Book recommendations?

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Octotrooper
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Joined: 11 Sep 2019 19:16
Location: San Diego CA

Book recommendations?

Post by Octotrooper » 12 Feb 2020 17:10

Does anyone have any biography recommendations? I want to read about a soldier's experience on the front but I can't find any books on the subject. Thanks in advance! (Sorry if this is in the wrong section I don't know where is to put it, please delete if not allowed)

Sejanus
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Re: Book recommendations?

Post by Sejanus » 13 Feb 2020 01:06

Greetings Octotrooper!

The best single recommendation I can make is a book titled The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer. Sajer's book remains controversial as some find fault with its inaccuracies, leading them to conclude that it is a work of fiction. But my own belief is that the book is based on the real life experiences of the author and whether it is all true or not, it remains an extremely compelling and moving story regardless. Sajer (a very young Frenchman with one German parent) was drafted into the German Army and spent most of his time fighting on the Eastern Front, becoming a member of the elite Grossdeutschland Division.

I had the opportunity to personally know another enlisted member of the GD that had emigrated to the States (Waldemar N along with his wife Marga) from Bremerhaven after the war, and some of his experiences matched Sajer's exactly. So what Sajer has to say is good enough for me.

Sajer also makes a very astute point in his book that I will paraphrase from memory: that people should read about war (particularly combat) when they are uncomfortable or sick (to gain a better understanding of what it can really be like), as Sajer says he was during part of the process of writing it & having to stop during an asthma attack. Rather than read such an account in comfort and peace, in an environment without suffering.

Sajer's is a shattering account. Will not disappoint. One of the best works on the subject I have ever encountered after many decades of reading such material.

Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Forgotten-Soldie ... 1574882864

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hucks216
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Re: Book recommendations?

Post by hucks216 » 13 Feb 2020 12:40

Do you mean just German or those of any nation? If the latter then just take a look at the very top of this section where such memoirs are listed.
For the Germans there are also plenty, one of which has already been mentioned (ignoring the 'is it fact or fiction' argument that constantly comes up). Also, just for starters...

In Deadly Combat by Gottlob Bidermann
Through Hell For Hitler by Henry Metelmann
Blood Red Snow by Günter K. Koschorrek
An Infantryman in Stalingrad by Adelbert Holl (and also After Stalingrad which is about his time as a Soviet PoW)
An Artilleryman in Stalingrad by Wigand Wüster & Jason Mark
Panzer Ace: The Memoirs of an Iron Cross Panzer Commander from Barbarossa to Normandy by Richard Freiherr von Rosen
Tigers in the Mud by Otto Carius

Larso
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Re: Book recommendations?

Post by Larso » 15 Feb 2020 12:12

I have threads on American - both Pacific and ETO, British and German memoirs. They're mostly infantry but some tank crew - mostly British. If you have a preference I could list a half dozen (or score) standouts.

Ken S.
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Re: Book recommendations?

Post by Ken S. » 17 Feb 2020 05:02

A Stranger to Myself: The Inhumanity of War: Russia, 1941–44. Willy Peter Reese

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