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Barbarossa Through Soviet Eyes

Barbarossa Through Soviet Eyes Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review December 2015 Title Barbarossa Through Soviet Eyes
Author Artem Drabkin, Alexei Isaev with Christopher Summerville Publisher Pen & Sword
Published 2012 ISBN 9781844159239
Format 186 pages, hardbound MSRP (USD) $32.95


The title tells it all.

Barbarossa Through Soviet Eyes: The First Twenty-Four Hours recounts the first day of Nazi Germany’s attack on Soviet Russia – Sunday, 22 June 1941.

But don’t expect a dry distillation of strategic events and principal players.

Authors Artem Drabkin and Alexei Isaev instead competently convey the chaos and confusion of combat through historical notes amidst gritty, often brutal personal recollections.

Through Christopher Summerville’s lively English version, we learn much minutiae of the day itself. On the ground. In the air. On the sea. Attitudes. Expectations. Experiences. Even food, weather and, believe it or not, “hobby groups – aircraft modeling”!

Surprises abound. How did Soviet troops, for instance, spot German infiltrators? How did some villages react? How did some Soviets escape envelopment and capture? And what was the first confirmed Soviet air-to-air victory?

I won’t spoil things. Available through Casemate in North America, this informative, illustrated, entertaining effort promises many surprises.

So grab it. And trace Barbarossa’s first hours through the eyes of everyday Soviets suddenly thrust into savage circumstances.


With thanks to Casemate for the review copy.