Saturday, 14 January 2012

Book review – The SAS in World War II

The SAS in World War II – An illustrated history by Gavin Mortimer, published by Osprey in 2011, is a 250 page hardcover book.
As we’re planning to stage a LRDG-attack on an Italian airfield as our convention game this year I’m reading up on British Special Forces.
The book gives a in depth history of the SAS; how they formed and detailed descriptions about the action in North Africa, Sicily, Italy and North-West Europe. I found the very interesting and well written. Of special interest for me was description of the battles the SAS was involved in, and as these are very detailed there is a lot of wargaming potential here. Some of the jeep-borne action in NW Europe does really lend itself to gaming.
Other information is just very interesting, for example the way the men trained for parachuting in the early day. No plane? No problem, just jump from the back of a speeding truck. The downside was rather obvious, broken wrists etc.
Some is just reminds you how awful real war is, for example the description of the men led into the woods to be executed as saboteurs – a couple of them made a run for it, and a few survived.
The photos are first-rate, and are very informative if you’re to model one of their jeeps for example.
All in all a beautiful book and a good read. I give it a rating of 4.

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