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
Lost Battles - they reference this in the book, but take the personal side out of it.
no,but i was very interested in understanding the terrain and how the defense lines really were.
listen to this!
war is not black or white its more complex then good or evil, right or wrong. kursk showed what world mechanized warfare looks like and can be found today on the battlefield I found this to be great book would recommend this to anyone I mean anyone
The historiography of the Soviet-German War, 1941-45, much like that of the American Civil War, 1861-65, struggles for a consensus on a turning point battle or campaign. I read in Blood And Armor of wars decided by numbers of catastrophic events referred to as "victories" for one side or another. July 13 found the Germans having pushed from the field, but the next found all German formations in mindless states of despair. Similarly, the Soviets. They have, however, resources, art of war, strategy, and effective allies, but this has more or less true since summer 1941. This book makes that all perfectly clear. Further reading: David Glantze on: Barbarosa, Moscow, Stalingrad, Kursk, and operational art.
having read many WW2 histories, this is exactly the sort of book I look for: thoughtful commentary and engaging narrative
I really enjoyed this book. It is straightforward history, without the usual personal vignettes that bog down many modern historical books. The author provided plenty of detail, but not so much that it became a confusing slog. Sure, the unit names and numbers started to run together a bit, but I never lost sight of the big picture. Very good book, and the narrator was fine.
No technical details, hardly any impressions of the fighting as experienced by the soldiers. Dry textbook
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.
The thorough description of all dimensions of the battle - preparation, people, equipment, tactics, intelligence, air superiority - nothing was left out.
Print out a map to follow the action. The book gets very confusing without some idea of the relative position of various landmarks.
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