Together We Stand: North Africa 1942–1943: Turning the Tide in the West

James Holland, Author . Miramax $26.95 (650p) ISBN 978-1-4013-5253-0

After years of relative neglect, historians of WWII are rediscovering the savage fighting in North Africa and developing a renewed appreciation of its importance. Rick Atkinson's superb An Army at Dawn (2002) approached the subject from an American perspective. Now comes British journalist and historian Holland with a compelling and detailed account of the same campaign. Holland (Fortress Malta ) picks up in 1942, following two years of desultory fighting in the North African desert. The decision of the Anglo-American alliance to invade Northwest Africa first—instead of France—transformed the desert campaign into a major front. Early fighting favored the Axis since the British suffered from "interwar apathy" and inferior equipment, and the Americans were also plagued by inexperience, inadequate training and poor leadership. But the Allies learned from their setbacks and eventually drove the Axis out of Africa. Despite personality clashes, the Americans and the British learned to collaborate, setting the stage for "the strongest military alliance in history." Entertaining though scholarly, this exhaustively researched narrative moves seamlessly from the exalted strategy conferences of generals and presidents to the individual grunt on the front line, offering as complete a portrait of this important episode in WWII as we are likely to see. (Feb. 15)

Reviewed on: 12/05/2005
Release date: 02/01/2006
Genre: Nonfiction
Audio Product - 5 pages - 978-0-00-721184-5
Paperback - 798 pages - 978-0-00-717646-5
Hardcover - 732 pages - 978-1-4013-5207-3
Hardcover - 978-0-00-751830-2
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