Cromwell vs Jagdpanzer IV: Normandy 1944 Book Review
|Date of Review||November 2018||Title||Cromwell vs Jagdpanzer IV: Normandy 1944|
|Author||David R. Higgins||Publisher||Osprey Publishing|
|Format||80 pages, softbound||MSRP (USD)||$20.00|
In the days immediately after the 1944 Normandy invasion, Allied armor broke out of the beachhead – and battled their Axis adversaries for the liberation of Western Europe.
That's the setting of Cromwell vs Jagdpanzer IV: Normandy 1944 – 86th in Osprey's steadily growing "Duel" range.
Author David R. Higgins follows the publisher's proven prescription.
After introductory notes and a compact chronology, contents competently course through the development and technical specifications for both subjects.
There you'll find illuminating details of vehicle origins, armament, armor, and mobility. And with notes on strategic considerations, that sets the stage for capsule comments on combatants – training and tactics.
Higgins' story then hits apex with accounts of clashes between Allied Cromwells and Nazi German Jagdpanzer IVs in the Falaise Pocket – Operation Totalize.
"Facing a more concentrated number of Allied armored vehicles," Higgens notes, "cost-effective" Jagdpanzer IVs, while providing a "comparatively small combat element", inflicted "a disproportionate amount of damage from obscured, semi-static positions, while conducting an active defense" – contributing to "German tactical success".
Photos, tables and extended captions supplement the study. Illustrations for both vehicles include color 3-views with dimensions and authoritative camouflage & markings notes, ammunition, gunsights, and interior layouts.
Two maps recap actions – but underscore a deficiency in this otherwise useful study. Why no theater graphics to put the book's two tactical views into geographic perspective?
Four biographies add human faces to Osprey's account. And "statistics and analysis", aftermath, selected bibliography, and index conclude contents.
Osprey deftly distills the 1944 fighting through the prism of two competing technologies. Make this succinct study your introduction to these vehicles.
My sincere thanks to Osprey Publishing for this review sample!