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Review: Von Hassell’s Patton

Patton: The Pursuit of Destiny. The Generals. Von Hassell, Agostino and Ed Breslin. Thomas Nelson, 2010.

Readability is a hallmark of the author’s style. The prose is clear, succinct, and interesting. As I read, I want to read more. Is that redundant? Then, it’s an attractive redundancy. I’ll stop in my tracks and trash any text, if the prose is wooden. But in Von Hassell’s book the prose is fluid.

Von Hassell’s bio is factual; it’s a plethora of facts and pictures. As a biography should be. And, of course, his factual representation of Patton paints a clear and dramatic picture. The reader becomes enamored with Patton because the pictures Von Hassell paints are appealing, plus, the provide comparison with other WWII personality that gives us points of references:

Patton favored riding boots, jodhpurs, and a shiny silver helmet;

Monty embraced a stylized beret set in a rakish angle, sweaters with

leather shoulders, and a swagger stick under his armpit. Bradley,  in

contrast, was a self-effacing journeyman who wore standard –issue

uniform and reveled in his democratic touch, earning the name “the

GI General (xi).

No hero was created in a vacuum. He is always a part of a bigger picture.

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