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The German Fleet at War relates the little-known history of the Kriegsmarine's surface fleet with a focus on the sixty-nine surface naval battles fought by Germany's major warships against the large warships of the British, French, American, Polish, Soviet, Norwegian and Greek navies. It emphasizes operational details but also paints a broad overview of the naval war. The book addresses the lack of information about the specifics of naval engagements in World War II and provides a database of naval engagements for comparison and analysis, but unlike most reference works, it has a continuous narrative and a theme. The result is a unique overview of the German and Allied navies at war that provides new appreciation of their activities and accomplishments.
Vincent P. O'Hara is an independent scholar and the author of five books including On Seas Contested: The Seven Great Navies of the Second World War and The Struggle for the Middle Sea: The Great Navies at War in the Mediterranean 1940-1945. He lives in Chula Vista, CA.
Praise for The German Fleet at War, 1939–1945
“In this book, Vincent O’Hara, an American naval historian, gives a carefully detailed account of the engagements of the German navy in the Second World War. O’Hara gives equal praise to the courage and skill of both German and Allied crews for their dedication and prowess under often appalling conditions. It becomes clear that his extensive research into battle reports from both sides has resulted in a rare understanding of their strengths and weaknesses in encounters of varying complexity and difficulty. His thorough study is complemented by several appendices explaining the organization and command structure of the German navy, plus statistical analyses of the sixty-nine actions by type and sea area. Add to that useful notes and a good list of works consulted and you have a significant, if prosaic, survey of a lesser-known but important part of naval history.”
— Starshell, Summer 2012