I know I promised a break on non fiction WWII books, but this has been on the shelf since I married my husband (it came with him) and it was Christmastime so I thought, why not? Mistake. With WWII books it is good to exercise caution as there is such a flood of information that not all of it can be great. So many different and better accounts have been written about the Battle of the Bulge that this one was not needed in any way.
A little historical context, whilst Allied Generals were bickering and prancing and doing what they do best, jockeying for position, the German Army launched an offensive that they believed would bring about a victory to disable and demoralize the Allied forces. The Allies were ill prepared and ignored advanced warning then found themselves virtually surrounded. Many of the troops were not properly trained and/or equipped many seeing action for the first time. The Allies retreated en masse while battle hardened troops were moved up. As usual, Generals spent a lot of time and energy bickering, and claiming glory left and right. It is a well known battle in the war, and I was hoping for more in depth analysis for a book written for that express purpose. Nope. It was not to be. Wentraub doesn’t even stick to the forrest near Ardennes, he bounces back and forth to all fronts, including the US homefront at times. These little anecdotes did nothing to add and only distracted.
In short, this book had nothing new. When one is regurgitating the same old facts, stories, and articles, it would be better to try to find a more interesting writing style. I don’t recommend this to even the most interested in WWII.