Any good WWII books?

Discussion in 'WWII Books' started by B-17engineer, Feb 21, 2009.

  1. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    I was wondering if there were any good WWII books out there that are like, first person accounts, whether its the air-war, ground or on ships was just curious if you guys knew some good books ?

    Thanks!
     
  2. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    First of the Many by Tex McCrary is an excellent compilation of short stories about the 8th AF from start to early 1944.

    An Ace of the Eighth - by Norman "Bud" Fortier

    Mission With LeMay - McKinley Cantor (LeMay Biography)

    American Caesar - William Manchester (MacArther Bio)

    Those Devils in Baggy Pants - Ross Carter (best US Airborne memoir by a survivor of 504/82nd from start to finish of WWII)

    First and the Last - Galland

    Horrido - Toliver/Constable

    Panzer Commander - Von Luck

    Run Silent, Run Deep - Edward Beach

    Samurai - Sakai
     
  3. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    "Terror in the Starboard Seat" - Dave McIntosh
     
  4. Bill G.

    Bill G. Banned

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    Zemke's Wolf Pack - Roger Freeman

    The War as I Knew It - General George S. Patton

    (31 Knot) Burke (Admiral Burke) - Ken Jones Hubert Kelley Jr.

    Japanese Destroyer Captain - Tameichi Hara

    Pacific War Diary 1942 - 1945 - James J. Fahey A sailor's story aboard the USS Minneapolis in the Pacific. An excellent read!

    Tibbet's Story - Paul W. Tibbets

    Whistling Death - Boone T. Guyton The story of the test pilot on the F4U Corsair.

    I Could Never Be So Lucky Again - General James H. Doolittle

    The Man Who Flew the Memphis Belle - Col Robert Morgan A great story of a leader you would follow anywheres, but never let your daughter within 20 miles of!

    Jimmy Stewart Bomber Pilot - Starr Smith A SUPER Read! A real military leader!

    Into the Mouth of the Cat - Malcolm McConnell This isn't first person, but I most highly recommend it. It is the story of Medal of Honor winner Lance Peter Sijan in Vietnam.

    These are a few that I have in my library.

    Bill G.
     
  5. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    Warpath Across the Pacific - The story of the 345th BG (regarded as the best unit history ever published)

    Shattered Sword, the untold story of the Battle of Midway.

    Queen of the Midnight Skies - the story of the P61 Black Widow
     
  6. brickhistory

    brickhistory Member

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    Agreed. Excellent, humorous read!
     
  7. Amsel

    Amsel Active Member

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    I just got done reading "Wings of Gold" by Gerald Astor. I highly recommend this book about the Navy pilots in WWII. It has some very good stories from pilots in every theater and campaign.
     
  8. Corsair82pilot

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    Have any of you read "Reach for the Sky"? It is about British Ace Douglas Bader.
    He lost both legs in a pre war flying accident and was mustered out of the RAF. When the war started he got back into the RAF and became an Ace with about 22 kills before being shot down. He was captured and tried to escape a few times, so he was put in Colditz. Galland sprung him from the POW camp a time or two and took him out to dinner. They became great friends.
    Old book, but a great story. 8)
     
  9. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Yep, that book got me started on this whole Mosquito mularkey.

    I've since been able to identify one or two of the incidents he describes, I've got copies of a couple of Dave Sid's combat reports, ID for some of the aircraft and other airman. One or two mysteries remain though, have never yet been able to trace the French Canadian pilot.
     
  10. Dream Flyer

    Dream Flyer New Member

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    I'd like to add to the list:

    "Serenade to the Big Bird" - by Bert Stiles

    "Wing and a Prayer" by Harry Crosby

    "Command Decision" by William Wister Haines

    "The Mighty Eighth" by Gerald Astor

    Combat Crew" by John Comer

    "The Wrong Stuff" by Truman Smith

    "First of the Many" - by John R. McCrary and David E. Scherman

    "12 o'clock High" by Beirne Lay, Jr. (he also wrote some articles that appeared in The Saturday Evening Post - if you have access to old magazines it's worth the effort to seek them out. Nov. 6, 1943 "I Saw Regensburg Destroyed", Feb 5, 1938 "Should I Jump?" and 1938 (I lost the date) "No More Glamour".)

    Enjoy!
     
  11. ppopsie

    ppopsie Member

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  12. rochie

    rochie Well-Known Member

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    with the old breed by E.B. Sledge
    wing leader by Johnnie Johnson
    nine lives by Al Deere
    band of brothers by S.E.Ambrose
     
  13. Vassili Zaitzev

    Vassili Zaitzev Well-Known Member

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    Here's my personal favorites.

    "A Bridge Too Far"- Cornelius Ryan

    "The Longest Day"- Cornelius Ryan

    "Citizen Soldiers"- S.E. Ambrose

    "Midway- The Incredible Victory"- Walter Lord

    And if you like Historical fiction:
    "Disaster at D-day"- Peter Tsouras.
     
  14. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    After a fairly good opinion from a fellow members, I've bought Gudeian's "Panzer leader". Just discard the 10% of the "I've told Hitler, but he won't listen" stuff and the rest 90% is one superb read.
     
  15. glennasher

    glennasher Member

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    Enemy Coast Ahead- Guy Gibson
    The Dam Busters- Paul Brickhill
    The Jolly Rogers- Tom Blackburn

    There are stacks and stacks of them, these are some of my favorites.
     
  16. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    I agree with ppopsie, that Das Tagebuch Hauptmann Helmut Lipfert is very good and IIRC it’s translated to English, the title something like Captain Lipfert’s War Diary.

    Other very good LW memoirs are IMHO those of Peter Düttmann, hopefully it is translated to English.

    Finnish AF aces

    Eino “Eikka” Luukkanen’s memoirs, translated as Luukkanen, Eino. Fighter Over Finland: the Memoirs of a Fighter Pilot. London: Macdonald Company Ltd.., 1963. (Reprinted 1980 by Arno Press, NY as ISBN 0-405-12191-1. and in 1989 by Time-Life, NY as ISBN 0-80949-620-8.)
    see more on him Eino Luukkanen

    Juutilainen, Eino Ilmari (translated by Nikunen, Heikki). Double Fighter Knight. Tampere, Finland: Apali Oy, 1996. ISBN 9-52502-604-3.

    Soviet
    IMHO best memoirs are Vasili B. Emelianenko’s Red Star Against Swastika. He was Il-2 pilot.

    RAF
    “Johnnie” Johnsson’s Wing Leader
    Neville Duke’s War Diaries

    USAAF

    US members know these better but there is a series of books by Eric Hammel, Aces Against Germany, Aces Against Japan etc

    USN
    Among of the best books on WWII airwar are Lundstrom’s The First Team and The First Team and The Guadalcanal Campaign. They are excellent histories of early carrier campaigns in Pacific but have many personal recollections.

    On Ground war
    I liked very much on Keith Jones' Sixty-Four Days of A Normandy Summer. With a Tank Unit After D-Day.

    KarlHeinz Münch's The Combat History of German Heavy Anti-Tank Unit 653 in World War II

    Dr. Franz-Wilhelm Lochmann's et al The Combat History of German Tiger Tank Battalion 503 in World War II

    Juha
     
  17. magnu

    magnu Member

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    Tumult in the clouds James Goodson
    Lonely warrior Jean Offenburg
    They gave me a seafire Winc Co. Mike Crossley
    Ten fighter boys
    Shot down in flames Geoffrey Page
     
  18. BombTaxi

    BombTaxi Active Member

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    I'll second Panzer Leader, a good read that is.

    Also worth looking at:

    'Fighter Pilot' by Paul Richey (Hurricane pilot with the BEF in France, 1940)

    'Reich Intuders' by Martin Bowman is not a first hand account as such, but incorporates a large amount of first hand stuff into it's text. The book covers the operations of the RAF's light bombers throughout the war, on a vast range of types including Blenheims, Bostons, Mitchells, Hudsons, and of course Mossies. Very, very good read.
     
  19. Amsel

    Amsel Active Member

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    Another good book that is easily attainable is 'Panzergrenadier' by Kurt Meyer. Stackpole puts it out. If you liked Panzer Leader try that one.
     
  20. brickhistory

    brickhistory Member

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    Historical fiction:

    Leon Uris' "Battle Cry."

    Non-fiction:

    "Night Fighter" by C.F. Rawnsley and Robert Wright

    "Pursuit Through Darkened Skies" by Michael Allen, DFC**

    "The Doolittle Raid" by C.V. Glines

    "The Other Battle" by Peter Hincliffe

    warning/warning/shameless self-promotion/warning/warning

    "Beaufighters in the Night: 417 Night Fighter Squadron, USAAF"

    "Miracle at Midway" by Gordon Prange

    "KG200" by P. W. Stahl
     
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