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November 1942 - An Intimate History of the Turning Point of the Second World War

  • Pocket

  • 2023

  • Engelsk

An intimate history of the most important month of World War II, as experienced by the people who lived through it, completely based on their diaries, letters and memoirs.
At the beginning of November 1942, it looked as if the Axis powers could still win the Second World War; at the end of that month, everyone realized that it was just a matter of time before they would lose. In between was El Alamein, Guadalcanal, the French North Africa landings, the Japanese retreat in New Guinea, and the Soviet encirclement of the German 6th Army at Stalingrad. It may have been the most important month of the 20th century. In this hugely innovative and riveting historical marvel, Peter Englund has reduced an epoch-making event to its basic component: the individual experience.
Englund''s narrative is based solely on what he learned from the writings of soldiers and citizens alike. Not a word is made up. It didn''t have to be, because the material is incredible. In 30 memorable days we meet: a Soviet infantryman at Stalingrad; an American pilot on Guadalcanal; an Italian truck driver in the North African desert; a partisan in the Belarussian forests; a machine gunner in a British bomber; a 12-year-old girl in Shanghai; a university student in Paris; a housewife on Long Island; a shipwrecked Chinese sailor; a prisoner in Treblinka; a Korean sex slave in Mandalay; Albert Camus, Vasily Grossman, and Vera Brittain-40 characters in all. In addition, there are threads about the construction and launching of SS James Oglethorpe, a Liberty ship built in Savannah; the fate of U-604, a German submarine; the building of the first nuclear reactor in Chicago, and the making of Casablanca.
Not since the publication of the author''s The Beauty and the Sorrow, which similarly looked at World War I, have we had such a remarkable, mesmerizing work of history.

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