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Author Topic: The Guns of August  (Read 17730 times)
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« Reply #30 on: July 19, 2010, 01:28:48 PM »

I have always thought that Audie Murphy's record was pretty impressive.
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audie_Murphy

Should this be in the "To Hell And Back" thread in the Movie section?
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« Reply #31 on: August 11, 2010, 08:06:56 AM »

I spent last night organizing my book collection because my dad had thrown them all haphazardly into storage bins in the basement a few months ago and I got tired of not being able to find any of them. I found Guns of August as well as some of my other favorites (for light-reading, anyways) that I'd forgotten about:

In the Company of Soldiers by Rick Atkinson. Atkinson, a Washington Post writer, wrote this after he was embedded with the 101st Airborne during the first year of the Iraq War. It's an excellent read and gives a pretty engrossing account of the supply problems and other mishaps that plagued those first few days. Where it's really valuable, however, is the insight it gives into General Petraeus and his thoughts on the war back when he was just a division commander. It's chilling actually to see how well he predicted back in 2003 what was going to be the problem with Iraq in the future. Thanks to this book I was rooting for him to take over as commander in Iraq well before 2006. Atkinson also wrote An Army at Dawn, which I highly recommend for anyone interested in the North African campaign and the early days of the US Army in Europe during World War II.

So Sad to Fall in Battle- This is the book containing the letters from the Japanese defenders of Iwo Jima that later became the movie. Excellent book and one of the few (in English, at least) that shows the war from that side.

The Russian Revolution by Alan Moorehead. It was written in 1959, and thus it has a few inaccuracies that we know about now thanks to information that came out after the Cold War, but it's still the best single-volume history of the Russian Revolution I've ever read. It's remarkable for lacking any noticeable intellectual bias despite being written in the darkest days of the Cold War. It also does a fine job of exploring things from a monarchist and a Bolshevik perspective.

Vietnam: A History by Stanley Karnow. Best single-volume history of both Vietnam conflicts. Gives a background on the history of the nation since ancient times and gives a non-biased account from North Vietnamese, South Vietnamese, French, and American sources.

The Days of the French Revolution by Christopher Hibbert. It's not all that engrossing, but I'd recommend it to anyone wanting to understand the French Revolution without too much effort. A lot of good stuff about Robespierre and the Terror.

Shades of Blue and Gray by Herman Hattaway- one of the shortest one volume histories I've read of the Civil War. It's certainly not a towering manifesto like Battle Cry of Freedom, but it's short and definitely worth a read if you're more interested in military weaponry and tactics than social or political history.
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« Reply #32 on: March 23, 2011, 12:59:34 PM »

Probably more appropriate in the tv thread, but since this is the de facto WWI thread I thought I'd put it here. I'm sure several of you have seen it, but I just finished watching Blackadder Goes Forth on DVD, and while it was absolutely hysterical for the most part, the final scene was haunting and incredibly well done. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IglUmgYGxLM Sums it all up nicely, I suppose.
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« Reply #33 on: March 23, 2011, 03:07:50 PM »

Probably more appropriate in the tv thread, but since this is the de facto WWI thread I thought I'd put it here. I'm sure several of you have seen it, but I just finished watching Blackadder Goes Forth on DVD, and while it was absolutely hysterical for the most part, the final scene was haunting and incredibly well done. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IglUmgYGxLM Sums it all up nicely, I suppose.

That was one of my favorite finales of all time.
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« Reply #34 on: March 23, 2011, 03:52:53 PM »

Probably more appropriate in the tv thread, but since this is the de facto WWI thread I thought I'd put it here. I'm sure several of you have seen it, but I just finished watching Blackadder Goes Forth on DVD, and while it was absolutely hysterical for the most part, the final scene was haunting and incredibly well done. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IglUmgYGxLM Sums it all up nicely, I suppose.

That was one of my favorite finales of all time.

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« Reply #35 on: March 23, 2011, 05:24:31 PM »

Probably more appropriate in the tv thread, but since this is the de facto WWI thread I thought I'd put it here. I'm sure several of you have seen it, but I just finished watching Blackadder Goes Forth on DVD, and while it was absolutely hysterical for the most part, the final scene was haunting and incredibly well done. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IglUmgYGxLM Sums it all up nicely, I suppose.

That was one of my favorite finales of all time.

My comment could go in the movie thread, but for all time finales of a movie about WWI you have to include Sergeant York.  Not just an unlikely hero, he was an unlikey soldier.
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« Reply #36 on: April 05, 2012, 08:40:32 AM »

I thought The Things They Carried was a Desipio recommendation, but I can't find any mention of it in this here book-learnin' category. Anyway, a great read on Vietnam if you're a big puss like me with no idea of what it's like to be in the shit.
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« Reply #37 on: April 05, 2012, 10:21:17 AM »

I thought The Things They Carried was a Desipio recommendation, but I can't find any mention of it in this here book-learnin' category. Anyway, a great read on Vietnam if you're a big puss like me with no idea of what it's like to be in the shit.

I'll just watch We Were Soldiers
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« Reply #38 on: April 05, 2012, 12:34:18 PM »

I thought The Things They Carried was a Desipio recommendation, but I can't find any mention of it in this here book-learnin' category. Anyway, a great read on Vietnam if you're a big puss like me with no idea of what it's like to be in the shit.

I read that my senior year of hike school. I believe I read "In the Lake of the Woods", too.

What I mostly remember is O'Brien's discussion of "story-truth" vs. "happening-truth". Probably because that's the sort of thing you focus on in English class discussions.

Also: footnotes. Copious footnotes. (Though this may have just been "In the Lake of the Woods".)

Here's a PDF of Chapter 7 ("How to Tell a True War Story") for a taste of his ideas on truth in fiction.
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« Reply #39 on: April 05, 2012, 12:47:24 PM »

I thought The Things They Carried was a Desipio recommendation, but I can't find any mention of it in this here book-learnin' category. Anyway, a great read on Vietnam if you're a big puss like me with no idea of what it's like to be in the shit.

I read that my senior year of hike school. I believe I read "In the Lake of the Woods", too.

What I mostly remember is O'Brien's discussion of "story-truth" vs. "happening-truth". Probably because that's the sort of thing you focus on in English class discussions.

Also: footnotes. Copious footnotes. (Though this may have just been "In the Lake of the Woods".)

Here's a PDF of Chapter 7 ("How to Tell a True War Story") for a taste of his ideas on truth in fiction.

No footnotes in The Things They Carried (at least not the Kindle version). I'll have to check out some more of this guy's writing.
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« Reply #40 on: April 05, 2012, 04:55:51 PM »

I thought The Things They Carried was a Desipio recommendation, but I can't find any mention of it in this here book-learnin' category. Anyway, a great read on Vietnam if you're a big puss like me with no idea of what it's like to be in the shit.

I read that my senior year of hike school. I believe I read "In the Lake of the Woods", too.

What I mostly remember is O'Brien's discussion of "story-truth" vs. "happening-truth". Probably because that's the sort of thing you focus on in English class discussions.

Also: footnotes. Copious footnotes. (Though this may have just been "In the Lake of the Woods".)

Here's a PDF of Chapter 7 ("How to Tell a True War Story") for a taste of his ideas on truth in fiction.

Chapter 18, "Good Form"
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« Reply #41 on: April 05, 2012, 05:20:58 PM »

I thought The Things They Carried was a Desipio recommendation, but I can't find any mention of it in this here book-learnin' category. Anyway, a great read on Vietnam if you're a big puss like me with no idea of what it's like to be in the shit.

I'll second this hoopleheaded review.
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« Reply #42 on: June 10, 2015, 11:29:49 AM »

CT, TEC, Bort and any of you other WWI enthusiasts should read this: http://www.amazon.com/The-Sleepwalkers-Europe-Went-1914/dp/0061146668 Mother in law got it for me for Christmas. Good stuff.
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« Reply #43 on: June 10, 2015, 11:35:25 AM »

CT, TEC, Bort and any of you other WWI enthusiasts should read this: http://www.amazon.com/The-Sleepwalkers-Europe-Went-1914/dp/0061146668 Mother in law got it for me for Christmas. Good stuff.

Looks really good, thanks.
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« Reply #44 on: November 17, 2015, 04:45:57 PM »

CT, TEC, Bort and any of you other WWI enthusiasts should read this: http://www.amazon.com/The-Sleepwalkers-Europe-Went-1914/dp/0061146668 Mother in law got it for me for Christmas. Good stuff.

Bump.

Similar to The Sleepwalkers, I just finished The War that Ended Peace which is also an excellent book about Europe in the run up to WWI.  Also, if you like podcasts (and who doesn't) I'll echo Slaky's recommendation of Dan Carlin's Hardcore History series on WWI as well.
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