The Bloody Battle for Tilly: Normandy 1944 - Ken ToutStroud: Sutton Publishing, 2001, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Pages lightly age-tanned.
Includes: Further reading list; Black & white photographs; List of sources; References;
From the cover: “The fierce battle to capture the French village of Tilly-la-Campagne was an exceptionally bloody episode in the story of the Allied breakout from Normandy in the summer of 1944. Lying to the south of the city of Caen, Tilly was one of a number of stone-built villages that had been fortified by the Germans to hold up the Allied advance, and it was the hamlet which saw probably the worst of the infantry fighting after D-Day. Soldiers of the Canadian 3rd Division made five attempts to capture the village and lost well over half their number within a month to the determined defenders before the Scottish Seaforths eventually fought their way in. Operation ‘Totalize’ saw the Allies break the Bourgebus defences by driving tanks through at night, after the month-long battle for Caen.
Ken Tout’s A Fine Night for Tanks (Sutton, 1998) was probably the first book to concentrate solely on the armoured success of ‘Totalize’ Phase 1. The Bloody Battle for Tilly focuses on the much longer and more bitter infantry travail around the fortified villages south of Caen. Small Allied infantry units faced an almost impossible mission, hampered by the proximity of the elite German 1st SS Panzer Division and ‘friendly fire’ from the erratic USAAF bombing raids. If that was not enough, appalling tactical errors by British commanders resulted in infantry attacks which were as costly pro rata as the losses suffered on the first day of the Somme.
Drawing on vivid eyewitness accounts and the recollections of many who were there in 1944, Ken Tout’s masterly portrayal of the bloody battle is a fitting tribute to the youth of Canada and Britain who fought, and the many who died, during the breakout from Normandy in the last summer of the war in Europe.”