The Victors: Eisenhower and His Boys: The Men of World War II

Stephen E. Ambrose, Author Simon & Schuster $28 (400p) ISBN 978-0-684-85628-5
Ambrose has established himself as both a major biographer of Dwight Eisenhower and the definitive chronicler of America's combat soldiers in the D-Day campaign of 1944-45. But after Citizen Soldiers, he'd sworn off war and given away his WWII books. Then his editor convinced him to do ""a book on Ike and the GIs, drawing on my previous writings""--such as Citizen Soldiers, D-Day and The Supreme Commander. ""Alice Mayhew made me do it,"" Ambrose writes here. Readers familiar with Ambrose's work will find familiar set pieces, familiar anecdotes, even familiar phrases, but this is more than a clip job. It stands on its own as the story of the GIs who fought their way from Normandy's beaches and hedgerows across Europe. Few were prepared for combat against a Wehrmacht that was dangerous even in decline, and both enlisted men and officers learned through hard-earned experience. While admiring Eisenhower's character and generally affirming his performance as supreme Allied commander, Ambrose is sharply critical of such costly slugging matches as the one in the Huertgen Forest, which continued during the fall and winter of 1944 on orders from senior officers unaware of conditions in the front lines and unable to develop an alternative to frontal assault. But by the final thrust into Germany in the spring of 1945, the U.S. Army's fighting power was second to none. Once more, Ambrose does what few others do as well--vividly portray the sacrifices and achievements of democracy's army. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/02/1998
Release date: 11/01/1998
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-684-85629-2
Hardcover - 978-1-56895-636-7
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-671-04337-7
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-7435-1874-1
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-7434-9242-3
Ebook - 400 pages - 978-1-4711-0440-4
Open Ebook - 396 pages - 978-0-684-86454-9
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