Normandy to Nazi Surrender
Firsthand Account of a P-47 Thunderbolt Pilot
by Colonel Van H. Slayden, Patrecia Slayden Hollis
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Pub Date 25 Nov 2020 | Archive Date 31 Jan 2021
Van Slayden, in the Battle of Northern France as part of the Army Air Forces in the European Theater, landed in Normandy shortly after D-Day and fought on the ground in Tactical Operations Centers or in the air as a fighter-bomber pilot across France and Belgium into Germany to within miles of the Nazi’s surrender on May 8, 1945. He commanded the 36th Fighter Group—“The Fightin’ 36th”—at Bastogne, St. Vith, the Bridgehead at Remagen, Operations Grenade, Clarion, Varsity, and other missions. His 22nd Squadron was the first AAF unit to land voluntarily in Germany. A Tennessee country boy, he stepped up to the challenge as part of the Greatest Generation. The book is written entirely in his voice.
A Note From the Publisher
“I wish I’d had access to this book as a cadet at the Air Force Academy in the mid-60’s. It was an honor and privilege to review this book.” –COL Ed Petersen, Lawton, OK, USAF Retired, B-52 Pilot in Vietnam
“He crashed and flew again, and he was shot at and pushed on. As a historian and farm boy-turned-fighter-pilot, his story hit me right between the eyes!” –LTC Todd Lang, USAF Retired, Tulsa, OK, F-16 Fighter Pilot
“Slayden piloted the Army’s flying tank from the Battle of the Bulge into the heart of Germany, telling us what it was like to fly by the seat of his pants against the Nazis--engrossing and unforgettable.” –James Jay Carafano, Washington, DC, author of After D-Day
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 6 members
An excellent account of the air war from the Normandy landing to the end of the war. The author’s personal story is compelling and really held my interest. I found the book enjoyable and a quick read. A must read book.
Thank you to #NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
A firsthand account of an American fighter-bomber pilot Van Slayden in World War II, telling us what it was like to fly by the seat of his pants against the Huns. It contains very detailed information about the actions of the US-air force in their determination to bring WWII to an early and successful conclusion.
To me, they were all heroes. We can not be grateful enough to them repeatedly risking their lives for (our) liberty.
At times the book jumps from one subject to another, resulting in losing the story-line / overview.
I would certainly recommend this book to read. It gives you an interesting perspective on WWII history.
I have always been interested in personal accounts of WWII. This book chronicles the life of the author from his youth to the end of the war. It also includes several appendices about family members, personal letters, etc.
Strangely, I found the appendices more interesting than the chapters. The chapters often read like after action reports with little personal information. However, the appendices were filled with interesting stories of life before the war and letters that detailed events in the war. Worth reading, but you have to go to the end of the book.
Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing an advance reader copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
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