Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Tank Action: An Armoured Troop Commander's War 194445 Hardcover – October 4, 2016
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Extraordinary youth, unbelievable bravery and humbling heroism: David Render and his crew are the real deal. His book with Stuart Tootal more than delivers
About the Author
David Render is one of the very last surviving Second World War tank troop commanders to have participated in the D-Day landing and the entirety of the subsequent fighting in the Allies campaign to liberate Europe in 1944 and 1945. After the war, he went on to become a highly successful businessman and national champion racing-car driver. David lives with his wife in north London.
Stuart Tootal spent twenty years as a soldier, serving in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, the Gulf War and the invasion of Iraq in 2003. In 2006 he commanded 3 PARA as the first UK combat unit to be sent to Helmand province in Afghanistan. A champion of veterans' affairs, on leaving the Army he set up the Parachute Regiment Afghanistan Trust charity and now works in the City of London. A defence and security commentator for several national media networks, he also regularly lectures on leadership in the commercial environment. Tank Action is his third book.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Back to the book. I thought it was very well written explaining his insights into his crew and other soldiers in his unit, particularly the effects of combat fatigue, which he experienced, too. He does a wonderful job of describing the Sherman both the pluses and minuses. Especially interesting to me was how his unit used tactics to overcome the Sherman's shortcomings to successfully engage Panthers, Mark IV's and even a Tiger!
If you are interested in WWII armor combat experiences and the human side of a Sherman crew, I highly recommend this book.
Render joined his regiment as a replacement officer on D+5. He had been sent to Normandy in fairly bizarre circumstances and received some awful jolts in the process. He was made commander of 5 Troop and largely continued in this role until VE-day. Again there are some jolts, including in dealing with his own men. He participated in extensive fighting in the bocage country, the ‘swan’ through France, combat in Holland and the advance through Germany.
The author experiences extensive combat. He is fortunate to have an experienced and sensible CO and the tactics they adopt give them considerable success in the hedgerows and against German tanks. He fights the SS and Fallschirmjagers as well as regular German troops and has some interesting and dramatic things to say. It is close quarters stuff at times, as there are a lot of threats to his tank. He is responsible for significant carnage and relates it all. It is of course no means one way, the regiment loses 50 tank commanders in Normandy and the average ‘life’ of one is two weeks.
This points to some of the difficulties he experienced at the start. His crew knew he was inexperienced and quite likely to get them killed. It took a lot to win them over. He discusses this as part of an excellent appraisal of small unit leadership in war. Britain had been at war for 5 years and the line between an experienced and a ‘played-out’ soldier was fine. Render also has some clear sighted things to say about German abilities and equipment. He also has an eye for German vehicle types and has for instance, several dramatic encounters with Jagdpanthers.
This is a very good war memoir. Perhaps because he was only nineteen for the bulk of it he has retained a clear memory of events. Still it is a remarkable account by a man who was 90. There are a heap of interesting little tidbits throughout. For instance the weaknesses of the Sherman Firefly and various statistics, that will be new to even a well-read reader on this theatre. It is fascinating, poignant and frankly, often very exciting. It would appeal to a modern audience and I highly recommend it.