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 (U through Z)
Books
Books - in association with amazon.com
Organized Alphabetically by Author's Last Name
Page 1 / 2 / 3 / 4


Black Edelweiss by Johann Voss
Black Edelweiss by Johann Voss


This book is the WW2 memoir of a Waffen-SS soldier written while in American captivity immediately following the war. Johann Voss, a pseudonym, is a thoughtful, intelligent young man from a prominent family that joins the Waffen-SS in 1943 out of patriotism and the idealistic desire to protect Europe from Communism. One of his main purposes in writing the book is to counter the evil reputation of the Waffen-SS (deservedly earned by such divisions as Tötenkopf) and show that not all Waffen-SS soldiers were cruel murderers but that some were motivated by quite selfless and altruistic goals. The book is well written, fast-paced, and quite an interesting read. It is fascinating to see how the soldiers described do not see themselves as evil world-conquering monsters, but rather as noble heroes. It did strike me as a bit too sugarcoated ' the suffering of the soldiers in the cruel winter environment of Finland is not really covered, and the focus tends to be on his positive experiences, rather than the negative. This was obviously written by an idealistic 20-year-old who had not yet been exposed to the horrible crimes of the Nazis and the SS. Still, it is worthwhile to read an account from the other side of the war and learn about their motivations for fighting ' not really that much different from the American boys over there.


Parachute Infantry by David Kenyon Webster
Parachute Infantry by David Kenyon Webster


Kirkus Reviews
It is a mystery why these splendid reminiscences of a gentleman ranker who served with the US Army's 101st Airborne Division in Europe during the climatic months of WW II were rejected by book publishers following their completion in the late 1940s. However, the frequently sardonic, dead-honest text proves well worth waiting for. A Harvard student before his induction, Webster signed on with the parachute infantry, a posting that earned him the privilege of dropping behind German lines early on D-Day, long hours before Allied forces launched their coastal assault on France's Normandy Peninsula. Having survived the invasion and its aftermath, the author made his second and last combat jump into Holland for the Arnhem campaign, during which he sustained a leg wound that took him out of action for nearly five months. Rejoining his unit at the start of 1945, Webster helped chase the battered but still deadly Wehrmacht through the Rhineland and into Bavaria. At war's end he and his comrades-in-arms were drinking Hitler's champagne in Bertchesgaden, the Fuhrer's fabled Alpine redoubt. Occupation duty soon palled, however, and the author pulled all available strings to get himself stateside for demobilization. Webster, who went on to become a reporter with the Wall Street Journal, penned his memoir shortly after discharge, drawing mainly on letters he had written from Europe. A permanent private with the soul of a short-timer, he had many complaints about the chain of command, in particular its propensity for thoroughly briefing the troops before any action and leaving them in the dark once the shooting started. He also understood that the ties that bind men in battle have more to do with brotherhood and its obligations than either God or country. Webster's words with ring a resonant bell with the legions of GI's who rather enjoyed soldiering under fire but despised the military for its chickenshit rigidity.


Pacific Alamo by John Wukovits
Pacific Alamo by John Wukovits


It happened in the shadow of Pearl Harbor mere hours after the first attack on the day that would "live in infamy." But few know the full story of Wake Island. Now a prominent military historian, breaking new ground on the assault, relates the compelling events of that day and the heroic struggle that followed. Thanks to the brave Marines stationed there and the civilian construction workers who selflessly put their lives on the line to defend the island what was supposed to be an easy victory became a protracted and costly battle for Imperial Japan. This is the story of that battle, from survivors on both sides, and with a gallery of historic photos.

John Wukovits is a widely published military expert who has authoritatively chronicled the story of the United States in the Pacific theater. He is the author of Devotion to Duty: A Biography of Admiral Clifton Sprague, as well as numerous articles in Naval History, The Journal of Military History, and other publications.