can ascertain, there is exactly one account of an exchange of fire between the two types; to save your time, I will reveal that it can be found at the bottom of page 59. A Tiger B came face to face with an IS-2 and destroyed it with three shots; the crews of two other IS-2s then abandoned their tanks and ran away. That's the extent of the fighting between King Tiger and IS-2 that you will find in this book. The author could have included the exploit of Fred Carpaneto, whose lone Tiger B destroyed an entire Soviet tank company including IS-2s, and several other documented encounters between Tigers and IS-2s.

Instead, what you get includes good detailed backgrounds and histories of the two tanks, including metallurgical comparison of their armour protection and descriptions (with pictures) of their guns and sighting arrangements; and an account of the chosen campaign, Operation "Solstice" ("Sonnenwende") in East Prussia in February 1945. The section dedicated to "Solstice", entitled "The Action", is 20 pages long and mentions Tigers and IS-2s from time to time, but in no way focuses on them. Indeed, it seems quite out of place in this book: the 20 pages could better have been devoted to the fighting around Tarnopol in 1944, for example, or at Targul Frumos in Rumania.

So if you want to learn about the King Tiger and the IS-2, this book may be just the thing - only a real expert could read it all without learning anything new. But if you are interested in combat between the two types, forget it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too many things wrong 3 Aug 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Another Sprey that does not deliver what it says on the tin. Poor editing, and a poor grasp of ballistic data spoil the book and belie the title:

P. 5, photo caption, the vehicle is pristine because it is a photo of a preserved King Tiger at Munsterlager in Germany, and has not "just been produced". The absence of Zimmerit should have provided the author with a clue. Although "Königstiger" can refer to the Bengal Tiger, there is no specific geographical implication in the word; in German it is also referred to as the King Tiger, the Bengal Tiger or the Indian Tiger. Consequently, I think Bengal Tiger is not a particularly good translation.

P. 6, lower right photo caption, the "disabled" IS-2 has clearly been knocked out and then examined by German troops; it is part of a sequence of similar photographs.

P. 7, lower left photo caption, it might be worth stating that `Pilz' translates as "mushroom", or "fungus".

P. 12, photo caption, the author has also omitted to state that the vehicle is fitted with the narrower transportation tracks ready for rail shipment; this is why the side skirts are missing.

P. 23, the use of the term `HVAP' should be discouraged as it fails to identify precisely what type of projectile is being discussed. In this case (PzGr 40) the term APCR is more appropriate, and accurate, but HVAP could also refer to APDS or APCNR ammunition, hence the need to be more precise. The author implies, and a less knowledgeable reader would not know otherwise, that HVAP refers exclusively to APCR projectiles. The phrase "Hartkernor [sic] hard core" should read "Hartkern or hard core".
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