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Currahee! A Screaming Eagle at Normandy

ISBN-10: 0440236304
ISBN-13: 9780440236306
Review Date:

Band of Brothers fans, repeat after me: there is more to the 101st Airborne than Easy Company, 506th. There were OTHER regiments in the 101st and several Easy companies. See author Mark Bando's excellent history here. While the mini-series brought Hollywood-style history to the mainstream, there were other soldiers who fought through Europe and made equally important contributions. Don Burgett is one of them.

Currahee! A Screaming Eagle at Normandy (1967) is the memoir of an A company man, 1st battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment. And it is a classic. What Burgett delivers is nothing short of astounding, all while stripping his descriptions to the core. Yet as a reader, I'm amazed that the author managed to do so much in 202 pages.

At its core, Currahee! is a stark, grim, and sometimes surprising read. For instance, consider

In each of these circumstances, the author doesn't pause much to consider the "whys" behind what he experiences or hears. Rather, he gives readers short explanations, then he's off to the next subject. What Burgett provides fits the nature of events as he experienced them, as a paratrooper, on the move. It should come as no surprise to readers, as Burgett describes passing a crying 4th Division dogface holding a dead buddy shot through the neck, when he says "we couldn't sit around and cry about it [among the dead and wounded were many of the author's friends]. We had Germans to kill" (172-173).

If you want to know more about paratroopers in Normandy, get Currahee! ($7 paperback). It is one of the few books that General Eisenhower endorsed about World War II. He wrote:

"A fascinating tale of personal combat...portrays the courage, endurance, initiatives and fighting qualities of an American soldier on a European battlefield of World War II." (from the back cover)

Readers interested in other books by the author should invest in The Road to Arnhem-A Screaming Eagle in Holland, Seven Roads to Hell-A Screaming Eagle at Bastogne, and Beyond the Rhineā€”A Screaming Eagle in Germany. Buy them new to make sure the author gets his just due. For others interested in reading more from Don Burgett, check out Mark Bando's Trigger Time web site.

Source: Mark Bando's Trigger Time web site.

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anne Johnson says:
15 May 2007 10:05:16 AM

My dad was in that goup, 101stAB Div. Raymond V. Bottomly, Jr., AB Co., 506th.
2. Douglas Cupples says:
28 Sep 2007 11:38:27 AM

My heroes are the screaming eagles of World War 2.
3. Anonymous says:
30 Sep 2008 04:40:08 PM

4. Anonymous says:
16 Oct 2008 07:39:11 PM

This is a great book it tell about how the war really was and how the U.S. army kicks butt!
5. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
2 Mar 2009 03:53:15 PM

The Nation sends young men to war, what they see, hear and remember stays with them for the rest of their lives. If you have never experienced the fear of someone trying to kill you, then its difficult for me to tell you. Every person, who has served in the U.S. Armed Forces, is a hero. Remember those men and women in V.A. Hospitals. In war, there are no unwounded soldiers.
6. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
2 Mar 2009 04:13:44 PM

To the Politicians they speak of courage. Obviously they do not know the difference between courage and foolhardiness. And it is the brave ones who die, the soldiers
7. Noel says:
30 Mar 2009 11:19:38 PM

awesome account-its suprising2know the level of endurance human beings possess&the strange love for one's country that propels people to experiences that are unbelievable!more power to all soldiers!you are all heroes.
8. Linda Vreeland says:
23 Nov 2010 03:49:31 PM

My dad was in the 101st airborne - Easy Company during World War 2. He past away several years ago. I recently found an original Currahee book that he sent home to my mom when he was overseas.

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