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The 56th Infantry Brigade and D-Day: An Independent Infantry Brigade and the Campaign in North West Europe 1944-1945 (Studies in Military History) Hardcover – 10 Jun 2010

4.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Continnuum-3PL (10 Jun. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1441119086
  • ISBN-13: 978-1441119087
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 1.6 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,684,316 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

A former history teacher, Andrew Holborn has recently completed a Doctorate at Plymouth University. Currently a Professional Mountaineering Instructor and Technical Advisor, holding the Mountain Instructor Award and International Mountain Leader Award.

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Andrew Holburn `s account of the 56th Infantry Brigade during the Second World War is a fascinating account and adds to the literature of the Normandy campaign and the fighting across France towards Germany. It fills in, what amounts to be, a hole in the literature of the various campaigns, while adding to the understanding of the brigade, the campaigns, and of the British soldier.

As the work progresses from detailing the tasks of the various battalions, that eventually composed the brigade, from the start of the war to the brigade formation in 1944, one is presented with an interesting picture of life for the British soldier that is not always presented to the reader. While it is made clear that the men were well trained, and the staff officers did an amazing job getting the brigade into shape for war; I feel that the book missed an opportunity (considering its focus) to provide some additional detail on the training and some analysis on it and the doctrine of the infantry battalion and brigade.

Once into the battle the author's writing style, coupled with the testimony of the men who were there paint a very vivid picture of what life was like on the frontline as well as various major offensive and defensive actions: war is hell, and the author and veterans make this known. The author makes it very clear that the German soldier was brave and very able, who on the defence made extensive use of field fortifications making their positions hard nuts to crack.
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Format: Hardcover
This account of the 56 Independent Infantry Brigade is military history at its best and most authentic. Not only has Dr Holborn personally interviewed forty five survivors of the Brigade but he has accessed the papers of five others as well as records in national archives, regimental museums and the Imperial War Museum. He has brought to light material never before published. He has also visited and revisited the main sites of the operations he describes so well, often using the vivid words of those who actually took part. In addition he has consulted a wide range of secondary sources.

Dr Holborn's aims have been to tell how the British Army succeeded against the odds in the North-West Europe campaign from D Day on, to show how a brigade actually functions in the field, to give an accurate picture of the life of the ordinary serving infantryman, and to record and revere the sacrifices made by the dead and wounded.

If you want to know how young men faced up to the horrors of battle, exulted in comradeship and helped to make history, this is the book for you.

Dr Tony Atcherley MA Dip Soc
Royal Corps of Signals
Veteran of the 56 Independent Infantry Brigade.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an amazing piece of work. The author has done a remarkable job in gathering so many oral history interviews with surviving members of 56th Independent Infantry Brigade. What he gives the reader is a powerful and insightful account of D-Day and beyond from the perspective of the Brigade level. Beyond this he gives us a remarkable picture of the British Army in the latter stages of the war in Europe. Highly recommended.....
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Format: Paperback
This review is of the 2010 hardback edition. Andrew Holburn `s account of the 56th Infantry Brigade during the Second World War is a fascinating account and adds to the literature of the Normandy campaign and the fighting across France towards Germany. It fills in, what amounts to be, a hole in the literature of the various campaigns, while adding to the understanding of the brigade, the campaigns, and of the British soldier.

As the work progresses from detailing the tasks of the various battalions, that eventually composed the brigade, from the start of the war to the brigade formation in 1944, one is presented with an interesting picture of life for the British soldier that is not always presented to the reader. While it is made clear that the men were well trained, and the staff officers did an amazing job getting the brigade into shape for war; I feel that the book missed an opportunity (considering its focus) to provide some additional detail on the training and some analysis on it and the doctrine of the infantry battalion and brigade.

Once into the battle the author's writing style, coupled with the testimony of the men who were there, paints a very vivid picture of what life was like on the frontline as well as various major offensive and defensive actions: war is hell, and the author and veterans make this known. The author makes it very clear that the German soldier was brave and very able, who on the defence made extensive use of field fortifications making their positions hard nuts to crack.
Read more ›
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