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The Eighth Army in North Africa (ePub)

Military WWII > Battles & Campaigns > North Africa WWII > Photographic eBooks

By Simon Forty
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Series: Images of War
File Size: 173.2 MB (.epub)
Pages: 144
Illustrations: 150
ISBN: 9781526723802
Published: 3rd April 2019


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The British Eighth Army, which played a decisive role in defeating the Axis in North Africa, was one of the most celebrated Allied armies of the Second World War, and this photographic history is the ideal introduction to it. The carefully chosen photographs show the men, weapons and equipment of the army during campaigns in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. The battles the army fought in the Western Desert in 1941 and 1942 are the stuff of legend, as is the second Battle of El Alamein when, under Montgomery, it defeated the German and Italian forces commanded by Rommel. The book gives a vivid insight into the fighting and the desert conditions, and it shows what a varied, multinational force the army was, for it brought together men from Britain, the British Empire and Commonwealth as well as Free French, Greeks and Poles.

The Eighth Army in North Africa makes a tidy, comprehensive introduction to this aspect of the war for the newcomer and a trove of visual specificity for those of us who think they have “seen it all before” (but would keep looking anyway!).

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The book covers all the bases and I have to be honest and say I liked the bit of bagpipe humour at the end very much. All in all this book does a straightforward job.

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War History Online, Mark Barnes

I really enjoyed reading the book and flipping through the pages for the photographs and charts. It is well worth it´s price and can be read during a lazy Sunday afternoon... I can recommend the book to every wargamer with in interest in the campaign, not only as a primer but also as a worthy addition to every library.

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Wargames Illustrated Online

"Given my history, I wasn´t really expecting to find anything new in the book.
How wrong I was!"

Reviewed in

Wargames Illustrated, September 2019

A third fantastic book about the Eighth army's North African campaigns is told in pictures. Simon Forty introduces us to a brilliant visual history of the Eighth.

Books Monthly

A good documentation that will be of great interest to both the historian or researcher and the modeler of military vehicles at scale.

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Miniaturas JM

Overall, a riveting collection of photographs which gives readers a clear insight into the men of the Eighth Army, their struggles and ultimate victory under an enigmatic leader, unafraid to lead from the front.

I would recommend this book to any model-maker or historian.

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Army Rumour Service (ARRSE)

The North African Campaigns were war of movement as armour travelled fast in advance, only to run short of supplies and be forced into retreat. Highly Recommended

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The book presents a series of very beautiful photos, some of which I knew, but which most of all exemplify the war in North Africa.

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Old Barbed Wire Blog

Well written text and some excellent photos which I am sure many modellers will enjoy for their detail.

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Military Model Scene, Robin Buckland

If tanks and armoured vehicles are your “thing” this is the book for you. There are a number of marvellous photographs for the non-specialist including a mobile telephone exchange with trails of spaghetti wires and the “bulled boots” of a piper on parade in the desert during a visit by Montgomery having obviously been dusted down in situ. Another brilliant piper photograph is at the end of the book where British with their German prisoners are treated to the playing of a lone piper as the wounded are treated amongst the debris of war. Intriguingly there is a photograph of Christmas 1940 with a troop of South African armoured car personnel in the field, sipping wine from wine glasses with one what appears to be a roasted chicken between 11 troopers. You can’t help but feel they would have preferred a beer!

An enjoyable inexpensive book with many rare or previously unseen photographs

Robert Bartlett

This series of Images of War is intended to be all about the pictures and this book is a very good example of that genre. There are photographs taken on both sides of the conflict showing the men and their equipment. Almost every type of armoured vehicle used in the desert campaign is shown some in pristine others in a well battered state. There is sufficient text to give the photographs a context but most usefully the bulk of the writing is as captions to the photographs. A few maps and schematic drawings fill out the story. Particularly informative in an easily understood way are the comparisons between Axis and Allied guns in both range and penetration on pgs. 36 & 37. The further reading list guides the interested reader to fuller explanations of the to and fro of the North African campaign...
We thoroughly enjoyed looking at this book and recommend it to you.

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Clash of Steel

This offering from Pen and Sword as part of their Images of War series is a great visual delight for the modeller. I like that the author of this offering opted to provide a short write up at the start of each chapter that can be considered as an introduction to what visual delights are ahead of you. The captions that accompany each photograph are well written and provide a good level of detail.

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As featured 'On The Shelf'

Wargames Illustrated, April 2019

About Simon Forty

Simon Forty was educated in Dorset and the north of England before reading history at London University’s School of Slavonic and East European Studies. He has been involved in publishing since the mid-1970s, first as editor and latterly as author. 
Son of author and RAC Tank Museum curator George Forty, Simon and his brother Jonathan have continued the family tradition, writing mainly on historical and military subjects including books on Hadrian's Wall, the Napoleonic wars and the two world wars, often in collaboration. Simon's latest book, published by Historic England, is D-Day UK: 100 Locations in Britain; Jonathan's Heavyweights: The Military Use of Massive Weapons. They are also co-authors of Tank Warfare 1939-1945.

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