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Omaha Beach: D-Day, June 6, 1944

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Overview

"Balkoski's depiction of 'Bloody Omaha' is the literary accompaniment to the white-knuckle Omaha Beach scene that opens Steven Spielberg's Saving Private Ryan." — John Hillen, New York Post

In this unforgettable narrative of D-Day, Joseph Balkoski describes the minute-by-minute combat as it unfolded on Omaha Beach, allowing soldiers to speak for themselves as they recall their attempts to maneuver bombers through heavy cloud cover, the claustrophobic terror aboard transports, ...

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Omaha Beach: D-Day, June 6, 1944

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Overview

"Balkoski's depiction of 'Bloody Omaha' is the literary accompaniment to the white-knuckle Omaha Beach scene that opens Steven Spielberg's Saving Private Ryan." — John Hillen, New York Post

In this unforgettable narrative of D-Day, Joseph Balkoski describes the minute-by-minute combat as it unfolded on Omaha Beach, allowing soldiers to speak for themselves as they recall their attempts to maneuver bombers through heavy cloud cover, the claustrophobic terror aboard transports, and the relentless fire that greeted them on the beach. Equal parts oral history and meticulous reconstruction, Omaha Beach is the closest the modern reader can get to experiencing the Normandy landings firsthand.

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Editorial Reviews

Stone & Stone Second World War Books - Bill Stone
"This is probably the best book ever written about Omaha Beach."
Publishers Weekly
Balkoski (Beyond the Beachhead: The 29th Division in Normandy) makes officer and enlisted-men's first-person testimony the center of this account, with light contextualization in between, along with 34 b&w photos and 27 maps. (Apr.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Each decennial anniversary of the Normandy landings has produced its own recounting of this momentous event in World War II. Although written soon after the war, Gordon Harrison's Cross-Channel Attack (1951) remains the starting point for all future accounts, and Cornelius Ryan's The Longest Day (1959), which was followed by the Darryl F. Zanuck film, wonderfully popularized the story. In the early 1980s, John Keegan's magisterial Six Armies in Normandy (1982) set a new standard for scholarship, followed a decade later by an equally valuable telling by Stephen Ambrose with his D-Day: June 6, 1944 : The Climactic Battle of World War II (1994). Recently, Russell Hart provided an updated rendering with Clash of Arms: How the Allies Won in Normandy (2001). The Balkoski study is quite good and certainly compares favorably with Adrian Lewis's Omaha Beach: A Flawed Victory (2001). Balkoski (Beyond the Beachhead) has skillfully blended first-person accounts with a well-researched narrative of what happened on that fateful morning and an artful sprinkling of detailed maps. Bastable's Voices from D-Day, however, is a patchwork of interviews and reminiscences interspersed with historical narrative, which reflects his journalistic background but does not break much new ground historiographically. Most libraries would benefit from the Balkoski volume, but only the largest need to consider Bastable's. Ed Goedeken, State Univ. Lib., Ames, IA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811733762
  • Publisher: Stackpole Books
  • Publication date: 5/18/2006
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 236,816
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.06 (d)

Meet the Author

Joseph Balkoski is Command Historian of the Maryland National Guard. He has appeared as a D-Day expert on MSNBC, and his work has been praised by Joe Scarborough, the New York Post, the Washington Times, World War II magazine, and others. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

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Table of Contents

Preface ix
Chapter 1. The End of the Beginning 1
Chapter 2. Realism, Not Pessimism 15
Chapter 3. Festung Europa 33
Chapter 4. Fortune Favors the Bold 52
Chapter 5. The Greatest Show on Earth 71
Chapter 6. Forlorn Hope 97
Chapter 7. The Momentous Now 110
Chapter 8. Clear the Way 140
Chapter 9. Bullets like Rain 157
Chapter 10. Move or Die 191
Chapter 11. Everyone an Infantryman 237
Chapter 12. Beyond the Beach 267
Chapter 13. A Full Measure of Devotion 307
Chapter 14. To Rest or to Die 329
Appendix I Allied Casualties on Omaha Beach, June 6, 1944 350
Appendix II Medal of Honor and Distinguished Service Cross Awards for Valor on Omaha Beach 353
Appendix III U.S. Army and U.S. Navy First-Wave Units on Omaha Beach 362
Appendix IV Composition of Typical Assault Boat Team, 16th and 116th Infantry 367
Appendix V Uniform and Equipment of Boat Team Leader, 16th and 116th Infantry 370
Notes 372
Bibliography 393
Acknowledgments 398
Index 404
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 23, 2011

    Great book for World War 2 ETO buffs to get detailed information from

    Balkoski is the historian for the 29th Division in Normandy and beyond. I have read all his books and highly recommend them all.

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