The true story of the friendship—and rivalry—among the greatest American generals of World War II
Supreme Allied Commander Dwight D. Eisenhower, General George S. Patton, and General Omar N. Bradley engineered the Allied conquest that shattered Hitler’s hold over Europe. But they also shared an intricate web of relationships going back decades. In the cauldron of World War II, they found their prewar friendships complicated by shifting allegiances, jealousy, insecurity, patriotism, and ambition.
Meticulously researched and vividly written, Jonathan W. Jordan’s book recounts the battle for Europe through the eyes of these three legendary generals. For the first time in such detail, the bonds between them are explored, and readers are treated to an insider’s view of life at the summit of raw, violent power. Throughout three years of hard, bloody warfare, Eisenhower, the Alliance’s great diplomat, sought victory in the fighting qualities and tactical genius of his most trusted subordinates, Bradley and Patton. They, in turn, owed their careers to Eisenhower. Yet their friendship would be put to the ultimate test as life-and-death decisions were thrust upon them, and honor and duty conflicted with personal loyalty.
Brothers, Rivals, Victors is drawn from the candid accounts of its main characters and strips away much of the public image of “Ike” (Eisenhower), the “GI’s General” (Bradley), and “Old Blood and Guts” (Patton) to reveal the men behind the legend. Adding richness to this story are the words and observations of a supporting cast of generals, staff officers, secretaries, aides, politicians, and wives, brought together to produce a uniquely intimate account of a relationship that influenced a war. The story of how these three great strategists pulled together to wage the deadliest conflict in history, despite their differences and rivalries, is marvelously told in this eye-opening narrative that is sure to become a classic of military history.
©2011 Jonathan W. Jordan (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“A truly compelling narrative…A masterly, exciting study of character and tactics in World War II.” (Kirkus Reviews)
Let's face it, these authors aren't paying me, so there's no need to lie!!
This is the BEST, and only (for my knowledge), book to speak in great detail about three of this country's most important figures of WWII. If you're a fan of WWII, and/or a fan of any of these great men, this book is an absolute must. The narrator is superb, which is a rarity. The author did his homework on these people, gathering comments from many sources. I highly recommend.
If one of your heroes are Patton, Eisenhower or Bradley, you will love this book. The behind the scenes info revealed in this book really gives you an idea of the stress Eisenhower was under, his strained but affectionate relationship with Patton and his deep respect for Bradley. Time is fairly well split between all 3 men, but Ike & Patton do get a little more attention than Bradley, primarily beacause they knew each other longer and better. In fact, in the 1920's they could be considered best friends. I can't imagine the hours, probably measured in years, that the author put into this book. I learned a lot and was greatly impressed. Please note that it is not a complete history of the war, but a look at each mans daily life with insight as to what drove their decisions. Highly recommended to the WWII buff....but might bore the casual listener.
Every chapter, and really the whole book, is one story. George writing to his diary that ike and Omar are cowards and can't lead, Ike telling someone how frustrating george is, but that he is a great general and worth keeping, and Omar loving Ike and being frustrated with patton. Its good reading, lots of stuff from original documents (diaries, transcripts) that definitely brings the reader into the minds of these leaders, and gives you an appreciation for the thoughts of the leaders of the war, but its not like things changed all that much over the period covered.
A terrific book detailing the early personal relationship between Ike and Patton, the later personal relationship between Bradley and Ike, Bradley and Patton, the African campaign, and the European theater's operations. Drawn from scores of diary entries, personal conversations, the book gives a personal description the pre-war lives of each, of the time in North Africa, of the Sicilian campaign, of the Normandy invasion without Patton, of Bradley's Cobra push using Patton, and of crossing of the Rhine with unbelievable infighting among the allied generals, including especially Monty. What a complex love-hate-love-despise-admire-denigrate-on again-off again-on again relationship among these three (and other minor characters in this book, e.g. Montgomery, Smith, Hodges, Churchill, Roosevelt, et al.). Personal spats, tirades against one another, two against one, then a different two against the other one. The book gets a little tedious with the hammering on Patton's ego, and may make a few points a couple times too many, but what an insight into the personal relationships and into the personal experience of each of these generals in theater.
I usually enjoy books about World War Two, and having read biographies of Eisenhower and Patton, was looking forward to listening to this. But Jordan's writing displays all the worst characteristics of an amateur attempting to apply cliched rules about colorful writing. Which means that a grin has to be sheepish, eyes to twinkle, etc. I finally gave up at minute 26, shortly after hearing Eisenhower described as "instinctively likable." Whose instinct? Eisenhower's? Other peoples'? Think about it a minute and you'll realize that this is an example of a writer grabbing a readily available adjective without considering its meaning. Jordan tells us that "The Army wanted Eisenhower to stay in the States and train men." The Army did, eh? Was this before or after the Army wanted a BLT for lunch? Coming after books by Max Hastings and Andrew Roberts--who actually know how to write vivid and correct prose--this book seemed like Wonder Bread after crusty and flavorful sourdough. Yuck.
There is nothing much new revealed in any of this exhausting book. Everyone know Patton was a prima donna, this confirms it. Likewise Bradley is not very interesting; he's a damn good soldier. The only 'news' is how intertwined the 3 soldier's lives were before the war.
If there is anything new; it is that Ike was human and was overwhelmed, on occasion, by the magnitude of his responsibility as Supreme Allied Commander. This would be a much more readable effort if reduced by about 2/3.
The way the story is woven
At times I felt in tune with each of them, Ike, Patton, and Bradley
An articulate and engaging narration.
I enjoyed the novel, intensely.
For those interested in these three great American generals this is a both 3 biograhies and detailed history of their activities in Europe during World War II. Because the author uses their words (diaries, letters, etc.), as well as those of their staff, the men come across as complex and sometimes contradictory men. The focus is narrow with little in the narrators voice but great wealth in Ike's, Brad's and George's voices and thoughts.
The book is more insightful than the movie Patton. Although I think Patton was a superior general and was condemned for things that Bradley and eisenhaurer did on a much larger scale. Ie putting their troops at incredible risks
Made these supreme generals out to be real people not above anything in human nature
If you like non fiction you will thoroughly enjoy this book. Should be required listening by our military officer corp.
This book was excellent. If you're a WW2 buff, you will find this book very interesting. These men knew each other for years, and served with each other during the lean years between the wars. It details the rise to power, fall from grace, and resurrection of 3 men that were pivitol in our military history.
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