A German soldier during World War II offers an inside look at the Nazi war machine, using his wartime diaries to describe how a ruthless psychopath motivated an entire generation of ordinary Germans to carry out his monstrous schemes.
©1992 Siegfried Knappe Charles T. Brusaw (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I thought this book had amazing historical significance, as a first person narrative of someone who was right at the center of the last days of the Third Reich. As someone who reads a lot of books on WWII I always look for alternative perspectives, especially when it pertains to the Eastern Front. I did question the author's honesty about not knowing anything of Hitler's final solution. I think for most people it seems inconceivable that a plan to exterminate an entire race of people, a plan that was partially carried out on such a horrific and massive scale, could not be known by those higher up in the military. We may never know the truth.
Very nice story. So interesting to hear from the German side of WWII. The details Siegfried gives you are incredible, from the uniforms, terrain and emotions of his combat experience.
people tend to dehumanize German soldiers in ww2, however most were not evil they were not Nazis, they were human. yes we can ask ourselves why did they follow Hitler's orders, but are we really that different today?
sodat is a story from the other side, and it is best I have ever heard.
It is great to get a German soldiers perspective of the war. It is easy to demonize the German military during WWII, but in the end, soldiers are soldiers who take commands and execute them. I often wondered if the soldiers ended up taking on the perspectives of their Nazi leaders. Some did, but what this book confirmed was that war is ugly and evil, but it brings out both the good and the bad. Herr Knappe perspective helped paint a better picture.
I don't have a frame of reference for this book, but I'm hoping in the future I do. I'm looking into books from the Japanese soldier's perspective of WWII.
I have not listened to any of John Wray's other performances, but I loved his performance here. Never got boring and his accents were great!
Not all of us agree with evil.
This book was well worth my time.
Great story- 6 stars. Narrator was flat as as the sheets from which he read. It's almost as though he deliberately avoided any inflection so as not to lead anyone to believe he had any sympathy for the author and his story. Oh well. Rare to find axis memoirs on audio- recommend.
Geopolitics, history, and philosophy junkie. I love smoothly flowing prose that moves me effortlessly from one idea to the next.
In typical German fashion, the story unfolds in a very clinical and sterile way like a battlefield report. I did appreciate some of the details, especially the last days in Berlin at Hitler's bunker, but overall I felt myself wanting for some feeling or philosophical enlightenment on the war itself.I felt there was more to the story despite the author's best attempts to downplay his knowledge (and perhaps culpability) of Nazi atrocities. It's hard for me to rationalize such ignorance considering he was an officer in the general staff.
Certainly one of the best books on WWII that I've read. It's much more a soldier's diary than "a shocking look inside Hitler's war machine", although there is inevitably some of that. It follows Knappe from the end of high school through the army's battles - Poland, France, Italy, USSR, the final days in Hitler's bunker and Berlin, and his capture and imprisonment by the Soviets for the 4 years following the war. Along the way we glimpse the European countryside and German gentile culture, family life, love and marriage, as well as disillusionment and disbelief at the tragedy and horrors inflicted both by, and on, Germany.
I enjoyed the book but I am a WW2 History buff. The book is very dry and not much in the way of building a story. more information then anything else. It was what I expected. A German soldiers account of WW2
This was an interesting look at a soldier who made it through the entire war and Russian captivity - and came home.
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