Book review: Codeword Overlord

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08 August 2019
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Obviously the Germans knew that an Allied invasion was coming, it was just a case where it was.

Author: Nigel West

Reviewed by: Duncan Evans

 

Buy your copy here.

 

Obviously the Germans knew that an Allied invasion was coming, it was just a case where it was. Cue the German intelligence service, the Abwehr and other groups, committing 30,000 men and women to try to figure when and where the landings would come. They also sent spies and double agents through Spain, in a desperate attempt to find out what was going on in Britain.

 

Nigel West’s book delves into the murky world of WWII espionage, tackling the plans, German signal intercepts, Luftwaffe aerial recon, the melting pot of Spain, Rommel’s assessment of the threat and how it all worked out as the Allies successfully deceived the Germans. There’s no doubt that this is immaculately researched and is full of painstaking detail however, a lot of the world of spies is clouded in doubt. So the majority of this narrative consists of explaining who knew what and when. Unfortunately it slows the pace down to an absolute crawl and it’s like this all the way through. If you’re fascinated by WWII espionage then the detail will keep you happy but for the general WWII enthusiast this is a largely tedious read.

 

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• The History Press

 

• ISBN 978-0-7509-8993-0

 

• 356 pages • Hardback • £25

 

As reviewed in The Armourer August 2019

 

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