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The Longest Day

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  18,084 ratings  ·  476 reviews
The classic account of the Allied invasion of Normandy.

The Longest Day is Cornelius Ryan's unsurpassed account of D-Day, a book that endures as a masterpiece of military history. In this compelling tale of courage and heroism, glory and tragedy, Ryan painstakingly recreates the fateful hours that preceded and followed the massive invasion of Normandy to retell the story of
Paperback, First Touchstone Edition, 350 pages
Published May 1st 1994 by Simon Schuster (first published 1959)
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Pramod Nair
Feb 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
6 June 1944 is a day that can be seen as the pivotal point of World War II, which definitely swung the momentum of war in favor of the Allied forces. It was a day when the allied forces successfully opened the final European phase of the World War II by invading and gaining footholds on the shores of France, which was the first step, aimed at freeing the continent from Nazi occupation. The Longest Day from Cornelius Ryan is a masterpiece of military history and a true classic, which gives the re ...more
May 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
The most surprising thing about Cornelius Ryan’s D-Day classic The Longest Day is how short it is. Despite its epic subject matter – and despite the prodigious length of the epic movie that followed its publication – The Longest Day comes in at under 300 pages. This, combined with Ryan’s novelistic writing style, made for a surprisingly quick read.

Ryan was an Irish-born war correspondent who saw World War II firsthand. He flew along on bomber missions with the U.S. Air Force and was later embed
BAM The Bibliomaniac
Dec 09, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: library, wwii
I think the only reason I didn't rate this higher is the audio narrator, although the format of the book also wasn't to my taste. I just felt like a timeline was being regurgitated instead of having a story told. What is so amazing to me is just how active this one day in June was, and how it almost felt apart.
Bob Mayer
Jun 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Today, on the 72nd anniversary of D-Day, this book is as relevant as ever. I read it as a youngster and have re-read it. There are some days that pivotal in world history and 6 June 1944 is certainly one of them. To learn the history of that day from all perspectives, winners, losers, innocents caught up in it, is to understand the width and depth of the human experience. When researching this day, this year for my own D-Day book, I learned more with each page re-read.
I recommend this book and
Nandakishore Varma
The Allies messed up the Normandy invasion.

The Germans messed up the defence even more.

Therefore, the Allies won World War II.

In the process, quite a lot of people died needlessly.

End of story.
Nov 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Shelves: ww2
One of the greatest books about WWII and D-Day. I've read it and seen the movie many times. Always good to go back and reread the stories of our hero WWII soldiers for inspiration and gratitude.
Jun 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all military buffs
My first comment in Goodreads about this book is: "an orgasmic experience". Haha, I know some people will be intrigued by such clause (and I did receive one comment). Anyway, I did mean it. This book is orgasmic. Seriously.

For those who’ve seen the movie, better erase it from your memory. This kind of book can not be shortened into a three-hour movie, it has to become a series. And maybe have to be directed by someone like Steven Spielberg, LOL. It is not only about D-Day, but also about the bac
Steven Z.
Nov 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
On June 6, 2019 thousands will descend onto the beaches of Normandy to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the allied landing that would eventually bring an end to Nazi domination of Europe during World War II. Since my wife and I plan on traveling to Normandy at that time I felt it was important to read the latest works on the topic. It made sense to me to reread Cornelius Ryan’s THE LONGEST DAY, first published in 1959, a book that has not lost its resonance to this day. As I began to familiar ...more
Apr 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book of Cornelius Ryan's World War II trilogy and, having now read them all, it turns out I saved the best for last. His method of storytelling served this turning point of history well and gave a sense of tension and suspense that was remarkable especially since the ultimate outcome was already well known. If you are interested in an exciting and captivating telling of one of the most momentous events of the 20th century look no further - this it. A true classic.
Mar 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a fucking excellent book that was! This book really did live up to its hype..

It is such a detailed and researched book, that surprisingly delivered a brilliant novel-like storytelling narrative in under 400 pages.

Excellent writing. Excellent storytelling. Excellent detailing. Excellent narratives by all sides involved on the D-day invasion, which includes the American, British, French, Canadian, polish and other allied soldiers, the Germans as well as the normal Normandy civilians who were
Amr Mohamed

كنت عايز اضيف الى معلوماتي عن الحرب العالمية الثانية ....الحمد الله معلوماتي قلت بعد قراءة الكتاب ده

المفروض أنه بيحكي عن يوم مهم جدا وهو بداية تحرير الحلفاء لأوروبا وموقعة نورماندي..لكن الكتاب سئ الصراحة كانه بيحكي فيلم.

حاسس انه بيحشي الكتاب بأى كلام ومفيش أى مصادر للمعلومات اللى فى الكتاب ... وتفاصيل ملهاش لازمة ...رغي كتير عن كل حاجة...عن النزول بالمظلات ...والجسور والسفن...وكل قائد ألماني كان فين ساعة الغزو ورومل فى الحمام .. وكان واحد فيهم تقريبا فى حفلة في عيد ميلاد تقريباً .

وقاعد بيحكي موا
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Oct 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Lisa (Harmonybites) by: Ultimate Reading List - History
The title is taken from a quote of Field Marshall Edwin Rommel, who commanded the German forces defending the Atlantic Wall against invasion, "...the first 24 hours of the invasion will be decisive...the fate of Germany depends on the outcome...for the Allies, as well as Germany, it will be the longest day." That day came on June 6, 1944, and Ryan gives an account not just of that day, but the lead up. The book, in fact, is split into 3 parts--"The Wait," "The Night" and "The Day." It has a stro ...more
Amie Geyman
Sep 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a fantastic book! Ryan gave a detailed review from every prospective of D-Day.
Sep 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
A masterpiece of historical narrative, this book was an engaging read. Would have given it five stars, if the the author had excluded the military language, which sadly includes blasphemy. Not a book I would advise for children. The account of D-Day is vivid and violent. I'm astounded how so many details to fell into place in favor of the Allied forces and how so much went wrong for the Germans. It can only be described as divine intervention.
Oct 26, 2014 rated it really liked it

I have seen this movie six or seven times and somehow I had no idea it was a book!

This was a great telling of D-Day and any fan of military history should read this one.
Jill Hutchinson
I finished this book three days after the 71st anniversary of D-Day, the Allied landings in Hitler's Fortress Europa. I have no idea why I never read this classic history before since I am a military buff and am interested in anything about WWII (and WWI, as well). I was impressed by the author's approach to the telling of Operation Overlord, the largest invasion in history......he used the words of survivors of that bloody day to tell the story as well as some pictures that had not been seen be ...more
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: military, non-fiction
Great stuff! Not quite the epic - in terms of length or scope - as Ryan's The Last Battle, but every bit as gratifying.

D-Day - 24 hours. Tick, tock... The agony and the ecstasy - the glory and the ignominy - inspired decisions and catastrophic mistakes - bravery and cowardice - cost and carnage - luck and fate - sacrifice, death, destruction, and liberation - steaming (and sinking), flying (and crashing), jumping, swimming, wading, running, walking, crawling, climbing, and, yes, fighting - momen
Hayder Hasan
Mar 17, 2017 rated it liked it
3.8 stars
This was surprisingly enjoyable.
Feb 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Cornelius Ryan, a war correspondent during WW II and afterward, published this book in 1959, and, despite there having been many subsequent memoirs and government documents relating to the events he describes, memoirs and documents providing further information, nonetheless this remains a classic account of D-Day in June, 1944, the invasion of the German-occupied European continent by the Allies in Normandy, France.

Anticipating the invasion, German Field Marshall Erwin Rommel said to his aide in
Jun 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, war, wwii
Though we have all so many images of D-Day from movies and Memorial Day remembrances it was good to go to this text which dealt with this day. It is always amazing what we accomplished logistically, back when it was run under the civil service under military control, before the time of computers when people did all of that amazing work on a writing pad, but their minds held info on just about where everything was, where it was or knew who to call who knew where signaling mirrors were stored. So ...more
Laura Bacon
May 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The Longest Day: A Riveting Epic about June 6, 1944
The world is full of history, it is made everyday. But on June 6, 1944, also known as D-Day, was when the Allies invaded Normandy during World War II, drastically changing it. Cornelius Ryan captures it perfectly.
Ryan begins his nonfiction tale with the planning of Operation Overlord and the amount of work involved with trying to execute it. He shows how the Germans were making preparations for any invasion and how hard it was for the Allied c
احمد عبد الفضيل
إننا عندما نضع على أجسامنا الرداء العسكرى لا نهتم بالمعارك إلا عندما نخوضها .
كتاب أطول يوم فى التاريخ
الكاتب كورنليس ريان
ترجمة محمد مرسى ابو الليل .
اليوم المقصود هو يوم 6 يونية 1944
وسبب التسمية مقولة اطلقها رومل الألمانى خلال الحرب العالمية الثانية وهو اليوم الذى سمى من قبل الحلفاء بيوم الغزو وبداية تحرير أوروبا من قبضة هتلر وقد تحقق ذلك بعد سنة من تاريخ هذا اليوم .
Dhiraj Sharma
Feb 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The Longest Day is among the top ten books ever written about World War-II and the best book on D Day (the Allied Invasion of German occupied France)

The author had done meticulous research on the subject matter and interviewed numerous persons (soldiers and civilians alike) present on that fateful day on Normandy within (before and after) 24 hours of the invasion.

The book slwoly builds up the excitement and suspense of impending Allied invasion, the pathfinder and airborne raid and the final att
A.L. Sowards
Nov 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I've read a lot about D-day, but hadn't gotten around to reading this book until recently. It's good. I wished it would have covered a little more--gone until the amphibious troops linked up with the paratroopers. But I guess then they would have had to call it The Longest Day, plus a few after and that wouldn't sound as good.
Aug 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
For such a short work on such a historical day, Ryan packs enough information for anyone looking for more than an overview, but less than a tome on the subject. Thoroughly researched and strongly written.
Apr 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Not typically my genre of books, but in efforts to learn more about the history of Normandy for our upcoming trip, I started reading last night and can not put this book down. It reads like a riveting novel, but constantly reminding myself this isn't fiction!
Jan 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Film only
Edouard Stenger
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a stellar read this was. Very well researched, thrilling from first to last page, this book is a must if you want to learn out more about the D Day, when the Allied forces landed on European soil to free nations from Fascism and Nazism.

Hundreds of testimonials were collected and compiled and it shows all sides of the story. From the German to the US with a good portion about what the French resistance and population was going through.

Sure, there is some very sad stories there. It is a book
Jul 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a detailed look at D-Day, starting a couple of days beforehand, right through the entire day, June 6, 1944. Originally written in 1959, the book is based on questionnaires and interviews with many people who were there. We get to see what happened from various points of view – the Allies, the Germans, and even some of the French civilians living in Normandy at the time of the attack. This book brings you to the shores of the five beaches: Utah, Omaha, Juno, Sword and Gold, as well as Poi ...more
Josh Stowers
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My First World War 2 book and what a experience. Truly amazed at the vivid details that we have June 6th that morning many years ago. Sobering book that showed the true nature of D-Day. A wonderful retelling of the longest day.
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ACPL Online Book ...: The Longest Day-November 2 2 Nov 08, 2017 08:41AM  
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Ryan was born in Dublin. After finishing his education Ryan moved to London in 1940, and became a war correspondent for ''The Daily Telegraph'' in 1941.

He initially covered the air war in Europe during WW II, flew along on fourteen bombing missions with the Eighth Air Force and Ninth Air Force United States Army Air Forces (USAAF), then joined General Patton's Third Third Army and covered its act
“Wearily, he swung the glasses over to the left again. Slowly, he tracked across the horizon. He reached the dead center of the bay. The glasses stopped moving. Pluskat tensed, stared hard. Through the scattering, thinning mist the horizon was magically filling with ships—ships of every size and description, ships that casually maneuvered back and forth as though they had been there for hours. There appeared to be thousands of them. It was a ghostly armada that somehow had appeared from nowhere. Pluskat stared in frozen disbelief, speechless, moved as he had never been before in his life. At that moment the world of the good soldier Pluskat began falling apart. He says in those first few moments he knew, calmly and surely, that “this was the end for Germany.” 6 likes
“By morning an immense fleet of five thousand ships would stand off the invasion beaches of Normandy.” 1 likes
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