The Gothic Line: Canada’s Month of Hell in World War II Italy In this third volume of his critically acclaimed trilogy tracing Canada’s involvement in World War II’s Italian campaign, Mark Zuehlke vividly recounts the Battle of the Gothic Line. The line was meant to be impregnable, a final fortified position that would enable the battered German divisions to bring the Allied advance up Italy’s boot to a decisive halt. On August 25, 1944, it fell to the soldiers of I Canadian Corps to spearhead the British Eighth Army’s attempt to rip a hole in the line. For the...Read More
Month: November 2015
Ortona: Canada’s Epic World War II Battle In one blood-soaked, furious week of fighting, from December 20 to December 27, 1943, the 1st Canadian Infantry Division took Ortona, Italy, from elite German paratroopers ordered to hold the medieval port town at all costs. Infantrymen serving in the Loyal Edmonton Regiment and the Seaforth Highlanders, supported by tankers of the Three Rivers Regiment, moved from house to house in hand-to-hand combat amid heavy shelling and wrested the town from the grip of the fierce German defenders. When the vicious battle was over, 2,339 Canadians were dead or wounded. But the...Read More
Excerpt From Operation Husky All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced in any form without permission of the author. Chapter 7: Call This a Fight? From Bark West, 1st Canadian Infantry Division’s inland advance in the early morning hours of July 10 proceeded rapidly. On the division’s right flank, Royal Canadian Regiment captain Slim Liddell’s ‘A’ Company made a beeline across country towards Maucini. Although it showed on the maps as a village, the place consisted only of a large house with a few nearby outbuildings. Captain Strome Galloway’s ‘B’ Company was a little slower...Read More
The B.C. Fact Book: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About British Columbia. Find out what makes Canada’s most westernmost province so unique. The B.C. Fact Book presents an eclectic mix of information ranging from archaeology and politics to Nanaimo bars and killer whales, and from the Abbotsford International Airshow to Yoho National Park. Published by Whitecap Books, 1995: 253 pages. Reviews: The Georgia Straight A boon to anyone planning to spend an aimless holiday tooling around the...Read More
Forgotten Victory: First Canadian Army and the Cruel Winter of 1944–45. During the winter of 1944–45, the western Allies desperately sought a strategy that would lead to Germany’s quick defeat. From the Swiss border to the North Sea hundreds of thousands of soldiers in trenches and dugouts suffered through the bitterest weather Europe had experienced in fifty years while their generals debated and schemed. Finally, on February 8, 1945, advancing on the heels of the greatest artillery bombardment fired by the western Allies, First Canadian Army launched the offensive meant to win the war. The army’s combined Canadian and...Read More
About the Author
Mark Zuehlke is an award-winning author generally considered to be Canada’s foremost popular military historian. His Canadian Battle Series is the most exhaustive recounting of the battles and campaigns fought by any nation during World War II to have been written by a single author.
In recognition of his contribution to popularizing Canadian history, Mark was awarded the 2014 Governor General’s History Award for Popular Media: The Pierre Berton Award. In 2007, his For Honour’s Sake: The War of 1812 and the Brokering of an Uneasy Peace won the Canadian Author’s Association Lela Common Award for Canadian History. The Canadian Battle Series Holding Juno captured the City of Victoria Butler Book Prize in 2006. Mark is also an award winning mystery writer, whose popular Elias McCann series has garnered much critical praise in Canada and abroad. Set in storm-swept west Vancouver Island village of Tofino, the series follows the reluctant community coroner Elias McCann. Hands Like Clouds, the debut in this series, won the Crime Writer’s of Canada’s Arthur Ellis Award for the 2000 Best First Novel and the third instalment, Sweep Lotus, was nominated for the 2004 Arthur Ellis Best Novel. When not writing, this Victoria, British Columbia resident can often be found tinkering around the Fernwood heritage house he shares with partner and fellow writer Frances Backhouse. He enjoys hiking, backpacking, cycling, kayaking, travelling, and cooking.