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From America's preeminent military historian, Stephen E. Ambrose, comes the definitive telling of the war in Europe, from D-Day, June 6, 1944, to the end, eleven months later, on May 7, 1945. This authoritative narrative account is drawn by the author himself from his five acclaimed books about that conflict, most particularly from the definitive and comprehensive "D-Day" and "Citizen Soldiers, " about which the great Civil War historian James McPherson wrote, "If there is a better book about the experience of GIs who fought in Europe during World War II, I have not read it. "Citizen Soldiers" captures the fear and exhilaration of combat, the hunger and cold and filth of the foxholes, the small intense world of the individual rifleman as well as the big picture of the European theater in a manner that grips the reader and will not let him go. No one who has not been there can understand what combat is like but Stephen Ambrose brings us closer to an understanding than any other historian has done." "The Victors" also includes stories of individual battles, raids, acts of courage and suffering from "Pegasus Bridge, " an account of the first engagement of D-Day, when a detachment of British airborne troops stormed the German defense forces and paved the way for the Allied invasion; and from "Band of Brothers, " an account of an American rifle company from the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment who fought, died, and conquered, from Utah Beach through the Bulge and on to Hitter's Eagle's Nest in Germany. Stephen Ambrose is also the author of "Eisenhower, " the greatest work on Dwight Eisenhower, and one of the editors of the Supreme Allied Commander's papers. He describes the momentous decisions about how and where the war was fought, and about the strategies and conduct of the generals and officers who led the invasion and the bloody drive across Europe to Berlin. But, as always with Stephen E. Ambrose, it is the ranks, the ordinary boys and men, who command his attention and his awe. "The Victors" tells their stories, how citizens became soldiers in the best army in the world. Ambrose draws on thousands of interviews and oral histories from government and private archives, from the high command--Eisenhower, Bradley, Patton--on down through officers and enlisted men, to re-create the last year of the Second World War when the Allied soldiers pushed the Germans out of France, chased them across Germany, and destroyed the Nazi regime.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780684856292
ISBN-10: 0684856298
Format: Paperback
(216mm x 135mm x 27mm)
Pages: 396
Imprint: Touchstone
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publish Date: 2-Nov-1999
Country of Publication: United States

Reviews

US Kirkus Review » Revisiting ground covered previously in his superb Citizen Soldiers (1997) and other works about the climactic European campaigns of 1944-45, distinguished historian Ambrose (Undaunted Courage, 1996, etc.) tells the story of the conquest of Nazism by an array of American, English, and Canadian kids led by the plain-spoken Dwight Eisenhower. As in his earlier works, Ambrose focuses on the stories of individuals - the men who planned and led the invasion, the junior officers and non-commissioned officers, and the ordinary citizen soldiers of the Allied armies. He traces the training of ordinary boys from Chicago, Kansas, and Georgia, and the rise of their commander, Dwight Eisenhower, through a variety of staff posts. "Ike," as he was known to absolutely everybody soon after his arrival in England in 1942, quickly became a favorite with the British press and with the often prickly English military establishment: He relied often on his considerable diplomatic skills to compel the British and American commanders to work together. However, the author faults the inefficiency of Ike's war of attrition and his failure to ensure that his army was adequately trained and equipped for battle. Most of the narrative is devoted to the travails of the individual soldier in combat. With photographic immediacy, Ambrose shows the pitilessly savage nature of the war as he takes the reader through hellish beach landings, sanguinary battles to liberate Normandy, pursuit through France, the terrifying aspects of trench, street, and night battle, setbacks to the Allied advance, and the ferocious but ultimately unsuccessful German counter-punch through the Ardennes. Meticulously researched and characteristically well told. A compelling and heartfelt tribute to the GI. (Kirkus Reviews)


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