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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dont go to France or Flanders without this book!
The Somme needs little introduction to the military historian Great War enthusiast and many family historians as the events there around 90 years ago left a mark on French soil and in British history that can never be deleted.

It is a known fact that an ever increasing number of researchers, enthusiasts and casual trippers visit these areas each year, obviously...
Published on 19 Aug 2006 by Michael David Booker

versus
1.0 out of 5 stars OH GOD NO
Very dense, boring and old fashioned both in presentation and content. I would not dream of using it. There has to be something more user friendly
Published 7 months ago by ian goldup


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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dont go to France or Flanders without this book!, 19 Aug 2006
This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
The Somme needs little introduction to the military historian Great War enthusiast and many family historians as the events there around 90 years ago left a mark on French soil and in British history that can never be deleted.

It is a known fact that an ever increasing number of researchers, enthusiasts and casual trippers visit these areas each year, obviously some are more interested than others and it is the casual visitor or those with limited time, that these two splendid books are aimed.

Major and Mrs Holt produce the best guides to the battlefields one can wish to buy, they are without a doubt quality products and are invaluable to a wide range of readers. Despite this new volume being a fraction of the price and size of the more detailed Holts publications, it does not lack detail and therefore anyone contemplating a visit to this famous battlefield area would be advised to take a copy with them on tour.

In usual Holt's style,it is fully comprehensive and features excellent colour pictures and maps, excellent itineraries with map references and mileages together with a wealth of other up to date information and facts, it will make any visit to this area so much more enjoyable.

Its well done and thanks once again Major and Mrs Holt for your valuable contribution to this fascinating subject.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent pocket-guide lacks only a large-scale strategic map, 26 Dec 2010
By 
The Guardian (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
This small book is an excellent pocket guide to the museums, war cemeteries and battlefield locations of the Somme sector of the Western Front between 1916-18, containing just the right amount of detail to plan any visit lasting no more than three or four days. During my visit to this region in August 2010, I found it to be invaluable.

The Somme offensive of 1916 is described and the actions of all the participating formations detailed. A further section then relates the enormous German offensive of March 1918 (the "Kaiserschlacht" meant to deal a knock-out blow to the Allies following the freeing-up of hundreds of thousands of the Kaiser's troops on the Eastern Front after peace was made with the new Bolshevik regime in Russia) which basically fought over the same ground as the 1916 Somme battles until it was ground to a standstill by lack of supplies and allied counter-attacks, returning the front to stalemate.

The authors detail the most prominent and interesting sites to visit - the excellent museum under the market square in Albert which exits into an ornamental garden (painted wall mural and shell-damaged church tower featured on the book's cover), for example, is under no circumstances to be missed - and many of the minor memorials and lesser-known spots. Any visitor to this part of Europe will be aware that the landscape is littered with cemeteries and tens of thousands of war graves: German, French, British (especially in this sector), Australian, Canadian and a few American too: the flower of a generation scattered across the gently rolling fields under a sea of white gravestones. Monumental white stone structures on which thousands of names are carved impose themselves everywhere on the landscape; poignant reminders of the cost paid in lives for Europe's thankfully long-gone age of tribal warfare.

The Holts' book is a quality publication with good informative text, well laid out with many pages of excellent photographs. One minor criticism I would have of the pocket-guide is the lack of a large-scale map offering strategic perspective of where everything is in relation to the main road/town network. Reportedly such a regional map is included in the larger edition of the book, but if you buy the pocket-guide, you need to buy the map separately. Make sure you don't visit this region without it, so you can see at a glance where you are in relation to everything else. The book does however contain smaller maps of several localities, and these are useful and detailed once you're actually there.

Overall, very good as a serious and knowledgeable guide for a short visit, and buying and studying it before you go will save you a lot of time.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent, 19 May 2010
By 
Mr. Pj Williams (cardiff uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
invaluable on the trail and even more useful if you buy the map to go with it. basically took all the effort out of the trip
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Somme, 26 April 2010
This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
An excellent book for the pocket on a limited visit to the Somme area and well illustarted.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Holts Pocket Guide to the Somme, 9 Mar 2009
This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
Good small guide book excellent for taking with you
Directions good and distances accurate. Could do with some road maps particularly if you want to visit sites in a different order from the tour.
Used in conjunction with the CWGC overprinted Michelin maps
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very useful guide, 29 May 2014
By 
Howard (TROWBRIDGE, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
A very practical, informative and useful guide. We were visiting the area for three days - this guide helped us choose a few sites and enabled a most memorable time.
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5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic piece of kit, totally invaluable, 20 May 2014
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
I am just back from the Somme and used this book as a guide ... It was invaluable and let us see the total area. We not only found where our Grandfather won his military medal, but we also found the grave of another friend and the trench where another friends relative won a vc .... I cannot say how much this book meant to me.
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1.0 out of 5 stars OH GOD NO, 28 April 2014
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
Very dense, boring and old fashioned both in presentation and content. I would not dream of using it. There has to be something more user friendly
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 28 Mar 2014
By 
Mr. P. J. Miller (Ipswich UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
Excellent product. Helped me to put together a tour package with interesting stories that helped my party. A most informative book
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great guide., 6 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Major and Mrs Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to the Somme 1918: "The Big Push": 1 July-17 November 1916; The Kaiser's Offensive: 21 March-25 April 1918; American/Canadian/French Sectors 1918 (Paperback)
Great details and useful tips and hints for anyone who intends to visit this area on a battlefield tour, of a size that will easily fit into a pocket.
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