Sunday, January 12, 2014

Christmas Reading

Most years I tend to get some very good history books for Christmas, and 2013 was no exception.  Two are highly recommended. The third I haven't read yet, but based on my skim through and O'Hara's past work it'd bet my hat that it's a corker.

I am about halfway through this one.  The defenders have just pulled back from Maleme airport in fear of the seaborne invasion.  We'll see how that plays out for them…

Excellent work that gives the full story from before the Greco-Italian war in Albania through to resistance.  I find it very interesting how the SOE hired operatives for Greece - they looked at archeology and classics grads from Oxbridge.  The theory was that they would understand Greek!  It did also give them excellent cover.

On a personal note, it is kind of weird for me that two of the witnesses quoted also appeared in one of my favourite books from childhood - Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals (Durrell's brother Lawrence and tutor Theo).

This is a book I've read before, but I am very happy to have my own copy instead of continually borrowing copies from local libraries.  I am sure the librarians are happy I have my own copy too!

Excellent book, and highly recommended - as are all of Graves work.  It covers both Crysler's Farm and Chateauguay, from the Americans two pronged assault on Montreal.

I haven't done more than skim through this yet, but his other books are excellent and this one looks great.  O'Hara covers the twin convoys Vigorous from Alexandria and Harpoon from Gibraltar in June 1942.  These actions are really the Italian Navy's best moments from WW2.

Vigorous turned home when the Italian heavy units closed and Harpoon resulted in the Battle of Panteleria.  Panteleria was the one occasion where the Italians won a surface engagement in WW2.

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