Overlord: D-Day and the Battle for Normandy 1944 (Pan Military Classics) Paperback – 21 May 2010
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"Max Hastings's reportage of the battle is not unworthy to stand with that of the best journalists and writers who witnessed it. . . . A tribute to his skills as a historian." -John Keegan, "The New York Times Book Review" "Hastings combines a quick, clear prose with provocative and often brilliant analysis. His conclusions are sharp yet sound, his research through, and his history incisive. Of the many books that have been written on Normandy, it is quite simply the best." -"Dallas Morning News" "A brilliant and concise account." -"The Washington Post Book World" "A fine account of the strategy and tactics of the campaign. The author has been shot at himself. . . . This has done marvels for quickening his understanding of what such landings are like, and adds an extra cutting edge to his book. He goes over a well-worn path, full of pitfalls, and falls into none of them." - "The Economist"
Max Hastings' classic account of the famous D-Day landings --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Out of Ambrose, Beevor and Hastings I'd recommend Hastings, just make sure your have a good pair of glasses!
Whilst far superior to the work of 'historians' such as Stephen Ambrose, there is still an overwhelming feeling of this book being authored by a journalist and not an historian. Hastings makes many sweeping statements, many of which are totally unfounded, yet does very little to substantiate his claims. He constantly enforces the popular misconception, which have almost become fashionable, to criticise rather than to focus on the positives. Reading 'Overlord' found me actually questioning myself as to whether or not the Allies actually won the Battle of Normandy or not.
There is far too much unbalanced emphasis on the conceived failures, failures which can only be called such with the benefit of no small amount of hindsight. Operation Overlord was the biggest and best operation the western allies launched in WW2 and should be celebrated for what it achieved, not disected to an extent that only with that valuable aid of hindsight can decisions be doubted and triumphs blunted beyond recognition.
Hasting plays up the superiority of the German forces but, in my opinion, fails to give due credit to the forces (prodominantly British) that took on the bulk of the German elite, and beat them into submission within just 71 days in Normandy.
Whilst I dont agree with every sentiment expressed by historians like John Keegan, Carlo D'Este, Denis Whitaker and Terry Copp, these historians make much more effort to present an objective and substantiated account than Hastings achieves in this publication.Read more ›
There is some complaint to be made with this not being as strictly academic as other work that has since been produced since this book was released. I think this book is not without it flaws, but ones that are forgiveable. The complaint one reviewer made is legitimate, and perhaps this is more a result of the author trying to keep the momentum of the story moving (this is narrative history after all). The Canadians, for example, fought brilliantly throughout the war. When the author is critical of the Canadians and British failing to make progress against the Germans, this is more probably due to shoddy tactics (little armour & infantry working together) than 'not wanting' to fight. For a good idea of how poor their tactics were, I would recommend reading Panzer Commander by Hans Von Luck. He fought on the other side during Normandy, and it is quite eye-opening how badly the British (and therefore Canadian) attacks were planned and executed. Perhaps another issue could be that the author gives too much credence to Monty's retrospective argument for British and Canadian troops taking the brunt of the German forces and 'allowing' the Americans to break-out of the beach-head. But these are relatively minor matters, and I think the author is right not to get too bogged down in dealing with arguments for and against. Leave that to the academics.
But whatever this book's deficiencies, I dare you to put it down once you start reading. It is an excellent starting point or anyone who wants to understand this campaign.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Allied amphibious invasion of the continent via Normandy was its biggest gamble of the war. Had it failed, no other invasion would have been possible until 1945. Read morePublished 2 months ago by David Herdson
Superbas usual. he is a most gifted writer and a person with a very deep understanding. He really does his research well.dPublished 2 months ago by D
Well balanced review of the invasion with personal accounts to give it a real flavour of the cost of the battle as well as an understanding from a strategic perspectivesPublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
well written, very detailed, unprejudiced account of the run up to the Battle of Normandy and its enactment from both sides. An amazing read.Published 5 months ago by Ms. B. M. Alton
It is fantastic ;a unique ,critical but very balanced view of the battle and personalities involved
Lots of snippets about things I didn't know (eg the preceding minor... Read more