This volume from the Battleground Europe series is dedicated to the portion of The Somme battlefield named after the village of Montauban, the only objective captured on schedule July 1. The 18th and 30th Divisions were successful at Montauban, but their success was overshadowed by total failure elsewhere. The British army, incredibly, did not exploit the success achieved by the men of the XIII Corps of General Congreve who, to quote the author Graham Maddocks, "attacking up the slopes of Montauban Ridge ... unseated a resolute German army - a brilliant army which had had 21 months to prepare for that inevitable day."
It was at Montauban, that a Captain W.P. Nevill (8th battalion East Surrey Regiment) provided each of his attacking platoons with a football (soccer ball) to kick across No Mans Land and into the German trenches! Capt. Nevill did not survive the attack, but two of the footballs made it back to England! This famous story sparked my further interest in the Battle of the Somme and this volume in particular. The author highly commends Martin Middlebrook's The First Day on the Somme FIRST DAY ON THE SOMME, THE. It is regarded as the "bible" of the Battle of the Somme after 40 years since it was published! I highly recommend it and have reviewed it! Like other volumes in the series, great photos, maps, tours and explanatory text elucidate the battle for the traveler or armchair historian (me!). I highly recommend the Battleground Europe guidebooks. I have purchased, read, studied, thoroughly enjoyed, and reviewed them! I have always been fascinated by World War One battles and these books are the next best thing to being there! Here are some links to other Somme battlefield guides: Gommecourt (Battleground Europe Series) Serre (Battleground Europe. Somme) La Boiselle: Somme (Battleground Europe) Somme: Beaumont Hamel (Battleground Europe)