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Fb2 The Steel Wave: A Novel of World War II ePub

by Jeff Shaara

Category: Genre Fiction
Subcategory: Fiction
Author: Jeff Shaara
ISBN: 0345461398
ISBN13: 978-0345461391
Language: English
Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reprint edition (October 27, 2009)
Fb2 eBook: 1955 kb
ePub eBook: 1544 kb
Digital formats: lrf mbr mobi lrf

Jeff Shaara, America’s premier author of military historical fiction, brings us the centerpiece of his epic trilogy of the Second World War. General Dwight Eisenhower once again commands a diverse army that must find its single purpose in the destruction of Hitler’s European fortress.

Jeff Shaara, America’s premier author of military historical fiction, brings us the centerpiece of his epic trilogy of the Second World War. His primary subordinates, Omar Bradley and Bernard Montgomery, must prove that this unique blend of Allied armies can successfully confront the might of Adolf Hitler’s forces, who have already conquered Western Europe.

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER, This is Jeff Shaara at his best, giving us another superb historically grounded novel of one of the most . Praise for The Rising Tide.

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER, This is Jeff Shaara at his best, giving us another superb historically grounded novel of one of the most dramatic struggles of World War II. -George McGovernUtilizing the voices of the conflict’s most heroic figures, some immortal and some unknown, Jeff Shaara tells the story of America’s pivotal role in World War II: fighting to hold back the Japanese conquest of the Pacific while standing side-by-side with her British ally, the last hope for turning the tide of the war against Germany.

The Steel Wave: A Novel of World War II. Written by Jeff Shaara. Jeff Shaara, America's premier author of military historical fiction, brings us the centerpiece of his epic trilogy of the Second World War. Narrated by Anthony Heald. General Dwight Eisenhower once again commands a diverse army that must find its single purpose in the destruction of Hitler's European fortress. His primary subordinates, Omar Bradley and Bernard Montgomery, must prove that this unique blend of Allied armies can successfully confront the might of Adolf Hitler's forces, who have already conquered Western Europe.

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This book is the second volume of a trilogy, focusing primarily on America’s involvement in World War Two in. .This is a novel, and though I am careful to get it right, by definition the dialogue and inner thoughts of the characters have to be described as fiction.

This book is the second volume of a trilogy, focusing primarily on America’s involvement in World War Two in Europe. His primary subordinates, Omar Bradley and Bernard Montgomery, must prove that Jeff Shaara, America’s premier author of military historical fiction, brings us the centerpiece of his epic trilogy of the Second World War.

The Steel Wave: A Novel of World War II is a historical novel written by Jeff Shaara about Operation Overlord. The book is the second book in a trilogy written by Shaara. The novel begins in January 1944, nearly six months before the invasion of Normandy. Nearly half of the novel deals with General Eisenhower, Winston Churchill, and the rest of the SHAEF's attempt to prepare for D-Day and Erwin Rommel's attempt to prepare for such an assault

The Steel Wave book .

The second book in the World War II series gives us the build up into D-day and the aftermath in the battle in France. You get the points of view of all the key players, Eisenhower, Bradley, Patton, Rommel, as well as, paratroopers, such as Jesse Adams. Author Jeff Shaara incorporates two real-life quotes in the early pages of his World War II novel, "The Steel Wave", that help set the tone for their respective country's approach, aims and well-known results: "In war, there is no prize for runner-up.

Book 2 of 4 in the World War II: 1939-1945 Series. In this great, often moving novel of conflict, Shaara channels the roiling experiences of men in the midst of a tumultuous enterprise whose outcome was by no means certain. Shaara master of the war novel.

General Dwight Eisenhower commands a diverse army that must destroy Hitler’s European fortress. On the coast of France, German commander Erwin Rommel prepares for the coming invasion, as the Führer thwarts the strategies Rommel knows will succeed. Meanwhile, Sergeant Jesse Adams, a veteran of the 82nd Airborne, parachutes with his men behind German lines. And as the invasion force surges toward the beaches of Normandy, Private Tom Thorne of the 29th Infantry Division faces the horrifying prospects of fighting his way ashore on Omaha Beach, a stretch of coast more heavily defended than the Allied commanders anticipate. From G.I. to general, this story carries us through the war’s most crucial juncture, the invasion that altered the flow of the war, and, ultimately, changed history.
Comments to eBook The Steel Wave: A Novel of World War II
Inerrace
Guilty pleasure? Well, the pleasure is more of the thank-goodness-it's-actually-readable persuasion. The reality is, I am a WWII buff, I've read innumerable histories, and one day I found myself wishing I could read a fictional presentation of D-Day and its aftermath. I am a fan of Michael Shaara's Killer Angels (I've reviewed it here) but haven't found his son's work nearly as compelling based on various free samples. Steel Wave started out better than those, so I ordered the entire book and finished it last night.

This is a satisfying read for those who like a book to last a while. If I wanted to pay $5-10 for Kindle books I could read in a day, I'd be either a millionaire or completely insane, since I tend to read quickly. Steel Wave is a dense, chewy nugget of a book that will keep well in your mental refrigerator. Shaara gives the reader his/her money's worth.

The format is fairly simple. Chapters that take place in the minds of fictional characters alternate with those from the POV of Eisenhower, Rommel, Patton, and Bradley, among others. Sgt. Jesse Adams, the leading non-real person, is well-drawn, a thoughtful, clear-thinking individual whose surface toughness conceals an ... inner toughness. This isn't Steven Spielberg's D-Day. Picture the word "wuss" encircled with a slash across it, and you'll have some idea of the perspective here. Adams is a consistent presence across the book, and I was always glad to get back to him.

Glad, because as characters in a narrative the historical figures are less skillfully presented. Shaara does not render Winston Churchill well at all. I realize he is writing for a mass audience with scantier vocabularies and less delight in wordplay than the great man himself, but honestly, this is a very thin gruel. Churchill probably never referred to anything as "a crock" -- that's contemporary usage. Shaara has him make exclamations like, "Dammit! Tell me again it's going to work! Tell me!" and "Scares hell out of me, Ike. What's that damned Nazi cooked up?" I can imagine John Wayne saying those things, but Sir Winston? Uh, no. He was a Prime Minister who said and did many outrageous things, but employing strings of terse pedestrian monosyllables was not one of them.

Additionally, Churchill was never quite the boozer that Shaara (and many others) have tried to show him to be.

The author does better with Eisenhower, whose bland personality lends itself better to the tenor of this book. Ike's inner turmoil is believable as portrayed here. His irritation with Montgomery, who is as close to a villain as anyone gets on the Allied side of the novel, is consistent with Stephen Ambrose's authoritative version. Shaara's best portrait, though, is that of George S. Patton, with dialogue like, "I like people to shut the hell up when I walk into a room. I like raising the blood pressure of stodgy old farts." Yeah, that sounds like Patton, all right.

Shaara's Rommel deserves special mention. The picture we see is Erwin Rommel the "good" German, the reluctant warrior who placed his men over his own career, who cared nothing for Hitler and his frothing, drug-fueled madness, who was devoted to his wife and son and who chomped down on a poison capsule rather than expose them to ignominy and disgrace. There are some to say that Rommel refused to execute Jewish POWs despite Hitler's demands, and that he was never a Holocaust-booster. I don't know if this is true -- there are schools of thought on the subject -- but it is true that Rommel embraced Nazism early and loudly, and that he was not a participant in the failed assassination of 1944, although he was actively recruited by the plotters (for an outstanding literary novel on that subject, read Paul West's The Very Rich Hours of the Count Von Stauffenberg). Rommel's complexity as a human being is without question; the Rommel we see here embodies the "in another world, we could have been friends" philosophy that has been kicked around since the man's death. Some will buy it, some will not, and others, like me, will remain hopeful but skeptical.

Perhaps the book's greatest weakness, and this is completely subjective, is the author's penchant -- although he may see it as a necessity -- for pages and pages of exposition laboriously explaining which division went where, what rivers were crossed, and other details large and small about D-Day and the weeks that follow, all of which are available to the reader from any number of sources. Younger people, which is to say anyone who graduated from high school after the PC police took over the history textbooks, may not have this information, and will need it to follow the story. On the other hand, you can see World at War on Youtube, along with gazillion other documentaries, and thus obviate the need for Shaara's rehash. Frankly, I skipped much of this turgid retelling.

There is also a strange prudishness operating here. Damn, hell, bitch and bastard pop up frequently; any stronger language is either only hinted at ("f------" this or that) or omitted altogether. Don't look for sex, or even romance; all the women, and there are pitifully few of them, are offstage. This is a tough-guy war book your Aunt Agatha might read without a blush (were she so inclined). There's little or no cultural context, i.e. references to music, movies, cars, clothes, all the non-war things that make this period so fascinating. One could argue that those have no place in a battlefield book -- but could you write about Vietnam without sex, drugs, and rock and roll? The Greatest Generation (and I dislike that phrase) cared just as much for pop ephemera as any other humans. Some of these guys must have been thinking about jitterbugging even as they lobbed grenades.

What works in this book are the battle scenes, the tension before and the shock that follows. What satisfies is the growth of some fictional characters, in particular Unger, the scrawny, underaged kid from Iowa who Jesse Adams sees as most likely to cave under pressure and who (wholly predictable, but so what) turns into a coolheaded killer. Fiction, even genre fiction, can illuminate a historical event in ways documentaries and nonfiction cannot, with some notable exceptions. If you are interested in D-Day but, like me, yearn for some quotation marks mixed up with the history, you will warm to Steel Wave.
Magis
This is the first Jeff Shaara book I’ve read. It’s a long book and the beginning is a bit of a slog. We see and expect action-packed, fast-paced movies and TV, but this is a book. War planning is hard work and the interactions of the military personnel from the many countries who joined the ally coalition made the story. The action in North Africa showed the difficulties of the soldiers at a time when the best weapon we had was the tank, not the high-tech weaponry of today. As the war moves north into Sicily with the paratroopers, Shaara brings the reader into the battle and there are many tense moments when things go wrong. Then we see the ingenuity of the men in the field and how they learn to work together. Interesting read and brought WWII to life in a good and different way.
Kendis
"The Steel Wave" by Jeff Shaara is the second novel (following "The Rising Tide") in Shaara's planned Second World War historical fiction trilogy. The theme of this novel is the planning and execution of Operation Overlord, the Allied invasion of Northern France. In this piece Shaara uses his now-familiar technique of examining the time period in question from the perspective of historical figures -- some eminent indeed, such as Dwight D. Eisenhower, others less exhalted, i.e. a sergeant of paratroopers. In this novel the approach works superbly, because this novel passes the first critical test--it is one extremely engaging read. The novel moves along at a brisk pace, never loses the reader's interest, and has the ring of realism about it.

The other notable trait of this novel is that once again, Mr. Shaara appears to have done his homework. Shaara's insights into the problems faced by General Eisenhower, the various political leaders, and the men in the field, go well beyond the superficial. Here, the reader truly appreciates the risks and uncertainties that faced the planners and fighters of Operation Overlord. Shaara takes us into the infighting, indecisions, and ultimate risks with which the Allied generals had to contend. My sense is that here, Shaara is fairly evenhanded, although *very minor spoiler* partisans of British General Montgomery will probably not be pleased. And of course, Shaara does a creditable job showing us the invasion from the perspective of the incredibly brave men who actually undertook Operation Overlord and made it a success.

Overall, this is excellent historical fiction about a great subject, that is very well told. Highly recommended.
Legionstatic
Excellent book which continues the story of WW II in Africa/Europe from the first book of the series - The Rising Tide which was also excellent and an interesting/enjoyable read. I truly enjoyed reading about WW II in Africa/Europe being a Marine officer who is looking forward to the Pacific side of the war where us Marines excelled in the island battles against the Japanese. The author weaves a very interest account of the battles in Sicily, Italy and France forward from both an infantryman's view and that of the leaders. The personalities, courage and fighting elements and enemy is very well displayed. Also, the details of preparing for and going into Normandy is excellent and makes one feel they are part of it. It shows the fear, courage and fighting of the American soldier. I was both amazed and thankful for the details as told in the story. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in American war history.
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