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Author
Philip Kaplan
ARRSE Rating
3 Mushroom Heads
Philip Kaplan has chosen to write on well trodden areas of history. There are a legion of books looking at the D Day landings in general and German defences in particular. A key issue is whether this book adds to the subject or not.

Rommel was well aware that allied air superiority would make tactical movement to the landing sites impossible by day and difficult at night. For this reason he chose to pour an enormous proportion of his resources into fixed defences.

He took a detailed personal interest in both design and progress to a degree that would warm the heart of any Sapper officer . His plan was at variance with Von Rundstedt who believed the critical battle would be after the landings. There was also vigorous debate in the higher levels of the German Army over the Pas De Calais or Normandy scenarios.

The book takes a fairly wide sweeping approach with space devoted to the Dieppe landing, seen as the precursor to D Day. The chapters examine the defence of France, the run up to invasion,the Organisation Todt, Rommel, Pride and Concern, clearing the air and by page 110 a look at the German defences.

The book is probably aimed at the generalist reader more than the military historian. There is no categorisation of German defences , a fairly scant index and little in the way of file references for follow on reading. The illustrations are printed on good glossy paper but seem a bit scattered in selection of pictures in terms of relevance. Pictures of a rusty first aid kit , interior of a B 17 or a restored P51 cockpit add little to the book's purpose.

On a similar vein the maps are a bit sketchy and there is little to help a visitor plan a trip to view the invasion beaches.
The book runs to 172 pages with a cover price of £25 (Kindle £15.00) with prices on Amazon from £12.73.



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MoleBath
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