12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
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This review is from: Crete: The Battle and the Resistance (Paperback)
Beevor is one of the most gifted among mainstream historians and the success of his books reflects his ability in weaving compelling narrative with independent and stimulating points of views. The controversies created in Russia by his previous books Stalingrad and the Battle for Berlin amply prove this. I am afraid that no such discussions will originate from this early work.
The book is singularly shallow, heaping together a string of facts mostly unconnected and avoiding to create a convincing broader picture of this pivotal battle, where against all odds German troops managed to win an already lost battle. The average reader remain with the bittersweet taste of an imperfect book, occasionally entertaining but mostly limping in a heavy style that fails to describe in a balanced way the struggle for the island. I found especially disturbing the author's double standard in respect of the numerous war crimes committed by British and Greek troops and irregulars against wounded and surrendering German soldiers. He glosses over them in a way similar to the one portrayed by Sebag Montefiore in the similarly failed Dunkirk. Added to this the description of British officers invariably as gentleman sportsmen, Germans as thick, senseless murderers, Greek as chivalrous bandits, only adds to the general sense of unsatisfaction.
I cannot recommend this as a serious piece of historical work while I am open for suggestions for the definite book on Operation Merkur.
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Initial post: 25 May 2010 22:03:35 BDT
I totally agree with your review. I think the main reason for it is Beevor's sole usage of British sources, probably as a result of his lack of understanding of other languages. All in all, your review is completely in line with mine. Bravo!
In reply to an earlier post on 4 Sep 2010 12:46:37 BDT
Martin Ruhland says:
Absolutely agree. I was appalled when reading the book
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