The Last Battle

When US and German Soldiers Joined Forces in the Waning Hours of World War II in Europe
Letto da: Joe Barrett
Durata: 7 ore e 11 min
Categorie: Storia, XX Secolo
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Sintesi dell'editore

May 1945. Hitler is dead, and the Third Reich is little more than smoking rubble. No GI wants to be the last man killed in action against the Nazis. But for cigar-chewing, rough-talking, hard-drinking, hard-charging Captain Jack Lee and his men, there is one more mission: rescue 14 prominent French prisoners held in an SS-guarded castle high in the Austrian Alps. It's a dangerous mission, but Lee has help from a decorated German Wehrmacht officer and his men, who voluntarily join the fight.

Based on personal memoirs, author interviews, and official American, German, and French histories, The Last Battle is the nearly unbelievable story of the most improbable battle of World War II - a tale of unlikely allies, bravery, cowardice, and desperate combat between implacable enemies.

©2013 Stephen Harding (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Altri titoli dello stesso

Cosa pensano gli ascoltatori di The Last Battle

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  • Generale
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Reggie
  • 23/09/2017

A Maddening Book

What disappointed you about The Last Battle?

This is not a bad book. At times it does feel like Harding's pay was based on how many stock, trite war phrases he could work into the narrative, but stale verbiage aside it's not a poorly written book. My displeasure is with the choice he made to introduce all the players in this drama, through evidently well-researched biographical sketches, prior to the battle referenced in the title. We don't get a whiff of the battle until nearly the end of the book. Again, that choice does not make this a bad book, but it did make me really dislike it. It is a heavily researched book, but the pedantic details show up at odd times, giving this strange and almost surreal, human drama the feel of an old-school, names-and-dates antiquarian history. I wish he had gone the other way, allowing himself to speculate more on the human drama; the prison lives of these political foes locked together as VIP POWS. But Harding's discipline is firm, and we get the facts as they have been recorded. The actual battle, which takes place in the final 1/5 of the book feels largely anticlimactic. Acts of bravery and betrayal accompany scenes of comedy and tragedy, but they are fleeting and fail to land fully.I can't recommend this book, but if you're okay listening to a story structured like I've described, you may love it.

Would you ever listen to anything by Stephen Harding again?

I would give it a shot, sure.

Have you listened to any of Joe Barrett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

5 people found this helpful

  • Generale
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Joel Langenfeld
  • 28/10/2013

Write the book, THEN the screenplay.

This book as a screenplay, which may have been at the back of the author's mind. There are a couple of themes you could work with - the continuum of loyalism, especially after the death of Hitler is one, how to best arrange for one's personal destiny if you know you're going to be on the losing side is another.

Ironically, the author spends much more time fleshing out the portrayal of the detainees and various German/Austrian notables. It could be he couldn't resist the thought of forcing the swashbuckling tank commander into a yankee stereotype, best introduced in a headlong rush of action.

There are the makings of a much better narrative than that which was told. Ultimately disappointing. A popular history written by someone hoping the screenplay gets picked up.

4 people found this helpful

  • Generale
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    5 out of 5 stars
  • 5012690528
  • 13/03/2018

Great story - weird performance.

The work by Harding is top notch--a thoroughly researched, well-written story. However, I have never heard an audiobook where the narrator takes on a foreign accent. He feigned a French accent (while speaking English, mind you) when reading direct quotes from French characters, a German accent for German characters, etc. That was an odd stylistic choice.

2 people found this helpful

  • Generale
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Eric Button
  • 21/10/2020

Not Bad, but Bland

It's not a bad book. It's just very uninteresting. Like other people have said, it's 99% exposition and biographies of everyone named. I think maybe 15 or 20 minutes focused on the actual fighting. If you want to learn about this without going through 8.5 hours of exposition, just look it up on Youtube. A 15 minute video will give you all you're probably interested in. If instead you're reading this for research, not entertainment, then I could recommend it. If you want entertainment, go to Youtube.

  • Generale
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Erik
  • 22/09/2020

Really good

I really enjoyed this book and the author talking about one of the Lesser-known stories of World War II would absolutely recommend to anybody interested in history

  • Generale
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    5 out of 5 stars
  • tory
  • 26/04/2020

One hell of a story!

Enjoyed this quick read of an impressive historical event. I'd never heard of this battle and it really was a bizarre, important and inspiring story. The educational/informative style of the writing, though rather dry, gave ample information and background on all the players and events in the story. The Last Battle is plenty exciting and drew me in despite the detached perspective. Loved it!

  • Generale
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    5 out of 5 stars
  • John K. Marsh
  • 20/03/2020

Great book, narrator needs to speak better German

Great story, very interesting. the end seemed to be a bit anti climatic the narrator had lots of trouble pronouncing the large amount of German throughout the book.

  • Generale
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Donald talbot
  • 30/09/2019

decent but to much time on background information

spends to much time on the background of the castle and occupants but not enough time on the actual battle

  • Generale
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Edward Thomas
  • 26/03/2018

if it's not a movie, it should be.

a little bit of a hard start but it was well-read and a very good story. If it's not a movie yet it should be I'd go see it.

  • Generale
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    4 out of 5 stars
  • patrick
  • 28/01/2017

An interesting piece of WW2 history

Americans and German soldiers banding together to fight the vaunted and beleaguered SS divisions at the close of WW2. A story that every WW2 history buff must know.

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  • Generale
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rossano Nocera
  • 16/05/2020

Gripping story

Superbly narrated, gripping story and fascinating subject. Was hooked and couldn’t wait to keep listening. Really engaging real life story and great narration.

  • Generale
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lettura
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Storia
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 10/11/2018

excellent

people can join sides when times are desperate whether you have different options against a common foe.