Since its publication in 1960, William L. Shirer’s monumental study of Hitler’s German empire has been widely acclaimed as the definitive record of the 20th century’s blackest hours. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich offers an unparalleled and thrillingly told examination of how Adolf Hitler nearly succeeded in conquering the world. With millions of copies in print around the globe, it has attained the status of a vital and enduring classic.
For Australians, Kokoda is the iconic battle of World War II, yet few people know just what happened and just what our troops achieved. Now, best-selling author Peter FitzSimons tells the Kokoda story in a gripping, moving story for all Australians.
"Compulsory listening...we must know this."
In 1989, the Berlin Wall fell; shortly afterwards the two Germanies reunited, and East Germany ceased to exist. Anna Funder tells extraordinary tales from the underbelly of the former East Germany. In a country where the headquarters of the secret police could become a museum literally overnight, and one in 50 East Germans were informing on their fellow citizens, there are thousands of captivating stories.
In the early days of April 1941, the 14,000 Australian forces garrisoned in the Libyan town of Tobruk were told to expect reinforcements and supplies within eight weeks. Eight months later these heroic, gallant, determined "Rats of Tobruk" were rescued by the British Navy having held the fort against the might of Rommel's never-before-defeated Afrika Corps.
"high quality ,very tougher inclusive of many sides"
The story begins in 1629, when the pride of the Dutch East India Company, the Batavia, is on its maiden voyage en route from Amsterdam to the Dutch East Indies, laden down with the greatest treasure to leave Holland. The magnificent ship is already boiling over with a mutinous plot that is just about to break into the open when, just off the coast of Western Australia, it strikes an unseen reef in the middle of the night. While Commandeur Francisco Pelsaert decides to take the longboat across 2,000 miles of open sea for help, his second-in-command Jeronimus Cornelisz takes over....
"Batavia - the worst voice ever"
On 25 April 1915, Allied forces landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula in present-day Turkey to secure the sea route between Britain and France in the west and Russia in the east. After eight months of terrible fighting, they would fail. Turkey regards the victory to this day as a defining moment in its history, a heroic last stand in the defence of the nation's Ottoman Empire.
"Essential reading for every Australian."
There have been many biographies of Stalin, but the court that surrounded him is untravelled ground. Simon Sebag Montefiore, acclaimed biographer of Catherine the Great's lover, prime minister, and general, Potemkin, has unearthed the vast underpinning that sustained Stalin. Not only ministers such as Molotov or secret service chiefs such as Beria, but men and women whose loyalty he trusted only until the next purge.
The point of The Churchill Factor is that one man can make all the difference. On the eve of the 50th anniversary of Winston Churchill's death, Boris Johnson explores what makes up the 'Churchill Factor' - the singular brilliance of one of the most important leaders of the 20th century.
"Fascinating book excellent narration"
While the Nazi party was being condemned by much of the world for burning books, they were already hard at work perpetrating an even greater literary crime. Through extensive new research that included records saved by the Monuments Men themselves, Anders Rydell tells the untold story of Nazi book theft, as he himself joins the effort to return the stolen books. When the Nazi soldiers ransacked Europe's libraries and bookshops, large and small, the books they stole were not burned. Instead, the Nazis began to compile a library of their own.
In this final volume of a towering work that is both literary masterpiece and living memorial to the untold millions of Soviet martyrs, Solzhenitsyn's epic narrative moves to its astounding and unforseen climax. We now see that this great cathedral of a book not only commemorates those massed victims but celebrates the unquenched spirit of resistance that flickered and then burst into flame even in Stalin's "special camps."
It was a war without mercy, fought back and forth along 90 miles of river crossings, steep inclines and precipitous descents, with both sides wracked by hunger and disease, and terrified of falling into enemy hands. Defeat was unthinkable: the Australian soldier was fighting for his homeland against an unyielding aggressor; the Japanese ordered to fight to the death in a bid to conquer ‘Greater East Asia’.
In August of 1914, the British ship Endurance set sail for the South Atlantic. In October, 1915, still half a continent away from its intended base, the ship was trapped, then crushed in the ice. For five months, Sir Ernest Shackleton and his men, drifting on ice packs, were castaways in one of the most savage regions of the world.
"The perfect audiobook"
Drawing on previously unpublished eyewitness accounts, prizewinning historian Donald L. Miller has written what critics are calling one of the most powerful accounts of warfare ever published. Here are the horror and heroism of World War II in the words of the men who fought it, the journalists who covered it, and the civilians who were caught in its fury. Miller gives us an up-close, deeply personal view of a war that was more savagely fought - and whose outcome was in greater doubt - than one might imagine. This is the war that Americans on the home front would have read about had they had access to previously censored testimony.
"Best Audible Book I've Listened To!"
The definitive account of Germany's malign transformation under Hitler's total rule and the implacable march to war. This magnificent second volume of Richard J. Evans's three-volume history of Nazi Germany was hailed by Benjamin Schwartz of The Atlantic Monthly as "the definitive English-language account... gripping and precise." It chronicles the incredible story of Germany's radical reshaping under Nazi rule.
Remember Us is a look back at the lost world of the shtetl: a wise Zayde offering prophetic and profound words to his grandson, the rich experience of Shabbos, and the treasure of a loving family. All this is torn apart with the arrival of the Holocaust, beginning a crucible fraught with twists and turns so unpredictable and surprising that they defy any attempt to find reason within them. Through the eyes of 91-year-old Holocaust survivor Martin Small, we learn that these priceless memories that are too painful to remember are also too painful to forget.
Drawing on hundreds of accounts by soldiers, politicians, aid workers, entertainers and the Vietnamese people, Paul Ham reconstructs for the first time the full history of our longest military campaign. From the commitment to engage, through the fight over conscription and the rise of the anti - war movement, to the tactics and horror of the battlefi eld, Ham exhumes the truth about this politicians' war - which sealed the fate of 50,000 Australian servicemen and women.
Drawing on exclusive interviews with dozens of Paperclip family members, colleagues, and interrogators, and with access to German archival documents (including papers made available to her by direct descendants of the Third Reich's ranking members), files obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, and lost dossiers discovered at the National Archives and Harvard University, Annie Jacobsen follows more than a dozen German scientists through their postwar lives and into one of the most complex, nefarious, and jealously guarded government secrets of the 20th century.
With an introduction read by Max Hastings. A companion volume to his best-selling ‘Armageddon’, Max Hastings’ account of the battle for Japan is a masterful military history. Featuring the most remarkable cast of commanders the world has ever seen, the dramatic battle for Japan of 1944-45 was acted out across the vast stage of Asia: Imphal and Kohima, Leyte Gulf and Iwo Jima, Okinawa and the Soviet assault on Manchuria.
"A backward historian with a chip on his shoulder."
Beginning with the story of a simple burglary at Democratic headquarters and then continuing with headline after headline, Bernstein and Woodward kept the tale of conspiracy and the trail of dirty tricks coming - delivering the stunning revelations and pieces in the Watergate puzzle that brought about Nixon's scandalous downfall. Their explosive reports won a Pulitzer Prize for The Washington Post and toppled the president. This is the book that changed America.
Books about the Kennedys are legion. Yet missing until now has been the exploration of the bond between Jack and Bobby, and the part that it played in their rise and fall. Richard D. Mahoney gives us Jack and Bobby in all their hubris and humanity, youthfulness and fatalism. Here is American history as it unfolds. The Kennedy Brothers is a fresh and masterful account of the men whose legacy continues to hold the American imagination.
One fateful week in June 1967 redrew the map of the Middle East. Many scholars have documented how the Six-Day War unfolded, but little has been done to explain why the conflict happened at all. As we approach its 50th anniversary, Guy Laron refutes the widely accepted belief that the war was merely the result of regional friction, revealing the crucial roles played by American and Soviet policies in the face of an encroaching global economic crisis and restoring Syria's often overlooked centrality to events leading up to the hostilities.
The sinking of the Titanic on her maiden voyage in 1912 is one of the most dramatic stories in maritime history. The largest passenger steamship in the world, fitted with more advanced safety features than any of her rivals, she was proclaimed to be virtually unsinkable. Just how and why the Titanic foundered on such a beautiful April evening is the subject of this fascinating book.
A lot of ink has been spilled covering the lives of history's most influential figures, but how much of the forest is lost for the trees? In Charles River Editors' American Legends series, listeners can get caught up to speed on the lives of America's most important men and women in the time it takes to finish a commute, while learning interesting facts long forgotten or never known.
It was the great mystery of its time and still reads like an episode of Law and Order today. In December 1910, a wealthy young woman, thought to be sheltered and above reproach, goes missing shortly after being seen in broad daylight on Fifth Avenue in New York City. The police are called in and begin to question those closest to her, only to have her father, a wealthy manufacturer, insist it must be foul play and that his daughter was on good terms with her entire family.
Curtis J. Austin chronicles how violence brought about the founding of the Black Panther Party in 1966 by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale, dominated its policies, and finally destroyed the party as one member after another - Eldridge Cleaver, Fred Hampton, Alex Rackley - left the party, was killed, or was imprisoned.
Brilliant and wrenching, The Holocaust: History and Memory tells the story of the brutal mass slaughter of Jews during World War II and how that genocide has been remembered and misremembered ever since. Taking issue with generations of scholars who separate the Holocaust from Germany's military ambitions, historian Jeremy M. Black demonstrates persuasively that Germany's war on the Allies was entwined with Hitler's war on Jews.
World War II was much more than just a war among several nations. With the war came new forms of warfare, covert missions, special operations, sabotage, destruction, and espionage and so on among the enemies. Spies were employed, plans were formulated, and disguises were put up by both the Axis and the Allies to obtain information or to hinder the progress of the war. This resulted in some of the most unconventional, creative and ingenious operations that played an important role in shaping the course of the war.
Shortly after World War II, Congress' House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) began investigating Americans across the country for suspected ties to communism. The most famous victims of these witch hunts were Hollywood actors, such as Charlie Chaplin, whose "un-American activity" was being neutral at the beginning of World War II, but at the beginning of the Cold War, many Americans had the Red Scare.
In 1941, the US began to form a hand-picked army to fight in Europe. What made it different is that its troops were composed of artists, actors, meteorologists, and sound technicians, and their true mission was not to fight, but to deceive the German Army. Information about the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops was classified top secret until 1996. Following the declassification, Jack Kneece interviewed many of the key personnel involved in this elaborate ruse, including fashion designer Bill Blass.
Despite Russia's imposing image in the world, less apparent weaknesses within the tsarist government threatened the country's stability. Several events in the early 20th century led to an eroding loyalty among Russian military forces, and Potemkin was the first modern ship to reveal it, an act that would bring it fame and make it the subject of some of the most well-known works of film and literature in Russian history.
Those who had decoded and seen the Japanese communications in early December 1941 would not be surprised when they heard about an attack on December 7, 1941. They would, however, be astonished when they heard where that attack took place. Posted on the other side of the world, it was early on the morning of December 8 in the Philippines when American general Douglas MacArthur received news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor hours earlier.
In tracing the rise of the modern idea of the American "new woman", Lynn Dumenil examines World War I's surprising impact on women and, in turn, women's impact on the war. Telling the stories of a diverse group of women, including African Americans, dissidents, pacifists, reformers, and industrial workers, Dumenil analyzes both the roadblocks and opportunities they faced. She richly explores the ways in which women helped the United States mobilize for the largest military endeavor in the nation's history.
In examining one of the defining events of the twentieth century, Doris L. Bergen situates the Holocaust in its historical, political, social, cultural, and military contexts. Unlike many other treatments of the Holocaust, this revised, third edition discusses not only the persecution of the Jews, but also other segments of society victimized by the Nazis: Roma, homosexuals, Poles, Soviet POWs, the disabled, and other groups deemed undesirable.
Shortly after World War II, Congress' House Committee on Un-American Activities began investigating Americans across the country for suspected ties to Communism. The most famous victims of these witch hunts were Hollywood actors, such as Charlie Chaplin, whose "Un-American activity" was being neutral at the beginning of World War II. By the late 1950s, the hysteria had waned, recognized in large measure as an overreaction.
Almost a century after the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, Kaiser Wilhelm II is still viewed as either a warmonger or a madman, as the hundred-year-old propaganda posters remain fixed in the general consciousness. Was he, though, truly responsible for the catastrophe of the First World War, or was he in fact a convenient scapegoat, blamed for a conflict which he desperately tried to avoid?
A century ago, if one were to come across a manual laborer from the early 20th century or the Roaring Twenties and relayed to them the possibility of one day sticking it to the man, one would probably be laughed out of the century. However, this was exactly what one man with solid-gold aspirations and audacity set out to achieve. Jimmy Hoffa, once described by Bobby Kennedy as the second most powerful man in America, was a union boss who evoked both respect and fear.
There is a popular saying that claims timing is everything, and in no other field of study is that truer than in history. For instance, under normal conditions, a ship that sank with more than 1,000 passengers aboard - most of whom died - would be big news, yet today the sinking of the PS General Slocum is often overlooked if not entirely forgotten.
In 1947, at the start of the Cold War, President Truman tried to assure Americans who were worried about Communists in government that he was "not worried about the Communist Party taking over the Government of the United States, but I am against a person, whose loyalty is not to the Government of the United States, holding a Government job. They are entirely different things. I am not worried about this country ever going Communist. We have too much sense for that."
Americans have always loved animals, and those living prior to World War II were still close enough to their pioneer roots to feel a special affection for horses. After all, it was these noble animals that had carried soldiers and pulled plows and milk wagons alike. A horse was more than just a pet; it was a partner in the fight for survival. Just as many Americans had known special, unforgettable individuals, so they had known special horses.