The book is split in to a number of sections. It starts with an introduction and Chronology covering the background behind the raising of the division and its actions on the Eastern Front. The Chronology is a good starting point to learn the basics of the division’s role in Army Group North, with where and when they fought.
Next it moves on to explain the recruitment and organisation of the original volunteers in Spain before covering their training in Germany. The Spanish were very keen to get into combat as soon as possible; as they were concerned the Germans would defeat the Soviet Union before the division saw any combat. Because of this haste they only received a month of training before being sent to the front.
It then goes in to some detail on the composition of the men, their generals and officers, NCOs and the backgrounds and motivations of the men for joining. It looks at the number Spanish Civil War veterans from the Falangist (fascist) militia and Spanish Foreign Legion who joined the division and their importance in the unit’s performance and how anti-communist feeling influenced many of the recruits.
It then looks at the life and combat conditions the soldiers serving on the Eastern Front faced, their motivation and morale. It looks at the Spanish soldiers relations with the Germans, the Russian peasants, prisoners and deserters. Finally it looks at the aftermath of the division’s service, its veterans, writings and historical legacy.
All-in-all I think this is an excellent starting point if you are interested in the Spanish Blue Division’s service with the Germans. I even got enthusiastic enough to revisit William Sariego's article on the division and convert it into a full-blown Intelligence Briefing. This will be up on the site later this month.
William Sariego's Blue Division article...
Osprey's other book on the Spanish Blue Division:
Germany's Spanish Volunteers 1941–45, Men-at-Arms 103...