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Trial by Combat: A Paratrooper of the 101st Airborne Division Remembers the 1944 Battle of Normandy
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Top Customer Reviews
There is some interesting stuff in training and a bit more than usual on being in England but I have to say this is not overall a compelling read. There are also a lot of punctuation oddities like double spaces and in particular random hyphens. These don't detract from the text but it's odd to see, especially since Rice was a teacher after the war. There's also some odd referencing, with the quote repeated in full at the bottom of the page. It left me confused as to whose words they were. Another more serious error was the inconsistency with naming German units. The 6th FJ is alternatively named as both a battalion and a regiment, sometimes on the same page.
One thing I did like was some of the background.Read more ›
This odd little book filled with both interesting facts and confusing moments. The biggest problem is it suffers terribly from a lack of good editing. There are run-on paragraphs and sentences that need to be read two or three times. Words are sometimes connected rather than separated. It also suffers from a consistent flow from topic to topic and people are suddenly appear without introduction and later disappear with as little notice.
More importantly, it ends in a confusing way. We're never sure why Mr. Rice exited combat in Normandy. He never says he was wounded or simply was pulled out of combat. Even though I read the ending several times, I was never clear, due to disjointed world flow what the conclusion was.
There are some fascinating tidbits of information. What I thought was a factual error regarding a silenced 98k sniper's rifle turned out to me my fault. While quite familiar with many small arms, and silenced weapons, I had never heard of such a thing being used in combat by the German army. I stand corrected. This is the only narrative I know that specifically mentioned the topic.
Among this book's best moments are his comments about Father Francis Sampson. Both Mr. Rice and Farther Sampson are true American heroes.
If you are interested in this type of reading I would suggest trying Currahee!: A Screaming Eagle at Normandy by Donald R. Burgett among others.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The pictures in hardback were not as clear as in they were in the paperback that we ordered for our uncle.Published on June 3, 2012 by Phyllis Brown