The author is Ben H. Shepherd and the subtitle is The German Army in the Third Reich. That may seem like a timeworn topic, but I found this book consistently fresh and interesting, also well-written, analytic throughout, one of the year’s best non-fiction studies. Here is one bit:
Two occupied populations whom the German army particularly tried to cultivate were the Muslim peoples of the Crimea and the Caucasus. The Sunni Tatars comprised a quarter of the Crimea’s population, and German army administrators saw them, as they would also come to see their Muslim brethren in the Caucasus, as presenting an opportunity to woo Islam in the Soviet Union for political and military gain. The Germans granted the Tatars religious rights and concessions and reintroduced major religious holidays, and Manstein’s otherwise infamous November 1941 order required his troops to treat the Tatars with respect…the Germans appointed a Muslim committee to re-establish the religious infrastructure.
…Yet the failings of German occupation were soon apparent to these Muslim peoples.
Overall the message is that the German army was less effective and less moral [sic] than many other historians had suggested. Recommended.