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Hitler's Panzers: The Lightning Attacks that Revolutionized Warfare
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Hitler's Panzers: The Lightning Attacks that Revolutionized Warfare

3.82  ·  Rating Details ·  234 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
A fascinating account of Nazi Germany's armored forces by the author of Patton and Rommel.

Determined to secure a quick, decisive victory on the World War II battlefields, Adolf Hitler adopted an attack plan that combined tools with technique- the formidable Panzer divisions. Self-contained armored units able to operate independently, the Panzers became the German army's
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Paperback, 400 pages
Published November 2nd 2010 by Berkley (first published 2009)
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Maitrey
Feb 01, 2016 Maitrey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, 2016_kindle
I started out reading this book as a relative WWII newbie, I can place Stalingrad on a map, and know what the Battle of the Bulge was, but that is about it.

This book was easily the most in depth study of a particular facet of war, any war, that I've ever read. It threw me at the deep end, and like somebody cut off and surrounded by the eponymous Hitler's panzers, I was struggling to make sense of most things. Unlike those poor souls however, I enjoyed being confused and looking for answers all t
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Bryan
Jul 23, 2011 Bryan rated it really liked it
A great book on the development and use of German armor during World War II. Showalter's style is that of the history professor you always liked‚ rooted in fact, but able to breathe life into the subject matter. He also spends a considerable amount of space, and rightly so, discussing Germany's Eastern Front. This might be an eye-opener for U.S. readers more accustomed to reading about D-Day and island-hopping in the Pacific. If you're a history buff or want to know more about the development of ...more
Richard
May 22, 2012 Richard rated it really liked it
Very good look at the Panzer forces from their start through 1945. Lots of new information from the old USSR is worked into this and nicely integrated with the work of authors like Gantz. The development of Panzer tactics and operational uses gets nice discussion.

One particularly interesting question the author raises is 'Why did the USA manufacture so many thousands of Shermans after we saw how the Germans destroyed them?' A complicated answer based on several factors is given and worth reading
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Darrell
Jul 20, 2012 Darrell rated it liked it
If you are hoping for a good story don't read this book. This is a history Prof's dream book. Detail by detail, in chronological order. Every modification of the Panzer and tanks that led up to and after it. It is very well written and interesting for history buffs but I had a hard time finishing it.
Seth
Apr 12, 2016 Seth rated it really liked it
Considering the many contemporary writers on the myriad of topics about the Second World War, there has been much written on the popular subjects, one of which are the tank divisions of the German Wehrmacht. Hitler’s Panzers, written by Dennis Showalter in 2009 is an outstanding assessment of the tank divisions of the Wehrmacht before and during the war. The author is a highly respected scholar whose focus is German military history from Frederick the Great to the Second World War. Showalter’s p ...more
Walt
Dec 02, 2013 Walt rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
Hitler's Panzers is about the history of German armored warfare around World War II. The first few chapters cover the concepts of tank warfare developed by the German's prior to World War II and the successes they had in its use during the years of 1939-1941. Showalter does a fantastic job of exploring not just the ideas but also analyzes how and why of the German developed these advances in tank warfare tactically, geopolitically, and culturally. After reading this part of the book I was convin ...more
Dean Marquis
Mar 10, 2014 Dean Marquis rated it it was ok
obviously mr showalter knew a lot about the development of german armour tactics during ww 2. He even defined the german art of war as the mobile battle. this has gotten them into a lot of trouble but thankfully now there part of nato and thats not going to happen. poland is part of nato. dennis also defind the us art of war as war by management. i think that this is a topic for a book in itself. i thougjt hitlers panzers was poorly presented. it had no space between the paragraphs. i know this ...more
Chuck
Nov 01, 2015 Chuck rated it it was ok
This is the story of the German panzer units in WW2. The biggest problem with the book is that it is unfocussed. On a topic like this, which has been widely written about, you've got to offer a new perspective, which means that you should have a premise or series of premises that you seek to demonstrate in your book. Showalter doesn't do that. His book is one that proceeds by saying, this happened, then this happened, then this happened, etc. When I finished it, I came away with the feeling that ...more
Trebor
Feb 09, 2014 Trebor rated it liked it
Tanks, tanks, and more tanks. Blitzkrieg, shock and awe, invasion of the merciless Huns. They had the best tanks, the most disciplined soldiers, the smartest generals, the most courageous officers, but thank God they were all under the thumb of a total madman who generally did everything contrary to the German military strategists. How could something so evil as Nazism and its' malignant doctrine seize the entire continent of Europe is such a short time. The author explains it almost tank battle ...more
Brentman99
Jul 24, 2016 Brentman99 rated it really liked it
If you are looking for a very academic book on the German Panzerwaffen, look no further than this one. Showalter is a great historian and provides lots of details that anyone who is interested in WWII will enjoy. It is quite a story how Germany moved from the Pz I in Poland to the King Tiger that helped defend Germany in the latter stages of the war.

Overall, I enjoyed the details as well as the politics that Showalter mixes in with the history. Worth reading if you have an interest in the subjec
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Iain
Jun 02, 2013 Iain rated it liked it
Shelves: historical-wwii
I'd give this four stars as the book is engaging and holds many insights. However a complete lack of footnotes and often fractured/incomprehensible sentences drops my rating a notch. A good book that could have been great if only it had seen sterner editing and supported some of its contentions with sources.
Bruce
Mar 01, 2015 Bruce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well worth the read. It gives a good look at the how's and why's of the Wehrmacht's Macbeth-like rise and fall. The author also demonstrates how ultimately doomed the Panzers were by the very system that created them; and that turned them the juggernaut they were for the first 4 years of World War 2.
Ray
As one who had a brief encounter with later versions of this devilish machine, I found the story of the evolution of it fascinating--in a terrifying, fifty-years-removed, sort of way. The book is vintage Showalter--clearly written and deeply researched. It's not a book I"d say is a "fun read" though.
Rory
Aug 28, 2011 Rory rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was one of the most even handed portrayals of the Wehrmacht I've read, and I've read more than a handful at this stage in my life. It was a bit plodding, but so was the war on the Eastern Front. I think I'll be seeking out Patton and Rommel in the near future.
Twilight Sparkle
Apr 24, 2012 Twilight Sparkle rated it really liked it
A good insight into the panzer formations and tanks of the Wehrmacht and SS and touches on myths such as the Wehrmacht being clean when it comes to war crimes. A little dry at times.
Scott
Jan 08, 2013 Scott rated it really liked it
Most through account of the panzers I've ever read. Slight complain that months are commonly misattributed.
Jim
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Aug 27, 2012
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