on April 15, 2007
As an avid researcher of both the Canadian and British battles of Vimy Ridge, I have no hesitation is suggesting that this is perhaps the best book ever written on this topic. This is truly a scholastic masterpiece and not just "another story" about Vimy Ridge. The book, which everyone should understand is a collection of essays by different authors, is well integrated. From the situation prior to the battle, throughout the battle itself and into the aftermath, the book is an exceptional review of those that served to make this one of Canada's greatest moments in history.
In particular I was most impressed by Chapter 4 "Old Wine in New Bottles" that told the story of changing tactics that would lead to the success at Vimy. Chapter 6 "The Gunners" and Chapter 7 "The Sappers" told of the importance of the support teams, often discounted in the books detailing the front line infantry battalions. Lastly, Chapters 9 through 12, although all written by different authors, gave an excellent review of the 4 Canadian Divisions working as a team. References to each others work was a refreshing approach to the individual essays. The use of the war diaries provided factual accounts and encourages the reader to go back to see those diaries for more details.
If you are a fan of the Canadian Expeditionary Force in the Great War, even if not a researcher of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, you will want to read this book. I can not wait for the next book, perhaps "Passchendaele: A Canadian Reassessment".
on February 9, 2009
I have acquired and read any and all World War 1 material I could lay my hands on as I have a very strong family connection to that period, and the Vimy campaign in particular as I have an Uncle and a cousin who are buried there. With the possible exception of Tim Cook's two volumes dealing with World War 1, 'Vimy Ridge: A Canadian Reassessment' is the most complete and well presented treatise on a WW 1 battle I have yet read.
I can reccommend it without reservation.