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Subject: Good East front books to compliment Beyond Valor? rss

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Isley
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Thanks to suggestions on the geek, I recently read John Keegan's "Second World War" and thought it was great (exactly what I needed...an overview of the entire war). Now I was thinking of moving on to read something about more specific campaigns. And since I've been getting more and more into ASL, and I own Beyond Valor, I was thinking that a good East Front book would be nice. Again I'd like something more broad that covers most of the East Front instead of just a Stalingrad book or something. I've heard Guderian's "Panzer Leader" might fit the bill...any other recommendations?
 
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Alfred Wallace
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There have actually not been very many books on just the whole Eastern Front, compared to some other WWII topics. It's a hard one for just one book--if a writer's going to zoom that far out, why not go just a little farther and do the whole thing? It's kinda like games; a fair number of games on the whole war, lots of games on campaigns and battles, but fewer on just one front for the whole war. David Glantz and Jonathan House wrote When Titans Clashed that has gotten pretty good reviews. I haven't read that one myself, but I do like their book on Kursk.

Although, if you're playing ASL, I also recommend getting into the soldier experience--up-close and personal, like the game. Catherine Merridale's Ivan's War is a great recent entrant on the topic.
 
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Andy Daglish
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Start with Prof. Stolfi and Hitlers Panzers East in order to realise all your east front games are total crap and then go onto David Glantz and Stumbling Colossus, When Titans Clashed and all that other stuff. By this time you'll have realised they don't know which end the bullets come out of so back to the ASL Gun & Vehicle Notes, and then off to Stone and Stone

http://books.stonebooks.com/cgi-bin/foxweb.exe/base/subjects...

after which you cross to the dark side and start buying books about tanks and machineguns, and hanging round in modelshops looking at the 1/5th scale Tiger II until the staff push you out the door with the floor mop. By the time you go everywhere with Niklas Zetterling's book under your arm, muttering to yourself, your friends and relatives will already have called the cult recovery people so thats all right.

Then you start posting on Geek and consimworld.
 
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Isley
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Lawrence
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haha...wow...the future sure doesn't look very bright!
 
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Andrew C
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I recently read Clash of Titans and thought it was just okay. I think Alan Clark's Barbarossa is a better read, and, despite its name, covers the entire eastern front for the duration. Clash's veiwpoint is more Russia-centric, and probably more scholary, but its a dry read.
 
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Michael Parchen
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Read 'The Forgotten Soldier' to get an appreciation of how brutal the Eastern Front was for the average soldier: both German and Russian.
 
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Jay Richardson
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Isley Unruh wrote:
I've heard Guderian's "Panzer Leader" might fit the bill...any other recommendations?

"Panzer Leader," although a fascinating book, covers the eastern front only in the time that Guderian was actually a field commander there... and not in particulary great detail.

A classic work on the east front is the long-out-of-print "Hitler Moves East, 1941-1943" by Paul Carrell. The author, whose real name was Paul Schmidt, worked in Nazi Propaganda during the war, so he hardly qualifies as an objective observer... and I seem to recall that questions have been raised concerning the accuracy of his history. But there is no denying that this is an engrossing book to read; whatever his faults – including suspicions that he was involved in war crimes – he was a talented storyteller.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Carell
 
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Mark Drake
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Agreed on Paul Carell's books (Hitler Moves East and Scorched Earth.)Both are great reads on east front comabt operations.

Also check out "Small Unit Actions During the german Campaign in Russia" for excellent small unit accounts;another along the same line is "German Military Improvisations In Russia."

For some great combat reports featyuring Tiger tanks there is Jentz's "Tiger I+II:Combat Tactics" for how Tiger tanks were used in combat on various fronts.

MD
 
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Ken Crangle
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"Barbarossa", by Alan Clark

Others have mentioned it also.
 
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Andrew Hung
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mcondor wrote:
Read 'The Forgotten Soldier' to get an appreciation of how brutal the Eastern Front was for the average soldier: both German and Russian.


By Guy Sajer. I recently read it and it covers the period from 1942 to 1945. First Person account on how brutal the East Front was for the average Soldier(He was half French & German). He was drafted into supply division until he volunteered for combat and became a member of the Gross Deutchland Division.
 
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Isley
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Mark, can you tell me more about: "Small Unit Actions During the german Campaign in Russia"? It sounds interesting. Lots of other good choices here too, thanks for all the suggestions everyone!
 
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