PortraitsofWar Book Review #1: Panzerwrecks’ Duel in the Mist 2: Leibstandarte During the Ardennes Offensive

One of my favorite current WWII publishers has to be the tag team duo of Lee Archer and Bill Auerbach of Panzerwrecks.  This international dreamnteam has been meticulously researching and compiling books on knocked-out German armor since 2005; focusing on amateur photographs of (often) never-before-seen scenes of German armor moments after destruction by US forces during WWII.

In a world filled with overused and reprinted images, it’s a refreshing relief to open a new copy of Panzerwrecks and see new images of late war German armor with wonderful descriptions.  A balance of tongue-in-cheek humor mixed with meticulous research offers the reader with a book worthy of a well-stocked research library or office coffee table.


I recently finished my review copy of Duel in the Mist 2 published by Panzerwrecks and written by Timm Haasler, Roddy MacDougall, Simon Vosters and Hans Weber.  With nearly 700 footnotes (really!), this book is well reseached, cited, and backed up with primary source documentation that includes first hand accounts, after-action reports, photographs and veteran interviews.  A well balanced piece; Duel in the Mist 2 views the initial battles of the Ardennes Offensive through a non-biased lens.  Interviews with US veterans easily mesh with similar accounts from SS veterans.

The superlative collection of wartime images compiled for the book is, by far, the most amazing part of the book.  Images from the deep collections of David Thompson and Stefan De Meyer of AMC, Bill Auerbach, Jeff Tomkinson, Freddy Lemaire, Gerard Gregoire, Eddy Monfort, Tom Fischer and many others supplement the written component.

Artistic representations of German armor were intricically detailed by Simon Vosters, with a special attention to detail regarding camo patterns.  This, combined with actual portraits of the men involved in the battles, provides the reader with an intimate view of WWII not often seen in other publications.

A series of intensive maps follows the progression of the battles using modern day color and figures.  An easy-to-follow chart accompanies each map, allowing the reader to follow the battle with relative ease.  Flipping back and forth between maps is made easier by the 8.5 in by 10.25 in format of the book.  The pages want to be turned!

A special thanks to the guys at Panzerwrecks for providing me with a review copy of Duel in the Mist 2, and a special thanks to Timm Haasler, Roddy MacDougall, Simon Vosters and Hans Weber for their fantastic work.  Keep up the good work, and I hope to review Duel in the Mist 3 by 2014!



Interested in picking up a copy of Duel in the Mist 2?  Check out Panzerwrecks website for a compendium of top notch WWII material!



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