D-Day: June 6, 1944 -- The Climactic Battle of WWII

Stephen E. Ambrose, Author, Albano, Author Simon & Schuster $35 (656p) ISBN 978-0-671-67334-5
Ambrose's account of the D-Day fighting on the Normandy beaches and bluffs is unsurpassed for detail, emotion and suspense. Quoting liberally from the recollections of participants, he reveals how the massive cross-Channel effort stretched back two years and involved millions of people. He describes the choice of the site and date of the landings, the planning and special training, ship loading and embarkation, and finally the amphibious assault itself--that moment when ``the Western democracies made their fury manifest.'' Ambrose, director of the Eisenhower Center at the University of New Orleans, interprets events as the narrative unfolds and much of what he has to say is bracing. He concludes, for example, that German military leadership was abysmal that day, even at the small-unit level; that Allied elite units such as Airborne, Rangers and Commandoes were superior in fighting ability to those the enemy had in the field; and that the German reliance on fixed defensive positions, the so-called Atlantic Wall, was one of the greatest blunders in history. Among the spate of books marking the 50th anniversary of D-Day, Ambrose's overview will likely stand as definitive. Photos. 100,000 first printing; BOMC and History Book Club main selections; Reader's Digest Condensed Books selection. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/06/1994
Release date: 06/01/1994
Genre: Nonfiction
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