The latest volume in the magisterial Germany and the Second World War series, volume VIII deals with one of the most eventful phases of the Second World War: the battles on the eastern front in 1943 and 1944. In no other period of the war, apart from its concluding phase in 1945, did the Wehrmacht suffer such enormous losses. The land battles of those years, first and foremost the battle of Kursk in the summer of 1943, were among the biggest in world history. In the winter of 1943/44 the Red Army showed itself for the first time capable of conducting large-scale offensives against all German army groups simultaneously. It was no longer a matter of isolated flare-ups: the whole eastern front was in flames. The dramatic climax was reached in the summer of 1944, when the collapse of Army Group Centre led to what was then the heaviest defeat in German military history. It was nevertheless overshadowed by events on the western front, with the Allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944. And it is that which dominates perceptions in western societies to this day and has relegated the catastrophe in the east, despite its unprecedented proportions, to the rank of an almost 'forgotten war'.