Thursday, 31 May 2018

The Three Battles of Vitebsk Vol 1 - Jean Restayn

Title: The Three Battles of Vitebsk Vol 1
Author: Jean Restayn
ISBN: 978-1-92733-208-5
Publisher: JJ Fedorowicz Publishing
Year: 2016
Pages: 194
Photos/Maps: hundreds/fold out

This first Volume of a three volume set relates the battles between the 3rd Panzer Armee and the Soviets in the region of Vitebsk commencing in July, 1943. Overshadowed to a great extent by the titanic struggle at Kursk, Vitebsk was nonetheless another pivotal point where the Soviets exerted intense pressure on outnumbered German forces.

This book is somewhat unique in that it has something for everyone; for the reader and historian, a synopsis of the first battles including the build-up, for those who enjoy a visual narrative of the operating environment there are literally hundreds of black and white pictures that facilitate a vivid understanding of the conditions and the equipment and capabilities of the two protagonists; and for the model builder, a series of coloured plates depicting the paint schemes of the equipment used. The accompanying maps are good but busy.

The publisher is a small ‘boutique’ house specializing in German World War 2 histories and they produce a phenomenally high quality of product. There is no bibliography with this book but will be provided when the third volume is published. This work serves as an excellent companion to any work on the battles in this region.

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