Wednesday, March 28, 2018

World War II: The Definitive Visual History Hardcover – May 5, 2015 by DK (DK) (IBRArtBooks)

World War II: The Definitive Visual History is a comprehensive, authoritative, yet accessible guide to the people, politics, events, and lasting effects of World War II.

Perhaps the most complex, frightening, and destructive event in global history, the Second World War saw the heights of human courage and the depth of human degradation. World War II presents a complete overview of the war, including the rise of Hitler and the Nazi party, fascism, Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, and the D-Day landings. This book also looks at the enduring effects of World War II during succeeding decades.

Expanded with an all-new guide to battlefield and memorial sites and repackaged to honor the 70th anniversary of the end of the war, World War II: The Definitive Visual History covers key military figures, pivotal battles, political profiles, and strategies, as well as features on everyday life on the Home Front as ordinary citizens did their best to aid the war effort. Gallery spreads feature collections of uniforms, weapons, and other equipment. Maps, timelines, and side panels offer an inviting variety of entry point to the huge wealth of information.

DK Publishing provides a comprehensive and extensive source of information. The chronological timeline and concise narrative and amazing photographic display of World War II is an exceptional accompaniment to their companion publication of World War I. The Definitive Visual History From Blitzkrieg to the Atomic Bomb may be one of the most important resources when one may refer to a particular event of history for research and reference.

However, the book may appear to be an encyclopedic format, it is more than that. In addition to the historical events, the important areas that are stressed within each of the pages include people, eyewitness, technological advancements that emerge during the war, critical points, and parallels to each theater of the war. But of course, the history of events are the highlight of the book, but one major element that may bring the history one step further are the unforgettable haunting images of hundreds of photographs that may not have been seen before as well as the maps and illustrations. Indeed, the tireless work of contributors that made this book possible cannot be overlooked such as editor Richard Holmes, consultants Charles Messengers and Jonathan Bastable, et al. that offered their expertise of archival, scholarly, and journalistic assistance to compile all of the information in one package. And for the narrative of World War II, each section begins with a timeline and a brief overview of World War I in 1914 within 42 pages to set the stage by 1939 to what led to the Second World War in Europe and Asia and the Pacific; the war was a continuum to the first of unresolved issues within economic, political, and social proportions that were also linked to cultural traditions that became skewed in interpretations. Importantly, a war that expanded beyond territories and peoples that were not in conflict during the first war, especially in Asia and the Pacific islands. Richard Holmes asserts, “The events of the war were inter-related by long and complex threads, and it is misleading to consider any single episode, no matter how significant, in isolation. One of the many virtues of this book is that it tells, on the one hand, the stories of specific battles and campaigns but, on the other, its layout enables the reader to see how these relate to previous and subsequent events”(Foreward).

Aside from the layout of the book, it is a coffee table or one’s personal source to one of the most climactic events in world history and vividly exhibits year by year of the origins of how the war occurred. And similar to World War I, this book enlarges every important source that is included in this edition and concludes with an after thought with the last pages that mention the years to follow 1946-1950. No doubt, a great source and topic up for further discussion that may elaborate on war and remembrance.

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