This is one of the most significant military books of the twentieth century. By an outstanding soldier of independent mind, it pushed forward the evolution of land warfare and was directly responsible for German armoured supremacy in the early years of the Second World War.
Published in 1937, the result of 15 years of careful study since his days on the German General Staff in the First World War, Achtung Panzer! argues how vital the proper use of tanks and supporting armoured vehicles would be in the conduct of a future war. When that war came, just two years later, he proved it, leading his Panzers with distinction in the Polish, French and Russian campaigns. Panzer warfare had come of age, exactly as he had forecast.This first English translation of Heinz Guderian’s classic book – used as a textbook by Panzer officers in the war – has an introduction and extensive background notes by the modern English historian Paul Harris.
How America’s bomber boys and girls in England won their war, and how their English allies responded to them.
In this comprehensive history, Kevin Wilson allows the young men of the US 8th Air Force based in Britain during the Second World War to tell their stories of blood and heroism in their own words. He also reveals the lives of the Women’s Army Corps and Red Cross girls who served in England with them. Drawing on first-hand accounts, Wilson brings to life the ebullient Americans’ interactions with their British counterparts, and unveils surprising stories of humanity and heartbreak.
Thanks to America’s bomber boys and girls, life in Britain would never be the same again.
Why the British forces fought so badly in World War II and who was to blame
Gordon Corrigan’s Mud, Blood and Poppycock overturned the myths that surround the First World War. Now he challenges our assumptions about the Second World War in this brilliant, caustic narrative that exposes just how close Britain came to losing. He reveals how Winston Churchill bears a heavy responsibility for the state of our forces in 1939, and how his interference in military operations caused a string of disasters. The reputations of some of our most famous generals are also overturned: above all, Montgomery, whose post-war stature owes more to his skill with a pen than talent for command. But this is not just a story of personalities.
Gordon Corrigan investigates how the British, who had the biggest and best army in the world in 1918, managed to forget everything they had learned in just twenty years. The British invented the tank, but in 1940 it was the Germans who showed the world how to use them. After we avoided defeat, but the slimmest of margins, it was a very long haul to defeat Hitler’s army, and one in which the Russians would ultimately bear the heaviest burden.
The story of D-Day, told in the words of those who were actually there.
‘The gigantic scale of the invasion is stunningly evoked’ – MAIL ON SUNDAY
At fifteen minutes after midnight on June 6 1944, Operation ‘Overlord’, the Allied invasion of Hitler’s Fortress Europe, became reality. In this penetrating account of D-Day and the period which followed, Robin Neillands and Roderick de Normann weave objective narration with personal accounts from those who were there to create a matchless history of the largest amphibious assault ever launched.
The dramatic story of the sinking of the Dunedin Star
November 9th, 1942. Amid the cloaking gloom of the Liverpool docks lay the Dunedin Star. A ship of the Blue Star Line, she was bound for the Middle East, her consignment of munitions for the 8th Army supplemented by twenty-one fare-paying civilians escaping the Blitz for the colonies, all forced to take the long haul round the Cape.
As an unescorted merchantman sailing U-boat infested waters, Dunedin Star’s passage was, at best, a risky undertaking. But her eventual fate was to defy all expectation. Three weeks into her voyage, her hull mysteriously holed, Dunedin Star ran aground off Namibia’s infamous Skeleton Coast – five hundred miles of raging surf and burning desert, the most violent and desolate shore on earth. Sixty-three men, women and children were to defy mountainous waves and unfathomable odds to reach land . . . but their struggle for survival had only just begun.
From interviews with survivors, eyewitness testimony, historical resources and personal journals, Dawson skilfully reconstructs the Dunedin Star’s doomed voyage, the terror of the wilderness and the painstaking rescue missions. From the grim waters of the North Atlantic to the blistering African wastes, he narrates a classic tale of pluck, set against the backdrop of World War II.
An extraordinary account – from firsthand sources – of upper class women and the active part they took in the War
Pre-war debutantes were members of the most protected, not to say isolated, stratum of 20th-century society: the young (17-20) unmarried daughters of the British upper classes. For most of them, the war changed all that for ever. It meant independence and the shock of the new, and daily exposure to customs and attitudes that must have seemed completely alien to them. For many, the almost military regime of an upper class childhood meant they were well suited for the no-nonsense approach needed in wartime.
This book records the extraordinary diversity of challenges, shocks and responsibilities they faced – as chauffeurs, couriers, ambulance-drivers, nurses, pilots, spies, decoders, factory workers, farmers, land girls, as well as in the Women’s Services. How much did class barriers really come down? Did they stick with their own sort? And what about fun and love in wartime – did love cross the class barriers?
A gripping account of the most famous military defeat and retreat in history, now the subject of a major motion picture, written and directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Kenneth Branagh, Tom Hardy and Mark Rylance.
The NEW YORK TIMES of 2 June 1940 summed up the greatest disaster in British history thus: ‘As long as the English tongue survives, the word ‘Dunkirk’ will be spoken with reverence.’
This book tells the story of the Dunkirk evacuation. It traces the fortunes of the British Expeditionary Force during those dark days of May 1940 when boys armed with little more than rifles took on the might of Hitler’s Panzer divisions – and held them while Allied armies crumbled on all sides.
The evacuation at Dunkirk lifted more than 338,000 men from France to the safety of Britain using everything from Destroyers to pleasure yachts. It was the biggest single defeat ever suffered by British arms, but it was also one of the most astounding exoduses in history.
The extraordinary drama of Malta’s WWII victory against impossible odds told through the eyes of the people who were there.
In March and April 1942, more explosives were dropped on the tiny Mediterranean island of Malta – smaller than the Isle of Wight – than on the whole of Britain during the first year of the Blitz. Malta had become one of the most strategically important places in the world. From there, the Allies could attack Axis supply lines to North Africa; without it, Rommel would be able to march unchecked into Egypt, Suez and the Middle East. For the Allies this would have been catastrophic. As Churchill said, Malta had to be held ‘at all costs’.
FORTRESS MALTA follows the story through the eyes of those who were there: young men such as twenty-year-old fighter pilot Raoul Daddo-Langlois, anti-aircraft gunner Ken Griffiths, American Art Roscoe and submariner Tubby Crawford – who served on the most successful Allied submarine of the Second World War; cabaret dancer-turned RAF plotter Christina Ratcliffe, and her lover, the brilliant and irrepressible reconnaissance pilot, Adrian Warburton. Their stories and others provide extraordinary first-hand accounts of heroism, resilience, love, and loss, highlighting one of the most remarkable stories of World War II.
At the outbreak of the First World War in 1914 Captain J. L. Jack was serving with the First Cameronians, one of the earliest British regiments to arrive in France. Almost every day while serving in France and Flanders, Jack kept a secret diary. This diary is unique. It presents the detail of a regular officer’s life at war during virtually the whole of the First World War on the Western Front. Jack was witness not only to the horror and wretchedness of much that happened in the trenches but also to the bravery and spirit that kept the British soldiers in the line going through to the momentous battles of 1918 and final victory. Poignant and moving, as well as describing the reality of war on the Western Front, these diaries have been edited and linked with commentaries by the distinguished military historian John Terraine.
A superb short historical analysis of the Holocaust, by one of the world’s leading authorities on the subject
Robert Wistrich begins by exploring the origins of anti-Semitism in Europe, and especially in Germany, to try to explain how millions of Jews came to be killed systematically by the Third Reich. In the process of relating these events, he provides new and incisive answers to a number of central questions concerning the Shoah that have emerged over recent years: who, inside and outside Nazi Germany, knew that Jews were being murdered; how responsibility for the genocide should be divided between Hitler himself and ordinary Germans; and how historians have tried to make sense of the Holocaust.
The book concludes by considering the legacy of Nazi crimes since 1945: the Nuremburg trials, the impact of the Holocaust on Diaspora Jewry (particularly in Israel and America), and the rise of neo-Nazism and Holocaust-denial.
This is a closely argued and wide-ranging assessment of just how, with so many alternatives open, the German High Command chose the path that led, ultimately, to its own destruction. Heinz Magenheimer examines in detail the options that were open to the Germans as the war progressed. He identifies the crucial moments at which fateful decisions needed to be made, and considers how decisions different from those actually taken could have propelled the conflict in entirely different directions. Using the very latest source material, in particular new research from Soviet Russian sources, the author analyses motives and objectives and considers the opportunities acted upon or rejected, concentrating especially on specific phases of the conflict.
NOW WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY W. STANLEY MOSS’S DAUGHTER GABRIELLA BULLOCK AND AN AFTERWORD BY PATRICK LEIGH FERMOR
Ill Met By Moonlight is the true story of one of the most hazardous missions of the Second World War. W. Stanley Moss is a young British officer who, along with Major Patrick Leigh Fermor, sets out in Nazi-occupied Crete to kidnap General Kreipe, Commander of the Sevastopool Division, and narrowly escaping the German manhunt, bring him off the island – a vital prisoner for British intelligence.
As an account of derring-do and wartime adventure, made into a classic film starring Dirk Bogarde, Ill Met By Moonlight is one of the most brilliantly written, exciting and compelling stories to come out of the Second World War.