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Publisher's Summary

Pulitzer Prize, History, 2003
The liberation of Europe and the destruction of the Third Reich is a story of courage and enduring triumph, of calamity and miscalculation. In this first volume of the Liberation Trilogy, Rick Atkinson shows why no modern learner can understand the ultimate victory of the Allied powers without a grasp of the great drama that unfolded in North Africa in 1942 and 1943. That first year of the Allied war was a pivotal point in American history, the moment when the United States began to act like a great power.
Beginning with the daring amphibious invasion in November 1942, An Army at Dawn follows the American and British armies as they fight the French in Morocco and Algeria, and then take on the Germans and Italians in Tunisia. Battle by battle, an inexperienced and sometimes poorly led army gradually becomes a superb fighting force. Central to the tale are the extraordinary but fallible commanders who come to dominate the battlefield: Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley, Montgomery, and Rommel.
Brilliantly researched, rich with new material and vivid insights, Atkinson's narrative provides the definitive history of the war in North Africa.
An Army at Dawn is the winner of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for History.
©2002 Rick Atkinson; 2013 Simon and Schuster
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By jon on 07-14-13

What war movies didn't tell you

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, because it tells the truth and strips the BS away from the history we were taught. We watched movies like Patton and thought the US was amazing in WW2. The reality is that, like in the build up to Iraq, the Americans were naïve. To me, it was stunning to see how ill prepared and clueless we were going into WW2. Thank god we went to Africa first and got our asses kicked, otherwise we would have gone straight to Normandy, lost, and Germany would control Europe still today.

What about George Guidall’s performance did you like?

I will listen to any thing he narrates. He is the best!

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful


By Greg on 06-02-13

The Africa campaign was Real War!

What did you love best about An Army at Dawn: The War in North Africa (1942-1943)?

I loved that, for once, The Africa Campaign was shown for what it was: Intense, gruesome struggles, replete with all the terror and drama that illuminates battles like those on the islands of the Pacific in WWII.

I must deduct a star, because this book requires frequent consulting of maps, and I lost a lot by listening, instead of buying hard copy. (To be fair, even hardcopy books often provide sorry maps, tossed in as an afterthought, without serious effort at illustrating towns or topography described in the text.)

I wish Audible, or the publisher, or the author, or somebody would supply a web site that contains maps that one could follow. What a difference that would make!

Any additional comments?

Rick Atkinson's WWII trilogy has been hailed for the superb way it describes WWII. This praise is deserved. But may I also recommend Michael Shaara's four WWII novels, which I consider as enjoyable and informative as Atkinson's, and less map-dependent? Yes, read Atkinson, but also read Shaara.

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16 of 18 people found this review helpful

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