Kokomo Tribune, May 8, 1994, Page 129

Kokomo Tribune

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Kokomo Tribune (Newspaper) - May 8, 1994, Kokomo, Indiana BY HERBERT KUPFERBERG WHATS UP THIS The best books about the most crucial 24 hours of World War II The Winners and Losers Remember DDay Among the debris on the beach the day after Robert a who had survived the invasion at tack on June came upon the body of another young soldier who hadnt Near the dead mans outstretched hand lay a paperback Our Hearts Were Young and by Cornelia Otis Healey thought the title re flected the spirit of the invasion ordeal itself Our hearts were young and gay because we thought we were we believed we were doing a great and we really believed in the crusade which we hoped would liberate the world from the heel of Perhaps the incident is significant in another way for showing that some sol diers carried books in their supply packs along with the three items regarded as most rations and Certainly as we prepare to observe the 50th anniversary of it is books that are retelling most compellingly the story of the land ings by the Allies on the Normandy coast of Its impossible to cover all the vol umes of DDay analy ses and critiques that are now coming so this roundup of recommended titles is necessarily Some of these books have an official publication date of June but youll find many of them in bookstores All are il some quite and any will give the reader new insight into the political above hu man aspects of this mightiest of all in SOS CUIIIC CM ir IMT CORNELIUS RYAN Private Healeys quotation is from DDay June The Climac tic Battle of World War by Stephen Ambrose Simon Ambrose probably knows more about Dwight the Allies supreme than does anyone else He has written a twovolume bi ography of the general and directed the Eisenhower Center at the University of New But he also knows a great deal about the DDay battles and the men who fought and much of his 700page book is based on ac counts by Al lied and Ger man soldiers and on the re actions of those who could only wait and including even Anne Frank in her lonely attic From such personal Ambrose builds up a magnificent picture of the great with such shrewd observations as that trying to run the show from interfered disastrously with his in sharp contrast to Churchill and who made no attempt at all to tell their generals and admirals what to do on and to who also left the deci sionmaking up to his If Ambroses is the most extensive of the new the most compact is DDay and the Invasion of Nor by Anthony an entry in Abrams admirable Discoveries series This beautifully printed little 192page paperback recounts both the buildup and the battle and its 230 illustrations are distinctive and imag Most unusual are a color fold out of an aerial view of the beaches and a replica of the Overlord created by English needleworkers to up date the famous medieval Bayeux Tap estry that hangs in the battle America at DDay A Book of by Richard Goldstein Delta is espe cially worthwhile for its glimpses of the homefront news paper that ran the Lords Prayer as its the synagogue that stayed pen for prayer for 24 toe sports events that were called Among the books that tell the whole one should not overlook the late Cornelius Ryans classic The Longest the first of the DDay his which subsequently be came an admired Pub lished in it has been reissued as a Touchstone pa perback and still stands up very well for its swiftmov ing coverage of the the battle scenes and the episodes of individual Assault on Normandy First Person Accounts From the Sea edited by Paul gives the Navy its due share of credit for the in vasions The published by the Naval Institute Press has some 50 firsthand accounts of troop shore plant ing of artificial harbors and other crucial aspects of the massive One key element was the LCVP Landing Craft which carried thousands of infantrymen to the Andrew Jackson Higgins and the Boats That Won World War by Jerry Strahan Louisiana State Uni versity tells the story of the maverick industrialist who overcame the naval bureaucracy to design and con struct the shallowdraft No ever remembered a ride aboard a bob 36foot LCVP with but the little ships got the job The Normandy Diary of Marie Louise Osmont Random is devoted to a journal kept by a French woman in the Caen where some of the fiercest fighting took The independentminded Os mont saw her chateau occupied by Ger man troops for four years and subse quently by the Its a little sad to observe that she found the Germans the better Her distinctively per sonal and spirited book is filled with the agonies of die devastation she witnessed and the daily deprivations she under a visit to a hairdresser could become a physical al most a spiritual Michelin has reprinted its Battle of Normandy map orig inally issued in Folding out to ap proximately 46 by 28 it shows the entire Normandy area in great de with the landing zones and battle sites clearly plus brief but in formative annotations in French and If any map can bring alive the great this is AND WHAT IF THEY HAD LOSTP The invasion of Normandy borrow Wellingtons description of the Battle of nearrun There were such as at the fierce ly contested lauding aiQmaJia when the tide of battle could easily have gone the other As u turned the Allies got several breaks The Germans werent ttyrt this was the real Field Marsha Rommel was away fjrqm the and Adolf Hitler held back his But what if things hadnt gone right Peter a British has written Diwrten at DDay Stackpole a fictional account in which the invaders In this fanciful Rommel stays on the Hitler and the Allied troops are driven back into the Tsouras spins out his yarn in meticulous mili tary even providing pictures and footnotes some of the latter deliberately In the all turns put with generals inviting him to a victory where they take care of him in their own But its much better that it happened the way it PARABIMAQAIINI MAY PAOi 19 ;

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