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Winter Reading List

Discussion in 'WWII Books & Publications' started by Mussolini, Nov 16, 2016.

  1. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    Winter season for me means a big slow down at work. I'm about to finish reading my third book at work already (The Last Escape by John Nichol/Tony Rennell) and have a few other books lined up this winter, but I am not sure if I want to tackle them (mostly reading on lunch break at work, but also when there is nothing to do).

    The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
    Mussolini's Italy
    Winston Churchills 'World War 2' Series

    So, some heavy reading there.

    I am looking for additional recommendations too. Preferably first-hand accounts or books that are entertaining (but true) to read.

    Does anyone know of any Japanese perspective books (written/translated into English) or any other good reads from the 'Axis' side of things? I've read all the usual American books - Stephen Ambrose of course and countless others, so I'm looking to broaden my horizons a bit.
     
  2. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member Patron  

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    Any specific focus you looking for (PTO/ETO, Memoir, Biography, etc)?
     
  3. Smiley 2.0

    Smiley 2.0 Smiles

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    Soldat: Reflections of a German Soldier 1936-1949 is one of my favorite books written by a soldier from the Axis side. Although it includes an American pilot, A Higher Call by Adam Makos focuses a lot on the German pilot Franz Stigler. There is also a biography about Mitsuo Fuchida, the lead pilot in the attack on Pearl Harbor titled "God's Samurai: Lead Pilot at Pearl Harbor" by Donald Goldstein.
     
  4. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Try "The Cause of Japan" by Togo Shigenori. It's a memoir of Japan's Foreign Minister written while he was in prison. It has a 1956 copyright date. Tough reading, but an interesting take on Japan in the 30s and 40s. It was recommended to me by OpanaPointer.
     
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  5. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    Good suggestions so far.

    I know I've read 'Forgotten Soldier' by Guy Sajer but I think most of my reading has been from the American/British perspective.

    I want a good page-turner...a book you can't put down...but what specific category that falls in, I have no clue! I will google some of the suggestions at home tonight.

    Between the books and continuing my family research (timezone means communication is once a day with my great-uncle and uncle over in the UK at best) I should be able to keep occupied this winter.
     
  6. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member Patron  

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    Kershaw's The End is a good, IMO, page turner. Great incite and research regarding the end of the Reich.
     
  7. FalkeEins

    FalkeEins Member

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    Beevor's 'D-Day, the battle for Normandy' is certainly a page-turner...as is Hastings "Nemesis - the Battle for Japan". I really enjoyed Isby's " The decisive duel ; Spitfire vs Bf 109 " too, beautifully written. A view from the Axis side " Messerschmitts over Sicily " (Steinhoff) or " Luftwaffe fighter Ace" (Hannig) are good reads
     
  8. rkline56

    rkline56 USS Oklahoma City CG5

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    "Blackwater"
    Civilian Warriors: The Inside Story of Blackwater and the Unsung Heroes of the Iraq War
    by Former Founding CEO Erik Prince.

    Very relevant, given the rise of defense contractors increasingly providing Security Forces for various assets, Police Forces and State Department personnel. Just watch your contracts or you'll get burned like he did. Very interesting look at life from ground zero Iraq.

    https://books.google.com/books?id=9TgtAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT278&lpg=PT278&dq=blackwater+jeff+prince&source=bl&ots=g9M1H6K1TU&sig=yFCSfmFXoyE20dw0xabT8H1MRPY&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiK1fK05rLQAhWB24MKHemwCcgQ6AEIMjAE#v=onepage&q=blackwater%20jeff%20prince&f=false
     
  9. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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  10. WW2HistoryGal

    WW2HistoryGal Member

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    Two page-turners I recommend are non-military related, but set in Occupied France.

    Priscilla: The Hidden Life of an Englishwoman in Wartime France by Nicholas Shakespeare. It's a fascinating story about how an ordinary woman collaborated with the Germans, but while you're reading it, you can't help but wonder, what would I have done in the same situation?

    The Hotel on Place Vendome: Life, Death, and Betrayal at the Hotel Ritz in Paris by Tilar J. Mazzeo. Features famous individuals, like Coco Chanel and Ernest Hemingway.

    Both are excellent.
     
  11. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    Based on recommendations and availability, this is my Winter Reading Purchase List:

    1. God's Samurai: Lead Pilot at Pearl Harbor (Brassey's Commemorative Series, Wwii)
    2. Cassino: Portrait of a Battle
    3. Soldat: Reflections Of A German Soldier, 1936-49
    4. The Cause of Japan
     
  12. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    You've made quite a list. Make sure you give yourself enough time to reflect on what you've read. It will certainly keep you busy.
     
  13. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    My current book is "Mussolini's Italy' by RJB Bosworth. Certainly not light reading (both content and the 572 pages) but I plan on getting it read before Christmas. I get 30 min lunch breaks, during which I read as I stuff my face, and can also sneak in a few pages here and there during the day when there is nothing/little to do. I imagine it won't take me a month to read, but you never know.
     
  14. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    I've just finished "Soldat: Reflections Of A German Soldier, 1936-49" in a weeks worth of reading.

    Pretty interesting Military Career - certainly came up through the ranks as far as being an Officer. It certainly shed some light on things I was not aware about especially the mindset of a German who was certainly not a Nazi.

    I may pick up the Cassino or Gods Samurai book next. I may have to flip through the first few pages of each tonight before making my decision.
     
  15. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    5 feet, 11 inches. That's the height of my current backlog. As I'll be down for surgery next week I can chip away at it.

    And Santa hasn't been here yet.

    I think I'm going to cry.
     
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  16. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    1. Read Alan Zimm's book on Pearl Harbor when you're done.

    4. Interesting book.
     
  17. Otto

    Otto Rested & Resupplied with MREs. Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    Mail a few feet of those books my way, I'll keep an eye on them for you.
     
  18. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    I'll put you in my will.
     
  19. rkline56

    rkline56 USS Oklahoma City CG5

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    Asser's Life of King Alfred,

    I, got interested in this after watching Netflix - The Last Kingdom (only 3 episodes of 9 complete). Fairly factual regarding the defense of Essex against the Danes and leaders Guthrum and Ubbe.
     
  20. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    If I lived in my own home I am sure I would be in the same situation as you! As it is, I rent 1 of 4 rooms in a crappy place. I guess I need to find myself a sugar-mommy (or a trustfund girl) and get that sorted.

    So I decided to go with 'Gods Samurai' for my next book reading. I'll be starting it today at lunch time.
     

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