Friday, September 3, 2010

Book Review: Patton: the Pursuit of Destiny by Agostino Von Hassell and Ed Breslin

From the legacy of George Patton’s illustrious ancestors to the muddy roads of World War II Europe, this book follows Patton’s pursuit of the destiny that awaits him. This easily read biography doesn’t gloss over Patton’s all too human faults, but it also reveals the inner quality of a man driven by ambition and his own military genius. Through well organized chapters we follow Patton from one stage of his life to the next, through both his triumphs and his failures.

The book opens with a look at Patton’s childhood – an idyllic time on his grandfather’s ranch in southern California. We see a young man who was shaped by stories of his hero-grandfather and steeped in the study of classical warfare. We see a young career officer who is frustrated by the lack of combat in his life, while at the same time fascinated by the possibilities he sees in motorized warfare. We see the general who grieves at the waste of human life during war, and does his utmost to wage quick and decisive battles in order to preserve the lives involved.

There is really no better story than a well told biography, and this book fits the bill. I enjoyed learning details about Patton’s life that had escaped me before, such as his participation in the 1912 Olympics and his prowess as a swordsman. This book showed me a Patton I had never met, and now I feel like I know a hero.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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