The Day of Battle

The War in Sicily and Italy, 1943-1944

Volume Two of the Liberation Trilogy

“A triumph of narrative history, elegantly written, thick with unforgettable description and rooted in the sight and sounds of battle.”
—The New York Times

In An Army at Dawn—winner of the Pulitzer Prize—Rick Atkinson provided a dramatic and authoritative history of the Allied triumph in North Africa. Now, in The Day of Battle, he follows the strengthening American and British armies as they invade Sicily in July 1943 and then, mile by bloody mile, fight their way north toward Rome.

The Italian campaign’s outcome was never certain; in fact, Roosevelt, Churchill, and their military advisers engaged in heated debate about whether an invasion of the so-called soft underbelly of Europe was even a good idea. But once under way, the commitment to liberate Italy from the Nazis never wavered, despite the agonizingly high price. The battles at Salerno, Anzio, and Monte Cassino were particularly difficult and lethal, yet as the months passed, the Allied forces continued to drive the Germans up the Italian peninsula. Led by Lieutenant General Mark Clark, one of the war’s most complex and controversial commanders, American officers and soldiers became increasingly determined and proficient. And with the liberation of Rome in June 1944, ultimate victory at last began to seem inevitable.

Drawing on a wide array of primary source material, written with great drama and flair, this is narrative history of the first rank. With The Day of Battle, Atkinson has once again given us the definitive account of one of history’s most compelling military campaigns.

Book Information

848 pages
Includes thirty-two pages of pictures and twenty maps
ISBN: 0-8050-8861-X
ISBN-13: 978-08050-8861-8

Abridged Compact Disc, 8 discs
Read by Rick Atkinson
ISBN-10: 0-7435-2797-6
ISBN-13: 978-0-7435-2797-2
Listen to a sample:

816 pages
Includes thirty-two pages of pictures and twenty maps
ISBN: 0-8050-6289-0
ISBN-13: 978-08050-6289-2

Additional WWII Resources

Readers eager to learn more about the campaign in Western Europe have no shortage of resources from which to choose. Rick Atkinson has compiled a list of other books, documents, and websites available for further study.

Find out more »