The Battle of the Bulge took the Allied armies by surprise in 1944. It was a result of the extraordinary recovery of Hitler's panzer divisions following crushing defeats on the Eastern and Western fronts. In a daring offensive he hoped his panzers would unhinge the American and British push on the Rhine by charging through the Schnee Eifel, thereby prolonging the war. The consequence was one of the best-known battles of the entire conflict, and Anthony Tucker-Jones's photographic history is the ideal introduction to it. The story is told through a sequence of revealing contemporary photographs and a concise text. They give a sharp insight into the planning and decision-making, the armored forces involved, the terrain and the appalling mid-winter conditions, the front-line fighting and the experience of the troops involved. The armored battle, which was critical to the outcome, is the main focus. Through a massive tank offensive the Germans aimed to cut through the US 1st Army to Antwerp and Brussels, in the process trapping three Allied armies. The confusion and near collapse of the Americans as their defenses were overrun is vividly recorded in the photographs, as is their resistance and recovery as the German spearheads were slowed, then stopped.