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This is the first fully illustrated book about U-boats to combine first-class commissioned photographs and artwork with narrative eyewitness accounts by crewman so enabling the reader to acquire as accurate and redolent a picture of life in the U-boat arm as is possible within the covers of a book. The author, a well-known U-boat historian, has pieced together the technical details of the roles of individual crew members with extensive first-hand reports, many drawn from previously unpublished oral histories. These experiences - from cooks to engineers and from young recruits to battle-hardened commanders - build up into a powerful picture of life undersea. But the book is not just about the experience on the front line; U-boat men had a reputation for making the most of time spent ashore, between missions, and a vivid portrayal of life back at the home bases is also drawn.

The book breaks new ground not just for the inclusion of new oral histories, but also for the presentation of the equipment and interiors of the U-boats using specially-commissioned new photography. There are an ever-increasing number of websites and forums dedicated to the U-boat war that are testament to the continuing fascination with this subject and this book is sure to satisfy a new generation of enthusiast looking for the very best in archival research and presentation.

Lawrence Paterson author, Chatham Publishing 2007, 156pp, h/c, dj, b&w photos. Ex library copy. Minor wear/curl to dj edges, a reasonably tidy copy.

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  • Seller location: Rotorua, Bay of Plenty, NZ

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