What are you reading at the moment?

Discussion in 'Books, Films, TV, Radio' started by Gage, Mar 12, 2006.

  1. Strawberry5

    Strawberry5 Member


    I'm afraid I tend to buy them anyway - my 'personal' military library comfortably rivals that of our local public libraries (this is not a proud boast, I'm probably just dumb, but like to have the books close whenever I need reference!). With regard to the British Army Communications book - yes, exactly as you say, it's over £20 at the moment so I'd like to see it before buying to gauge its usefulness (of course, there is the argument that, if I didn't buy so many books, I could be choosy and afford to pay a bit more).

    Ah, thank you for the avatar tip - now need to select a suitable image

    Kind regards

    Andrew
     
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  2. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles Patron

    Has anybody taken a look at this yet?

    Approach to Battle - Training the Indian Army During the Second World War (War & Military Culture in South Asia) Hardcover – 10 Jan 2017
    by Alan Jeffreys (Author)

    The Indian Army was the largest volunteer army during the Second World War. Indian Army divisions fought in the Middle East, North Africa, Italy and went to make up the overwhelming majority of the troops in South East Asia. Over two million personnel served in the army and India provided the base for supplies for the Middle Eastern and South East Asian theatres. This monograph is a modern historical interpretation of the Indian Army as a holistic organization during the Second World War. It will look at training in India, charting how the army developed a more comprehensive training structure than any other Commonwealth country. This was achieved through both the dissemination of doctrine and the professionalism of a small coterie of officers. They brought about a military culture within the army, starting in the 1930s, that came to fruition during the Second World War which informed the formal learning process.

    The book will illustrate that the Indian Army was reorganized after experiences of the First World War. Then, during the interwar period, the army developed training and doctrine for both fighting on the North West Frontier and as an aid to civil power. With the outbreak of the Second World War, the army had to expand and adapt to fighting modern professional armies in the difficult terrains of desert, jungle and mountain warfare. A clear development of doctrine and training can be seen with training pamphlets being produced by GHQ India that were in turn used to formulate training within formations and then used in divisional, brigade and unit training instructions. Thus a clear line of doctrine can be seen not only from GHQ India down to brigade and battalion level but also upwards from battalion and brigade level based on experience in battle that was absorbed into new training instructions. Together with the added impetus for education in the army, by 1945 the Indian Army had become a modern professional and national army. Contains 6 maps

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    https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1911096516/ref=rdr_ext_tmb

    I've been through the extracts and am considering a purchase, but it feels like a bit of an update of a lot of earlier works I already own.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017
  3. Orwell1984

    Orwell1984 Senior Member

    [​IMG]

    Interesting read as it is one of the few books available in English describing the Italian experience in the desert.
     
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  4. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Enjoying, Make for the Hills, by Sir Robert Thompson KBE, CMG, DSO, MC.

    7122TH24H0L 2.jpg
     
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  5. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles Patron

    Is it written by a veteran or a historian? If the former, which unit(s) was he with?
     
  6. Strawberry5

    Strawberry5 Member

    Hi - just finished The Diary of a Staff Officer (1940) - typical 'slim' volume of memoirs from the period, allegedly "reproduced exactly as written at the time of the events it records" - I say allegedly as I suspect a degree of revisionism to the original scribbles once he was back in Blighty such is the perspicacity with which he writes. If he was that well informed at the time he should have been running the show! Anyway, decent enough read and, probably, a 'must read' for fellow 1940 nuts (er, enthusiasts)
    Regards
    Andrew
     
  7. Orwell1984

    Orwell1984 Senior Member

    The author was a veteran. Here's his bio: Paolo Caccia Dominioni - Wikipedia
     
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  8. Strawberry5

    Strawberry5 Member

    Am now halfway through 'By tank into Normandy' as a bit of light relief from the usual 1940 diet. Now, I quite like Sherman tanks (as Donald Sutherland so pithily observed "a Sherman can give you a very nice edge"), and I really enjoyed Ken Tout's 'Tank' ( a 'must-read' for anyone remotely interested in tank warfare) but Stuart Hills book just isn't doing it for me. I'll feed back again when I've finished it but I'm finding myself looking at the bookshelf for the next read rather than getting on with it - not a good sign.
    Cheers
    Andrew
     
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  9. Seroster

    Seroster Desert-mad!

    Just finished The Gates of Hell by Ewart Brookes about the convoys to Murmansk. Chilling stuff, no pun intended. I would never have guessed that sailing in winter was PREFERABLE because of snow cover.
     
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  10. Orwell1984

    Orwell1984 Senior Member

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  11. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles Patron

    This.

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    A novel of the lives of a large cast of working and lower-middle class Londoners over a period spanning (roughly) from Munich (late '38) until Christmas 1940. The war is very much a backdrop, but from what I've read (only a fifth of the way through the six hundred odd pages) it's packed full of period detail and - if exaggerated in a slightly Dickensian tone - exceedingly good at drawing out the essence of these people's lives. It's all shabby genteel with cluttered rooms and those countless little class-based rituals an observances that stratified the classes within classes. Some on the up, some on the down, some on the make--most enjoyable so far.

    Much more detail here if you're interested (great site):
    Norman Collins: London Belongs to Me

    Film adaptation (which I'm saving until I've finished reading despite it not being terrible well received) here:
     
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  12. Seroster

    Seroster Desert-mad!

    Currently reading Commando Strike by Kenneth Macksey. He seems to have been a real Mountbatten fan - what is M's reputation now in 2017? I feel I've read somewhere that Jubilee was really Mountbatten's baby which would put the blame on him, but really it seems more one of a piece with (ahem) the quality of planning in raiding since many things went awry...
     
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  13. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member

    For Your Tomorrow- Canadians and the Burma Campaign 1941-1945 by Robert H. Farquharson.
    I had no clue that any Canadians were involved in the Pacific theatre apart from the overrun garrison in Hong Kong.
     
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  14. Seroster

    Seroster Desert-mad!

    Neither did I! And the author was one of those involved. Thanks for mentioning it. :)
     
  15. wtid45

    wtid45 Very Senior Member

    Review when your finished please Randy.
     
  16. canuck

    canuck Token Colonial Patron

    There certainly were many in the air over it.
     
  17. canuck

    canuck Token Colonial Patron

    The only thing I have ever had in common with the IRA was Mountbatten.
     
  18. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member

    I am told that the author is very much alive and well. If I get a chance to meet him, I will let the forum know.
     
  19. 17thDYRCH

    17thDYRCH Senior Member

    Canuck and I share the same sentiment. One only has to visit the Canadian cemetery in Dieppe and see 942 grave stones bearing the Maple Leaf and all reading August 19, 1942. This statement does not wish to diminish or ignore the British losses suffered during this useless exercise. A complete clusterf---k.
     
  20. Orwell1984

    Orwell1984 Senior Member

    [​IMG]
    Not a narrative history as such but one that looks at specific areas (Discipline, training, communications, command) in the BEF
    [​IMG]
    East Africa 1935-1941
    Polish book with English summary. Some interesting pictures from the Italian archives as well as Commonwealth sources including one of the gunners in a SAAF Ju 86 I hadn't seen before.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2017 at 7:47 PM
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