The Star of Africa: The Story of Hans Marseille, the Rogue Luftwaffe Ace Who Dominated the WWII Skies

The Star of Africa: The Story of Hans Marseille, the Rogue Luftwaffe Ace Who Dominated the WWII Skies

by Colin Heaton, Anne-Marie Lewis
4.1 11


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The Star of Africa: The Story of Hans Marseille, the Rogue Luftwaffe Ace Who Dominated the WWII Skies by Colin Heaton, Anne-Marie Lewis

"Heaton expertly portrays Marseille as one of history's great fighter pilots, as well as a man who lived life to the full and who fought with honor." — Dennis Showalter

The Star of Africais a biography of the dramatic life and meteoric career of German Luftwaffe Captain Hans-Joachim Marseille, the "Star of Africa.” Marseille, a legendary figure in the annals of military history, had 158 kills to his name and was one of the rare recipients of the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds, the Third Reich’s highest honor awarded for valor in combat. Unlike other German fighter aces, Marseille is also a famous figure in the public imagination in the United States and other English-speaking countries, where his rebellious nature, iconoclastic behavior, and early death have nourished his reputation just as greatly as his exceptional skill and chivalrous conduct as an adversary.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780760343937
Publisher: Zenith Press
Publication date: 11/12/2012
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Professor Colin D. Heaton served in the U.S. Army and later the U.S. Marines. He was a guest historian on the History Channel program Dogfights: "Secret Weapons," and he has authored several books of military history, including German Anti-Partisan Warfare in Europe 1939—1945 and Night Fighters: The Luftwaffe and RAF Air Combat over Europe, 1939—1945, which he coauthored with Anne-Marie Lewis. He has taught history and military history at American Military University. 

Anne-Marie Lewis received her BA with honors and MA from American Military University in international relations and is also a professional photographer. She lives in Southport, North Carolina.

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Star of Africa: The Story of Hans Marseille, the Rogue Luftwaffe Ace Who Dominated the WWII Skies 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Hawkman More than 1 year ago
The best air combat biography ever written in my opinion. I have read Tate, Kurowski and others who wrote about Marseille, and all are very good books, and all of those have much better photograph selections. Aside from the photos, this book has it all: technical details, great descriptions of air combat, political intrigues, the Holocaust knowledge historians always assumed Marseille had, his love life in great detail, and his true opinions of Goring, Hitler, Mussolini and many others. What also sets this this book apart from other Marseille biographies are the great number of first person accounts from others who flew with or knew, perhaps just met Marseille. These small personal snippets of history bring Marseille back to life in a very humorous, and moving way. Also described in much greater detail than in any other work is his humanity. The comment by Edu Neumann that "we are soldiers not animals" rung solid, given the notoroius history of the Third Reich. The comments and attitudes of the other JG-27 pilots interviewed are also of great historical relevance. This book should be required military reading on leadership topics, as well as conduct in war and the exceptions to the general rule that occur in every conflict. The air combat scenes are so vivid, if this were an audio book, you could close your eyes and see the aircraft spinning, diving and feel the impact of rounds. Absolutely first rate work.d
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Masterman More than 1 year ago
Unbelievably great story about a very unique pilot.
Nastydog More than 1 year ago
Absolutely fantastic! Read this in one sitting, and it was the best book I ever read.
simonsaysWS1 More than 1 year ago
I read this book in five hours. I have read Kurowski and Tate, as well as other books about or referencing Marseille. This book is the only one you will need to know who this man was, what he accomplished, and what the average German pilot thought about their government. You will also not need to read anything else to get the gripping drama of air combat and the physical and psychological impact of constant combat. I started this book as most people, not very empathetic to any German. I finished this book wishing I could have known this man, and the others interviewed. Humanity can be found everyehere, and this book proves it. Must read.
Jerry1989 More than 1 year ago
The book had great information, and I learned a lot. But the photos were lacking. Most of these have been used before, so there was really nothing new here. The combat descriptions and personal information given by others was the best part.
James Portolow More than 1 year ago
I was a US Navy F-14 fighter pilot, and we learned all about the fighter tactics of the Germans, Japanese and our own boys in WW II. This book could be a textbook on what NOT to do, but how to get away with it if you do. Star of Africa is the kind of book that entertains, educates, and captivates. This is a book you do not want to put down, trust me. read this book, slip back in time, and realize that if the Germans had 10,000 Marseilles, we could have lost the air war. Absolutely the best air combat biography I ever read, and I thought that Robin Olds' book was the best. It takes a back seat now.
PManBP More than 1 year ago
Great book about a great fighter pilot. Action packed and backed by research.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Outstanding biography of w ell known subject, packed with new information, exciting combat and the most insane stories ever told about Marseille. The authors use of the first person, gathered from many interviews paints a picture of a great pilot who, by all accounts was fighting on the wrong side of the war. I got this book, and read it in one day. I have read hundreds of books, and I am an expert on the Luftwaffe and WW II. I met Edu Neumann, Galland and many others. I spoke with them about Marseille, and this book only confirmed ths stories. I have not read, and dare say will never read a book as good as this one on air combat. There was a black and white German film about Marseille with the same title, his nickname. I would like to see this book as a remake, it would be a great film if done correctly. On another note, I found the tables, corroborating victory lists, statistics and confirmations of who shot down who probably the best part of the book. The air combat scenes make you feel as if you were there, strapped in watching the events unfold. Whether or not you like war stories, read this book as a human interest story. You will be very surprised at just how much better this biography on Marseille is than any ever written before. I guarantee it. Rated more than 5 stars but that is as high as it goes here.