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Finding the Lost Battalion: Beyond the Rumors, Myths and Legends of America's Famous WW1 Epic Paperback – October 13, 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
Robert Laplander has written one of the finest narratives of a military unit in battle that I have had the pleasure to come across. His knowledge of not only what went on in the pocket, but of the topography and personalities brings a depth that is rarely encountered. There have been some marvelous books about WW1 combat that have come out over the last decade, but none as focused on a small unit action as this one. For the reader who wants a good idea of the reality of the fighting in the Meuse-Argonne, this is the book.
From a literary standpoint the book is wonderful as well. I have been fortunate enough to attend one of Mr. Laplander's lectures on the incident, and as I read the book I could hear his voice speaking. Rather than dry academic writing, it is as though Laplander was sitting down with the reader over a cup of coffee and telling the story. This is not to imply that the writing style is disjointed, quite the opposite. Continuity is always maintained, and all points well cited. Which brings up the other point. The research going into this book was very in-depth and varied in types of material. A brilliant piece of historical digging.
I highly recommend this book.
Robert Laplander has written the definitive work on the subject. It's extremely well researched. The writing is terrific, engaging and entertaining. He not only provides reams of detail, but he does it while keeping you interested and awake. He tells the story in a manner that is clearer and more accurate than any of the other books I've read on the topic. The author is very engaged with his subjects and his excitement gets transmitted right to the reader. I'm sorry the book is done.
Compared to the other small books on this topic, this one makes you feel like you're creeping through the woods, minute by minute, under fire, bullets and gas and shells. All this while communicating the history. It's just amazing. He gets a lot more of the German point of view across than I've read in most books on World War I.
I have to say one thing about the book that really irked me though. The maps in the paperback edition stunk. No other way to describe it. There was only one per chapter and it was confusing and difficult to read. Not only that, but the printing of the maps provided was in this large scale dots sort of thing like an old time comic book that made it even worse. It's a good thing the rest of the book was so utterly amazing or the maps might have dropped this down to a four or three star review.
If you're interested in World War I, this is a must read. If you need a good book, regardless of interest, this is a must read.
Laplander gives you the feeling of the trenches with an extraordinary series of character sketches that make you feel like the men of the Lost Battalion are your own friends, your own comrades in arms. Finding the Lost Battalion is a very readable meld of big-picture unit action with a focus on the situations of individual Doughboys. It puts the reader there among the troops in trees of the Argonne, under the rain of artillery and the clatter of the Maxim guns. You'll enjoy this read for many hours and revisit their story many, many times. Well done.
Byron Scarbrough, Author, They Called Us Devil Dogs
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is outstanding. It’s rich in detail that would bog down most such works of history, but Laplander marshals the detail – and he writes – in a way that is energetic and... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
The story of the Lost Battalion is an incredible one and deserving to remembered. Robert Laplander is gifted as a story teller, but his gift is tarnished by 2 things: One, he... Read morePublished 6 months ago by David Kopp
I enjoyed the book because:
Very well researched and thorough. Staggering amount of detail.
Footnotes are excellent. Read more
Very well-written, detailed almost to a fault book - but interestingPublished 19 months ago by William L. Bush
If you want to learn about the Lost Battalion, this is the best book out there. I have read numerous accounts on this part of the First World War and this (in my opinion) is the... Read morePublished on January 1, 2014 by D. Paulsrud
As a contributor to the book, as my great grandfather was a survivor of the Lost Battalion, Laplander has done a masterful job of dispelling fact from fiction and made excellent... Read morePublished on October 9, 2013 by zack
My only negative is that the print is so small. The print on the maps in particular
is virtually impossible to read. The book itself is well written and enlightening.
Mr. Laplander has written an excellent compendium of information on a pivotal battle during the closing days of World War I. Read morePublished on November 29, 2012 by Robert Benson
This professionally written and researched account of the fabled "Lost Battalion" will satisfy both military buffs and casual readers alike. Read morePublished on June 25, 2012 by C. J. Gibbons