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Death of the Julia Division Memoirs of an Officer - Book Review.

1089maul

Member
I came across this book by chance when browsing the internet. Having now read it, I was in two minds as whether I should write a review. This book as the title suggests is the memoirs of an officer who fought in Greece and does not cover military doctrine, order of battles or any of the usual items that the student would expect to find in a military book. Every now and then we get requests for memoirs so in I thought that I would do a short review for this book.
The memoirs of this book are for Maggiore Giacomo Fatuzzo (Later General) who was in the 3rd Alpine Division Julia. The books consists of a short prelude where Magg. Fatuzzo is mobilised and ends where he serves on the Greek front. The bulk of the book is his war diary which covers the period 26th October 1940 to 29th December 1940 when Magg. Fatuzzo was wounded.
Magg. Fatuzzo’s memoirs come from a diary he kept and covers a day to day account on his service in the Italian Invasion of Greece and was translated by his daughter.
He describes in detail the environment in which he fought and the type of warfare undertaken by both sides. There are detailed descriptions on how Magg. Fatuzzo was deployed himself and how he deployed his own troops. He goes into great detail the conditions he and his troops faced, particularly hunger. He is very critical of the Italian High Command in throwing unprepared troops into an invasion for which they were not ready. They are completely let down when it came being relieved and promises of both food and equipment.
Magg. Fatuzzo makes mention of many of his colleagues, some who survived and some who did not. This makes it in some places very sad to read.
There are no photographs in the book as it is memoirs. That is a shame really as it always good to put a face behind a name. There is a map at the beginning of each chapter but would have been better if they were more clearer to help understand the troop movements. But I remind myself that the book is a memoir.
I won’t go into any more detail as I feel that book should be read with no pre-conceived idea of what to expect. I recommend it as it does bring home the harsh realities of war!
Regards to all,
Bob
 

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jwsleser

Administrator
Staff member
I enjoyed this book. It has been awhile since reading it, so I would need to go back to it to offer any intelligent comments.
 

Saetta

New Member
I thoroughly enjoyed the book as well. He seemed to do a pretty good job of providing elevations of both the Italian forces as well as the enemy opposite them, but it was a little difficult to understand the exact locations some of the events took place. I thought the instances of Fattuzo's regiment (blanking on the name currently) and how they coordinated with the Udine artillery was very interesting. I concur that this is a very good read and would also recommend!
 
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