- Series: Bill O'Reilly's Killing Series
- Hardcover: 352 pages
- Publisher: Henry Holt and Company; 1st edition (September 23, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 080509668X
- ISBN-13: 978-0805096682
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10,531 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,127 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Killing Patton: The Strange Death of World War II's Most Audacious General (Bill O'Reilly's Killing Series) Hardcover – September 23, 2014
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In Killing Patton: The Strange Death of World War II’s Most Audacious General, Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard have written a lively, provocative account of the death of General George S. Patton and the important events in the final year of the Allied victory in Europe, which Patton’s brilliant generalship of the American Third Army did so much to secure.
The fourth book in the bestselling Killing series is rich in fascinating details, and riveting battle scenes. The authors have written vivid descriptions of a compelling cast of characters, major historical figures such as Eisenhower, Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin, Hitler, and others, as well as more obscure players in the great drama of the Second World War and the life and death of Patton.
O’Reilly and Dugard express doubts about the official explanation for Patton’s demise from injuries he suffered in an automobile accident. They surmise that the General’s outspokenness about his controversial views on postwar security, particularly his animosity toward the Soviets, our erstwhile allies, might have made him a target for assassination. They cast a suspicious eye toward various potential culprits from Josef Stalin to wartime espionage czar “Wild Bill” Donovan and a colorful OSS operative, Douglas Bazata, who claimed later in life to have murdered Patton.
Certainly, there are a number of curious circumstances that invite doubt and speculation, Bazata’s admission for one. Or that the drunken sergeant who drove a likely stolen truck into Patton’s car inexplicably was never prosecuted or even reprimanded. But whether you share their suspicions or not this is popular history at its most engrossing.
From accounts of the terribly costly battle for Fort Driant in the hills near Metz to the Third Army’s crowning achievement, its race to relieve the siege of Bastogne in the Battle of the Bulge, the reader experiences all the drama of the “great crusade” in its final, thrilling months.
The authors’ profiles of world leaders and Patton’s contemporaries are economic but manage to offer fresh insights into the personalities of well-known men. Just as compelling are the finely wrought sketches of people of less renown but who played important parts in the events.
There is PFC Robert Holmund, who fought and died heroically at Fort Driant having done all he could and then some to take his impossible objective. PFC Horace Woodring, Patton’s driver, who revered the general, went to his grave mystified by the cause and result of the accident that killed his boss. German Field Marshall Erwin Rommel’s young son, Manfred, exchanged a formal farewell handshake with him after learning his father would be dead in a quarter hour, having been made to commit suicide to prevent the death and dishonor of his family.
These and many other captivating accounts of the personal and profound make Killing Patton a pleasure to read. I enjoyed it immensely and highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in World War II history and the extraordinary man who claimed Napoleon’s motto, “audacity, audacity, always audacity,” as his own.
About the Author
Bill O'Reilly is a trailblazing TV journalist who has experienced unprecedented success on cable news and in writing thirteen national number-one bestselling nonfiction books. There are currently more than 17 million books in the Killing series in print. He lives in Long Island.
Martin Dugard is the New York Times bestselling author of several books of history. He and his wife live in Southern California with their three sons.
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the book was a boring account of world war two. I would swear that much of the
copy was from "Killing Hitler" or some other O' Reilly book I read recently. If you
are looking for any mystery or intrigue about Patton's death forget it.
There is *nothing* in the book concerning any of the intrigues or theories around the possible assassination of Patton. Vague references are made as to why he may have been targeted, but you could have applied the same conjecture to most any senior general from the same era and generated the same result. The overarching theme of the book is "Patton irritated a lot of people with his success and sometimes ill-chosen words" - there is nothing to follow up as to who may have been involved or why.
In my opinion, O'Reilly's book is highly overrated. They bring no new information to Patton's life. Even the references to Stalin, Roosevelt, Churchill and Eisenhower are regurgitations of facts well known to anyone who studies the history of WWII. And, what serious history buff really cares to read O'Reilly's gossip column regarding the leaders' mistresses.
The book pales in comparison to your old boring and steril history books that were part of your required reading in college' plus is a lot cheaper than the $75 at your captive college bookstore
It is unfortunate that the book contains a number of factual errors. Some of these errors have been pointed out to the author, such as the incorrectly drawn map of Hungary, but it has not been corrected, which would be easy to do for the e-book. The letter pointing this out to the authors has not even been acknowledged.