I found whilst reading this book that you could, at time, feel the horror of the conditions which soldiers has to endure. It's not hard to picture yourself amongst the ruins of the city where german soldiers were fighting feet by feet. Its a facinating read nicely complimented with photographs and maps of the campaign. You also get a since of the hopelessness that the German Command were in when they realised they were bogged down and nobody was coming to their aid. It's also interesting to get a perspective of the Russian view where there was no going back - the line had to be held. An education in its own right.
It is a truly enjoyable book. It covers the story of Stalingrand; actually it starts from the first offensive to Moscow. It covers both sides, the German and the Russian. Fortunately the author is not biased and tries to explain the reasons -if any- behind the loss of almost 3 million soldiers and civilians. Its sources are vast, including interviews of survivors, thus achieving in presenting the atmosphere of the situation.
Again Antony Beevor surpases our expectations by adroitly pulling aside the veil of history and leading us through this momentous and horrific campaign of unimaginable human tragedy. Although meticulous in historical detail, allowing us to understand the tactics and overall strategy of the opposing forces, we very quickly become immersed in its personal agony and irony. A superb book for all lovers of fine historical literature.
Stalingrad. The book is a probably a very realistic description of one of the major war theaters in the second world war. It depicts a one year battle, led by stubborn and unmoveable leaders on both sides. The Germans are represented by Hitler who doesn't listen to his generals, the Russians are led by Stalin, who doesn't either listen to his generals. Both sides are making decisions on very dubious facts. After the Germans have destroyed the plant that producest tractors (actually producing T-tanks) the military target is achieved. But after that, both sides continue a totally meaningless war, based on outdated and incomplete information. Driving some 1 million soldiers to ther meaningæless deaths. Also the book describes how soldiers are forced to switch sides because they have no options. Superb book that really grapped me - it's difficult to underatand how men could survive that chaos - most succumbed, but some miraculously survived.