D-Day: The Battle for Normandy

“A quite outstanding book. . . a truly outstanding historian of war” Professor Sir Michael Howard in Standpoint
“Dramatic, exciting, well-paced and lucid” Christopher Silvester in the Daily Express
Buy now on Amazon

Antony Beevor’s D-Day: The Battle for Normandy is the closest you will ever get to war – the taste, the smell, the noise and the fear.

The Normandy Landings that took place on D-Day involved by far the largest invasion fleet ever known. The scale of the undertaking was simply awesome. What followed them was some of the most cunning and ferocious fighting of the war, at times as savage as anything seen on the Eastern Front. As casualties mounted, so too did the tensions between the principal commanders on both sides. Meanwhile, French civilians caught in the middle of these battlefields or under Allied bombing endured terrible suffering. Even the joys of Liberation had their darker side.

‘Antony Beevor’s gripping narrative conveys the true experience of war.As near as possible to experiencing what it was like to be there. . . It is almost impossible for a reader not to get caught up in the excitement’ Giles Foden, Guardian

‘No writer can surpass Beevor in making sense of a crowded battlefield and in balancing the explanation of tactical manoeuvres with poignant flashes of human detail’ Christopher Silvester, Daily Express

Antony Beevor is the renowned author of Stalingrad, which won the Samuel Johnson Prize, the Wolfson Prize for History and the Hawthornden Prize for Literature, and Berlin, which received the first Longman-History Today Trustees’ Award. His books have sold nearly four million copies.

Read Less
“Dramatic, exciting, well-paced and lucid. . . there is no writer who can surpass Beevor in making sense of a crowded battlefield and in balancing the explanation of tactical manoeuvres with poignant flashes of human detail” Christopher Silvester in the Daily Express
“In this brilliantly co-ordinated and almost overwhelmingly upsetting history of D-Day and its aftermath, Antony Beevor . . . homes in on such details with the heightened senses of a great novelist. . . Beevor never allows the deadly truth of war to be obscured by the foggy language of academia: this is history that is felt, war as it was experienced by real people, by our fathers and grandfathers.” Craig Brown in the Mail on Sunday
“This massive narrative sweep is very much in the tradition of Beevor’s bestsellers Stalingrad and Berlin: The Downfall. It is clear from the outset that he succeeds, to a quite remarkable degree, in catching that sense of scale that marked out one of the decisive campaigns of history. . . Beevor’s judgments are overwhelmingly sound.” Richard Holmes in the Evening Standard
“Antony Beevor’s vast panorama of the entire campaign seen from both camps becomes invaluable. . . his narrative takes on a taut intensity as compelling as that of his justly applauded Stalingrad.” Andro Linklater in the Spectator
“It is these human touches, as well as the operational detail and the strategic-level machinations that Beevor excels at. . . Beevor deftly handles the brushes on the great Overlord canvas.. . Beevor tells it all with the soldier’s eye for what matters on the ground as much as with the historian’s for the broader understanding of events.” Allan Mallinson in The Times
“This most humanitarian work of military history. . . Beevor has has a particularly keen eye for the aperçu or quotation that brings an experience to life.” Andrew Roberts in the Daily Telegraph
“Beevor does battle history consummately, but he does something more than battle history. His account of the battle for Normandy combines clarity and density. The narrative has a characteristic texture. It is not so much the face of battle as the very pores. The texture comes from the testimony he noses out, truffle-like, from the archives. When it comes to truffle-hunting, Beevor is well-nigh unbeatable. . . The text abounds in memorable observations, with democratic disregard for rank and station. . . This first-hand testimony offers something more than morsels. It bears witness to the nature of war. . . Beevor is finely attuned to the military cultures and sub-cultures he describes. He is particularly good on combat effectiveness, battle weariness, collaboration sentimentale, psychological breakdown, coping mechanisms, concepts of honour and military civility: the grandeur and servitude of arms.” Alex Danchev in the Independent
“In this book, Antony Beevor has succeeded brilliantly. D-Day can sit proudly alongside his other masterworks on Stalingrad and the fall of Berlin. It provides a view of the battlefield from all sides: the soldiers killing each other in the hedgerows, the commanders directing them, the terrified French civilians watching their progress, and the political leaders in London, Berlin and Washington wrestling with gigantic decisions. The result is an engrossing narrative that illuminates and appals in equal measure. . . Beevor’s book superbly brings the events of that summer to life again and reminds us of why we should never allow ourselves to forget them.” Patrick Bishop in the Daily Telegraph
“It is the personal narratives of ordinary servicemen that drive this book. This is the same approach Beevor took in his justly acclaimed Stalingrad, Berlin: The Downfall and other books. Once again gripping narrative is the result. . . The pleasure of this book lies in the vividness of an episodic narrative, backed up by judicious use of quotations. . . It is almost impossible for a reader not to get caught up in the excitement . . . He has overleaped the barrier of hindsight, getting us as near as possible to experiencing what it was like to be there, that fateful summer 65 years ago.” Giles Foden in the Guardian
“Beevor tells it straight. He doesn’t try to compete with his subject. . . the dramatically effective deployment of his material, is what gives D-Day its compelling forward movement. . . D-Day is a triumph of research and dense with human detail: like one of those fractal patterns, it is as intricate at any level of magnification. . . This is a terrific, inspiring, heart-breaking book. It makes the argument all over again that the world would be an infinitely better place if it didn’t keep producing subject matter for military historians: but as long as it does, we can rejoice that at the top of that profession is Antony Beevor.” Sam Leith in the Daily Mail
“Where this book scores most heavily is that it tells a thrilling story, with all Beevor’s narrative mastery of awesomely complex material. . . Beevor describes this campaign brilliantly. . . A mark of Beevor’s skill, honed in his work on Stalingrad, Crete, the Spanish Civil War and the fall of Berlin, is that the detailed descriptions of the ebb and flow of the campaign on both sides – Allied and German – never leave the reader confused.” Chris Patten in the Financial Times
“Beevor is a master of the art of casting brilliant new illumination upon familiar themes. . . He has assembled a mass of new sources, fresh voices, untold anecdotes to create a saga as vivid as his earlier narratives of Stalingrad and the Battle for Berlin . . . Beevor’s account of 6 June, and especially of Omaha, is exemplary . . . No one knows better than Beevor how to translate the dry stuff of military history into human drama of the most vivid and moving kind. His book offers a thousand vignettes of drama, terror, cruelty, compassion, courage and cowardice.. . . This is as powerful and authoritative account of the battle for Normandy as we are likely to get in a generation.” Max Hastings in the Sunday Times
“Antony Beevor is not just any military historian: as a master of narrative, expertly blending, the grand sweep with the telling anecdote, he has few peers. . . What emerges from this thoroughly researched and gripping narrative is the appalling human suffering of the struggle. . . this splendid book.” Dominic Sandbrook in the Observer
“Beevor skilfully evokes the fear of ambush that lurked behind the high hedges, the smell of dead cattle, the effect of unripe apples falling through the hatches of the tanks. He pictures the cruel disruption of the rural scene.” Charles Moore in the Daily Telegraph
“He has done more than any other current writer to drag history out of its ivory towers and into the nation’s living-rooms. . . D-Day is vintage Beevor. Written with tremendous verve and flair, it segues seamlessly between the various locations of the narrative and between the macro of grand strategy and the micro of soldiers’ experiences, without ever losing its way or appearing disjointed. . . Beevor is the consummate military historian” Roger Moorhouse, in the Independent on Sunday
“Beevor is superb at marshalling an international cast of characters caught in the horror of battle – from generals, to civilians in their cellars and privates in their foxholes.” Saul David in the Daily Mail
“D-Day’s phenomenal success is both understandable and justified. There is not a finer account.” James Holland in the RUSI Journal
“The heroic tale of the Allied landing has been told many times before, but rarely as objectively and comprehensively as in Antony Beevor’s new book. The result is everything one might expect from one of the finest military historians of our time: a dramatic and insightful re-evaluation of an apparently familiar story, combining an intimate understanding of the grim realities of war with the narrative technique of a novelist.” Robert Gerwarth in the Irish Times
“Beevor is the master of asides that are not asides at all but parts of a vast fresco, laid in deliberately for what they tell. He works this technique better than anyone else. . . Like Joseph Conrad, Beevor wanted to make the reader hear and feel and see. . . D-Day is Beevor again doing what he does best, making military history readable, not by writing military history but by writing well.” Les Carlyon in the Australian
“D-Day underlines the fact that he has few peers in the study of military history. . . Beevor has again succeeded splendidly. D-Day adds much to our understanding of Normandy and the aftermath, including the Liberation of Paris. He conveys Operation Overlord in all its complexities, from debates at the top to battles in the foxholes on the front line. He is a compelling historian at the summit of his craft.” Stephen Loosley in the Weekend Australian
“This is the real thing and Beevor tells it with great verve, compassion and his usual unerring eye for the terrible details. . . The great achievement of this book lies not only in Beevor’s sure grasp opf the sweep of battle and his deft protrayal of the commanders but also in his keen understanding of the ordinary soldier – Allied and German- and the long-suffering French civilians. His prose is fluid and spare, with a lightness of touch that belies his prodigious research.” Sydney Morning Herald
“Un grand récit épique et humain” La Croix
“Antony Beevor signe un récit haletant qui nous apporte de nouveaux éclairages. Au fil des 640 pages de cette analyse aussi précise que passionanante, Beevor, l’un des plus éminents historiens de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, balaie une à une les idées reçues et secoue le tapis de la légende pour rendre aux faits leur crudité. Un travail monumental, parcouru d’émotion et d’intelligence. Servi par une écriture limpide.” Christian Markarian, l’Express
“Magistralement mené, mêlant de manière séduisante récit des opérations, rappel de certains détails et appréciations personnelles, son ouvrage constitue une somme à ce jour inégalée sur le Jour le plus long et la bataille de Normandie.” Eric Roussel, Le Figaro
“Heure par heure, presque mètre après mètre, l’historien anglais Antony Beevor, spécialiste réputé de la Second Guerre mondiale, raconte en détail les trois mois de la bataille de Normandie. . . L’auteur n’a pas son pareil aussi pour faire revivre les horreurs des combats.” Le Canard Enchaîné
“Como siempre, donde Beevor es insuperable es en su forma de narrar, en la humanidad, el humor; la gran descripción de los personajes.” Jacinto Antón, El País
“Como ocurre con los títulos anteriores, su libro se lee sin pausa y está lleno de testimonios que surgen desde el dolor de la guerra para hacemos mucho más humano el pasado.” Guillermo Altares, Babelia
“La documentación es amplísima, la narración muy ágil y el autor se muestra objectivo y ponderado.” El Mundo
United States & Canada
“It is a dramatic, important and instructive story and Beevor tells it surpassingly well. . . It was a great victory the Allies won in Normandy, and to this day all of us should be grateful to those who won it. But the cost, as Antony Beevor is at pains to emphasize in this fine book, was awful beyond comprehemsion.” Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post
“The first impression on seeing “D-Day, the Battle for Normandy,” on the bookshelf might be a question, “Why yet another book on D-Day?” The answer comes through in the detailed research and exhaustive treatment of individual stories as the Allies lodged ashore and then advanced on that fateful day and after, all the way to Paris. The author contrives to bring the reader into the presence of not only those who were at the very top of the planning and responsibility for Overlord but also into the lives, often very short, of the soldiers and sailors who actually hit the beaches, the airmen who supported them and even the German defenders. They are stories that never seem to pale in the retelling, especially when delivered in the style and with the thoroughness of Antony Beevor. . . For anyone with any interest at all in World War II in Europe, especially the time from the landings through the liberation of Paris, “D-Day” is the book for you.” Vice-Admiral Robert F. Dunn, Washington Times
“His account of atrocities on both sides, of errors committed and of surpassing bravery makes for excellent – though often blood-soaked – reading. Beevor gets better with each book.” Kirkus
“One of Beevor’s strengths is his ability to describe the day-to-day experience of ordinary soldiers: the food, the weather, the smells, the humor, the fear. . . Perhaps this is what makes Beevor’s D-Day such terrific reading. It details the shattering reality of D-Day and the months of savage fighting that followed instead of offering empty mythologizing. This is that reare hardcover worth your valuable attention and money.” USA Today
“This is a superb book and a model of the historian’s craft. It stands as the best one-volume history of this decisive military engagement.” Christian Science Monitor
“But where the book really scores is in its eye for the operational detail and its vivid reconstructions of the experience of battle, as unavoidable courage mixes with arbitrary tragedy.” Lawrence Freedman in Foreign Affairs
“What places D-Day apart from the others is not only the comprehensive nature of the story, dealing as it does with grand strategy, grandiose personalities and the perosnal anecdotes of the combatants at the sharp end, but the deft hand of the author in weaving together these thematic threads into a cloth of bravery and honour, stupidity and betrayal.” The Canadian Army Journal
Book of the Year Selections
“Will surely stand as the definitive account for years.” Daily Telegraph
“This well-known story is revivified by Beevor’s expert grasp of complex detail. He masterfully describes not only the killing zones of the beaches and the ‘dirty bush war’ fought in the fields beyond but the uncertainty and infighting of the British and American generals, and the courage of the people of Normandy caught in the middle of it.” The Financial Times
“A thousand details that make Antony Beevor’s D-Day: The Battle for Normandy so utterly absorbing. . . this book brings a terrifying clarity to the Battle for Normandy” Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday
“Antony Beevor’s D-Day: The Battle for Normandy has all the qualities that have made his earlier works so successful: an eye for telling and unusual detail, an ability to make complex events understandable, and a wonderful graphic style of writing.” Ian Kershaw, The Guardian
“Antony Beevor’s D-Day is a brilliantly organised, eye-opening epic about the world’s greatest military campaign.” Philip French, The Observer
Read More
United Kingdom Penguin
US Viking Penguin
France Calmann-Levy
Netherlands Ambo Anthos
Denmark Lindhardt & Ringhof
Finland Werner Soderstrom Osakeyhtio WSOY
Sweden Historiska Media
Norway Cappelen Damm
Iceland Bokautgafan Holar
Estonia Tanapaev
Poland Znak
Italy RCS Libri
Spain Critica
Portugal Bertrand Editora
Germany Bertelsmann
Brazil Record
Japan Hakusui-sha
Israel Yavneh
China Changjiang Literature and Art
South Korea Geulhangari Publishers
Greece Govostis
Croatia Profil
Czech Republic Beta-Dobrovsky & Sevcik