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Monty and Rommel : parallel lives
Peter Caddick-Adams
Adult Nonfiction D736 .C33 2012

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Bernard Law Montgomery and Erwin Rommel are ideal subjects for a comparative military biography. These two WWII generals confronted each other directly over a significant period of time, under different conditions: the deserts of North Africa and Normandy's woodlands. Their styles were fundamentally different. Rommel was a master of maneuver; Montgomery excelled in the set-piece battle. Rommel was an improviser; Montgomery was a planner. Rommel was a gambler; Montgomery possessed an infinite capacity for avoiding risk. But Caddick-Adams, a distinguished British military writer and defense analyst, demonstrates as well that the two commanders had much in common. Each understood the strengths and limitations of the armies in which he served and the forces he commanded. Montgomery knew British soldiers could not be made to fight like Germans. Rommel was aware that the Third Reich was waging war on a shoestring and had to take risks for victory. Both lacked political sophistication. Montgomery faced dismissal by Winston Churchill in the war's final months. Rommel's misjudgment of Hitler cost him his life. But each was a master of the battlefield, feared and respected by his opponents. Without choosing between them, Caddick-Adams compares Rommel to a bold "modernist painter" and Montgomery to a painstaking "seventeenth-century minimalist." It is a striking, appropriate conclusion to an excellent book. 40 b&w photos; 10 maps. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

From Library Journal:

Of the World War II leaders who have been examined over the years, few have had careers that so closely mirror each other as British general Bernard Montgomery and German general Erwin Rommel. Caddick-Adams (lecturer, Cranfield Military Academy, UK) chronicles Monty's and Rommel's lives from birth until death, occasionally in alternating chapters but more often woven seamlessly within one narrative. Both men served in World War I; both were ambitious; both needed to adjust their modes of communicating and reacting in order to be successful leaders, but each paid a price, Rommel all the more. Fans of dual World War II biographies such as Alan Bullock's Hitler and Stalin and Jon Meacham's Franklin and Winston will enjoy the juxtaposition of the generals' careers, which parallel each other in both great and minor ways. Caddick-Adams uses his own professional expertise in detailing and analyzing each man's leadership strategies in wartime. Verdict Behind-the-scenes descriptions that place the reader directly in the action of World War II, the character analysis, and the biographical context are sure to satisfy all curious readers in military biography or World War II history.-Melanie Mitzman, Triumph Learning, New York (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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