11 August 2019
Of all the beaches stormed during D-Day, the most casualties and stiffest defence was found at Omaha Beach, where American forces landed.
Auhtor: Robert Kershaw
Reviewed by: Duncan Evans
Of all the beaches stormed during D-Day, the most casualties and stiffest defence was found at Omaha Beach, where American forces landed. From a pleasant three miles stretch of holiday beach, Rommel transformed it into a waiting hell, with bunkers having overlapping arcs of fire, chalets converted into concrete strongpoints, and acres of barbed wire and mines. The narrative of this book starts at midnight on 6 June and recounts the desperate fight, hour by hour, with reports from American, German and French forces who were there.
When the fighting starts the first waves onto the beaches were slaughtered, with General Bradley facing the very real fear that they would fail. In the end, it took the naval forces to sail right up to the beaches so they could pummel the cliff-based defences to turn the tide in their favour. The story reads like a written version of the start of Saving Private Ryan. It’s intense, brutal, exciting and horrifying in equal measure. A fantastic read.
• Amberley Books
• ISBN 978-1-4456-8852-7
• 380 pages • Hardback • £25
As reviewed in The Armourer July 2019
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