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"Book on WW2 naval engagements" Topic

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Armournaut11 Dec 2022 1:05 p.m. PST

I am looking to get into WW2 naval wargaming – probably starting with the Med and the Atlantic.
I'm interested in finding a decent book (or books) which gives a basic breakdown on the historic engagements of this period perhaps with a basic run down of the battles and the ships involved.

Can anyone suggest anything suitable…?


JMcCarroll11 Dec 2022 1:44 p.m. PST

Best to pick a battle and then goggle it.

Personal logo Saber6 Supporting Member of TMP Fezian11 Dec 2022 1:49 p.m. PST

Check Offical Histories

Inch High Guy11 Dec 2022 3:42 p.m. PST

For the USN in WWII read "The Two Ocean War" by Samuel Elliot Morrison.

Then check out "The First Team" by John Lundsrom, and "Shattered Sword" by Parshall and Tully.

"Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors" by James Hornfischer should also be on the list.

Duncan Adams11 Dec 2022 4:39 p.m. PST

For a good overview of the naval war in the Med try

"Struggle for the Middle Sea"
Vincent P. O'Hara
Naval Institute, 2009


Personal logo McKinstry Supporting Member of TMP Fezian11 Dec 2022 5:09 p.m. PST

If the Med is your primary focus, I also recommend O'Hara.

BillyNM11 Dec 2022 10:03 p.m. PST

O'Hara is great for a history of the Med campaign, but for setting up wargames I'd recommend:
Sea Battles in Close Up: World War 2 (vol.s 1 & 2)
by Eric Grove and Martin Stephen.
Both readily available on eBay:

colkitto12 Dec 2022 4:14 a.m. PST

+1 BillyNM

Armournaut12 Dec 2022 5:06 a.m. PST

Many thanks for the suggestions.

ddasawe12 Dec 2022 4:00 p.m. PST

History books you can find a lot in those old museums and documentaries.
dynamons world

Thresher0112 Dec 2022 7:49 p.m. PST

Not a lot of engagements in the Atlantic, other than for the U-boat War on the convoys.

Hunt for the Bismarck, and Battle of the River Platte are two good ones.

Barents Sea had some engagements of major German surface units and DDs vs. Allied vessels and convoys.

There is the early war DD battle in Norwegian waters too, which is quite interesting, as well as small clashes in the North Sea and English Channel between various units.

Thresher0112 Dec 2022 7:50 p.m. PST

Wikipedia offers a good overview of naval battles in the Med. with the Italian Navy vs. the British.

Armournaut15 Dec 2022 5:28 a.m. PST

Thanks again. I would also like to add that I found this title which looks very good and which may be of some use to other readers of this thread:

WAR AT SEA A NAVAL ATLAS 1939-1945 by Marcus Faulkner

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2022 2:53 p.m. PST

Recommend the 2-volume Sea Battles in Close Up series, available new or used from Amazon:



Armournaut16 Dec 2022 12:05 p.m. PST

Thanks Hinds – they were recommended by BillyNM earlier in the thread and I have them both on order.

Pontius01 Jan 2023 4:07 a.m. PST

An interesting but little-known battle is the Battle of the Bay of Biscay, 28th December 1943. Involving British 6" cruisers HMS Glasgow and HMS Enterprise and on the German side a destroyer flotilla and a torpedo-boat flotilla. This is can also be played in several "what if" scenarios. I think this is covered by O'Hara.

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