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.
Now, many years after the end of World War II, it may seem incredible that our most valued institutions and way of life were threatened by the menace that Hitler and the Third Reich represented. Shirer’s description of events and the cast of characters who played such pivotal roles in defining the course Europe was to take is unforgettable.
Benefiting from his many years as a reporter, and thus a personal observer of the rise of Nazi Germany, and availing himself of some of the 485 tons of documents from the German Foreign Office, as well as countless other diaries, phone transcriptions, and other written records, meticulously kept at every level by the Germans, Shirer has put together a brutally objective account of how Hitler wrested political control of Germany, and planned and executed his six-year quest to dominate the world, only to see Germany go down in flames.
This is a richly rewarding experience for anyone who wants to come to grips with the mysterious question of how this menace to civilization ever came into being, much less was sustained for as long as it was. The answer, unfortunately, is that most of Germany, for a whole host of reasons, embraced Nazism and the fanaticism that Hitler engendered.
©1990 William L. Shirer (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“One of the most important works of history of our time.” (The New York Times)
”A splendid work of scholarship, objective in method, sound in judgment, inescapable in its conclusions.” (The New York Times Book Review)
The book is touching, informing, and entertaining. Truly a masterpiece. I know feel like I have a much better grasp on the rise and fall of the third Reich. Although it's a topic that one could spend a lot of time studying, this is an incredible book to give someone a good idea of everything that happened on a higher level, with many interesting and helpful details.
I will. The story itself is beyond summary. There is so much depth to it and the narrative is compelling.
The rise of Hitler. It was so improbable.
I have not.
When the author's mask would slip and he was unable to mask his contempt for this or that person.
Much of the style is dated, but it adds to an authenticity to the time. This is a story, not a dry recollection of dates. The author clearly tries to be impersonal but the times and people are so extraordinarily evil... The authenticity of the book is remarkable, informative, and impactful.
An excellent book that explains a challenging history in simple terms for the listener. There is also a lot of detail for the serious history buff. A great work!
This is a master work of historical information. Well thought out, well performed, and well footnoted.
Should be required reading for every human.
Some outdated and offensive views on sexuality, but otherwise an incredible account of Hitler's inner circle from the beginning to the end of the Third Reich, based on primary sources, from an author who lived through it.
The first time I listened to the book I found it to be somewhat too extensive at times, but very informative. I listened to it again recently and I have much more respect for it now. Once you learn a few of the german language words and phrases often quoted in the book it becomes much more comprehensible lol
The subject matter is a terrifying man and the history of a people led to war by him. This history must be told and retold. Not to shame the German people. That is not what is required. But to make sure no one ever forgets those who were killed, and murdered, and erased from history. And to also make sure that everyone understands that this could happen again at any time with the right mix of a charismatic maniac bent on world domination no matter what the costs.
The author was spot on: in Germany we never spoke about it. For me, this was the first time to get a detailed account of the events. We all should now about them and learn the lessons of thus area so they never happen again.
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