Thursday, 28 January 2016

Review: Armoured Hussars 2. Images of the 1st Polish Armoured Division, Normandy, August 1944

Hi folks,

In an effort to expand my knowledge about the Totalize operation, I was having a look about the other night and saw a reference to this:

Armoured Hussars 2. Images of the 1st Polish Armoured Division, Normandy, August 1944

This particular book is available from a range of sellers on The main listing is for £25, however I paid only £14.31 including postage. 

 The book arrived well wrapped and packaged and 5 days after I ordered it. I've taken some poor quality pics of the types of things found insider, but first the book description:

"Armoured Hussars 2 provides a highly-illustrated account of the 1st Polish Armoured Division s baptism of fire in Normandy in August 1944, from Operations Totalise and Tractable to the victory at Falaise, culminating at the climactic battle on Mont Ormel the site of this triumph was justly named A Polish Battlefield by the Canadians. This album contains contributions written by the distinguished military author and Normandy veteran Ken Tout, who was recently awarded the Knight's Cross of the Order of Merit by the Republic of Poland for popularising the Polish soldiers of the Second World War. Serving as a young Sherman tank crewman in the Northamptonshire Yeomanry, Ken watched the Poles go in to action on 8 August and witnessed their savage baptism of fire. The album features many dramatic photographs and documents, numbering over 250, from the renowned Polish Institute and Sikorski Museum (PISM) as well as from the author's collection. It is also supplemented by eight pages of colour plates featuring divisional armour, uniforms, maps and a centre page-spread of a close-quarter action on Mont Ormel, based on the memoirs of a regimental commander. Illustrated by the renowned military artist, Peter Dennis, this depiction also features on the front cover. This book will appeal to all who have an interest in the Second World War and the Normandy Campaign, and is a fitting tribute to those Polish soldiers who fought so gallantly for Europe's freedom as part of the Allied Liberation Army and played a decisive role in the defeat of German forces in France at the Battle of the Falaise Pocket in August 1944. Contains c 250 photos, 8pp colour profiles & ills." 

The book is bigger than I thought, and high quality glossy paper. Most of the pics are black and white, but there are many full colour pages. The book is crammed full of pics of wartime Polish forces, including quite a number from prior to Normandy and time spent training in Scotland and Yorkshire. There are a lot of pictures (most of them, in fact) that I have not seen before. 

There are some decent quality maps, including this nice one of the outcome of the Totalize Operation:

 And some nice pictures of Re-enactors in period kit. 

As well as colour illustrations of some of the units tanks:

In total, 176 pages full of pictures with a sprinkling of historical filler to put the pictures in context. The pictures all have comments, with the place names and such other details provided where known. Apologies for the picture quality, space and light are both poor here.

A really nice book, especially for the price. 

Now, do I do a Polish Cromwell army....





  1. Why yes, yes you do. The Highlanders need pals afterall. :) (Would collecting Poles allow you to start a Cromwells company? I don't recall you painting those as yet.)

    Sounds like a bloody good buy mate. You must have quite the collection of WW2 literature!

  2. Chesh ! Yak Sh'mash ?

    At least, that's how it sounds phonetically in English; I've seen it written in Polish and it isn't pretty. But yes, to echo Dai, of course.

  3. Of course! Cromwells are very neat looking and if even they aren't any better than a Sherman, the clunky rivets on the turrets are endearing. Plus the Poles give you another interesting flavor for the British in NW Europe.

    I saw the book the other day and now it's on my "wish" list for Amazon. Thanks for the pictures.


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