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The German Invasion of Norway, April 1940 Hardcover – October 1, 2009
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Haarr dedicates approximately the first third of the book to examining the rationale for the invasion and the planning the Germans put into the invasion. The balance of the book dedicates individual chapters to look at major geographic operational areas: Oslofjord; Kristiansand--Arendal; Stavanager -- Egersund; Bergen; Trondheim; and Narvik. Each of these chapters follows the model of studying the naval operations and the initial contact between Norwegian and German forces. These are very detailed naval campaign studies, and Haarr did a good job explaining where the ground forces made their initial landings.
From a naval perspective, I thought the charts did a decent job illustrating where the naval combatants engaged. As a specific example, I thought the chart diagramming the British attacks on the Kriegsmarine in Narvik harbor was especially well done. The book does an excellent job of tracking each of the combatant ships through its role in the invasion, but Haarr could have better identified where the major ground units participated.Read more ›
This book focuses almost exclusively on the naval aspect on the war, the air and land elements are only mentioned briefly when they are relevant to the combat at sea. As such, the topic is somewhat narrow, but this does allow for a deeper, more detailed coverage than other works spanning the entire width of the conflict.
I will especially praise the fact that this work is published in English. While this might deter a few Norwegian readers, it will make the story accessible to a much greater audience. Kudos!
The book goes into great detail on the lead-up to the invasion, and although I have read much of the previously published books on the subject, I am nevertheless struck again by the almost incomprehensible ignorance shown by Norwegian leaders in this period. How they could ignore so many signs and warnings that something was afoot is truly astonishing. Equally, as often mentioned, is how big a gamble the German effort really was, it succeeded only by sheer audacity, willpower and improvisation.
As the combat at sea is the main focus, naturally the Norwegian naval units` efforts are given much space, and it is very interesting to read about the actions of smaller vessels and coastal forts. While ultimately being unable to prevent the invasion, there were many skirmishes and smaller battles that are seldom mentioned, usually being overshadowed by more known events such as those around Narvik.Read more ›
The outstanding part of this work is that the author looks at the operation from the Norwegian, German, British, Danish, Swedish and French sides in descending order of treatment and importance -- something simply not done anywhere before. The political policies, actions and blunders on all sides is extremely well presented, and there is much new material here to digest. For example, it was Churchill who first violated Norwegian neutrality, and had the Germans not mounted Weseruebing, the British would have put a friendly occupying force ashore in Norway. This was one of the things the Norwegian politicians feared, as it would almost force them into a hostile stance against the side they favored. Had the book stopped at the moment the Bluecher entered the Oslofjord, it still would have received five stars.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Astonishingly well researched. The story of the German invasion is very clearly told in a way no other English language book on the subject has ever done. Read morePublished 13 months ago by ERIC W
Lengthy account of how the Germans were able to occupy Norway. Well researched.Published on July 4, 2014 by Andrina
THIS BOOK WAS EXCELLENT. I CAN'T WAIT TO READ HIS SECOND VOLUME ABOUT THE INVASION OF NORWAY. AS A HISTORIAN, BOOKS SHOULD BE WRITTEN IN A CERTAIN WAY, AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED. Read morePublished on September 18, 2013 by douglas a jones
Finally we get "both sides" of what happened during this daring invasion of Norway early in the war: how well the Norwegians tried to deal with it and how slow the Brits... Read morePublished on August 22, 2013 by Joan M. Hutchins
Very complete and interesting.Much more readable that other books of the type. Good illustrations. Holds interest very well. Like it.Published on January 5, 2013 by Gus Karlsen
This is the first of a two volume set covering the April through June, 1940 - the Invasion of and Battles for Norway. Read morePublished on June 25, 2010 by Rich Marsh