Reading/Interest Level: Young Adult
Author: Rick Atkinson
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
D-day is a day that many Americans and most of the world know of as a day that turned the tides in WWII to bring the Allies to victory. This non-fiction book is divided into two main sections: The Plan and The Invasion. In "The Plan," the inner workings of the Allied minds are discovered. D-day was kept as a great Allied secret and was planned to have three different waves of attack: by air, by land, and of course- by sea. One of the greatest struggles with the plan was making sure the weather conditions were just perfect- if the weather didn't cooperate, the mission could not succeed. Finally, there is a small window when the weather conditions turned more ideal, and the mission was launched. "The Invasion" section then tells of how each wave of attack was carried out. Some groups were more successful than others, but overall, D-day was a huge win for the Allies, and helped turn the tides of the war.
Rick Atkinson, the author of the book, speaks with authority. It is clear that his research has been done- each section is extremely detailed. Atkinson fluidly intertwines direct, primary quotes with his narrative and information. He is extremely detailed and gives even the smallest pieces of information within his narrative. However, at some points, there is almost too much detail. The book is an adaptation from Atkinson's book The Guns at Last Light and is supposed to be targeted towards young adults. As a middle school teacher, I believe this book is too hard for young teenagers. I am a college graduate, and I had to refocus myself many times, or re-read certain passages so that I could make sure I was fully following along. The vocabulary used, and the high concentration of detail, makes this book too difficult for young adults. It may be more suitable for an advanced high school student who is doing a research project on D-day or one who has a great deal of interest in war strategy. It does have a great glossary, timeline, and additional list of resources to make it helpful for a student doing a research project.