Andrew Roberts' "Masters and Commanders: The Military Geniuses who led the West to Victory in WWII" tells the story of how four great leaders fought each other over how best to fight Hitler. During the Second World War the master strategy of the West was shaped by four titanic figures: Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt, and their respective military commanders - General Sir Alan Brooke and General George C. Marshall. Each man was tough-willed and strong minded. And each was certain he knew best how to achieve victory. Drawing on previously unpublished material, including for the first time verbatim reports of Churchill's War Cabinet meetings, Andrew Roberts' acclaimed history recreates with vivid immediacy the fiery debates and political maneuverings, the rebuffs and the charm, the explosive rows and dramatic reconciliations, as the masters and commanders of the Western Alliance fought each other over the best way to fight Adolf Hitler. "History as it should be written; a gripping narrative". (Michael Gove, "Mail on Sunday" Books of the Year). "Scintillating historical writing on the whole rich panorama of Britain and the US at war". (Martin Gilbert, "Evening Standard"). "A compelling analysis of American and British military strategy during the war. He also tells a profoundly human story". (Laurence Rees, "Sunday Times"). "A masterpiece". (Christopher Silvester, "Daily Express"). "Britain's finest contemporary military historian". ("Economist" Books of the Year). Andrew Roberts is a biographer and historian of international renown whose previous books include "Salisbury: Victorian Titan" (1999), which won the Wolfson History Prize and the James Stern Silver Pen Award for Non-Fiction; "Napoleon and Wellington" (2001); "Hitler and Churchill: Secrets of Leadership" (2003), which coincided with four-part BBC2 history series, and "A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900" (2005).
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"Masterly. . . . A triumph of vivid description, telling anecdotes, and informed analysis.”
—The New York Review of Books
"Britain's finest contemporary military historian."
— The Economist
An epic joint biography of four titanic figures—a President, a Prime Minister, and two Generals—who shaped the grand strategy of the Allies during World War II.From the Back Cover:
An epic joint biography, Masters and Commanders explores the degree to which the course of the Second World War turned on the relationships and temperaments of four of the strongest personalities of the twentieth century: political masters Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt and the commanders of their armed forces, General Sir Alan Brooke and General George C. Marshall. Each was exceptionally tough willed and strong minded, and each was certain that he knew best how to win the war. Yet each knew that he had to win at least two of the others if he was to have his strategy adopted. Andrew Roberts, whom The Economist calls "Britain's finest contemporary military historian," traces the mutual suspicion and admiration, the rebuffs and the charm, the often-explosive disagreements and wary reconciliations, and he helps us to appreciate the motives and imperatives acting upon these key leaders struggling to destroy Nazism.
Drawing on newly discovered verbatim accounts of Churchill's war-cabinet meetings and on the private papers of nearly seventy contemporaries, Roberts reconstructs the lively debates of the four principals and other leading figures, and attempts to answer some of the key questions of Allied strategy. Why, when the most direct route from Germany to Britain was through north-western France, did the Western Allies launch attacks via North Africa, Sicily, and Rome? Why, if Operation Overlord in June 1944 was intended to be the start of the Allies' great thrust into Germany, did four hundred thousand men land five hundred miles to the south, in southern France, two months later? Why did the Allies not take Berlin, Vienna, or Prague and allow the Iron Curtain to descend where it did?
Masters and Commanders dramatically re-creates the atmosphere, debates, and maneuverings through which Allied grand strategy was forged and reveals the profound impact of personality upon history.
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