“An exciting and dramatic episode.”Library Journal “Cliff-hanging suspense.”Christian Science Monitor Assault in Norway is the classic account of a legendary raid on the Nazi war program. By 1942 Germany had a seemingly insurmountable lead over the Allies in developing an atomic bomb. Contributing to this situation was its access to a crucial ingredient: “heavy water,” found in great abundance at a fortresslike factory in occupied Norway. Allied hopes of stalling the Nazi nuclear program soon focused on sabotaging the cliffside planta suicidal mission. But a team of brave Norwegian exiles, trained in Britain, infiltrated their homeland and, hiding in the wilds, awaited the opportunity to launch one of the war’s most daring commando raids. Basing his gripping narrative in large part on interviews with the commandos themselves, Thomas Gallagher recounts in vivid detail the planning and execution of Operation Gunnerside. Assault in Norway recalls the intrigue found in such wartime classics as David Howarth’s We Die Alone and The Sledge Patrol, and the mission it recounts inspired the 1965 Hollywood film The Heroes of Telemark.
|Publisher:||Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)|
About the Author
Thomas Gallagher (1918-1992) was a widely published journalist and the author of eight books, including The Gathering Darkness (1952), which was nominated for a National Book Award; and Fire at Sea: The Story of the Moro Castle (1959), which won the Edgar Allan Poe Award for nonfiction.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Absolutely fascinating story that for some reason is not very much mentioned when WWII events are discussed on TV or in the press. It is surprising because these determined Norwegians majorly (if not singlehandedly) contributed to bringing the Nazi nuclear program to a screeching halt. Gallagher's writing is so captivating that it is hard to put the book down. The stories of courage and survival during the harsh Norwegian winter are almost unbelievable. Highly recommended.
In 1943 and 1944, a couple of amazing raids by Norwegian volunteers destroyed the heavy water from the Norsk Hydro plant at Vemork, Norway. Heavy water differs from ordinary water in that the former is made with hydrogen isotopes, each of which has a neutron in addition to the proton in its nucleus. This isotope is called deuterium and is uncommon in nature. Heavy water acts as a moderator for nuclear fission, thus making possible the production of atomic bombs. It is difficult to manufacture, and at that time, there was only one plant in the world capable of making it in significant quantities: Norsk Hydro. When the Germans occupied Norway in 1940, they took over the plant. But the success of the intrepid saboteurs eliminated any chance for the Germans to develop a nuclear bomb before the Americans.Gallagher provides a play-by-play of the sabotage efforts from the insertion of the operatives onto the barren wastes of ice and snow in Norway, to the destruction of the remaining barrels of heavy water two years later. You follow the small team as they learn to stomach reindeer eyeballs to survive; as they climb the snow-and-ice-covered walls of a sheer 600-foot gorge to wire the factory with explosives (and then climb back down); as one of them literally races from six Germans on skis, out-skis all but one, and then stands stock-still as the German empties his Lugar from forty-feet (but into the sun, so he misses). And that¿s only a few highlights of this incredible adventure. The beginning might seem a bit slow as you are introduced to the volunteers, and as they wait for the weather to be favorable. But persevere: you won¿t be disappointed! James Bond has nothing on these guys, except maybe a taste for martinis rather than reindeer parts.(JAF)
Assault in Norway is by far the best book on the topic. A quick reading of the preface makes it clear that Gallagher has done his research here. DO NOT trust the National Geographic and other film accounts of this story...they are very misleading. This book kept me up for hours at night. I couldn't put it down. Get it!
I read the original version (copywrite 1975) of this book...it is a VERY good book. It is very detailed, and the suspense is great! i highly reccomend this book for WWII buffs