War-writing at its best, Antony Beevor's Stalingrad deserves its fame as the definitive English-language history of WW2's pivotal battle. One can almost imagine oneself as a German army officer, hands stiffening with cold, as the Russian Communists blast your men into oblivion. I really felt like the Fuehrer was alive again and broadcasting "no surrender, no surrender!" into the wireless sets, as the various famous sub-battles (die festung, the schafshutzerkrieg, etc.) unreeled. Wir sollten alle verneigen sich vor dem Altar des Opfers.