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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant book, meticulously researched and well-written
This is a superb book that brilliantly chronicles the massive British Airborne attack which secured the eastern flank of the Normandy invasion area in the early hours of D-Day.

It tells in unprecedented detail the story of Major John Howard's famous glider-borne coup de main force, which shortly after midnight on June 6, 1944, seized Pegasus Bridge and Horsa...
Published on 19 Aug 2009 by Tommac

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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Looking for a readable history of the first battles for Normandy
Sadly this choice did not meet my needs, the extensive insertion of personal accounts sometimes taking up more page space than the authors own words made this a very awkward read for me. The information needed to tell the story is most certainly in this book, it just did not read enjoyably for me.
Published 17 months ago by Michael Nolder


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant book, meticulously researched and well-written, 19 Aug 2009
This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
This is a superb book that brilliantly chronicles the massive British Airborne attack which secured the eastern flank of the Normandy invasion area in the early hours of D-Day.

It tells in unprecedented detail the story of Major John Howard's famous glider-borne coup de main force, which shortly after midnight on June 6, 1944, seized Pegasus Bridge and Horsa Bridge - the vital crossings over the Caen Canal and River Orne that had to be captured to prevent the later seaborne invasion being jeopardised.

But the book's greatest achievement is to piece together the wider story of the huge force of British paratroopers who dropped shortly after the coup de main force and whose main task was to secure the villages of Benouville and Ranville, creating a bridgehead which would deny the Germans access to the invasion beaches.

The operation was complicated, confused and sometimes chaotic. But, through meticulous research and using extensive interviews with veterans, the author has produced a compelling narrative which is as easy to follow as it is thrilling to read.

For anyone with an interest in this aspect of the Normandy operation, such as myself, this book is a must-have and I am sure it will become the definitive account of the Airborne operations in the Orne bridgehead.

But it is also an excellent read in its own right and a fitting tribute to those brave young men who for a few fateful hours in the darkness of D-Day held the future of Europe in their hands.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another brilliant thoroughly researched account from Neil Barber., 11 Aug 2009
By 
J. A. Holder-Vale "Jim Holder-Vale" (Hertfordshire.England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day I did not arrive at Le Port until late on D-Day, but I now know the full story of what went on before, thanks to the thorough research of Neil Barber. He relates the story so clearly it is easy to locate the positions and read the participants own words and fully grasp the heroism and brutallity of real war. I have read many books dealing with Pegasus & Horsa Bridges but only now do I understand the full story.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the pegasus and orne bridges:their capture and relief, 1 Mar 2011
This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
Very well researched and written. It is so important to get the views and record the experiences of the people on the ground.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pegasus & Orne Bridges - an excellent reference book, 23 Dec 2010
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Alan Edwards - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
This book gives a detailed record of events as they unfolded of the capture and retention of the bridges over the river Orne and the Caen-Ouistreham canal on D-Day, 6th June 1944. A study of of the successful achievement of one of 6th Airborne Division's objectives on the Eastern flank of the invasion, it is meticulously researched, as are all Barber's works. It is a reliable reference for all who who wish to know more about this British mass airborne operation, comprising parachute and glider-borne units, on that first, ctitical day of the liberation of Europe.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent History, 8 Jun 2014
Important to Remember

As I read The Pegasus and Orne Bridges by Neil Barber the seventieth anniversary of the D-Day landings are taking place. Just after midnight in the early minutes of 6th June 1940 the British Prime Minister and Normandy Veterans are at Pegasus Bridge with fireworks going off around him. Seventy years earlier some of those veterans were young men who captured the bridge the first of many successes that would take place that day. Today those men were driven to the bridge seventy years earlier they had either parachuted in or in the back of a glider.

This book is a gripping description of the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry and the 7th Battalion of the Parachute Regiment capture of the bridges over the Caen Canal and the River Orne. This book describes in detail the planning of the operations and their successful execution of those plans in what is a wonderfully readable account of that day.

One of the most important things in this book is that there are historical explanations of what was happening throughout the book which neatly dovetail with the words of the soldiers and officers on the ground of that day. This really gives a lot of resonance to their story rather than a bland account by a historian.

Pen & Sword Military Publishers really do cover Military History so well as they not only print books about the big battles and dates in war but also some of the stories that could easily be forgotten so easily as the men that participated in the various theatres of war are very few and their number dwindles by the year.

This book uses the words of the officers and men along with war time pictures and right now I can hear the voices of those men. My interest in this part of history is not just that I am a qualified historian but my own grandfather was a paratrooper who knew and trained many of the men that served their country and adopted country so well on 6th June 1944. This is a wonderful book that really should be in every library.

This book is a wonderful testament to those who fought to take and defend the bridges over the Caen Canal and the Orne River we owe them a debt of gratitude. This really is an important book to read and cherish.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Blow-by-blow account of a highly significant WWII action, 30 Jan 2014
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This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
Neil Barber's carefully researched mixture of official war diaries and personal reminiscences brings to life the harsh realities of a highly significant action in the closing year of the Second World War. These narratives are arranged in a manner that gives the reader a clear picture of the drama as it unfolded. This is arguably the best account of this audacious operation I have come accross among several I have read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent, 12 April 2013
By 
John Wimbush (Newcastle upon Tyne, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
I was moved to add a review simply because I noticed that another reviewer had inexplicably rated this marvelous book lower than 5 stars. I found that Neil Barber's reseach shone through and I was fascinated to see some of the myths placed in context: thank God I've never had to stop a tracked vehicle at night with the only PIAT - it's not a comment on the bravery of Wagger Thornton to correctly identify the vehicle and is a welcome change from Ambrose's hyperbole. I enjoyed "The Day the Devils Dropped In" but really found this book a step up and it is my fervent wish that Neil follows this up with an account of the 8th Batalion and 1st Canadian who have had their misdrops and support actions play bit-parts in both the books. Combine this with the 1st Airlanding Brigade and we'll have a work on the 6th Airborne to rival Nordyke's work on the 82nd, surely a fitting commemoration of the only airborne division to achieve all its objectives on DDay. It's an incredible achievement to weld so many personal testimonies together from so many subjective viewpoints and yet tie them together with a coherent narrative. When eye-witnesses remember things differently Neil respectfully opts for the more likely option. I was mesmerised. If you want to get beyond surface detail on the Normandy fighting then this book is essential.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Looking for a readable history of the first battles for Normandy, 1 Mar 2013
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This review is from: The Pegasus and Orne Bridges: Their Capture, Defence and Relief on D-Day (Hardcover)
Sadly this choice did not meet my needs, the extensive insertion of personal accounts sometimes taking up more page space than the authors own words made this a very awkward read for me. The information needed to tell the story is most certainly in this book, it just did not read enjoyably for me.
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