Monty and Rommel: Parallel Lives

Peter Caddick-Adams. Overlook, $35 (640p) ISBN 978-1-59020-725-3
Bernard Law Montgomery and Erwin Rommel are ideal subjects for a comparative military biography. These two WWII generals confronted each other directly over a significant period of time, under different conditions: the deserts of North Africa and Normandy’s woodlands. Their styles were fundamentally different. Rommel was a master of maneuver; Montgomery excelled in the set-piece battle. Rommel was an improviser; Montgomery was a planner. Rommel was a gambler; Montgomery possessed an infinite capacity for avoiding risk. But Caddick-Adams, a distinguished British military writer and defense analyst, demonstrates as well that the two commanders had much in common. Each understood the strengths and limitations of the armies in which he served and the forces he commanded. Montgomery knew British soldiers could not be made to fight like Germans. Rommel was aware that the Third Reich was waging war on a shoestring and had to take risks for victory. Both lacked political sophistication. Montgomery faced dismissal by Winston Churchill in the war’s final months. Rommel’s misjudgment of Hitler cost him his life. But each was a master of the battlefield, feared and respected by his opponents. Without choosing between them, Caddick-Adams compares Rommel to a bold “modernist painter” and Montgomery to a painstaking “seventeenth-century minimalist.” It is a striking, appropriate conclusion to an excellent book. 40 b&w photos; 10 maps. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/21/2011
Release date: 02/16/2012
Show other formats
Paperback - 614 pages - 978-1-84809-154-2
Paperback - 614 pages - 978-1-4683-0498-5
Open Ebook - 640 pages - 978-1-4090-5092-6
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.