by: Randy L Harvey [ ]
This is a review of the Osprey Publishing LTD book D-Day To Victory with men and machines that won the war by author Stephen Bull.
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The Western Front of the European Theatre of World War II encompassed Denmark, Norway, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands, France, and West Germany. The ground war for the Western Front began in June 1944 with the Allied landings in Normandy and continued until the defeat of Germany in May 1945.
Osprey Publications Ltd has released “D-Day To Victory” with men and machines that won the war as a 272 page hardback book with a paper dust jacket by author Stephen Bull. Included with the text are colour and black and white and colour photographs, colour and black and white illustrations, colour maps, a metric to US measurement conversion table, a key to military symbols and detailed captions. It has a 2011 copyright and the ISBN is 978-1-84908-838-1. The book examines Western Front warfare from D-Day to the end of World War II in Europe.
- Introduction: The Great Crusade
- Chapter 1 – D-Day: 6 June 1944
- Chapter 2 – Normandy: 7 June-25 July 1944
- Chapter 3 – Breakout: 25 July-25 August 1944
- Chapter 4 – Arnhem and the Siegfried Line: 17 September-15 December 1944
- Chapter 5 – The Ardennes: 16 December 1944-16 January 1945
- Chapter 6 – The Rhine and Berlin: 17 January-30 April 1945
- Conclusion: Going Home
- Further Reading
Stephen Bull has done an excellent job with detailing and discussing the Western Front during World War II. The text starts out with the planning stages of the Normandy invasion and continues on throughout the various campaigns and the losses and victories and takes you on to the final battle for Berlin as well as the details after the end of hostilities in Europe. As well as covering the main events of the battles on the western front Bull also goes into detail in regards to specific Allied and Axis small arms, armour, aircraft, troops and larger weaponry. Bull has also included details from several personal accounts of the fighting on the Western Front by the individuals that were there and involved in the historic events that led up to the victory over Germany. Anyone interested in warfare on the Western Front during World War II will find this book very informative and interesting.
There are a total of 104 black and white photographs and 53 colour photographs throughout the book. I appreciated with the photographs that a good majority of them are not the same old overused photographs that tend to turn up. It is always nice to see the lesser known photographs. The photographs that are provided cover the time frame and specific conflicts very well and are shown in the correct chronological order, as well as being typical for that period. They range from very nice and clear staged photographs to some that are not so well defined. Nonetheless the photographs accompany the volume nicely and help provide visual reference to the text. The photographs cover everything from Allied and Axis small arms, armour, aircraft, troops and larger weaponry. The majority of the photographs are nice clear, centered and focused images, however there are some that have an out of focus look to them and some appear to be too dark. I have seen several military photographs that have this look to them so maybe that is just typical. I do know that several military photographs are actually stills taken from video so that could be one reason. With that said the quality of the blurry photographs is no fault of the author and do not take anything away from the book.
There is one colour illustration and nine black and white illustrations. The accompanying illustrations are a definite plus and are a welcome companion to the photographs. Some of them are in the form of scale line drawings and appear to be taken directly out of military manuals, both Allied and Axis, from the time frame discussed.
the colour maps
There are seven colour maps throughout the book. The maps are a welcome addition as they help show the reader the actions taken during particular battles and operations. To me this is nice as it shows you what took place as opposed to trying to see it in your mind as you read.
The captions are well written, very detailed, and explain the accompanying photographs well. They provide information about the image shown in regards to specific things such as individuals, dates, locations, specific armour, actions being shown, etc. As I read through the captions I didn’t notice any spelling or grammatical errors. Grammar and spelling might not be an important factor to everyone however it is something that I take notice of and pass on my findings. I feel that if the text is well written then it shows that the author has taken the time to be a professional with their writing.
All in all I am very impressed with the book. The book will be helpful and interesting to the military enthusiasts and historian and well as the military modeler. I have reviewed several Osprey Publishing titles and I am yet to be disappointed with any of them and this title is no exception. I would have no hesitation to add other Osprey titles to my personal library nor would I hesitate to recommend this book to others.
This book was provided to me by Osprey Publishing Ltd. Please be sure to mention that you saw the book reviewed here when you make your purchase.
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