A Measureless Peril: America in the Fight for the Atlantic, the Longest Battle of World War II

Richard Snow, Author . Scribner $27 (353p) ISBN 978-1-4165-9110-8

Former American Heritage editor-in-chief Snow brings long experience to this graphic account of the Battle of the Atlantic. He seasons it heavily with the letters of his father, who was an officer on one of the U.S. destroyer escorts vital to the U-boat offensive's final defeat. Snow quickly, colorfully, and accurately sets the stage: the construction and employment of Nazi Germany's formidable submarine force; the heroically improvised British and Canadian response; the fine line Franklin Roosevelt treaded in supporting Britain without committing America directly to war. Even after Pearl Harbor, it took time for a U.S. Navy previously indifferent to antisubmarine warfare to develop an effective doctrine and an industry that would construct the ships to implement it. Twenty-seven hundred “Liberty ships” put to sea faster than the U-boats could sink them. Four hundred destroyer escorts, “built out of spare parts, by amateurs,” crewed and commanded by other amateurs, protected the Liberties and hunted the subs. Snow ably uses his father's letters to reconstruct Atlantic duty in the final years of a vital battle for Allied victory. (May)

Reviewed on: 03/15/2010
Release date: 05/01/2010
Paperback - 353 pages - 978-1-4165-9111-5
Compact Disc - 978-1-4423-3452-6
Ebook - 368 pages - 978-1-4165-9507-6
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4423-3453-3
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