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Friday, June 6, 2014

D-Day: Books about the Beginning of the End of WWII

June 6 was forever seared into America's memory as D-Day in 1944. On that day seventy years ago, over 150,000 Allied troops landed on Normandy's beach to battle the Axis powers. The attack, known officially as Operation Overlord (referring to the land battle) and Operation Neptune (the naval part of the attack), led to an eventual Allied victory in Europe less than a year later. D-Day's cost was high; over 9,000 men were injured or killed that day. Putting an end to tyranny, though, was worth the price.

D-Day was immortalized in the highly acclaimed miniseries Band of Brothers and popular movies such as The Longest Day and Saving Private Ryan. Some great books have been written about D-Day as well. For instance, did you know that the miniseries Band of Brothers is based on Stephen Ambrose's book of the same name? The Mississippi Library Commission has copies in both regular and large print of this book about E Company, a group of men who, like many others, trained and bonded together, and fought together, and even died together. It's an absorbing read and adds even more detail that the miniseries missed.

D-Day: The Battle for Normandy by Antony Beevor is another fascinating book about this epic part of Word War II. This book is filled with maps, which we absolutely love, and gives more details of the battle from perspectives other than just America's side. Drop by MLC and pick this one up in large print for an in-depth look at June 6, 1944.

Looking for less action and more intrigue? Agent Garbo: The Brilliant, Eccentric Secret Agent Who Tricked Hitler and Saved D-Day by Stephen Talty is the book for you. It tells the story of Juan Pujol, a farmer, who became a double agent working for the Allies and deceiving the Germans. His deception was supreme: he convinced the Germans that an attack was aimed at Calais, hundreds of miles away from the Allies' landing point in Normandy. Stop by MLC to check this book out in regular print.

Mull this over on your way to check out your books: the D in D-Day may actually stand for Day. During World War I, the U.S. Army used the designations H-Hour and D-Day to indicate upcoming classified operations. Whatever the name of the day, we suggest commemorating those who fell in battle with one of these books or the many others we have to offer on World War II and D-Day.

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