The first volume in this series, The German Invasion of Norway, looked at the initial German landings. This second volume looks at the battles that followed, as Norwegian resistance stiffened and British and French expeditionary forces arrived in an unsuccessful attempt to stop the Germans. The main focus is on the naval aspects of the fighting, although the relevant land battles are also covered in some detail.
A key theme of this book is cooperation, either between the Norwegians and their new allies, or between different services. The campaign in Norway saw some of the first combined operations of the Second World War, with naval, air and land forces cooperating in coordinated attacks. Sadly it also saw some terrible examples of poor cooperation, most obviously between the British and their Norwegian allies, where some senior British officers clearly didn't trust their new colleagues, or think that they could make a useful contribution to the fighting. There was also a woeful lack of proper coordination of the first Allied campaign around Narvik, with the British command of land forces making a particularly negative contribution to the fighting.
As with the first volume this is a meticulously researched book, with good use of Norwegian, British, French and German sources. The first hand accounts from naval vessels under heavy air attack are particularly impressive, sticking long in the mind.
This in an invaluable account of the naval aspects of the German invasion of Norway, and should long remain the standard work on that subject.
1 - Introduction
2 - Operation Weserübung
3 - The Dangers of Improvisation
4 - War Throughout the Land
5 - Romsdalsfjorden - Sickleforce
6 - Namsos - Mauriceforce
7 - Carrier Task Force
8 - Cutting the Losses
9 - Events in the South
10 - A Winter's Tale
11 - The Long Retreat
12 - Withdrawal
13 - Operation Juno
14 - Epilogue
A - Ships in Service with the Royal Norwegian Navy, April 1940
B - Main Units of the Norwegian Army c.15 April 1940
C - The German Army in Norway, 1940
D - Luftwaffe Units in Norway, April-May 1940
E - Allied Vessels Involved in the Norwegian Campaign
F - Allied Land Forces Involved in the Norwegian Campaign
G - Allied Personnel Involved with the Norwegian Government
Author: Geirr H Haarr