This coffee-table book, packed with prints and photographs covering the Allies' June 1944 invasion of France is clearly a labor of love by French military historian François. A preinvasion bombing killed his grandfather, a Norman farmer, and barely missed his father, age 10 at the time. Chapter one offers family photographs as well as posters and photos of the 1940-1944 German occupation. Even better is an epilogue of before-and-after photographs juxtaposing images of locations like Omaha Beach in 1944 and 60 years later. In between, the pages teem with images of the massive Allied buildup in England, the invasion itself and the battles in Normandy interspersed with sidebars on generals and soldiers awarded medals for their bravery. Readers familiar with the iconic Normandy photographs will not find them; among the myriad of images in the archives, François's choices emphasize modest soldierly activity and civilian miseries. The extensive text delivers a conventional, undistinguished history of events, so readers will lose little by skimming. Picture books on the Normandy invasion would fill a substantial shelf, but this one offers some modestly unusual features. 100 color and 400 b&w photos. (Nov.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Normandy: Breaching the Atlantic Wall: From D-Day to the Breakout and Liberationby Dominique Francois
Told in full, in never-before-seen detail, this is the first complete illustrated history of Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of France. The book’s on-the-ground and behind-the-scenes accounts of both the attacking Allies and the defending Germans offer a uniquely broad perspective on the Normandy landing and subsequent battles. Dominique Francois, a… See more details below
Told in full, in never-before-seen detail, this is the first complete illustrated history of Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of France. The book’s on-the-ground and behind-the-scenes accounts of both the attacking Allies and the defending Germans offer a uniquely broad perspective on the Normandy landing and subsequent battles. Dominique Francois, a noted expert on D-Day and Normandy, begins with the German’s occupation of the region, the building of the Atlantic Wall by Rommel, and preparations for the defense of the French Coast. Moving back and forth between the Germans and the Allies, he captures the tension of the buildup on both sides, the training in England, and the aerial preparation of the battle field by U. S. Air Forces.
The Dieppe Raid, the tragedy at Slapton Sands, the drama of the embarkation, the night drops, the landingall of these are depicted in remarkable photographs and descriptions that put readers in the middle of action. From the beaches to the breakout and race across France, this expertly told and illustrated volume makes a critical moment in WWII history real for all readers and all time.
- Zenith Press
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- 10.90(w) x 12.10(h) x 1.50(d)
Meet the Author
Dominique Francois is a French military historian specializing in D-Day and the subsequent Normandy campaign. He has written fifteen books on the subject, including Normandy: Breaching the Atlantic Wall (Zenith Press, 2008). His expertise on D-Day is well known throughout France, and he has served as a consultant for the History Channel, NBC, and Inertia Films. He currently lives in Normandy, France.
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