Review by Lynne Booker
After one particularly poor AAA talk, I politely said to the speaker that I had been interested in her presentation about Catherine the Great and she replied by recommending a book that was over 600 pages long. She then added, "You probably won´t be able to manage it because even I found it difficult." She will never know how close she was to being abandoned by the side of the A22. It was with a gesture of defiance that I later picked off our library shelves a biography of 800 pages about Dwight D Eisenhower. The author, Carlo D´Este, is noted for his definitive biography of General George S Patton. I need not have worried about those extra 200 pages. D´Este is an accomplished military historian famous for his thorough research, his psychological analysis and his elegance of expression. In his book, he paints a picture of a tough, diplomatic and unpretentious general in the one of the most difficult roles of World War 2; a man of whom I might say with some justification that the War would not have been won without him. There is not one sentence in this book that is otiose or uninteresting and US Army lieutenant-colonel (retired) Carlo D´Este clearly shares his enormous respect for the World War 2 victor who eight years afterwards became the 34th President of the USA.