The book explains in a very interesting way why it is so difficult to change the course of history of a society or country. It explains how the West was lucky to break free from the standard of history - oppressive and exploitative regimes. And tells you that you should not expect that an authoritative place will change for the just because there was a popular revolution or successful invasion.
This book made me feel like going to Florence and Rome again despite the fact that I have been to both places several times.
The narrative is amusing, it made me remember Michelangelo's story more easily than any other. It is perhaps not 100% historically accurate, there is some fiction involved. But the important facts are there and when I finished the book, I had the feeling that I somehow know that era much better.
I find this book really extraordinary. First, I was rather put off by the length. Then when I started, I was captivated. The book tells the story of the rise of Nazis from the perspective of someone who was a direct witness of the beginning of the tragedy. It is very well written and narrated.
It reminds one how terribly actual it is. Would Europe be able to stop a similar development if it were to arise now? It makes you think, remember recent tragedies like Yugoslavia, and see the events in Crimea in different light. And it makes you realize how special the time we live in is.
It is not an amusing book but it is really great and should be read by as many people as possible. Some parts made me literally shudder, and so they should.
The book actually made me pity that I did not listen to history lessons at school more carefully. I found it amazing how powerful some minds can be, how they can break beyond the limits of the current knowledge. Can you calculate how far the moon is? 400 years ago, they could...
Listening to the book, I had the feeling that it is unncessarily prolonged. Repeatedly, the book comes back to the point that "no-one would listen". Madoff story is interesting but could be told in half the space.
By listening to this book, I learned no new information. Most of what is written there seems common knowledge to me. No revelations...
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