Robert Ballard's Bismarck Hardcover – Jan 1 2007
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The book is basically divided into two parts, the first and last parts of the book deals with discovery of the Bismarck, the famed German battleship that had a momentary glory against the British Royal Navy before being sunk by them. I thought the narrative on the ship's discovery and the photographs and illustrations of the wreck was well presented and highly interesting.
The middle section of the book consisted of military history of the Bismarck. The history of the ship, from the beginning to the end is retold here. I thought this was pretty well done and a great introductory material to anyone who wants to read more on the subject.
Overall, this book and the 1990 edition serves it purpose very well and Robert Ballard have done a great job in presenting the Bismarck in her glory as well as in her ruins.
Whilst we are treated, once again to excellent illustrations by Ken Marschall of the wreck itself, my own favourite series of images are across pages 218/9 and show the Bismarck sinking, how it turned upside down allowing the big guns to fall away from their mountings, how it then turned right side up as it continued its voyage - 3 miles down, until it came to rest creating a massive underwater landslide. It is because there are no currents down there that that landslide was found - exactly as it was on the day it was created by this great ship in May 1941.
Having the achieved yet another outstanding feat of finding a famous - but elusive ship so far beneath the ocean's surface, Dr Ballard has, once again put together the most complete account of that search, discovery and final success. He also includes an extremely detailed, accurate and well portrayed account of the life and death of the ship itself. As with the Titanic, all the facts and historic photographs are there and, as I know from researching lesser ships, he really has done the most thorough job of work on all fronts.
From the book's front cover onwards we are, once again, treated to the most "outstanding" collection of artwork created by Ken Marschall. From thousands of photographic images taken far below the surface, Bob Ballard created montage after montage of the various sections and profiles of this great ship so that Mr Marschall was able to provide us with paintings which are as accurate as colour photographs.
Once again (and it will not be for the last time!) I congratulate Dr Ballard on an excellent and professional job of work. Altogether, the most outstanding book for which 5 stars are not enough.
The book describes the creation of the Bismarck, the world it was created in, it's short history and final days. And finally, the second hunt for it's wreck.
It has lots of pictures and grest drwaings to explain things.
The Bismarck class of battleships were amongst the largest warships built in nazi Germany (superseded only by the Kriegsmarine aircraft carrier Graf Zeppelin in length) and were both formidable and beautiful.
The story of the persuit and subsequent sinking of this, the most powerful of Hitler's battleships is one of the great maritime naratives of the second world war.
An awesome piece of writing, the book is an excellent combination of history and adventure; the story of the discovery and exploration of Bismarck being almost as exciting as the story of her persuit!
Definately worth a read. 10/10!