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Martin Middlebrook - Author

About the Author

Martin Middlebrook is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and the author of many important books on military history including The Kaiser's Battle and The Falklands War 1982.

Featured books by Martin Middlebrook

The First Day on the Somme

The First Day on the Somme

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback Release Date: 31/03/2016

On 1 July, 1916, a continuous line of British soldiers climbed out from the trenches of the Somme into No Man's Land and began to walk slowly towards dug-in German troops armed with machine-guns and defended by thick barbed wire. By the end of that day, as old tactics were met by the reality of modern warfare, there had been more than 60,000 British casualties - a third of them fatalities.

Other books by Martin Middlebrook

Arnhem 1944 The Airborne Battle

Arnhem 1944 The Airborne Battle

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/04/2018

Arnhem was meant to end the war in Europe. The Germans were in retreat from Normandy and seemed to be beaten. Three airborne divisions were to seize the bridges across the great rivers of Holland and unleash the Allied armies into Germany. The Battle of Arnhem was a turning-point in the war, a gamble by Montgomery, using three airborne divisions to capture a series of bridges across the wide rivers that separated a powerful mobile army from the plains of northern Germany. If the bridges had been captured and held, and the ground forces had been able to relieve the airborne forces, then there would have been a good chance of ending the war before Christmas 1944. It all went wrong. The initial operation was successful, the bridges taken by the Americans were relieved by ground troops, but these troops could not reach Arnhem quickly enough. In the meantime, only a small part of the 1st British Airborne Division had reached the Arnhem Bridge. Most of the remainder of the airborne force was held up on the outskirts of the town by German units that turned out to be far stronger than expected - a major intelligence failure. After nine days of fighting, the survivors of the division were withdrawn across the Rhine and it was not until many months later that ground forces captured Arnhem. Using the technique he has perfected over twenty-five years of military study, blending meticulous research based on original documents with the personal experiences of more than 500 participants, Martin Middlebrook describes the Battle of Arnhem from start to finish, from one end of that complicated battlefield to the other. The author offers a masterly summary of what went wrong in the last major defeat in battle suffered by the British Army.

The First Day on the Somme

The First Day on the Somme

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Hardback Release Date: 06/04/2016

After an immense but useless bombardment, at 7.30 am. On 1 July 1916 the British Army went over the top and attacked the German trenches. It was the first day of the battle of the Somme, and on that day the British suffered nearly 60,000 casualties, two for every yard of their front. With more than fifty times the daily losses at El Alamein and fifteen times the British casualties on D-day, 1 July 1916 was the blackest day in the history of the British Army. But, more than that, as Lloyd George recognised, it was a watershed in the history of the First World War. The Army that attacked on that day was the volunteer Army that had answered Kitchener's call. It had gone into action confident of a decisive victory. But by sunset on the first day on the Somme, no one could any longer think of a war that might be won. Martin Middlebrook's research has covered not just official and regimental histories and tours of the battlefields, but interviews with hundreds of survivors, both British and German. As to the action itself, he conveys the overall strategic view and the terrifying reality that it was for front-line soldiers.

The Middlebrook Guide to the Somme Battlefields A Comprehensive Coverage from Crecy to the World Wars

The Middlebrook Guide to the Somme Battlefields A Comprehensive Coverage from Crecy to the World Wars

Author: Martin Middlebrook, Mary Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/04/2016

While best known as being the scene of the most terrible carnage in the WW1 the French department of the Somme has seen many other battles from Roman times to 1944. William the Conqueror launched his invasion from there; the French and English fought at Crecy in 1346; Henry V's army marched through on their way to Agincourt in 1415; the Prussians came in 1870. The Great War saw three great battles and approximately half of the 400,000 who died on the Somme were British - a terrible harvest, marked by 242 British cemeteries and over 50,000 lie in unmarked graves. These statistics explain in part why the area is visited year-on-year by ever increasing numbers of British and Commonwealth citizens. This evocative book written by the authors of the iconic First Day on the Somme.is a thorough guide to the cemeteries, memorials and battlefields of the area, with the emphasis on the fighting of 1916 and 1918, with fascinating descriptions and anecdotes.

The First Day on the Somme

The First Day on the Somme

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback Release Date: 31/03/2016

On 1 July, 1916, a continuous line of British soldiers climbed out from the trenches of the Somme into No Man's Land and began to walk slowly towards dug-in German troops armed with machine-guns and defended by thick barbed wire. By the end of that day, as old tactics were met by the reality of modern warfare, there had been more than 60,000 British casualties - a third of them fatalities.

The Bomber Command War Diaries An Operational Reference Book

The Bomber Command War Diaries An Operational Reference Book

Author: Martin Middlebrook, Chris Everitt Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/04/2014

Bomber Command's campaign started on the very first day of the Second World War and ended within a few hours of the final victory in Europe five and a half years later. It was an attempt to win the war in Europe by strategic bombing on such an enormous scale that historians have only recently begun to piece together the finer details of the individual raids. There have been many books about Bomber Command, but Martin Middlebrook, the aviation historian, and his research colleague, Chris Everitt, were the first to compile a complete review of all the raids and the background stories to this fascinating campaign. They undertook the gargantuan task not only of documenting every Bomber Command operation but also of obtaining information from local archives in Germany, Italy and the occupied countries, on the effects of the raids. Little of this material had been published previously, and never before had the two sides of Bomber Command's war been brought together in this way. The Bomber Command War Diaries has become the standard basic work of reference on this extraordinary campaign. This edition includes retrospective observations and a new appendix.

Firestorm Hamburg The Facts Surrounding the Destruction of a German City 1943

Firestorm Hamburg The Facts Surrounding the Destruction of a German City 1943

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/11/2012

In July 1943 a series of heavy bombing raids virtually destroyed the North German city of Hamburg. In one night alone some 40,000 people were killed largely as a result of the terrible 'firestorm'. To this day controversy rages as to the morality of these attacks and their consequences.rnrnWith his trademark thoroughness Martin Middlebrook has delved deep into the archives to uncover the facts. As ever he draws on copious eyewitnesses and participants - a total of 547 British, American and German. The testimonies of the Hamburg survivors are particularly revealing and harrowing providing a first hand description of what it was like to be subjected to prolonged and intense air attack.rnrnParadoxically while Hamburg was arguably Bomber Command's greatest achievement it remains its - and Air Marshal Harris' - most criticised. Often overlooked was the USAAF's role and this together with the contribution to the failure of German air defences of a new device, Window, are fully covered.rnrnFirestorm Hamburg is a masterly description of a major air campaign and the Author's aim of achieving a better understanding of the background, conduct and results is fully realised. He does not shirk from studying the moral dilemma.

The Schweinfurt-Regensburg Mission The American Raids on 17 August 1943

The Schweinfurt-Regensburg Mission The American Raids on 17 August 1943

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 19/04/2012

On 17 August 1943, the entire strength of the American heavy bomber forces in England set out to raid two major industrial complexes deep in southern Germany, the vast Messerschmitt aircraft factory and the vital KGF ballbearing plant. For American commanders it was the culmination of years of planning and hope, the day when their self-defending formations of the famous Flying Fortress could at last perform their true role and reach out by daylight to strike at targets in the deepest corners of industrial Germany. The day ended in disaster for the Americans. Thanks to the courage of the aircrews the bombers won through to the targets and caused heavy damage, but sixty were shot down and the hopes of the American commanders were shattered. Historically, it was probably the most important day for the American air forces during the Second World War.While researching this catastrophic raid the Author interviewed hundreds of the airmen involved, German defenders, 'slave workers' and eye witnesses. This took him twice to both the USA and Germany.The result is a mass of fresh, previously unused material with which the author finally provides the full story of this famous day's operations. Not only is the American side described in far greater depth than before but the previously vague German side of the story - both the Luftwaffe action and the civilian experiences in Schweinfurt and Regensburg, are now presented clearly and in detail for the first time. The important question of why the RAF did not support the American effort and follow up the raid on Schweinfurt as planned is also fully covered.

The Falklands War

The Falklands War

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/02/2012

With the surprise Argentine invasion of the remote Falkland Islands on 2 April 1982, the United Kingdom found itself at war. Due to the resolve of a determined Prime Minister and the resourcefulness of the Armed Forces, a Task Force, codenamed Operation CORPORATE, was quickly despatched. Remarkably, just over two months later, the Islands were liberated and the invaders defeated. By any standards this was an outstanding feat of arms, cooperation made possible by political resolve, sound planning, strong leadership and the courage and determination of the British forces.Martin Middlebrook, the renowned military historian, has skilfully weaved the many strands of this extraordinary achievement into a fascinating, thorough and highly readable account. Thanks to his meticulous research he covers action at sea, on the land and in the air as well as providing the strategic overview. The author's use of many first-hand accounts reveals what it was like to be part of this audacious military endeavour. The experiences of the Falkland Islanders during the Argentine occupation are also included. Thirty years on, Middlebrook's The Falklands War is still an authoritative and thoroughly readable account of this historic enterprise.

Convoy SC122 and HX229 Climax of the Battle of the Atlantic, March 1943

Convoy SC122 and HX229 Climax of the Battle of the Atlantic, March 1943

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/04/2011

Winston Churchill wrote, The only thing that ever really frightened me during the war was the U-boat peril. Had the convoy link between North America and Britain been broken, the course of World War II would have been different. As it was, there was a period during the winter of 1942-43 when the Germans came close to cutting the North Atlantic lifeline. In the first twenty days of March, 1943, the Germans sank ninety-seven Allied merchant ships - twice the rate of replacement. During the same period seven U-boats were lost and fourteen put in service. no wonder Churchill was worried.rnrnConvoys SC122 and HX229 sailed from New York harbour for England early in March 1943. Admiral Doenitz deployed forty-two U-boats to trap those two convoys. Twenty-one merchant ships were sunk in the ensuing battle. The Germans called it the greatest convoy battle of all time. It was a major turning point in the Battle of the Atlantic.rnrnIn Convoy, every manoeuvre of the merchant ships, their escort vessels, the long range aircraft cover, and the attacking U-boats is documented in a powerful narrative that will recall for many readers Nicholas Monsarrat's best-selling novel The Cruel Sea. rnrnIn many ways, this book could be the story of any of the hundreds of convoys that sailed the ocean during the war. One important chapter throws new light on three controversial aspects of the Battle of the Atlantic: why there was an Air Gap long after full air cover could have been provided, why the convoys had to sail with dangerously weak naval escorts; and how the Allied outwitted the Germans in the radio decoding war.

The Berlin Raids The Bomber Battle, Winter 1943-1944

The Berlin Raids The Bomber Battle, Winter 1943-1944

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/06/2010

The Battle of Berlin was the longest and most sustained bombing offensive against one target in the Second World War. Bomber Command's Commander-in-Chief, Sir Arthur Harris, hoped to 'wreak Berlin from end to end' and 'produce a state of devastation in which German surrender is inevitable'. He dispatched nineteen major raids between August 1943 and March 1944 - more than 10,000 aircraft sorties dropped over 30,000 tons of bombs on Berlin. It was the RAF's supreme effort to end the war by aerial bombing. But Berlin was not destroyed and the RAF lost more than 600 aircraft and their crews. The controversy over whether the Battle of Berlin was a success or failure has continued ever since.Martin Middlebrook brings to this subject considerable experience as a military historian. In preparing his material he collected documents from both sides (many of the German ones never before used); he has also interviewed and corresponded with over 400 of the people involved in the battle and has made trips to Germany to interview the people of Berlin and Luftwaffe aircrews. He has achieved the difficult task of bringing together both sides of the Battle of Berlin - the bombing force and the people on the ground - to tell a coherent, single story.The author describes the battle, month by month, as the bombers waited for the dark nights, with no moon, to resume their effort to destroy Berlin and end the war. He recounts the ebb and flow of fortunes, identifying the tactical factors that helped first the bombers, then the night fighters, to gain the upper hand. Through the words of the participants, he brings to the reader the hopes, fears and bravery of the young bomber aircrews in the desperate air battles that were waged as the Luftwaffe attempted to protect their capital city. And he includes that element so often omitted from books about the bombing war - the experiences of ordinary people in the target city, showing how the bombing destroyed homes, killed families, affected morale and reduced the German war effort.Martin Middlebrook's meticulous attention to detail makes The Bomber Battle of Berlin one of his most accomplished book to date.Martin Middlebrook has written many other books that deal with important turning-points in the two world wars, including The First Day on the Somme, Kaiser's Battle, The Peenemunde Raid, The Somme Battlefields (with Mary Middlebrook), The Nuremberg Raid 30-21st March 1944 and Arnhem 1944 (all republished and in print with Pen and Sword). Martin Middlebrook is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and lives near Stroud, Gloucestershire.

Arnhem 1944 The Airborne Battle

Arnhem 1944 The Airborne Battle

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/07/2009

Arnhem was meant to end the war in Europe. The Germans were in retreat from Normandy and seemed to be beaten. Three airborne divisions were to seize the bridges across the great rivers of Holland and unleash the Allied armies into Germany. The Battle of Arnhem was a turning-point in the war, a gamble by Montgomery, using three airborne divisions to capture a series of bridges across the wide rivers that separated a powerful mobile army from the plains of northern Germany. If the bridges had been captured and held, and the ground forces had been able to relieve the airborne forces, then there would have been a good chance of ending the war before Christmas 1944.It all went wrong. The initial operation was successful, the bridges taken by the Americans were relieved by ground troops, but these troops could not reach Arnhem quickly enough. In the meantime, only a small part of the 1st British Airborne Division had reached the Arnhem Bridge. Most of the remainder of the airborne force was held up on the outskirts of the town by German units that turned out to be far stronger than expected - a major intelligence failure. After nine days of fighting, the survivors of the division were withdrawn across the Rhine and it was not until many months later that ground forces captured Arnhem.Using the technique he has perfected over twenty-five years of military study, blending meticulous research based on original documents with the personal experiences of more than 500 participants, Martin Middlebrook describes the Battle of Arnhem from start to finish, from one end of that complicated battlefield to the other. On this fiftieth anniversary, he offers a masterly summary of what went wrong in the last major defeat in battle suffered by the British Army.

The Nuremberg Raid 30-31 March 1944

The Nuremberg Raid 30-31 March 1944

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/03/2009

This book describes one twenty-four-hour period in the Allied Strategic Bomber Offensive in the greatest possible detail. The author sets the scene by outlining the course of the bombing war from 1939 to the night of the Nuremberg raid, the characters and aims of the British bombing leaders and the composition of the opposing Bomber Command and German night fighter forces.The aim of the Nuremberg raid was not unlike many hundreds of other RAF missions but, due to the difficulties and dangers of the enemy defences and weather plus bad luck, it went horribly wrong. The result was so notorious that it became a turning point in the campaign. The target, the symbolic Nazi rally city of Nuremberg, was only lightly damaged and 96 out of 779 bombers went missing.Middlebrook recreates the events of the fateful night in astonishing detail. The result is a meticulous dramatic and often controversial account. It is also a moving tribute to the bravery of the RAF bomber crews and their adversaries.

Argentine Fight for the Falklands

Argentine Fight for the Falklands

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/01/2009

Martin Middlebrook is the only British historian to have been granted open access to the Argentines who planned and fought the Falklands War. It ranks with Liddell Hart's The Other Side of the Hill in analysing and understanding the military thinking and strategies of Britain's sometime enemy, and is essential reading for all who wish to understand the workings of military minds.The author has managed to avoid becoming involved in the issue of sovereignty and concentrates entirely upon the military story. He has produced a genuine 'first' with this balanced and unique work. Among the men he met were the captain of the ship that took the scrap-metal merchants to South Georgia; the admiral in charge of planning the Falklands invasion; the marine commander and other members of the invasion force; two brigadier-generals, five unit commanders and many other men of the large army force sent to occupy and defend the islands.; the officer in charge of the Argentine garrison at Goose Green; and finally the brigadier-general responsible for the Defence of Port Stanley and soldiers of all ranks who fought the final battles.

The Middlebrook Guide to the Somme Battlefields A Comprehensive Coverage from Crecy to the World Wars

The Middlebrook Guide to the Somme Battlefields A Comprehensive Coverage from Crecy to the World Wars

Author: Martin Middlebrook, Mary Middlebrook Format: Hardback Release Date: 17/05/2007

While best known as being the scene of the most terrible carnage in the WW1 the French department of the Somme has seen many other battles from Roman times to 1944. William the Conqueror launched his invasion from there; the French and English fought at Crecy in 1346; Henry V's army marched through on their way to Agincourt in 1415; the Prussians came in 1870. The Great War saw three great battles and approximately half of the 400,000 who died on the Somme were British ' a terrible harvest, marked by 242 British cemeteries and over 50,000 lie in unmarked graves. These statistics explain in part why the area is visited year-on-year by ever increasing numbers of British and Commonwealth citizens. This evocative book written by the authors of the iconic First Day on the Somme is a thorough guide to the cemeteries, memorials and battlefields of the area, with the emphasis on the fighting of 1916 and 1918, with fascinating descriptions and anecdotes.

The Kaiser's Battle

The Kaiser's Battle

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/02/2007

At 9.30am on 21 March 1918, the last great battle of the First World War commenced when three German armies struck a massive blow against the weak divisions of the British Third and Fifth Armies. It was the first day of what the Germans called the Kaiserschlacht ('the Kaiser's Battle'), the series of attacks that were intended to break the deadlock on the Western Front, knock the British Army out of the war, and finally bring victory to Germany. In the event the cost of the gamble was so heavy that once the assault faltered, it remained for the Allies to push the exhausted German armies back and the War was at last over.Critics accounts:The clever blending of written and oral accounts from some 650 surviving British and German soldiers makes the book an extremely convincing reconstruction. SUNDAY TIMESMr Middlebrook's industry and patience are displayed in his amazing collection of eyewitness accounts, the compassion in his commentary, the good sense in his analysis' DAILY TELEGRAPH

The Peenemunde Raid The Night of 17-18 August 1943

The Peenemunde Raid The Night of 17-18 August 1943

Author: Martin Middlebrook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/02/2006

On the night of 17-18 August 1943, RAF Bomber Command attacked a remote research establishment on the German Baltic coast. The site was Peenemunde, where Hitler's scientists were developing both the V-1 flying bomb and the V-2 rocket whose destructive powers could have swung the course of the War. The raid was meticulously planned and hopes were high. But the night sky was so cloudless that the British bombers presented an easy target for German night fighters, and over 40 were lost. Martin Middlebrook draws on the memories of over 400 people involved in the dramatic events on that night: RAF and Luftwaffe aircrew, German personnel at the research site and foreign labourers who had been forced to work there. The result is a truly compelling account of this hazardous attempt to disrupt Hitler's V-weapons programme.

The Sinking of the Prince of Wales & Repulse The End of a Battleship Era?

The Sinking of the Prince of Wales & Repulse The End of a Battleship Era?

Author: Martin Middlebrook, Patrick Mahoney Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/01/2004

On the third day of the war with Japan, two Royal Navy capital ships were sunk off Malaya by air torpedo attack. They had not requested the air support that could have saved them and 840 men died in the battleship HMS Prince of Wales and the battle cruiser HMS Repulse. The authors re-create for the reader not only what happened, but also what it was like for the men involved. They dispose of several myths to explain the events of those confused hours, and address the uncertainty, controversy and strong emotions that surrounded the militarily disastrous sinkings.

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