Еще про книги
В продолжении предыдущей записи, тот же Stonebooks объявил победителей выбора редакции, см внизу. Несколько замечаний…я прочитал две книги из 6 в списке, Будапешт и Tower of Skulls. Обе книги отличные; два, очень разных, примера, какой должна быть современная военно-историческая литература. Gunners in Normandy до меня ещё не доехали, жду. V-Weapons Then and Now у меня нет но это серия всем известна и нет сомнений что новая книга будет отвечать всем, очень высоким, стандартам этой серии. В общем и целом, достойный выбор, книги качественные во всех отношениях, содержания и уровня издания. Что вызывает печальные размышления о извилистых дорогах современной отечественной военно-исторической литературы. Практически невероятно чтобы появилась книга уровня Будапешта Невенкина или серии Then and Now в сегодняшней России. И речь не об авторах, то же Замулин или Мосунов или Карасёв, не то что не уступают но и превосходят по уровню и качеству работы. Дело в издателях и, как ни печально, в читателях. Им просто не надо, издательство как PeKo например, которое выпустило Будапешт и много ещё чего, просто не выживет в российских реалиях
Editor's Choice Awards for books of 2020
Since 2000 we've been bestowing our annual Editor's Choice Awards on favorites from WWII-related books published in the preceding year, awards sometimes known with humor and affection as the "Stonies." We peruse, read, and review quite a few books each year, and during that time we separate a little wheat from a great deal of chaff. The Stonies allow us to select and acknowledge the titles we consider the most important new releases of the year.
Mind you, these awards are in their own way just as subjective and imperfect as any other method of honoring books. We can only read so many books in twelve months, and we have our own tastes and preferences about specific topics and about what makes a good book. But—hey!—this is our website, so we get to have a little fun once in awhile.
When we choose the annual Stonies, we never aim for a particular number of top books; instead, we seek quality rather than quantity. In 2020, despite unprecedented challenges to practically every aspect of researching, writing, publishing, and distributing—we received and read plenty of good books from a variety of authors and publishers from all over the world, many of which came close to making the final cut—we always need to resist the urge to end up with 20 or 30 "best" books—but ultimately we identified six new books as the "creme de la creme" of the past year.
In most years some kind of pattern emerges after we analyze the chosen books. What stands out for 2020? Perhaps the first impression is what's not here. It's a rare year when David Glantz fails to appear on the annual list, but unfortunately nothing new arrived from the prolific colonel in 2020. Perhaps in part due to his absence, only one book on the Russian Front appears on the list, and that's unusual. Instead, we have a considerably more diverse range of topics. More than that, this year every author is a first-time Stonie winner. Of the newbies, in particular it's rewarding to see one book that had been gestating for roughly twenty years, and another book by an author/publisher who has been producing high quality work for more than four decades. In any event, these six definitely struck us as the most worthy new titles of the past twelve months, and—as always—the crucial attribute they all have in common is their exemplary nature.
Whatever all that means to readers, without further ado we present the Stone & Stone Editor's Choice Awards for new non-fiction books about World War II published in 2020, the Stonies, in alphabetical order by author:
Frank, Richard B.
Tower of Skulls: A History of the Asia-Pacific War, volume I: July 1937 - May 1942. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc, 2020
Amazingly broad and amazingly deep, including a wealth of important peripheral information which constantly adds to a full understanding of the main threads of the war rather than detracting. A very impressive accomplishment.
Mussolini's War: Fascist Italy from Triumph to Collapse, 1935-1943. New York: Pegasus Books, 2020
An erudite but highly readable study of Mussolini's direction of the armed forces, the high command, Italian military campaigns, and the collapse of the war effort.
Fortress Budapest: The Siege of the Hungarian Capital, 1944-45. Keszthely, Hungary: PeKo Publishing, 2020. Two volumes.
A monumental achievement, the most complete history imaginable of the Soviet Budapest offensive from October 1944 through February 1945. The first volume contains over 1100 pages of text and the second volume adds over 400 pages of maps, diagrams, and photos.
The V-Weapons Then and Now. London: After the Battle, 2020
Main text from the secret post-war Air Ministry investigation of V-weapons offense and defense. Excellent photos and thorough captions with, as always, amazing ability to find modern locations of wartime shots. Extended tabular data listing every V-1 and V-2 that hit the UK or exploded in the air above. An essential source on the subject.
Townend, Will and Frank Baldwin
History of the Royal Regiment of Artillery: Gunners in Normandy: The History of the Royal Artillery in North-West Europe, Part 1: June - August 1944. Stroud, UK: The History Press, 2020
This volume was in the works for approximately 20 years, but it was worth the wait. Tons of material on Normandy from the perspective of gunners, mostly overlooked in previous histories. Also much high quality information on organization, doctrine, tactics, weapons, etc.
Young, Edward M.
The Tenth Air Force in World War II: Strategy, Command, and Operations 1942-1945. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing Ltd, 2020
If the Tenth was forgotten, this should restore to historical memory the air force, its men, its aircraft, and its operations. Relatively light on statistics, OBs, and mission-by-mission data compared to books such as The Mighty Eighth War Diary, but heavy on context, strategy, tactics, combat, and the airmen who served. By far the best volume