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MILITARY BOOKS

Carlo D'Este

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Lieutenant Colonel Carlo D'Este, USA (ret.) is a World War Two historian who has authored Warlord: A Life of Winston Churchill at War, 1874-1945; Bitter Victory: The Battle for Sicily, 1943; Eisenhower: A Soldier's Life; Fatal Decision: Anzio and the Battle for Rome; and, Patton: A Genius for War.

 

According to the book description of Eisenhower: A Soldier's Life, “D'Este unveils the story of a man who rose from humble Midwestern roots to the highest command accorded any soldier in the western alliance of World War II. This subtle, nuanced story about the man who held the allies together and led them to victory in WWII reveals a full-fledged portrait of one of the worlds most celebrated military commanders. D'Este writes in his epilogue: "Although he achieved everlasting distinction as the thirty-fourth president of the United States, Dwight David Eisenhower would have been elated merely to be remembered as a good soldier.”

 

Publisher’s Weekly said of Patton: A Genius for War, “Perhaps the most renowned and controversial American general of the 20th century, George Patton (1885-1945) remains a subject of intense interest. D'Este (Decision in Normandy) provides new information from family archives and other sources about Patton's ancestry, childhood and pre-WWII military career. This includes his student years at West Point, his experience as a tank officer in WWI and various interwar staff assignments. The author emphasizes Patton's lifelong study and preparation for war and his conviction that God not only chose him specifically to lead an army but also stood ready to intervene to assure him battlefield victories. D'Este has much to say about Patton's impulsiveness, impatience and tactlessness, showing how these qualities often got him in trouble with the public as well as with his superiors. The account of Patton's campaigns from North Africa through Sicily, Normandy and the Ardennes enables the reader to understand why the general is regarded as one of the great military leaders. This is a major biography of a major American military figure.”

 

According to the book description of Warlord: A Life of Winston Churchill at War, 1874-1945, “Carlo D'Este's brilliant new biography examines Winston Churchill through the prism of his military service as both a soldier and a warlord: a descendant of Marlborough who, despite never having risen above the rank of lieutenant colonel, came eventually at age sixty-five to direct Britain's military campaigns as prime minister and defeated Hitler, Mussolini, and Hirohito for the democracies. Warlord is the definitive chronicle of Churchill's crucial role as one of the world's most renowned military leaders, from his early adventures on the North-West Frontier of colonial India and the Boer War through his extraordinary service in both World Wars.

 

Even though Churchill became one of the towering political leaders of the twentieth century, his childhood ambition was to be a soldier. Using extensive, untapped archival materials, D'Este reveals important and untold observations from Churchill's personal physician, as well as other colleagues and family members, in order to illuminate his character as never before. Warlord explores Churchill's strategies behind the major military campaigns of World War I and World War II—both his dazzling successes and disastrous failures—while also revealing his tumultuous relationships with his generals and other commanders, including Dwight D. Eisenhower.

 

As riveting as the man it portrays, Warlord is a masterful, unsparing portrait of one of history's most fascinating and influential leaders during what was arguably the most crucial event in human history.”

 

Kirkus reviews said of Fatal Decision: Anzio and the Battle for Rome, “A meticulous audit of Operation Shingle, the WW II campaign designed to win Rome for Allied forces at an acceptable cost. D'Este (Bitter Victory, Decision in Normandy) provides a panoramic overview of the planning, preparation, and execution of the 1944 assault on Anzio, a Mediterranean port about 30 miles south of Rome. The aim of the amphibious thrust was to bypass strong German defenses along the so-called Gustav line and at Monte Cassino, which had stalled American and well as British armies in their drive to liberate Rome. In D'Este's persuasive view, the strike failed in its objectives for lack of decisive leadership. For example, instead of issuing firm orders, General Sir Harold Alexander made gentlemanly instructions which Mark Clark (commander of the US Fifth Army) often ignored. Nor did Clark prod subordinates to seize highways and rail lines that supplied Wehrmacht forces under the able command of Field Marshal Albert Kesselring. At any rate, the Anzio beachhead became a death trap in which Allied troops fought for their lives in rain and mud for over five dreadful months. When opposition finally crumbled under air and sea pounding, Clark neglected to pursue, let alone destroy, retreating German soldiers, so great was his ambition to be the first man into Rome. In a crowning irony, the recapture of Italy's capital was almost wholly overshadowed by the D-day landings in France. In D'Este's book, blame for the botched Anzio expedition is widely shared. Among others meriting censure, he singles out a meddlesome Winston Churchill, who sowed confusion in the Allied ranks and raised unrealistic expectations. A vivid account of a campaign that attests to the high cost of miscalculation and overconfidence in matters military.”


Eisenhower: A Soldier's Life
Carlo D'Este  More Info

Warlord: A Life of Winston Churchill at War, 1874-1945
Carlo D'este  More Info

Fatal Decision: Anzio and the Battle for Rome
Carlo D'este  More Info

Patton: A Genius for War
Carlo D'este  More Info

Bitter Victory: The Battle for Sicily, 1943
Carlo D'este  More Info

Decision in Normandy
Carlo D'Este  More Info

According to the book description of Bitter Victory: The Battle for Sicily, 1943, it “illuminates a chapter of World War II that has lacked a balanced, full-scale treatment until now. In recounting the second-largest amphibious operation in military history, Carlo D'Este for the first time reveals the conflicts in planning and the behind-the-scenes quarrels between top Allied commanders. The book explodes the myth of the Patton-Montgomery rivalry and exposes how Alexander's inept generalship nearly wrecked the campaign. D'Este documents in chilling detail the series of savage battles fought against an overmatched but brilliant foe and how the Germans—against overwhelming odds—carried out one of the greatest strategic withdrawals in history. His controversial narrative depicts for the first time how the Allies bungled their attempt to cut off the Axis retreat from Sicily, turning what ought to have been a great triumph into a bitter victory that later came to haunt the Allies in Italy.

 

Using a wealth of original sources, D'Este paints an unforgettable portrait of men at war. From the front lines to the councils of the Axis and Allied high commands, Bitter Victory offers penetrating reassessments of the men who masterminded the campaign. Thrilling and authoritative, this is military history on an epic scale.”

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