Seeking a certain new nonfiction book about Germany in WW II
June 25, 2007 11:13 AM   Subscribe

Help me find a new (I think) nonfiction book about Germany in World War II. All I know about it: It MAY have been recently mentioned in the NY Times (a search there failed) and one memorable scene. In the scene, a German pilot writes about flying over Normandy on D-Day, seeing the sheer mass of the Allied force, and knowing right then that the war was lost for his country. I know it's not much to go on, but can anyone help?
posted by GaelFC to Writing & Language (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Are you thinking of Angels Eight: Normandy Air War Diary by David Clark which chronicles US, German and British dogfights and pilots' combat reports?
posted by ericb at 11:54 AM on June 25, 2007


Another potential contender comes to mind: D-Day: The Greatest Invasion - A People's History [*].
posted by ericb at 12:05 PM on June 25, 2007


I'm almost certain that's in D-Day: June 6, 1944 by Stephen Ambrose. Otherwise it might be in The Longest Day (there's a bit in the movie about German Luftwaffe pilots who were pretty much instantly overwhelmed).
posted by dhartung at 12:11 PM on June 25, 2007


Yeah -- dhartung may be right. Ambrose and his book (which was written for the 50th. Anniversary of D-Day) were profiled frequently in recent television, radio and print coverage for the 60th. anniversary.
posted by ericb at 12:28 PM on June 25, 2007


Luftwaffe pilots who were pretty much instantly overwhelmed

To be fair, the Luftwaffe had earlier sent four of its five air fleets, equipped with the most recent first-line aircraft, to fight the USSR. The Russians' MiG 3 wiped out a lot of its planes and eventually helped achieve total Russian air dominance, while countless more Luftwaffe resources were wasted in the pointless and futile supply runs into Stalingrad. Bergstrom and Mikhailov's The Air War over the Eastern Front pretty much sums up the whole thing. The Western Allies faced a remnant force, crippled by low fuel supplies. Hayward's Stopped at Stalingrad also describes this process. Murray's War in the Air: 1914-1945 is also a good source.
posted by meehawl at 12:45 PM on June 25, 2007


It might be Armageddon : the battle for Germany, 1944-45 by Max Hastings. While I can't recall the exact scene you describe the book has tons of anecdotes like this, and it could be the one you're looking for.
posted by vito90 at 12:51 PM on June 25, 2007


Thanks to all so far, but I'm 90% sure the book was published only in the last two months. I'm thinking the NY Times mention might be my best bet to finding it...
posted by GaelFC at 1:04 PM on June 25, 2007


Thanks to all who tried. My mom (!) found the answer. I had the NY Times and Wall Street Journal confused.

Here it is:

"This is the quote that I think you referred to: "A German industrialist told me how, as a young flier, he had taken his plane up on June 6, 1944, into the Normandy clouds. He had seen an armada of ships and landing craft coming over the English channel, protected by a great cluster of aircraft. He knew then that the war was lost."

The book is "The Wages of Destruction" by Adam Tooze. Looks like it's published by Viking, is 799 pages long and costs $32.95. The above quote is from "Bookshelf" by Norman Stone, and this column was in the Wall Street Journal, Tuesday, June 19, 2007."
posted by GaelFC at 2:37 PM on June 26, 2007 [2 favorites]


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