Category Archives: History

Book Review – Hitler’s Armed SS

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Military historian Anthony Tucker-Jones http://atuckerjones.com is the author of more than 50 books. Hitler’s Armed SS: The Waffen-SS at War, 1939–1945 was recently published in August of 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. I categorize this book/novel as ‘G.

The book traces the origins and development of the armed or Waffen SS. It began as an elite personal protection unit for Hitler, and grew into Himmler’s 38-division strong army. The SS was not comprised of the regular Wehrmacht soldiers. Members of the Waffen SS were fanatic Nazis. They were not trained in combat as thoroughly as the regular Wehrmacht troops, nor were they as disciplined.

Units fought on all the fronts on which the Germans were engaged. Many were deployed on the Eastern Front, where they committed numerous atrocities. Several SS units also took part in battles in the West. What they lacked in tactical ability was made up for by their fanatic adherence to the Nazi cause.

I enjoyed the 10 hours I spent reading this 354-page WWII history. This is the fourth book by Tucker-Jones that I have read. The others have been Radio Operator on the Eastern Front: An Illustrated Memoir, 1940–1949Churchill, Master and Commander: Winston Churchill at War 1895–1945, and Life and Death on the Eastern Front: Rare Colour Photographs From World War II. They all have been interesting. The book is full of details about the Waffen SS units. I like the chosen cover art. I give this book a rating of 3.4 (rounded down to 3) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

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If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

A Book to add to your WWII History Shelf – Nineteen Weeks: America, Britain, and the Fateful Summer of 1940

I subscribe to several different ebook sales notification services. One of those is MyNextRead.

In the email I received from them today and they noted that the 647 page ebook edition of The Bomber War: Arthur Harris and the Allied Bomber Offensive 1939–1945 by Robin Neillands is currently available from Amazon for FREE. The book was published in 2014. I have downloaded the book, but not read it yet.

If you are a student of WWII history you should act now to add this book to your bookshelf. These sales often last only a few days, so better to act soon.


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

A Book to add to your WWII History Shelf – Nineteen Weeks: America, Britain, and the Fateful Summer of 1940

I subscribe to several different ebook sales notification services. One of those is MyNextRead.

In the email I received from them a couple of days ago and they noted that the 438 page ebook edition of Nineteen Weeks: America, Britain, and the Fateful Summer of 1940 by Norman Moss is currently available from Amazon for FREE. The book was published in 2015. I have downloaded the book, but not read it yet.

If you are a student of WWII history you should act now to add this book to your bookshelf. These sales often last only a few days, so better to act soon.


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – Reading Hitler’s Mind

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Norman Ridley is the author of five books. Reading Hitler’s Mind: The Intelligence Failure that led to WW2 was published in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. categorize this book as G.

The book covers the period from the 1930s forward. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain was preparing to deal with Hitler. The British leadership and military were stuck in their older thinking. There was also a concern as to the economic impact of beginning rearmament. What intelligence they had on the growth of Germany was often not believed.

Germany had been very successful in hiding its military growth. The UK also had significant financial ties to Germany. The British leaders were unwilling to confront Germany over events that were not directly affecting the UK. Many simply did not want to hear about things that challenged their point of view.

I enjoyed the 8.5 hours I spent reading this 179-page WWII history. This book was a challenge to read. The writing is very dry with many long rambling sentences. I do like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 3.5 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

A Book to add to your WWII History Shelf – Montgomery in Europe: Success or Failure?

I subscribe to several different ebook sales notification services. One of those is MyNextRead.

In the email I received from them a couple of days ago and they noted that the 546 page ebook edition of Montgomery in Europe: Success or Failure? (WWII nonfiction by Richard Lamb is currently available from Amazon for FREE. The book was published in 2014. I have downloaded the book, but not read it yet.

If you are a student of WWII history you should act now to add this book to your bookshelf. These sales often last only a few days, so better to act soon.


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

A Book to add to your WWII History Shelf – Five Days in Hell

I subscribe to several different ebook sales notification services. One of those is MyNextRead.

In the email I received from them a couple of days ago and they noted that the 114 page ebook edition of Five Days in Hell by Jack Smyth is currently available from Amazon for FREE. The book was published in 2016. I have downloaded the book, but not read it yet.

If you are a student of WWII history you should act now to add this book to your bookshelf. These sales often last only a few days, so better to act soon.

—–

If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – The Pope at War

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – David I. Kertzer https://davidikertzer.com is the author of more than a dozen books. The Pope at War: The Secret History of Pius XII, Mussolini, and Hitler was published in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. I categorize this book/novel as G.

On 2 March 1939, Eugenio Maria Giuseppe Giovanni Pacelli was elected Pope. He took the name Pius XII. His election came at a dark and tumultuous time in World History. With Vatican City nestled in Rome, the church was influenced by Italian Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini. After the German Wehrmacht took over Italy in 1943, they also exerted a great deal of pressure on the Pope.

Because Pacelli spoke fluent German and had served as Apostolic Nuncio to Germany from 1920 to 1930, he was believed to be favorable toward the Third Reich. His predecessor Pius XI had been an outspoken critic of Fascism and oppression. Cardinal Pacelli had attempted to exert a moderating influence on Pius XI.

Most consider Pius XII to have been a weak leader. He certainly was in a precarious position in Vatican City. Secret negotiations were conducted with Germany’s Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop. Pius XII condemned the Jews but never spoke out against Germany for their policies.

I enjoyed the 16+ hours I spent reading this 641-page WWII-era history. While this was full of facts, the book was very readable. The book covered an aspect of WWII that I had not heard much about. The Vatican sealed the war period papers of Pius XII when he died in 1958. They were only opened in 2020. Many facts contained in this book only came to light then. I do like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

—–

If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – Nazi Sex Spies

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Al Cimino is the author of more than 25 books. Nazi Sex Spies: True Stories of Seduction, Subterfuge and State Secrets was published in 2020.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. Due to a few mature situations, I categorize this book as PG.

The Nazis in WWII ran extensive intelligence operations. These included using women, and the occasional man, to seduce information sources. This book contains 21 chapters, each dealing with a different Nazi spy. Most were individuals operating on their own, but brothels were also occasionally used.

Seductive women were used to influence men in positions of importance. They also collected information that was of tactical advantage. At other times their goal was to discover or create embarrassing situations that could be used as blackmail.

The story I found most surprising is the romance between Inga Arvad, Miss Denmark 1931, and a young US Naval officer. Arvad had enjoyed a close relationship with Hitler in the 30s before she moved to the US in 1940. The FBI considered her a likely Nazi spy. As a reporter in 1941, she met and interviewed 24-year-old John F. Kennedy. Kennedy was assigned to the Office of Naval Intelligence in Washington DC. An affair followed, which caused Kennedy to be investigated. His father’s intervention and a transfer to the Pacific saved his career.

I enjoyed the 7.5 hours I spent reading this 279-page WWII history. This book takes a very different look at espionage in WWII. It is more a collection of short stories than a book. I was surprised at all of the documented attempts by the Nazis to use sex as leverage. The astonishing part is how they employed sex to spy on other German leaders. While the cover art is a bit bland, it is in keeping with the theme of the book. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

A Book to add to your WWII History Shelf – The Battle for the Rhine 1944

I subscribe to several different ebook sales notification services. One of those is MyNextRead.

In the email I received from them a couple of days ago and they noted that the 409 page ebook edition of The Battle for the Rhine 1944: Arnhem and the Ardennes, the Campaign in Europe by Robin Neilands is currently available from Amazon for FREE. The book was published in 2015. I have downloaded the book, but not read it yet.

If you are a student of WWII history you should act now to add this book to your bookshelf. These sales often last only a few days, so better to act soon.

—–

If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.

Book Review – The Partnership: George Marshall, Henry Stimson, and the Extraordinary Collaboration That Won World War II

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – This is the first book to be published by Edward Farley Aldrich . The Partnership: George Marshall, Henry Stimson, and the Extraordinary Collaboration That Won World War II was released in 2022.

I received an ARC of this book through https://www.netgalley.com with the expectation of delivering a fair and honest review. I categorize this book as G.

As stated in the book title, this is the story of George Marshal and Harry Stimson. Marshall was Chief of Staff of the US Army from 1 September 1939 until 18 November 1945. Henry Stimson served as the Secretary of War from 10 July 1940 until 21 September 1945. Together they led the US efforts in WWII.

The first 30% of the book details their childhood and early careers. The remainder of the book deals with the many challenges the two faced during the war. They worked well together in a true partnership. Their offices were next door to one another in the Pentagon. They generally had the connecting door between their private offices open for quick consultations.

They both had to deal with the logistical needs of a nation at war. They also had to frequently deal with disagreements with our allies, particularly with the British. Likewise, they had to discretely handle many power struggles. Some within the US government and others with allied powers.

A small portion of the book addresses their post-war lives.

I enjoyed the 22 hours I spent reading this 762-page history. While long, it is a very readable book. I had, of course, heard of George Marshal, but I was not nearly as familiar with Henry Stimson. The book provides a very behind-the-scenes look at the US war effort. The cover art is plain, but gives focus to the two primary figures. I give this novel a rating of 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 590 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII. Included are links to many fiction and non-fiction books on WWII that I have read and reviewed. There are also links to WWII oriented podcasts.