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This is one of those rare books which you just cannot put down. One may have read histories of WW II before, but not like this work. Like his other histories Sir Max Hastings is meticulous in his research and his delivery is faultless and absorbing. Facts, figures and names litter each page and take the reader on an incredible voyage into the most destructive conflict off all time. He does not lose the thread and brings personal accounts and the overview of the war together. Readers will find much new material here from the war on the home front in each country caught up in the conflict to the fighting in the front line, at sea and in the air. This single volume is an asset to anyone interested in the war, and to anyone studying the conflict for research this work as an invaluable tool. As with his other works Sir Max Hastings has delivered the goods again.

Author: Sir Max Hastings.
Publisher: Harper Press, tel. 020 8741 7070. www.harpercollins.co.uk
ISBN: 9780007450725.
Price: £9.99.


The author served with the 35th Panzer Regiment of the 4th Panzer Division seeing action on the Eastern Front and so he knows his subject matter from first-hand experience. This works begins at the start of Operation Barbarossa on 21 June 1941 all the way through to the end of the war. The first-hand accounts are fascinating and the author’s observations give an insight into this fierce campaign. Conversations are recounted, reactions recorded and thoughts are put into words. This is the story of a soldier’s war told ‘how it was’ in a no holds barred manner. The photographs range from the official type which would feature in publications and those taken using personal cameras to capture snapshots, but they also record the harsh reality and brutality of war.

Author: Hans Schaufl er.
Publisher: Pen and Sword Books Ltd, tel. 01226 734679.
ISBN: 9781781590058.
Price: £25.


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This book first appeared in 1956 and contains ‘First Hand Accounts by Hitler’s Generals’ as the sub-title. Those generals whose accounts are recorded here are now all long dead but what they wrote, heard and saw and thought at the time will all be of interest to a whole new generation. Arguments between officers and even disagreements with Hitler are contained in this work and they make for enlightening reading. We take for granted such records but here are the words of those who had to make Hitler’s plans work on the battlefield and in the skies over England during the Battle of Britain. The names of the generals will be familiar to readers but much of what is contained in this book may be new or even clarify certain points covered in other works. The conversation between Hitler and his generals as to whether or not the 6th Army at Stalingrad should be relieved or withdrawn makes for interesting reading even though the outcome is already known.

Edited by: William Richardson
and Seymour
Publisher: Pen and Sword
Books Ltd, tel.
01226 734679.
Website: www.penand-
ISBN: 9781848848764.
Price: £19.99.


Put quite simply this is a handsome book, full of photographs most of which, if not all, have never been seen before in a work of this kind. The authors have scoured far and wide to bring together this unique collection which benefits from having detailed captions. A brief introduction and the reader is into the photographs and the heart of the book. From the opening phases of the campaign in Russia to the end of 1941 it is all recorded here including the atrocities which followed in the wake of the invasion. Some images are informal, probably taken on personal cameras, and there are the official images which Germans at home would have seen in newspapers. Photographs of bridges being repaired, artillery in action and abandoned vehicles show what the campaign was like in the opening phases. The seasons are also recorded from the heat of the summer in June to the sub-zero temperatures in December will make the reader wonder how men could have fought in such extremes. This is a work which can be returned time and again and always find something new to look at.

Authors: Michael Olive and Robert Edwards.
Publisher: Pen and Sword Books Ltd, tel.01226
734679. www.pen-and-sword.co.uk
ISBN: 1848848676.
Price: £19.99.


Originally released in 2007 to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Falklands War this film still has a strong relevance in this year which marks the 30th anniversary. This confl ict lasted ten weeks but it marked the turning point in warfare because it was the last conventional campaign before chemical warfare became the main threat. This film contains all the major phases and operations, including Operation Paraquet, in six main chapters which take the viewer through the invasion of the islands, Britain’s mobilisation and the Argentinian surrender. It has atmospheric images and the narration is delivered in newsreader fashion which is not because this uses ITN film footage. The graphics are easy to follow and one is reminded of WW II newsreel when looking at the footage showing the artillery barrages and the POWs surrendering. Bonus features include material on the SAS and SBS along with other special forces of America and the former Soviet Union.

Distributor: Beckmann Visual Publishingtel. 01624
816585. www.beckmanndirect.com
EAN: 5020609007403.
DVD Running time: 74 minutes.
Price: £11.27.