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Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Stalingrad by Antony Beevor. The Battle of Stalingrad was not only the psychological turning point of World War II: it also changed the face of modern warfare. Historians and reviewers worldwide have hailed Antony Beevor's magisterial Stalingrad as the definitive account of World War II's most harrowing battle.
In the f The Battle of Stalingrad was not only the psychological turning point of World War II: it also changed the face of modern warfare. In the five-month siege that followed, the Russians fought to hold Stalingrad at any cost; then, in an astonishing reversal, encircled and trapped their Nazi enemy. This battle for the ruins of a city cost more than a million lives. Stalingrad conveys the experience of soldiers on both sides, fighting in inhuman conditions, and of civilians trapped on an urban battlefield.
Antony Beevor has interviewed survivors and discovered completely new material in a wide range of German and Soviet archives, including prisoner interrogations and reports of desertions and executions. As a story of cruelty, courage, and human suffering, Stalingrad is unprecedented and unforgettable. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published May 1st by Penguin Books first published July 1st More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews.
To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Stalingrad , please sign up. How to open the book to start reading it? Radu Miron You cannot read it here, goodreads. You need to buy the book somewhere else. See 2 questions about Stalingrad…. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege, — Feb 06, Matt rated it liked it Shelves: world-war-ii , world-war-ii-europe.
You fell victim to one of the classic blunders - The most famous of which is 'never get involved in a land war in Asia' - but only slightly less well-known is this: 'Never go against a Sicilian when death is on the line'"!
Or the European portion of Russia. That's good advice. For whatever reason, though, the lure of Russia - its vast steppes, its vast resources, its vast and bloody history - has "You fool! For whatever reason, though, the lure of Russia - its vast steppes, its vast resources, its vast and bloody history - has proven irresistible, stretching back to early Mongol invasions. The two most famous fools who dared strive for Moscow were Napoleon and Hitler. Napoleon was failed by the logistics of his day and age; the harder he pressed Kutuzov, and the deeper he got into Russia, the longer his supply line became.
When he reached his goal, he ran out of food, and turned back in the midst of a cruel winter. On his retreat, Napoleon famously remarked that "from the sublime to the ridiculous is but a single step. Undoubtedly, the winters were rough, and the Germans unprepared, but as Anthony Beevor makes clear in Stalingrad , the fault did not lie in the weather, but in Hitler and the stars.
Operation Barbarossa was a huge gamble, one that many of Hitler's generals and his generally imbecilic foreign minister Ribbentrop wanted him to avoid. However, due to Stalin's willful blindness, it almost worked. Indeed, it should have worked.
Without Hitler's constant bumbling intervention, it would have worked. Instead, the Germans attacked Stalingrad and nearly captured it. Then, the Russians surrounded the Germans, and the attackers became the attacked. The Germans at Stalingrad surrendered, and eventually the entire German invasion was turned.
The mistake at issue in Beevor's Stalingrad is that there was ever a battle of Stalingrad in the first place. Specifically, in the second summer of the German invasion, the Nazi armies were poised to sprint to the Caucuses and seize the Soviet oil fields.
Hitler intervened and split the German Army Group, sending Group B to Stalingrad, where it was eventually chewed to pieces. This is all explained in the beginning sections of Stalingrad , which are dedicated to the the planning of Operation Barbarossa, the start of the invasion, the battle for Moscow, and the first Russian winter. I found this to be the weakest part of the book, and it actually made me pause and consider continuing. Not that I didn't appreciate the purpose.
I firmly believe that even the most subject-specific history book should provide a little context. In this case, though, the overview was not only cursory, but confusing. Beevor jumps quickly from event to event, battle to battle, using a series of unconnected anecdotes.
He tries to cover too much subject matter in too few pages, so there is no room to breath or even reflect on what you're reading.
Oh, the Germans executed thousands of Jews at Babi Yar? That's interesting, but we're moving right along. The situation is not helped by the small number of maps. Beevor expends a lot of ink detailing troop movements. However, without a map showing where that body of soldiers was actually positioned on this earth, it's all a lot of numbers and letters signifying nothing. If you want me to care that the 81st Cavalry Division in the 4th Cavalry Corps crossed the Kalmyk steppe to the southern flank, you will kindly have to show me where the Kalmyk steppe is located.
I'm guessing it's Once the preliminaries are taken care of, and the focus is placed on General Paulus' fight for Stalingrad, things get better.
At the very least, the writing is at times vivid and evocative. Beevor has a novelistic flair for creating memorable images. Take, for instance, this description of Russian troops crossing the Volga to enter Stalingrad: The crossing was probably most eerie for those in the rowing boats, as the water gently slapped the bow, and the rowlocks creaked in unison.
The distant crack of rifle shots and the thump of shell bursts sounded hollow over the expanse of river. Then, German artillery, mortars and any machine-guns close enough to the bank switched their aim. Columns of water were thrown up in midstream, drenching the occupants of the boats. The silver bellies of stunned fish soon glistened on the surface Some men stared at the water around them to avoid the sight of the far bank, rather like a climber refusing to look down.
Others, however, kept glancing ahead to the blazing buildings on the western shore, their steel-helmeted heads instinctively withdrawn into the shoulders As darkness intensified, the huge flames silhouetted the shells of tall buildings on the bank high above them and cast grotesque shadows.
Sparks flew up in the night air As they approached the shore, they caught the smell of charred buildings and the sickly stench from decaying corpses under the rubble. Even during this middle section of the book, while the Germans were still on the offensive, I still had problems with the book's coherence.
A lot of times, the paragraphs on the page seemed absolute strangers to each other. Also, many paragraphs just left me scratching my head. For instance, one paragraph dealing with the Russian response to deserition stated that "[o:]n a rare occasion The proposition in the paragraph was that sometimes even the Russians realized they were nuts; but instead of supporting this statement, Beevor tells a story that shows just the opposite.
This is not to get nit-picky, but as I read, I often had this almost unconscious sensation that something was slightly off. The final third of the book, though, is quite strong. Once the Germans are on the defensive, battling Russians and the winter, Beevor's narrative really grips you. It's a good book to read while sitting in an armchair on a frigid February day so you can sympathize, without having to empathize. Along with the details of battle, there are fascinating discussions is fascinating the right word?
Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege, 1942–1943
Stalingrad is a narrative history written by Antony Beevor of the battle fought in and around the city of Stalingrad during World War II , as well as the events leading up to it. It was first published by Viking Press in Its main focus is the Battle of Stalingrad , in particular the period from the initial German attack to Operation Uranus and the Soviet victory. It details the subsequent battles and war crimes committed by both sides. The book ends with the defeat and surrender of the Germans in February and the beginning of the Soviet advance on Germany. Beevor returned to the subject with his book Berlin: The Downfall
Stalingrado by Antony Beevor