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Top Ten Books of 1996
Visitors to Stone & Stone's Second World War Books website have over the last two months nominated and voted for dozens and dozens of the best non-fiction WWII-related titles published in 1996 (not to mention the absent-minded votes for pre-1996 titles which had to be disallowed). Given the large number of great new books published last year, and the highly divergent tastes and specializations of readers, researchers, veterans, hobbyists, collectors, and other visitors to our site, it's no wonder that votes were spread over so many different titles.
Still, some very interesting voting patterns emerged: many ballots for panzers and the Russian front; many supporters of books on aircraft and air operations; relatively few votes for the Pacific war or for "social" themes.
Balloting was halted at the stroke of the New Year (California time) and tallying of votes is now complete. Although many other titles came within a few votes of the leaders and many deserving books just missed the top tier, when the smoke cleared ten highly appropriate winners emerged.
Here, then, are the Top Ten Books of 1996 as selected by visitors to these webpages, in alphabetical order by author:
Beale, D'Amico, and Valentini. Air War Italy 1944-45: Axis Air Forces from the Liberation of Rome to the Surrender. Shrewsbury: Airlife, 1996
Blair jr, Clay. Hitler's U-Boat War: The Hunters, 1939-1942. New York: Random House, 1996
Boatner III, Mark M. The Biographical Dictionary of World War II. Novato: Presidio, 1996
Goldhagen, Daniel Jonah. Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust. New York: Knopf, 1996
Jentz, Thomas L. Panzertruppen, volume 2: The Complete Guide to the Creation and Combat Employment of Germany's Tank Forces, 1943-1945. Atglen, PA: Schiffer, 1996
Keegan, John. The Battle for History: Refighting World War II. New York: Vintage Books, 1996
Le Tissier, Tony. Zhukov at the Oder: The Decisive Battle for Berlin. Westport: Praeger, 1996
Overy, Richard. Why the Allies Won. New York: Norton, 1996
Shores, Christopher. Dust Clouds in the Middle East: The Air War for East Africa, Iraq, Syria, Iran, and Madagascar, 1940-42. London: Grub Street, 1996
Our warm congratulations and thanks go out to the authors, publishers, and booksellers who brought us these Top Ten titles of 1996, as well as all the other great new books that arrived last year to enrich and enliven the body of Second World War literature.
Thanks also to all the visitors to Stone & Stone's Second World War Books website who helped select these winners and made 1996 such a great year for us.
Now let's start searching for the best new books of 1997!
Reviewed 5 January 1997
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