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Armor and Blood: The Battle of Kursk: The Turning Point of World War II | [Dennis E. Showalter]

Armor and Blood: The Battle of Kursk: The Turning Point of World War II

While the Battle of Kursk has long captivated World War II aficionados, it has been unjustly overlooked by historians. Drawing on the masses of new information made available by the opening of the Russian military archives, Dennis E. Showalter at last corrects that error. This battle was the critical turning point on World War II's Eastern Front. In the aftermath of the Red Army's brutal repulse of the Germans at Stalingrad, the stakes could not have been higher.
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Publisher's Summary

While the Battle of Kursk has long captivated World War II aficionados, it has been unjustly overlooked by historians. Drawing on the masses of new information made available by the opening of the Russian military archives, Dennis E. Showalter at last corrects that error. This battle was the critical turning point on World War II's Eastern Front. In the aftermath of the Red Army's brutal repulse of the Germans at Stalingrad, the stakes could not have been higher. More than 3,000,000 men and 8,000 tanks met in the heart of the Soviet Union, some 400 miles south of Moscow, in an encounter that both sides knew would reshape the war.

The adversaries were at the peak of their respective powers. On both sides, the generals and the dictators they served were in agreement on where, why, and how to fight. The result was a furious death grapple between two of history's most formidable fighting forces - a battle that might possibly have been the greatest of all time. In Armor and Blood, Showalter recreates every aspect of this dramatic struggle. He offers expert perspective on strategy and tactics at the highest levels, from the halls of power in Moscow and Berlin to the battlefield command posts on both sides. But it is the author's exploration of the human dimension of armored combat that truly distinguishes this book.

In the classic tradition of John Keegan's The Face of Battle, Showalter's narrative crackles with insight into the unique dynamics of tank warfare - its effect on men's minds as well as their bodies. Scrupulously researched, exhaustively documented, and vividly illustrated, this book is a chilling testament to man's ability to build and to destroy. When the dust settled, the field at Kursk was nothing more than a wasteland of steel carcasses, dead soldiers, and smoking debris. The Soviet victory ended German hopes of restoring their position on the Eastern Front, and put the Red Army on the road to Berlin. Armor and Blood presents listeners with what will likely be the authoritative study of Kursk for decades to come.

©2013 Dennis Showalter (P)2013 Tantor

What Members Say

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  •  
    Amazon Customer 05-04-15 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not Overwhelming, But Does What It Says"

    In this book you will get a better than mediocre tale of Kursk, but not an epic account. Yes, the narrator is monotone and lacks energy, but he seems to match very well what the author was going for. Author is very academic and unoriginal at times while insightful at others. overall, book is a slightly better-than- average look at Kursk from both sides, which a military historian will enjoy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric 03-20-15
    Eric 03-20-15 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    13
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    Performance
    Story
    "Great book, but print a map!"
    What did you love best about Armor and Blood?

    The thorough description of all dimensions of the battle - preparation, people, equipment, tactics, intelligence, air superiority - nothing was left out.


    Any additional comments?

    Print out a map to follow the action. The book gets very confusing without some idea of the relative position of various landmarks.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill wilmington, DE, United States 12-01-13
    Bill wilmington, DE, United States 12-01-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    3
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    "The Forgotten Battle of Kursk"
    What made the experience of listening to Armor and Blood the most enjoyable?

    The narration


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Armor and Blood?

    Learning how over 12 million men and 9 thousand tanks actually engaged in a hell on earth


    Have you listened to any of Robertson Dean’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No but I would..yes


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Forgotten Kursk Dante's Inferno


    Any additional comments?

    A must read for all WWII interests.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael 11-30-13
    Michael 11-30-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    9
    8
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    "Eye Opening Detail"
    Would you listen to Armor and Blood again? Why?

    Yes. First - there's Robertson Dean as the narrator. What a great voice! Second - the book is full of details that I was not aware of, and clarifies this battle's place in the history of the Eastern Front.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Armor and Blood?

    It's non-fiction, so this is not an appropriate question.


    What about Robertson Dean’s performance did you like?

    Everything - pace, tone, volume, etc. Dean is one of the very best.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I was saddened several times by the idiocy of the German leadership - and how it condemned good men, including my grandfather, to death.


    Any additional comments?

    Great book for those who love WW2 history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    brian 09-08-13
    brian 09-08-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    159
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    "An impressive view on a great battle."
    If you could sum up Armor and Blood in three words, what would they be?

    A fresh outlook.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Hard to say honestly.


    What does Robertson Dean bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Excellent narration.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Not really.


    Any additional comments?

    A must-have for anyone interested in the Kursk operations.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Blake BLOOMINGTON, IN, United States 01-11-14
    Blake BLOOMINGTON, IN, United States 01-11-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Boring book!"

    This book was very boring. It is just a long dissertation on tank movements. There is no character development. You do not learn anything about the men who did the fighting. You only learn about tank regiments and their movement.

    1 of 6 people found this review helpful

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