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The Day Of Battle: The War in Sicily and Italy 1943-44 (Liberation Trilogy Book 2) [Kindle Edition]

Rick Atkinson
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

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Book Description

In An Army at Dawn - winner of the Pulitzer Prize - Rick Atkinson provided a dramatic and authoritative history of the Allied triumph in North Africa. Now, in The Day of the Battle, he follows the strengthening American and British armies as they invade Sicily in July 1943 and then, mile by bloody mile, fight their way north.

The Italian campaign's outcome was never certain; in fact, Roosevelt, Churchill and their military advisors engaged in heated debate about whether an invasion of the so-called soft underbelly of Europe was even a good idea. But once underway, the commitment to liberate Italy from the Nazis never wavered, despite the agonizingly high price. The battles at Salerno, Anzio, and Monte Cassino were particularly difficult and lethal, yet as the months passed, the Allied forces continued to push the Germans up the Italian peninsula. And with the liberation of Rome in June 1944, ultimate victory at last began to seem inevitable.

Drawing on an astonishing array of primary source material, written with great drama and flair, this is narrative history of the first rank.

Product Description


"Majestic... Atkinson's achievement is to marry prodigious research with a superbly organized narrative and then to overlay the whole with writing as powerful and elegant as any great narrative of war." --"The Wall Street Journal ""A triumph of narrative history, elegantly written, thick with unforgettable description and rooted in the sights and sounds of battle."--"The New York Times" "In "The Day of Battle," Rick Atkinson picks up where he left off in "An Army at Dawn," his history of the North African campaign, which won the Pulitzer Prize in 2003. A planned third volume, on the Normandy invasion and the war in Europe, will complete "The Liberation Trilogy," which is shaping up as a triumph of narrative history, elegantly written, thick with unforgettable description and rooted in the sights and sounds of battle . . . He excels at describing the furor of battle, and the Italian campaign provides him with abundant raw material. . . Mr. Atkinson, a longtime correspondent and editor for "The Washington Post," conveys all of this with sharp-edged immediacy and a keen eye for the monstrous and the absurd."--William Grimes, "The New York Times" "Monumental ... With this book, Rick Atkinson cements his place among America's great popular historians, in the tradition of Bruce Catton and Stephen Ambrose."--"The Washington Post""A very fine book .... Anyone who devoured "An Army at Dawn" with relish will be delighted with Atkinson's account of the Sicilian and Italian campaign."--"The New York Times Book Review""[A] fascinating account of the war in Sicily and Italy."--"USA"" Today""Gripping .... [Atkinson] combines an impressive depth of research with a knack for taut, compelling narrative."--"Star Tribune "(Minneapolis-St. Paul)"Splendid ... the infantrymen who did the fighting will grab at readers' hearts."--"St. Louis"" Post-Dispatch""With "The Day of Battle, " Atkinson again proves himself to stand among the ranks of our most talent

Book Description

The second volume of Rick Atkinson's monumental trilogy about the Liberation of Europe in the Second World War.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1787 KB
  • Print Length: 796 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B001FB62GE
  • Publisher: Abacus (2 May 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #213,937 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the first part of the Trilogy 2 Dec. 2010
By Runner
I was impressed by the detail and research content of the first part of Rick Atkinson's Trilogy 'An Army at Dawn'. It seemed to make sense of the situation described to me by two relatives who served in that part of North Africa.

However, I am disappointed in his follow up book. It seems more partisan and omits some details which I feel would have been included before. My father was always distrustful of the American Army and Airforce due to his first hand experience of them. Rick's first book helped to explain why this might be so. This, his second book doesn't.

For example, use the index for 'British Army Royal Artillery' and you find some quotes from Spike Milligan's books. What you do not find is anything meaningful, such as any reference to the bombing of the Royal Artillery's 74th Medium Regiment by the American Air Force at Cassino. This resulted in 35 dead and injured, with a gun and equipment destroyed. As the USAAF had previously bombed the same unit in North Africa resulting in the CO being invalided back to the UK this incident should have been included as an example of why distrust between the two forces might fester.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A very revealing read and for one who lived through the period as a pre-teenager, quite a sobering window on the reality of what, then, seemed so brave and gallant.
Such a waste of so many good young lives through the pig-headedness and egoism of those in charge.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Invasion of Sicily & Italy 31 Oct. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Book was mainly from the American view point.......I was looking for the British view as my father took part with the 8th army.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I expected bias.. 8 Feb. 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
..but not to this degree. Unfortunately, this book is part of the new 'ambrose' like breed of sensationalist and revisionist american military writing. The focus on and lauding of Mark Clark and Fifth Army is pretty transparent and laughable for a book which considers itself a serious historical account. A shame as the writing at times is powerful and emotive. I also feel duty bound to be unhappy with a book that would have you believe that commonwealth troops did not fight and did not fight effectively. Little important detail, little sense of operational scope and patently not a book about anything except the US soldier and their further development as a fighting arm. Avoid.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Exhaustive and thought-provoking 30 Oct. 2014
By Blue in Washington TOP 500 REVIEWER TOP 1000 REVIEWER
I bought this book during a visit to SE Sicily where we encountered several WWII cemeteries but heard little about their backgrounds. As it turns out, the very excellent "The Day of Battle: The War in Sicily and Italy" devotes about one-third of its substance to the 1943 landings in Sicily and the relatively short period of time it took to wrest the island from the Italians and Germans. For our purposes, it was sufficient to explain what happened in the areas around Siracusa, Gela and Catania where we were traveling. Thankfully, the action was over relatively quickly and Allied (and Italian) losses here were comparatively light. Fighting in the north of Sicily was quite a different story, particularly around Mt. Etna and Catania.

Author Rick Atkinson's great accomplishment in this massive account of the Sicilian/Italian campaigns is the skillful weaving of strategies, battle plans, and politics with actual on-the-ground events and personal experiences of individual soldiers and military leaders. In the latter case, he has gone to some extremes to provide details--often opinions or observations from colleagues and friends--of the prominent military leaders involved in these battles---Eisenhower, Patton, Montgomery, Alexander, Clark, Kesselring, etc.

The takeaway for me from this carefully detailed chronicle was more or less a surprise. I had always bought into the idea that in this "good war" against the Nazis and fascism, the Allied forces followed well-thought out strategies and applied careful tactics on the ground. Author Atkinson, without being hysterical about it, is saying that both strategies and tactics were often badly flawed and the products of political compromise and/or personal rivalries.
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4.0 out of 5 stars American bias 15 Mar. 2015
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Dear oh dear. Although I found this book interesting I just had to write a review about it's bias toward the Americans and almost contempt toward the British.You would think the British played no part in the Italian campaign after reading this book.I was a bit surprised and disappointed about this,especially as I had already read An Army At Dawn and found that to be a more balanced and fair account of the war in north Africa.Not taking away from the bravery of anyone who fought in the war,I thought Mr.Atkinson was quick to praise every other nationality and equally quick to criticize the British.Fair enough,he didn't make out that every thing the Americans did was right or good,but he didn't have anything positive to say about the British at all.
I have bought The Guns At Last Light and am looking forward to reading it,but I hope the final installment of the trilogy is kinder and fairer to the nation that had been at war since 1939, and whose people and armed forces had fought on alone against the Nazis when everyone else had succumbed to them.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Superb writing. 3 Nov. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Exemplary writing by Rick Atkinson as always. He manages to cover everything from the high level political aspects down to the misery of the common soldier equally. Along the way, he reveals the incompetence, narrow-mindedness and sheer paranoia of many commanders - particularly Mark Clark, who insisted that every press release referring to Fith Army referred to it as 'Mark Clark's Fith Army and reputedly ordered soldiers holding the southern outposts of Rome to shoot any Eight Army (British) personnel who attempted to move into Rome central before he could stage his own triumphant entrance. This book also does a lot to establish the importance of the Italian campaign in the eventual Allied victory.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
An exceptional record of this particular conflict.Superb.
Published 4 months ago by R. Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars lee ran
An amazing story of a brutal campaign told both from the perspective of the grand strategy driving it to the words and deeds of the soldiers involved
Published 6 months ago by lran
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Better than the first book in the trilogy, well worth the wait, super service by Amazon
Published 8 months ago by david whitfield
5.0 out of 5 stars superb
this is the book to read about the italian campaign,well researched on the stratergy of both sides cannot wait to the authors other books,
Published 10 months ago by chris maidment
5.0 out of 5 stars Monumental Military History of WW2 Sicily and Italy
The second volume of Rick Atkinson's monumental three volume story of the US Army in North Africa and Europe continues with the account of the battles for Sicily and Italy. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Residency
1.0 out of 5 stars A biased account - insulting
Bias is expected but to this extent it is bordering on the insulting, all Americans are steely eyed and wonderful - more Zane Grey than historical work. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Lee Gibson
1.0 out of 5 stars Ugly American
Biased and subjective with very little historical worth.

If you want to believe that America won the war all by themselves and that the American soldier was the only... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Normandy Battlefield Guide
4.0 out of 5 stars The battle for Italy uncovered
This is a wonderful exposition of a cruel battle, following on from his first book in the war trilogy, on the battle for Tunisia. Sadly it ends with the fall of Rome. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Hampshire
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