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WWII Fiction

G. Alvin Simons
Reader
Location: Florida

Postby G. Alvin Simons » Fri February 5th, 2010, 12:34 am

How about The Eagle Has Landed by Jack Higgins? I couldn't put it down! Fascinating characters, suspense, & great action, not to mention a few unexpected plot twists.
I also enjoyed The Last Citadel by David L. Robbins. Set around the historic tank battle of Kursk, it's also a fascinating read.

G. Alvin Simons

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CigarGuy
Scribbler
Location: Minneapolis
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Postby CigarGuy » Wed March 23rd, 2011, 12:19 am

Huge fan of Herman Wouk. When I was little I watched War & Remembrance with Mitchum. Years later I found the entire series at my library for that plus the Winds of War. I read both books then watched the movies. Great overview of the war, although Pug is sort of a Forrest Gump and seems to find himself in the middle of all the most important events. Still great stuff though.
The Cigar Maker
Seventh Avenue Productions, June 2010
http://www.thecigarmaker.net/

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parthianbow
Compulsive Reader
Location: Nr. Bristol, SW England
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Postby parthianbow » Wed March 23rd, 2011, 9:37 am

Some great recommendations in this thread. I thought I'd read the thread before, but I hadn't. *scratches head* I was surprised not to see any mention of A Piece of Cake by Derek Robinson. Written in 1977, it was long listed for the Booker Prize, and details the story of the pilots of a fighter squadron in the Battle of Britain. It's absolutely outstanding, IMHO. He also wrote a fantastic book about the Royal Flying Corps in WW1, called Goshawk Squadron.

http://www.amazon.com/Piece-Cake-Cassell-Military-Paperbacks/dp/030436312X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1300872704&sr=1-1

PS I've now discovered how to put in the link as above, but can't quite get to change it to a nice mere name of the book. As I can on Amazon, and on my own website. Anyone know how to do it please?
Last edited by parthianbow on Wed March 23rd, 2011, 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: addendum
Ben Kane
Bestselling author of Roman military fiction.
Spartacus - UK release 19 Jan. 2012. US release June 2012.

http://www.benkane.net
Twitter: @benkaneauthor

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Michy
Bibliophile
Location: California

Postby Michy » Wed March 23rd, 2011, 3:06 pm

I went through a WWII reading phase in my teens -- read countless books on that era, most of which I've now forgotten. :( However, some of the ones that stand out are (naturally) Herman Wouk's The Winds of War and War and Remembrance. I really, really enjoyed them and read them at the same time the TV miniseries was running.

One of the very first WWII books I read -- in my early teens -- was called Holocaust by (I think) Gerald Greene. Or maybe that's Graham Greene. I can't remember much about it, only that it had a strong emotional punch. I'm sure it's OOP, but I need to track down a copy and give it a re-read, since that's been at least 30 years ago.....

annis
Bibliomaniac

Postby annis » Thu March 24th, 2011, 3:51 am

Posted by PartianBow
PS I've now discovered how to put in the link as above, but can't quite get to change it to a nice mere name of the book. As I can on Amazon, and on my own website. Anyone know how to do it please?


Copy the URL you want to use. Highlight the text in your post into which you want to embed your URL. Click on the round blue "insert link" symbol in tool bar and paste your URL into the box that opens up. Click "OK" and you should be sweet. Good luck :) I won't say how long it took me to work out how to post an image!

Robinson is great. I've recently discovered Robert Radcliffe, another author who's written some really readable stuff set during WWII, including 2 with an air war setting- Under an English Heaven and Dambuster. I very much enjoyed his WWI novel Across the Blood Red Skies - review here.

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parthianbow
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Location: Nr. Bristol, SW England
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Postby parthianbow » Thu March 24th, 2011, 8:59 am

I'm going to start a WW1 and WW2 non-fiction thread soon, as there are many books I want to recommend, but can't on this thread. First and foremost, he writes sneakily, would be The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer, a half-French, half-German who was conscripted into the German army in WW2 and who survived 3 years on the Russian front. It's in my top three books of all time by a Roman mile.

*Thanks Annis - it works!!!! :D :) :cool: *

But your link isn't to Across the Blood Red Skies - it's to a Wikipedia stub page on Verulamium :confused:
Ben Kane

Bestselling author of Roman military fiction.

Spartacus - UK release 19 Jan. 2012. US release June 2012.



http://www.benkane.net

Twitter: @benkaneauthor

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EC2
Bibliomaniac
Location: Nottingham UK
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Postby EC2 » Thu March 24th, 2011, 1:44 pm

I've just finished and enjoyed A Pair of Silver Wings by James Holland. it's about a Spitfire pilot who becomes involved in the siege of Malta. It's told in modern day and flashback and well worth the read.
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

annis
Bibliomaniac

Postby annis » Thu March 24th, 2011, 7:29 pm

Posted by ParthianBow
But your link isn't to Across the Blood Red Skies - it's to a Wikipedia stub page on Verulamium


Oops- I'm a fine one to be giving you instructions :) That Verulamium link relates to the review I'm writing for Ruth Downie's Caveat Emptor aka Ruso and the River of Darkness. I love Ruso and hope we get more of him- RD originally was only contracted to write a series of 4.

Across the Blood Red Skies review here (hopefully)

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Steve Anderson
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Location: Portland, Oregon USA
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Postby Steve Anderson » Mon April 25th, 2011, 1:14 am

"parthianbow" wrote:I'm going to start a WW1 and WW2 non-fiction thread soon, as there are many books I want to recommend, but can't on this thread. First and foremost, he writes sneakily, would be The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer, a half-French, half-German who was conscripted into the German army in WW2 and who survived 3 years on the Russian front. ...


Forgotten Soldier looks interesting. Thanks for that, parthianbow. I could list a bunch of my favorites, but for now I'll hold off and mention one that's overlooked and worth more notice. A Midnight Clear by William Wharton, is about a group of American soldiers gone lost during the Battle of the Bulge. While not a sweeping historical epic, it's heartfelt and gritty.

I'm currently reading Field Gray by Philip Kerr, his latest Bernie Gunther novel. Former Berlin detective Gunther has to come clean about his role during WWII after getting nabbed by the early CIA. The novel spans the 1930s to 50s but WWII is at the heart of the story. Good stuff with effective use of backstory narration, and a return to form for Kerr after his last one.

Also, the site War Through the Generations, though US-focused, has a wealth of titles and reviews for WWII and other war periods. I hope it's okay to mention it here. Margaret, your site Historical Novels is a must too, of course.
Last edited by Steve Anderson on Mon April 25th, 2011, 1:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
http://www.stephenfanderson.com | Novelist, writer, literary translator

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Margaret
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Interest in HF: I can't answer this in 100 characters. Sorry.
Favorite HF book: Checkmate, the final novel in the Lymond series
Preferred HF: Literary novels. Late medieval and Renaissance.
Location: Catskill, New York, USA
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Postby Margaret » Mon April 25th, 2011, 5:09 am

Also, the site War Through the Generations, though US-focused, has a wealth of titles and reviews for WWII and other war periods.


Great list - that's a site worth exploring. The WWII list there is much more extensive that the one at HistoricalNovels.info (thanks for the mention, Steve) because I try to focus on true historical novels, ones written quite recently by authors who were born after the war, and keep the contemporary WWII novels to a minimum. The difference between historical novels and contemporary novels about WWII can be subtle sometimes. Novels by soldiers who fought in the war and/or people who lived through it on the "home front" have the advantage of being written by people with intimate personal experience of the wartime period. The compensating advantage for true historical novels is that the authors have more distance from the war, so they are often able to see its events in a less subjective way than authors who lived through it and therefore had strong personal feelings about it. For example, more novels are being written now that explore the experiences of Germans during the war in a nuanced way that goes beyond blame to try to understand the complexity of the German experience of the Nazi era and WWII.
Browse over 5000 historical novel listings (probably well over 5000 by now, but I haven't re-counted lately) and over 700 reviews at www.HistoricalNovels.info


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