Books on Bunkers

Over the years I have collected a great number of books and reference material on the Atlantikwall, D-Day, the units that covered individual regions, defensive strong points and general World War Two reading.

Here are some of the best books in my collection worth checking out:


Bunkers and occupation in South Holland

Bunkers and occupation in South Holland
by Arthur van Beveren & Jeroen Rijpsma

‘Atlantikwall Map, Bunkers and Occupation in South Holland’ describes the story of the Atlantic Wall in South Holland on the basis of 120 unique maps and plans and dozens of photos from archives and private collections in the Netherlands and abroad. Thematically, the book deals with the planning and construction of the defenses, the occupation force, the consequences for the civilian population, exercises and actual combat on land, at sea and in the air, and finally the aftermath of five years of occupation. This broad and in-depth approach has resulted in a new standard work. The book has no less than 328 pages in large format, so that the maps and photos come into their own.

To purchase on their web site click here.



Attack on Concrete: Driving the Germans from their concrete defences in Northwest Europe
by Dave Thurlow

Operation Overlord, the Allied assault upon Normandy on June 6 1944, is arguably the greatest feat in military history. On that momentous day, the Allies pierced Hitler’s feared Atlantic Wall. Within three months, the Allies were on the German border and faced the Siegfried Line.

This book, consulting a wide range of primary and secondary sources, makes an original contribution to D-Day and the battles for the Siegfried Line by informing the reader on how the assault doctrines used evolved. This book will be essential reading for anyone interested in Second World War fortifications and methods to overcome them, the D-Day assault and the battles for the Siegfried Line. It will also be of interest to those with an interest in Second World War archaeology, giving context to the extant remains of structures used for training and experimenting in methods to breach Hitler’s West Walls.

To purchase on Amazon click here.



Building the Gort Line: The BEF and its Defences in France 1939-40
by Dave Thurlow

The main theme of this book is the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) and the defenses it constructed in France during September 1939-May 1940. Although there have been many books written about the BEF, virtually all deal with the campaign in France and Flanders that cumulated in the evacuation from Dunkirk. No detailed account has ever been published on the defenses the BEF built in the Secteur Défensive de Lille – the front allocated to it by the French – along the Franco-Belgium border. This account of the Gort Line aims to fill this gap in our knowledge of Second War defences.

To purchase on Amazon click here.



A Very Hostile Night: The Regina Rifles in Bretteville-l’Orgueilleuse, 8/9 June 1944
By Sean Claxton


On 6 June, 1944, The Regina Rifles landed on Juno Beach and quickly moved inland. Despite heavy casualties on D-Day, by the 7th they had secured the small town of Bretteville-l’Orgueilleuse.

Little did they know that over the next few days, they would be engaged in a series of desperate battles against elements of the 12.SS-Panzerdivision “Hitler Jugend.” The Regina’s were struck by wave after wave of the Waffen-SS, who committed their units in an effort to throw the invaders back into the sea.

With the aid of eyewitness accounts, contemporary photos, and detailed maps, you can visit the scenes of these battles and see how they unfolded from the perspective of those on both sides of the conflict. There is no better way to learn about history than to walk the ground where it happened. This book allows the reader to conduct a self-guided tour in less than a day.

Walk in the footsteps of history and experience the heroic stand of one of Canada’s most tenacious regiments, The Regina Rifles.

To purchase on Amazon click here



The Architecture of War
by Keith Mallory and Arvid Otter

My first book (and well worn it is!) on the subject of casemates, bunkers and the architecture of the Third Reich’s construction projects and still all these years later a wonderful reference book. The book also covers the French Maginot Line in great detail as well as other areas of interest.



The Atlantic Wall
History and Guide
J.E. Kaufmann, H.W. Kaufmann,
A. Jankovic-Potocnik, Vladimir Tonic

This book is an absolute must have when doing research on the Atlantikwall either in the field or in the comfort of your own home. This is a treasure trove of information about the Atlantikwall bunkers. I loved the book so much that I also bought the digital version so I could use it as a reference guide on the 2016 trip to France and Belgium.



The Atlantic Wall (2)
Steven J. Zaloga
Illustrated by Adam Hook

The Osprey series of military books offer a fine set of reference material. This book covers the Atlantikwall from Belgium, The Netherlands, Denmark and Norway.





D-DAY Fortifications in Normandy
Steven J. Zaloga
Illustrated by Hugh Johnson

Another of the fine books from the Osprey series. This book covers the Atlantik Wall fortifications in Normandy. This is a great book which I used on both the 2013 and 2016 visits to Normandy.





Bunker Archeology
Paul Virilio

Probably the finest book ever published on the subject of Atlantikwall Bunkers. First published in French in the mid 1970’s this book has now been reprinted in English. Despite it’s cost it is an absolute wealth of information from exquisite and rare photographs to typology and timeline. This is a must have in any collection.

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