Pen & Sword- Weapons of the Battle of the Bulge
From the Photographic Archives of the US Army Signals Corps
Author: Darren Neely
Hardcover, 309 pages with 400 black & white photographs
The Battle of Bulge, or Ardennes Offensive, is well known to most WWII history enthusiasts. Carried out from mid-December of 1944 into late January of 1945, it was the last best effort of the Germans to counter Allied advances and reach the port of Antwerp to disrupt supply chains and cause confusion. In some cases, they used captured equipment and uniforms to cause even more disruptions and chaos. This book looks to illustrate this period in the Western Front by using a myriad of photos from US Army Signal Corps photographers embedded with Allied troops. The photos are in many cases clear and crisp- like they were taken yesterday, only in black and white. Others are blurred as they definitely are showing troops and vehicles in movement, with snow and earth clearly kicked up by the wheels and tracks.
That's one way to set up a roadblock!
There are three sections of the book dedicated to Infantry Weapons, Infantry Support Weapons and Artillery, and Armored Fighting Vehicles (AFVs). Photos are either two per page or one full page photo and each are accompanied by captions. The introductory text for each chapter is from half a page long to just over a page- and the rest of the book is jammed with excellent photos. I enjoy these types of books just for the ideas they give me for new projects- and with the 80th anniversary of the start of the Bulge coming up next year, I feel it is high time to focus on a project based in this setting. The AFV chapter is the biggest by far and has loads of vehicles present in the setting- including even the M29 Weasel for those of you with the newer Takom kit in the stash waiting for inspiration.
Captured German halftrack in US hands
Something to consider on your next whitewash finish...go ahead and use those cotton swabs!
This a good sized book full of great photographs documenting the hardships that both sides endured during this month-long engagement in the cold winter Ardennes. The thickness of the book made scanning some photos challenging as you can see, but in the end- you have a great resource for ideas and settings- and a new peek into daily life for all those who fought and suffered through the brutal conditions. Well worth picking up a copy!
Highly Recommended for anyone interested in the Ardennes Offensive.
Thanks goes out to Casemate Publishing for this review sample.
Reviewed by Michael Reeves
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