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The World Remade Audiobook

The World Remade: America in World War I

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Publisher's Summary

A bracing, indispensable account of America's epoch-defining involvement in the Great War, rich with fresh insights into the key issues, events, and personalities of the period

After years of bitter debate, the United States declared war on Imperial Germany on April 6, 1917, plunging the country into the savage European conflict that would redraw the map of the continent - and the globe. The World Remade is an engrossing chronicle of America's pivotal, still controversial intervention into World War I, encompassing the tumultuous politics and towering historical figures that defined the era and forged the future.

When it declared war, the United States was the youngest of the major powers and militarily the weakest by far. On November 11, 1918, when the fighting stopped, it was not only the richest country on earth but the mightiest. With the mercurial, autocratic President Woodrow Wilson as a primary focus, G. J. Meyer takes listeners from the heated deliberations over US involvement, through the provocations and manipulations that drew us into the fight, to the battlefield itself and the shattering aftermath of the struggle. America's entry into the Great War helped make possible the defeat of Germany that had eluded Britain, France, Russia, and Italy in three and a half years of horrendous carnage. Victory, in turn, led to a peace treaty so ill conceived, so vindictive, that the world was put on the road to an even bloodier confrontation a mere 20 years later.

On the home front, Meyer recounts the breakup of traditional class structures, the rise of the progressive and labor movements, the wave of anti-German hysteria, and the explosive expansion of both the economy and federal power, including shocking suspensions of constitutional protections that planted the seeds of today's national security state. Here also are revealing portraits of Theodore Roosevelt, Henry Cabot Lodge, Robert La Follette, Eugene Debs, and John J. "Black Jack" Pershing, among others, as well as European leaders such as "Welsh Wizard" David Lloyd George of Britain, "Tiger" Georges Clemenceau of France, and Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany.

Meyer interweaves the many strands of his story into a gripping narrative that casts new light on one of the darkest, most forgotten corners of US history. In the grand tradition of his earlier work A World Undone - which centered on the European perspective - The World Remade adds a new, uniquely American dimension to our understanding of the seminal conflict of the 20th century.

©2017 G. J. Meyer (P)2017 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Accomplished with brio...[Meyer] blends 'foreground, background, and sidelights' to highlight the complex interactions of apparently unconnected events behind the four-year catastrophic war that destroyed a world and defined a century." (Publishers Weekly)

"With a historian's eye for clearheaded analysis and a storyteller's talent for detail and narrative, G. J. Meyer presents a compelling account of the blunders that produced the world's first 'great war' and set the stage for many of the tragic events that followed." (Steve Gillon, resident historian, The History Channel)

"Especially suited for the interested American reader.... Meyer's sketches of the British Cabinet, the Russian Empire, the aging Austro-Hungarian Empire, the leaders of Prussia with their newly minted swagger, are lifelike and plausible. His account of the tragic folly of Gallipoli is masterful.... [A World Undone] has an instructive value that can scarcely be measured." (Los Angeles Times)

What Members Say

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  •  
    David P. McGivern Vancouver, BC Canada 04-01-17
    David P. McGivern Vancouver, BC Canada 04-01-17 Member Since 2017
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    ""100% America" - a disturbing place to be"

    I recommend this without hesitation. I have two other histories from Mr. Myer in my library, the prequel to this one " A World Undone" ( a history of WW!) and his history of the Tudors. I consider this ( " A World Remade") to be his best.

    First what it is not. It is not a detailed history of the causes of,or events leading to and which occurred during, World War I (with heroic Britain, France and then America standing up against the evil German Empire). Neither is it a detailed recitation of the various battles (in other words, it was not co-authored by Max Hastings). It is, rather, a fascinating description of American society before, during and after the War, and a disturbing one at that.

    He of course has to establish the context of America's consideration of the War, which he does, throughout, in a more nuanced presentation that many (most) books on this terrible time in history. He describes, for example, the somewhat hypocritical attitude of Britain condemning the war atrocities of Germany all the while engaging in an unlawful sea blockade that starved millions of civilians both during the war and for as long as six months after the fighting stopped ( thus giving a reason why Germany, for it's survival, had to ( during the War) engage in U-boat retaliation). He describes the mood of the country, isolationist or no, and the support of Britain and France by America from the outset
    (notwithstanding the supposed assertion by Wilson that America was "neutral")

    Most startling is Mr. Myer's descriptions ( he gives many, many examples) of the extent to which President Wilson ( and Congress) suspended civil liberties almost completely after the war began. People could be, and were, jailed for upwards of 10, 15, 20 years merely for criticizing either himself or the war effort. Newspapers were shut down. Journalists were jailed. Unless one was "100% American" ( no ethnics need apply) they were shunned, mistreated, put out of business. Criticism of any kind was not tolerated - one bit.

    He concludes, less interesting for me, with a detailed description of Wilson's post-War attempts to establish the League of Nations, resisted by Congress and the Senate.

    Unlike the most recent (and worth reading/listening to) biography of President Wilson by Scott Berg, mostly supportive of the man, Meyer is very critical of the President, describing him as self-righteous, intolerant, and rigid.

    Mr. Meyer repeats his usual pattern of breaking up the chapters with "Background" information, all interesting in and of themselves. His prose is clear, concise.

    No problem with Mr. Shapiro's narration, Always a critical factor for me when I am ordering the book.

    This book is so detailed I will probably listen to it a second time in the future

    Highly recommended.

    13 of 13 people found this review helpful
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    John 04-20-17
    John 04-20-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Great Book, Interesting Takes & New Look at Wilson"

    As a fan of The World Undone, I looked forward to The World Remade and was not disappointed. It offers a great overall view of the period with many anecdotes that give it a more intimate feel. Additionally, it is refreshing to have an author go into detail to expose the hypocrite that was Woodrow Wilson. This book looks closely at all the details and finds the good and bad with all characters, including Wilson. If you want an unvarnished read on this period (and one that does not glorify Wilson or shame Lodge reflexively) than this is the read for you.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim Anderson 10-14-17
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    "Pay attention to other reviews"

    Lots of opinion given
    Not much detail of history
    Wanted to learn about events of war
    Learned author hates Woodrow Wilson

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 09-15-17 Member Since 2014
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    "Mostly a criticism of Wilson"

    Loved his other WW1 book. This one way too anti Wilson, giving Germany the benefit of doubt on all decisions and Wilson none. Even criticized his grammar on a speech. Not good for battle history at all, just a political history

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Philip S. 09-02-17
    Philip S. 09-02-17
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    "Good history, with a little bit of a slant"

    The World Remade, by G.J. Meyer is the 'sequel' to his earlier work, A World Undone. That work is an exceptional history of the Great War and I recommend anyone considering The World Remade to read/listen to his other work first.

    The World Remade focuses almost entirely on the United States during the war, and was very informative to me about where the US was extremely influential, and where they were not so much. It is focused primarily on the politics of the time, and the military events get relegated to a few chapters. However, as the US joined so late, and still was politically active from 1914-1917, it makes sense that most of the book would not be about the 6 months of combat US troops saw.

    The book is very critical of President Wilson and his administration, and while I agree that he deserves this critism, it felt like the author was trying to exonerate the Germans from any wrongdoings besides being politically inept. The Allies are themselves cast as selfish and full of ulterior motives, and while they most certainly were, this is again done while German actions are defended by the author. As someone who has read much on the First World War, I was able to appreciate the German point of view that Meyer gives, but was aware that Meyer wasn't explaining the Allies' actions (i.e. the blockade of Germany) in the same light he did for Germany (i.e. unrestricted submarine warfare). A less aware listener may come away with a different impression.

    Besides this, I do recommend The World Remade, and Rob Shapiro's wonderful narration made the 24+ hours a joy to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    daniel hoffelder 09-02-17 Member Since 2014
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    "after this you will look at the world Wilson creat"

    Worth every penny... well done historically and audio quality definitely worth your time every minute

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer 08-25-17 Member Since 2015
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    "HHe really doesn't like Woodrow Wilson"

    Meyers dislike for Wilson is palpable. Pretty much says he's a racist, sanctimonious hypocrite.

    He makes a convincing case. But I found his earlier World War history A World Undone more gripping.

    One personal note: I have a great picture of my grandfather relaxing in a French courtyard in 1918. My dad used to quote the song. "How do you keep them down on the farm once they've seen Paree." So it's all not all that long ago.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    SakuraHB 07-26-17
    SakuraHB 07-26-17 Member Since 2017
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    "The personification of revisionist history"
    Would you try another book from G. J. Meyer and/or Rob Shapiro?

    Rob Shapiro has a pleasant voice and reads well. G. J. Meyer is likely admired by leftists everywhere for making the UK and America share the blame for being the evil villains of WW1. He slants his history while claiming to be unslanted.


    What could G. J. Meyer have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Give a fuller unbias view. One can lie with truth but Meyer did not rise to even this level. As an example, if it is said I struck the man next to me it might be true but by leaving out my words and intention, "Hold still while I knock a spider off you" the truth of my striking another is recast and made malicious rather than beneficial. This is Meyer's method but he goes further and denies any history that is unfavorable to his view.
    A person unfamiliar with WW1 history will think they have been given the inside scoop and believe his turning of history on its head. If you think me too harsh read The Guns of August which is full of quotes and footnotes from the same period of history and you will get a completely different view. A prime example is the orders the Germans had to kill civilians in Belgium. Meyer dismisses these stories as propaganda. He has to if he is to make the Germans victims and morally superior to the allies. There are graves to visit and memorials in Belgium to what Meyer dismisses as just propaganda.
    He takes delight in showing the faults of allied leaders and works hard to make sure you do not admire them. It is right to show that they like all men have feet of clay. But this is one sided and not balanced. Both sides had such men but we are only shown one side.
    The glaring tell that this is not going to be just a historical narrative but is revisionist is at the beginning. When a book begins with words to the effect that no one really understands the origins of WW1 but the author and there has yet to be a book written that tell it correctly it is right to be skeptical.
    The level of pride in such an introduction can only be reached by a modern leftist.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Micheline Creager 07-14-17
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    "Well done!"

    Gripping! So very interesting and enlightening! I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn more about WWI, and what was going on in this country at that time. I especially enjoyed the background information at the end of each chapter.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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