BenTha'er-Horizons

reading

Bob's Books, Part Three

Here is the last of the list which is a trilogy not to be missed. Heavy, but lively reading from a master storyteller.

12, 13 & 14. World War II Trilogy/Rick Atkinson: Atkinson's monumental trilogy of the US Army during WWII from North Africa (An Army At Dawn) through Italy and Sicily (The Day of Battle) and ending with the battles in France and Germany (The Guns At Last Light) is a paean to the bravery and sacrifice of the common soldier. Atkinson combines interviews with everyday GI Joes, surviving staff officers, meticulous research of official and unofficial Army sources and the personal correspondence of a multitude of Generals, Officers and soldiers into an epic story of liberation. I read the first two volumes in 2010 and finished the third volume in 2012 shortly after its release. While I was ready for WWII to end, I also hoped Atkinson would one day write the definitive histories of the Korean and Vietnam Wars.

Bob's Books, Part Deux

Here is the middle section of Bob’s list which is weighted toward the military.

6 & 7. At Dawn We Slept and Midway/Gordon Prange: Prange's classic about the disaster at Pearl Harbor is both numbingly detailed as well as overtly compelling. The followup book, Midway, is just as forceful. The slaughter of the Yorktown based marine dive bombers as they attacked the Japanese fleet is particularly heart-rending.

10. Goodbye,Darkness/ William Manchester: Manchester's book about life and death on Guadalcanal is a gripping, dark and unforgettable chronicle of the chaos in war.

11. Roll Me Over/Raymond Gantner: Roll Me Over is a "soldier's story" of the Hurtgen Forest killing field. Depressing and hopeless yet I was unable to put the book down.

The final section of this part will be for tomorrow.