In burnished, driving prose, John Keegan chronicles the 1944 invasion of Normandy, from D-Day to the liberation of Paris. At the same time, he furthers his exploration of the ?role which warfare and its institutions play in social life? by showing how each of the six armies, while resembling one another in purpose and authority, is a mirror of its own nation's values. Each army is shown at successive stages of the invasion in a battle sequence testing them to the utmost: the Americans in their terrifying night drop on the eve of landings, the Canadians at the Omaha beachhead, the English savagely fighting their way inland, the Germans in their surprisingly strong resistance, the Poles in exile desperately blocking the German escape route, and the French at last liberating their City of Light. This extraordinary book is a shining addition to the dramatic literature of men at war.
If you are looking for a book on the D-Day Invasion, this is not it. However, there is some good context provided on the lead up to the battle, the situations on the ground after the invasion, and a fine epilogue.
To sum it up, this is not for beginners, but some good information can be learned.
It lacks the personal accounts of Ambrose's books, but explains the big picture better (more forest, less tree).
If you're curious to learn more about this segment of history, this book is concise, clear and well written.
As for the Allied side, Keegan treads carefully. He takes care to deflate some myths about Allied prowess, but does not enter into debates about strategical rights or wrongs, or the merits of Bradley, Montgomery, Patton, Eisenhower et al.
A good read
This one of Keegan's better books and an original take, event today on the Normandy campaign.