Published in Russia in 2008, Krysov's memoir offers an exceptional dive into the most intense and violent, but also the most dramatic, tank battles on the Eastern Front during World War II.
Sometimes compared to the famous Panzer ace, Otto Carius, Vasiliy Krysov will fight without interruption from 1942 to 1945. Wounded three times and surviving the destruction of four of his machines, the man crisscrossed the entire eastern front , from the gates of Stalingrad to the fortress of Königsberg. In doing so, he came up against the most powerful and experienced German mechanized units, such as the "Leibstandarte" or the "Totenkopf" and "Wiking" divisions.
Krysov meticulously describes his engagements against these tough, determined, well-equipped adversaries, recounting in detail his duels with the most dangerous Panzers, including the formidable Tiger and Panther. Moreover, the Russian hides nothing of the heavy price paid by the tank crews of the Red Army.
Far from being a propagandist pamphlet to the glory of the Soviet Union, the text also addresses the difficult fate of women in the Red Army, or even the favoritism shown towards members of the Communist Party in official reports and awarding of decorations and promotions.
Krysov's memoirs are an essential addition to the growing list of texts by Red Army veterans that have emerged in recent years.