Best of


Once & Then

Morris Gleitzman - 2009
    There's always a chance they can come true.Felix is lucky. Unlike the other children in the orphanage, he's certain his parents will come back for him one day. And whatever the Nazis do and however many books they burn, Felix's imagination provides him and his companions with an endless supply of stories - stories that protect them when they're on the run, shield them from the violent madness all around, give them hope when all seems lost, and one day may even save Felix's life.Once & Then is a spellbinding story of hope and imagination in the most terrible circumstances.However my story turns out, I'll never forget how lucky I am.

The Kindly Ones

Jonathan Littell - 2009
    Maximilien Aue has reinvented himself, many years after the war, as a middle-class family man and factory owner in France. An intellectual steeped in philosophy, literature, and classical music, he is also a cold-blooded assassin and the consummate bureaucrat. Through the eyes of this cultivated yet monstrous man we experience in disturbingly precise detail the horrors of the Second World War and the Nazi genocide of the Jews. Eichmann, Himmler, Göring, Speer, Heydrich, Höss—even Hitler himself—play a role in Max's story. An intense and hallucinatory historical epic, The Kindly Ones is also a morally challenging read. It holds a mirror up to humanity—and the reader cannot look away.

The Year That Changed The World: The Untold Story Behind the Fall of the Berlin Wall

Michael R. Meyer - 2009
    Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" President Ronald Reagan's famous exhortation when visiting Berlin in 1987 has long been widely cited as the clarion call that brought the Cold War to an end. The United States won, so this version of history goes, because Ronald Reagan stood firm against the USSR; American resoluteness brought the evil empire to its knees.Michael Meyer, who was there at the time as a Newsweek bureau chief, begs to differ.In this extraordinarily compelling account of the revolutions that roiled Eastern Europe in 1989, he shows that American intransigence was only one of many factors that provoked world-shaking change. Meyer draws together breathtakingly vivid, on-the-ground accounts of the rise of the Solidarity movement in Poland, the stealth opening of the Hungarian border, the Velvet Revolution in Prague and the collapse of the infamous wall in Berlin. But the most important events, Meyer contends, occurred secretly, in the heroic stands taken by individuals in the thick of the struggle, leaders such as poet and playwright Vaclav Havel in Prague; the Baltic shipwright Lech Walesa; the quietly determined reform prime minister in Budapest, Miklos Nemeth; and the man who privately realized that his empire was already lost, and decided -- with courage and intelligence -- to let it go in peace,Soviet general secretary of the communist party, Mikhail Gorbachev.Reporting for Newsweek from the frontlines in Eastern Europe, Meyer spoke to these players and countless others. Alongside their deliberate interventions were also the happenstance and human error of history that are always present when events accelerate to breakneck speed. Meyer captures these heady days in all of their rich drama and unpredictability. In doing so he provides not just a thrilling chronicle of the most important year of the twentieth century but also a crucial refutation of American political mythology and a triumphal misunderstanding of history that seduced the United States into many of the intractable conflicts it faces today. The Year That Changed the World will change not only how we see the past, but also our understanding of America's future.

Rick Steves' Vienna, Salzburg, & Tirol

Rick Steves - 2009
    Self-guided walking tours lead visitors to the Hofburg Castle and the magnificent gardens in Salzburg. Experience the culture like a local with a bike ride in the countryside or indulge in Viennese chocolate at Demel's Cafe. With up-to-date advice on which sights are worth your time and money and suggestions on good-value hotels and restaurants, Rick Steves helps travelers get the most out of every day and every dollar."

The Kaiser's Holocaust: Germany's Forgotten Genocide and the Colonial Roots of Nazism

David Olusoga - 2009
    As colonial forces moved in, their ruthless punitive raids became an open war of extermination. Thousands of the indigenous people were killed or driven out into the desert to die. By 1905, the survivors were interned in concentration camps, and systematically starved and worked to death.Years later, the people and ideas that drove the ethnic cleansing of German South West Africa would influence the formation of the Nazi party. The Kaiser's Holocaust uncovers extraordinary links between the two regimes: their ideologies, personnel, even symbols and uniform. The Herero and Nama genocide was deliberately concealed for almost a century. Today, as the graves of the victims are uncovered, its re-emergence challenges the belief that Nazism was an aberration in European history. The Kaiser's Holocaust passionately narrates this harrowing story and explores one of the defining episodes of the twentieth century from a new angle. Moving, powerful and unforgettable, it is a story that needs to be told.

Operation Barbarossa and Germany's Defeat in the East

David Stahel - 2009
    Its failure was a key turning point of the Second World War. The operation was planned as a Blitzkrieg to win Germany its Lebensraum in the East, and the summer of 1941 is well-known for the German army's unprecedented victories and advances. Yet the German Blitzkrieg depended almost entirely upon the motorised Panzer groups, particularly those of Army Group Centre. Using previously unpublished archival records, David Stahel presents a new history of Germany's summer campaign from the perspective of the two largest and most powerful Panzer groups on the Eastern front. Stahel's research provides a fundamental reassessment of Germany's war against the Soviet Union, highlighting the prodigious internal problems of the vital Panzer forces and revealing that their demise in the earliest phase of the war undermined the whole German invasion.

The Ivington Diaries

Monty Don - 2009
    Springing with amazing vigour from the soil behind the house, this space has been central to Monty's life; ever since he dug the very first border, he has obsessively written about it. The Ivington Diaries is a personal collection of Monty's jottings from the past fifteen years. Generously illustrated with his very own photographs, and beautifully packaged, this book promises to be one of the most delightful garden books ever published.

Etty Hillesum: A Life Transformed

Patrick Woodhouse - 2009
    Over the course of the next two and a half years, an insecure, chaotic and troubled young woman was transformed into someone who inspired those with whom she shared the suffering of the transit camp at Westerbork and with whom she eventually perished at Auschwitz. Through her diary and letters, she continues to inspire those whose lives she has touched since. She was an extraordinarily alive and vivid young woman who shaped and lived a spirituality of hope in the darkest period of the twentieth century. This book explores Etty Hillesum's life and writings, seeking to understand what it was about her that was so remarkable, how her journey developed, how her spirituality was shaped, and what her profound reflections on the roots of violence and the nature of evil can teach us today.

The Red Army Faction, a Documentary History: Volume 1: Projectiles for the People

J. Smith - 2009
    Projectiles for the People starts its story in the days following World War II, showing how American imperialism worked hand in glove with the old pro-Nazi ruling class, shaping West Germany into an authoritarian anti-communist bulwark and launching pad for its aggression against Third World nations. The volume also recounts the opposition that emerged from intellectuals, communists, independent leftists, and then – explosively – the radical student movement and countercultural revolt of the 1960s. It was from this revolt that the Red Army Faction emerged, an underground organization devoted to carrying out armed attacks within the Federal Republic of Germany, in the view of establishing a tradition of illegal, guerilla resistance to imperialism and state repression. Through its bombs and manifestos the RAF confronted the state with opposition at a level many activists today might find difficult to imagine. For the first time ever in English, this volume presents all of the manifestos and communiqués issued by the RAF between 1970 and 1977, from Andreas Baader’s prison break, through the 1972 May Offensive and the 1974 hostage-taking in Stockholm, to the desperate, and tragic, events of the “German Autumn” of 1977. The RAF’s three main manifestos – The Urban Guerilla Concept, Serve the People, and Black September – are included, as are important interviews with Spiegel and le Monde Diplomatique, and a number of communiqués and court statements explaining their actions. Providing the background information that readers will require to understand the context in which these events occurred, separate thematic sections deal with the 1976 murder of Ulrike Meinhof in prison, the 1977 Stammheim murders, the extensive use of psychological operations and false-flag attacks to discredit the guerilla, the state’s use of sensory deprivation torture and isolation wings, and the prisoners’ resistance to this, through which they inspired their own supporters and others on the left to take the plunge into revolutionary action. Drawing on both mainstream and movement sources, this book is intended as a contribution to the comrades of today – and to the comrades of tomorrow – both as testimony to those who struggled before and as an explanation as to how they saw the world, why they made the choices they made, and the price they were made to pay for having done so. With a preface by North American class war prisoner Bill Dunne, a revolutionary captured in 1979 following a shoot out with police in Seattle, Washington.

1989 The Berlin Wall: My Part In Its Downfall

Peter Millar - 2009
    Peter Millar was in the middle of it, literally: caught in Checkpoint Charlie between bemused East German border guards and drunk western revellers prematurely celebrating the end of an era. For over a decade Millar had been living not just in East Berlin but also Warsaw and Moscow. In this engaging, garrulous, bibulous memoir we follow him on a journey into the heart of Cold War Europe. From the hitchhiking trip that helped him discover a secret path into a career in journalism, through the carousing bars of Fleet Street in the seventies, to the East Berlin corner pub with its eclectic cast of customers who taught him the truth about living on the wrong side of the Wall. We relive the night it all disintegrated, gain insight into the domino effect that swept through Eastern Europe in its aftermath and find out how the author felt as he opened the Stasi files and discovered which of his friends had - or had not - been spying on him.

George, Nicholas and Wilhelm: Three Royal Cousins and the Road to World War I

Miranda Carter - 2009
    Together, they presided over the last years of dynastic Europe and the outbreak of the most destructive war the world had ever seen, a war that set twentieth-century Europe on course to be the most violent continent in the history of the world.Miranda Carter uses the cousins' correspondence and a host of historical sources to tell the tragicomic story of a tiny, glittering, solipsistic world that was often preposterously out of kilter with its times, struggling to stay in command of politics and world events as history overtook it. George, Nicholas and Wilhelm is a brilliant and sometimes darkly hilarious portrait of these men--damaged, egotistical Wilhelm; quiet, stubborn Nicholas; and anxious, dutiful George--and their lives, foibles and obsessions, from tantrums to uniforms to stamp collecting. It is also alive with fresh, subtle portraits of other familiar figures: Queen Victoria--grandmother to two of them, grandmother-in-law to the third--whose conservatism and bullying obsession with family left a dangerous legacy; and Edward VII, the playboy "arch-vulgarian" who turned out to have a remarkable gift for international relations and the theatrics of mass politics. At the same time, Carter weaves through their stories a riveting account of the events that led to World War I, showing how the personal and the political interacted, sometimes to devastating effect.For all three men the war would be a disaster that destroyed forever the illusion of their close family relationships, with any sense of peace and harmony shattered in a final coda of murder, betrayal and abdication.

Selected Prose

Heinrich von Kleist - 2009
    It is not enough to read it as historical—even in his day nobody wrote as he did...An impetus squeezed out with iron, absolutely un-lyrical detachment brings forth tangled, knotted, overloaded sentences painfully soldered together...and driven by a breathless tempo.”—Thomas MannPeter Wortsman captures the breathlessness and power of Heinrich von Kleist’s transcendent prose. These moral tales move across inner landscapes, exploring the bridges between reason and feeling and the frontiers between the human psyche and the divine.The concerns of Heinrich von Kleist are timeless. The mysteries in his fiction and visionary essays still breathe.

Bomber Boys

Travis Ayres - 2009
    But nothing offered more fatal choices than being inside a B-17 bomber above Nazi-occupied Europe. From the hellish storms of enemy flak and relentless strafing of Luftwaffe fighters, to mid-air collisions, mechanical failure, and simple bad luck, it's a wonder any man would volunteer for such dangerous duty. But many did. Some paid the ultimate price. And some made it home. But in the end, all would achieve victory. Here, author Travis L. Ayres has gathered a collection of previously untold personal accounts of combat and camaraderie aboard the B-17 Bombers that flew countless sorties against the enemy, as related by the men who lived and fought in the air-and survived.

Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1933-1945

Saul Friedländer - 2009
    Friedländer also provides the accounts of the persecutors themselves—and, perhaps most telling of all, the testimonies of ordinary German citizens who, in general, stood silent and unmoved by the increasing waves of segregation, humiliation, impoverishment, and violence.The second part covers the German extermination policies that resulted in the murder of six million European Jews—an official program that depended upon the cooperation of local authorities and police departments, the passivity of the populations, and the willingness of the victims to submit in desperate hope of surviving long enough to escape the German vise.A monumental, multifaceted study now contained in a single volume, Saul Friedländer's Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1933-1945 is an essential study of a dark and complex history.

New York Times:The Complete Front Pages 1851-2009 Updated Edition

The New York Times - 2009
    One of the most popular gift books of the 2008 holiday season now includes the history-making Obama front pages and so much more. The book and three accompanying DVDs contain new front pages through May 2009. The nearly 55,000 pages in the book and DVDs date back to 1851 and provide the reader an unprecedented opportunity to experience the news as it was being reported. Essays by Jill Abramson, Richard Bernstein, Ethan Bronner, Roger Cohen, Gail Collins, Helene Cooper, Thomas L. Friedman, William Grimes, Caryn James, Gina Kolata, Paul Krugman, David Leonhardt, Steve Lohr, Frank Rich, Carla Anne Robbins, Gene Roberts, William Safire, Serge Schmemann, Sam Tanenhaus, and John Noble Wilford.DVD-ROMs run on a PC (Windows 2000/XP or later) or Mac (OSX 10.4.8 or later) with Adobe 8.0 or later.  Free download available on the DVD-Roms."With the publishing of this stunning volume of the most momentous front pages of the past 150 years, accompanied by DVDs with every single Times front page ever published, a sprawling snapshot of human civilization as Americans saw it—is suddenly at our fingertips." —Ted Anthony, The Associated Press "[A] satisfyingly hefty volume…reminding you of how the experience of reading the newspaper is at once public and intimate, of the enduring, essential, all-important power of the printed word." —Francine Prose, O: The Oprah Magazine "Worth buying a coffee table for." —Dwight Garner, The New York Times

Nazi International: The Nazis' Postwar Plan to Control the Worlds of Science, Finance, Space, and Conflict

Joseph P. Farrell - 2009
    This title includes: pre-World War II Nazi partnerships in the USA, including those with the Bush family; and, Nazi Germany's penetration of the Muslim world including Wilhelm Voss and Otto Skorzeny in Gamel Abdul Nasser's Egypt.

An Honorable German

Charles L. McCain - 2009
    With the unstoppable German war machine overrunning Europe, Max looks ahead to a bright future with his fiancée, Mareth.But as the war progresses, their future together becomes less and less certain. German victories begin to fade. In the North Atlantic, Max must face the increasing strength of the Allies on ever more harrowing missions. Berlin itself is savaged by bombing, making life for Mareth increasingly dangerous and desperate. And as the Third Reich steadily crumbles, Nazi loyalists begin to infiltrate Max's crew and turn their terror on Germany's own armed forces.Recognizing what his nation has become, Max is forced to make a choice between his own sense of morality, and his duty to the Reich.With its stirring, rarely seen glimpse of the German home front during WWII, vivid characters, and evocation of the drama and terror of war at sea, An Honorable German is a suspense-filled story of adventure, of love and loss, and of honor and redemption.

Essays and Letters

Friedrich Hölderlin - 2009
    This new translation of selected letters and essays traces the life and thoughts of this extraordinary writer. Hölderlin's letters to friends and fellow writers such as Hegel, Schiller and Goethe describe his development as a poet, while those written to his family speak with great passion of his beliefs and aspirations, as well as revealing money worries and, finally, the tragic unravelling of his sanity. These works examine Hölderlin's great preoccupations - the unity of existence, the relationship between art and nature and, above all, the spirit of the writer.

The Seduction of Eva Volk

C.D. Baker - 2009
    Civilized men serving Hitler? Impossible, or so one would think when juxtaposed against jackbooted Aryan supremacy and the Holocaust. The astonishing truth, however, is that the majority of Germany's population willingly supported Hitler, so powerful the seduction and so profound the blindness. Never before undertaken in a novel, 'The Seduction of Eva Volk' is an inside look at the not-so-simple paradox of a Christian culture proclaiming faith-in-Führer with bullets and bombs. Through the eyes of young Eva, the alluring charm of the Hitler Movement is personified in a lover. Desperately seeking wholeness in her broken world, she is quickly swept away by the thrilling passions of love and war...until she finds herself facing the agonizing consequences of lost sight. "I was blind, but now I see," brings us to the gut-wrenching climax that challenges the boundaries of hope and redemption.

Guardian Angel House

Kathy Clark - 2009
    It's 1944, and she knows the world has become a dangerous place for Jews. Now that the Nazis have invaded Hungary, nowhere is safe, including her home in Budapest. But when Mama decides to send Susan and her little sister, Vera, to a Catholic convent to hide from the Nazi soldiers, Susan is shocked. Will they really be safe in a building full of strangers? How will she be able to protect and comfort her sister? What will happen to them in this place full of new rules and different rituals? And who are these women, the nuns, who dress so differently?Susan and Vera feel better when they discover that they are not the only Jewish girls being hidden in the convent. But danger still surrounds them, with the risk of discovery by the Nazis a constant threat. Susan and Vera learn the true nature of courage as the nuns risk their lives to protect the girls in their care.

Animals Up Close

Igor Siwanowicz - 2009
    The colors, textures, and structures of all parts of an animal are presented in breathtaking photographs, challenging the reader's understanding of animals and their habitats.

Rick Steves' Snapshot Berlin

Rick Steves - 2009
    Visit the Jewish Museum, the Reichstag Parliament Building, the New Synagogue, or the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church—you'll get tips on all the best tours and least-crowded visiting hours. Rick offers his firsthand advice on the best sights, eating, sleeping, and nightlife, and the maps and self-guided tours will ensure you make the most of your experience. More than just reviews and directions, a Rick Steves Snapshot guide is a tour guide in your pocket.Rick Steves' Snapshot guides consist of excerpted chapters from Rick Steves' European country guidebooks. Snapshot guides are a great choice for travelers visiting a specific city or region, rather than multiple European destinations. These slim guides offer all of Rick's up-to-date advice on what sights are worth your time and money. They include good-value hotel and restaurant recommendations, with no introductory information (such as overall trip planning, when to go, and travel practicalities).

The Wolf: The German Raider That Terrorized the Southern Seas During World War I in an Epic Voyage of Destruction and Gallantry

Richard Guilliatt - 2009
    The long-forgotten drama of a WWI secret German warship and floating international prison.

How to Keep a Pet Squirrel

Axel Scheffler - 2009
    Intrigued by the unlikely notion of a child attempting to keep so wild an animal, Axel created a series of delightful, beautifully finished illustrations to accompany the text.

The Retreat: Hitler's First Defeat

Michael Jones - 2009
    Yet this feat of endurance was a prelude to a long and arduous retreat in which Soviet troops, inspired by deep beliefs in the sacred Motherland, pushed back German forces steeled by the vision of the Ubermensch--the iron-willed fighter. Supported by tanks and ski battalions, Soviet troops engaged in this desperate struggle in the harshest Russian weather.Michael Jones draws upon a wealth of new eyewitness testimonies from both sides of the conflict to vividly chronicle this pivotal chapter in the Second World War as he takes us from the German invasion of the Soviet Union on the morning of June 22 through the counteroffensive that carried into the spring of 1942. From the German soldier finding his comrades frozen into blocks of ice to the Russian lieutenant crying with rage at the senseless destruction of his unit, the author shows us the faces of war when the Wehrmacht was repelled and the titanic and cruel struggle of two world powers forged the fate of Europe.

Food Safari: Glorious Adventures Through A World Of Cuisines

Maeve O'Meara - 2009
    Desserts include Baklawa, Crepes Suzette, and Fig Loukoumades. Demystifying unfamiliar cuisines, this book offers stories and traditions related to each cuisine, helps readers shop for the key ingredients and cooking implements, and includes simple recipes from cultures as far flung as Africa, the Middle East, Europe, Asia, and South America. Soon readers will be experts at making Dolma from Turkey, Bulgogi from Korea, and Black Forest Cake from Germany.

Saving Rafael

Leslie Wilson - 2009
    I heard the booted feet running up the stairs, then the hammering on the apartment door and the shouting. "Open up! Gestapo!" She is 15 years old and in love. Only this is Nazi-ruled Berlin and he's a Jew, so it's against the law to love him. There are spies everywhere and they're taking the last Jews away from Berlin—to the gas chambers. Powerfully evoking civilian survival in a bomb-blasted city, and the sacrifice and courage required to maintain high individual standards of friendship and integrity, this novel of love and courage in the face of danger is one that readers will not be able to put down.

Business in Great Waters

John Terraine - 2009
    The distinguished military historian here studies the two unrestricted U-Boat wars of 1916-1918 and 1939-1945.

The Ship That Changed the World: The Escape of the Goeben to the Dardanelles in 1914

Dan van der Vat - 2009
    Virtually alone in the Mediterranean, the Goeben eluded the French and British fleets and joined with Turkish forces, influencing Turkey to enter the war on Germany's side. Ludendorff estimated that this prolonged World War I by two years.

The Fruit of Her Hands: The Story of Shira of Ashkenaz

Michelle Cameron - 2009
    When Shira’s father is arrested by the local baron intent on enforcing the Catholic Church’s strictures against heresy, Shira fights for his release and encounters two men who will influence her life profoundly—an inspiring Catholic priest and Meir ben Baruch, a brilliant scholar. In Meir, Shira finds her soulmate.Married to Meir in Paris, Shira blossoms as a wife and mother, savoring the intellectual and social challenges that come with being the wife of a prominent scholar. After witnessing the burning of every copy of the Talmud in Paris, Shira and her family seek refuge in Germany. Yet even there they experience bloody pogroms and intensifying anti-Semitism. With no safe place for Jews in Europe, they set out for Israel only to see Meir captured and imprisoned by Rudolph I of Hapsburg. As Shira weathers heartbreak and works to find a middle ground between two warring religions, she shows her children and grandchildren how to embrace the joys of life, both secular and religious.A multi-generational novel that vividly brings to life a period rarely covered in historical fiction.

The German Invasion of Norway, April 1940

Geirr H. Haarr - 2009
    The first operation in which the air force, army, and navy worked closely together, Operation Weserubung included the first dive-bomber attack to sink a major warship and the first carrier task-force operations. Based on primary sources from British, German, and Norwegian archives, the book gives a balanced account of the reasons behind the invasion and showcases an unrivalled collection of photographs. As the definitive study of Germany's first and last major seaborne invasion, it offers a close look at an important but often neglected aspect of World War II.

Weimar Cinema: An Essential Guide to Classic Films of the Era

Noah Isenberg - 2009
    Encompassing early gangster pictures and science fiction, avant-garde and fantasy films, sexual intrigues and love stories, the classics of silent cinema and Germany's first talkies, each chapter illuminates, among other things: the technological advancements of a given film, its detailed production history, its critical reception over time, and the place it occupies within the larger history of the German studio and of Weimar cinema in general. Readers can revisit the careers of such acclaimed directors as F. W. Murnau, Fritz Lang, and G. W. Pabst and examine the debuts of such international stars as Greta Garbo, Louise Brooks, and Marlene Dietrich. Training a keen eye on Weimer cinema's unusual richness and formal innovation, this anthology is an essential guide to the revolutionary styles, genres, and aesthetics that continue to fascinate us today.

We Will Remember Them: Voices From the Aftermath of the Great War

Max Arthur - 2009
    Featuring an introduction by the 110-year-old Henry Allingham—the only living survivor of the Battle of the Somme—this new anthology will contain interviews with the families of World War I veterans as well those still alive from the British, German, French, Russian, and other armies. These men have left their mark on history, and their personal stories are deeply moving. A concluding chapter places the “Great War” in context.

Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World

Jeffrey Herf - 2009
    He draws extensively on previously unused and little-known archival resources, including the shocking transcriptions of the “Axis Broadcasts in Arabic” radio programs, which convey a strongly anti-Semitic message.Herf explores the intellectual, political, and cultural context in which German and European radical anti-Semitism was found to resonate with similar views rooted in a selective appropriation of the traditions of Islam. Pro-Nazi Arab exiles in wartime Berlin, including Haj el-Husseini and Rashid el-Kilani, collaborated with the Nazis in constructing their Middle East propaganda campaign. By integrating the political and military history of the war in the Middle East with the intellectual and cultural dimensions of the propagandistic diffusion of Nazi ideology, Herf offers the most thorough examination to date of this important chapter in the history of World War II. Importantly, he also shows how the anti-Semitism promoted by the Nazi propaganda effort contributed to the anti-Semitism exhibited by adherents of radical forms of Islam in the Middle East today.

Dilly: The Man Who Broke Enigma

Mavis Batey - 2009
    Knox, the son of a famous religious scholar, worked in the Admiralty's Room 40 codebreaking operation during the First World War & during the Second World War he was Britain's chief cryptographer.

Hindenburg: Power, Myth, And The Rise Of The Nazis

Anna von der Goltz - 2009
    In a period characterized by rupture and fragmentation, the legend surrounding Paul von Hindenburg brought together a broad coalition of Germans and became one of the most potent forces in Weimar politics. Charting the origins of the myth, from Hindenburg's decisive victory at the Battle of Tannenberg in 1914 to his death in Nazi Germany and beyond, Anna Menge explains why the presence of Hindenburg's name on the ballot mesmerized an overwhelming number of voters in the presidential elections of 1925. His myth-an ever-evolving phenomenon-increasingly transcended the dividing lines of interwar politics, which helped him secure re-election by left-wing and moderate voters. Indeed, the only two times in German history that the people could elect their head of state directly and secretly, they chose this national icon. Hindenburg even managed to defeat Adolf Hitler in 1932, making him the Nazi leader's final arbiter; it was he who made the final and fateful decision to appoint Hitler as Chancellor in January 1933.

Holocaust: The Nazi Persecution and Murder of the Jews

Peter Longerich - 2009
    The book received universal acclaim, and is now generally recognized by historians as the standard account of this horrific chapter in human history. Now finally available in English, this masterful history uses an unrivalled range of sources to lay out in clear detail the steps taken by the Nazis that would lead ultimately to the Final Solution. Focusing closely on the perpetrators and exploring the process of decision making, Longerich convincingly shows that anti-Semitism was not a mere by-product of the Nazis' political mobilization or an attempt to deflect the attention of the masses. Rather, from 1933 anti-Jewish policy was a central tenet of the Nazi movement's attempts to implement, disseminate, and secure National Socialist rule--and one which crucially shaped Nazi policy decisions. Holocaust is perhaps most remarkable for its extensive use of the 1930s archives of the Central Association of German Citizens of the Jewish Faith, which re-emerged in the 1990s after years languishing in Moscow. The letters and reports from this archive document in detail the attacks suffered by ordinary Jewish people from their German neighbors. They show how, contrary to what has been believed in the past, the German populace responded relatively enthusiastically to Nazi anti-Semitism. This long-awaited English edition has been fully updated by Longerich himself. It features revised appendices with notes and further reading, as well as a new preface by the author. In addition, Longerich has added new material on the Jewish victims and on the camps and the ghettos, and has extended the story from the end of the war right up to the present day. In all, it is the most complete treatment ever published on the history of this monumental tragedy.

The Nuremberg Ss-Einsatzgruppen Trial, 1945-1958: Atrocity, Law, and History

Hilary Earl - 2009
    Sent to the Soviet Union in the summer of 1941, four units of Einsatzgruppen along with reinforcements, murdered approximately one million Soviet civilians in open air shootings and in gas vans and, in 1947, twenty-four leaders of these units were indicted for crimes against humanity and war crimes for their part in the murders. In addition to a describing the legal proceedings, this book also examines recent historiographical trends and perpetrator paradigms and expounds on such contested issues as the timing and genesis of the Final Solution, the perpetrators' route to crime and their motivation for killing, as well as discussing the tensions between law and history.

After the Nazi Racial State: Difference and Democracy in Germany and Europe

Rita Chin - 2009
    This is an extremely important project, and the volume indeed has the potential to reshape the field of post-1945 German history."---Frank Biess, University of California, San DiegoWhat happened to "race," race thinking, and racial distinctions in Germany, and Europe more broadly, after the demise of the Nazi racial state? This book investigates the afterlife of "race" since 1945 and challenges the long-dominant assumption among historians that it disappeared from public discourse and policy-making with the defeat of the Third Reich and its genocidal European empire. Drawing on case studies of Afro-Germans, Jews, and Turks---arguably the three most important minority communities in postwar Germany---the authors detail continuities and change across the 1945 divide and offer the beginnings of a history of race and racialization after Hitler. A final chapter moves beyond the German context to consider the postwar engagement with "race" in France, Britain, Sweden, and the Netherlands, where waves of postwar, postcolonial, and labor migration troubled nativist notions of national and European identity.After the Nazi Racial State poses interpretative questions for the historical understanding of postwar societies and democratic transformation, both in Germany and throughout Europe. It elucidates key analytical categories, historicizes current discourse, and demonstrates how contemporary debates about immigration and integration---and about just how much "difference" a democracy can accommodate---are implicated in a longer history of "race." This book explores why the concept of "race" became taboo as a tool for understanding German society after 1945. Most crucially, it suggests the social and epistemic consequences of this determined retreat from "race" for Germany and Europe as a whole.Rita Chin is Associate Professor of History at the University of Michigan.Heide Fehrenbach is Presidential Research Professor at Northern Illinois University.Geoff Eley is Karl Pohrt Distinguished University Professor of Contemporary History at the University of Michigan.Atina Grossmann is Professor of History at Cooper Union.Cover illustration: Human eye, ©

Flight from the Reich: Refugee Jews, 1933-1946

Deborah Dwork - 2009
    As persecution, war, and deportation savaged their communities, Jews tried to flee Nazi Europe through legal and clandestine routes. In their multifaceted tale of Jewish refugees during and after the Nazi era, Debórah Dwork and Robert Jan van Pelt braid the private and public realms, personal memory and official history. They probe the challenges faced by German Jewish refugees; the dispute among the Swiss on allowing Jews to cross their border; the dangers braved by covert guides who helped the hunted out of occupied France; and the creation of postwar displaced person camps, which have much to tell us about refugee camps today. Grounded in archival research throughout Europe and America, hundreds of oral histories, and thousands of newly discovered letters, Flight from the Reich shows how the lives of people thread together to form history.

Escape from Germany: True Stories of PoW Escapes in WWII

Graham Pitchfork - 2009
    Written by a POW who himself tried to escape, it explores the most daring attempts ever made, including those from Colditz, the 'escapers gaol', and Stalag Luft III, where the famous 'Great Escape' tunnel is described by two of the officers who created it. Escape from Germany vividly portrays life in the camp and the meticulous planning behind each escape, from the hollowed-out vaulting horse concealing active tunnels to strategies for gathering intelligence, forging documents and producing clothing and maps. Dramatic true stories reveal the success - and failure - of journeys outside the camps, as fugitive POWs struggle to freedom inside beer barrels, leaping from trains or hidden in ship's coal bunkers. Compelling accounts combine with original photographs, documents and maps to celebrate the spirit and ingenuity of those who battled to be free

Santorini: Volcano, Natural History, Mythology

Walter L Friedrich - 2009
    This so-called 'Minoan' eruption triggered tsunamis that devastated coastal settlements in the region, and on Santorini it left behind a Bronze Age Pompeii, which is currently being excavated. Thriving Bronze Age settlements on the island - rich in colorful wall paintings and highly sophisticated pottery - were buried under thick layers of volcanic ash. The ejection of an immense volume of dust into the atmosphere also altered global climate for several years. The author, a well-known geologist, blends the thrill of scientific discovery with a popular presentation of the geology, archeology, history, peoples, and environmental settings of the island group of Santorini. He not only gives a comprehensive overview of the volcanic island and its past, but also reports on the latest discoveries: The finding, for example, of the olive trees which had been buried alive by the Minoan eruption has made it possible now to give a direct and precise radiocarbon date for the volcanic catastrophe. Furthermore, he seeks to assign certain geological structures, such as faulted rocks, red lavas and harbor sites, as depicted on the Bronze Age frescos from Santorini, to still-existing details in the Santorini landscape of today. Excellent color photographs and illustrations along with easily understandable scientific and historic details will make this book highly appealing to a wide audience. It will also be useful as a supplementary text for introductory courses in earth and atmospheric science, geology, volcanology, and paleoclimatology, as well as ancient history and archeology.

Not Home for Christmas: A Day in the Life of the Mighty Eighth

John Meurs - 2009
    The date was Sunday, November 26, 1944. Meurs always wanted to know more about what happened in the air on that Thanksgiving Sunday. So, more than sixty years later he started researching the B-17. He quickly found that the bomber was part of the 8th Air Force Air Combat Command. Meurs findings intrigued him and after discovering many interesting facts, Meurs focused his research on the 34 heavy bombers of the Mighty Eighth that were lost that day. He collected the personal stories of veterans who lived through it, families of veterans lost, and witnesses of the crashes. These first-hand recollections, captured in this book, provide a compelling and terrifying account of the reality of war. Thanks to the noble men of the Mighty Eighth who would not be home for Christmas in 1944 and their comrades in arms, many people the world over now live in peace and freedom.

Brothers in Exile: A Novel of the Lives and Loves of Thomas and Heinrich Mann

Selig Kainer - 2009
    Two of Germany's literary lions, Thomas and Heinrich Mann, are the central characters of Selig Kainer's novel, Brothers in Exile. Their rivalry is set against the background of Hitler's rise to power, and the novel opens in 1932 as Hitler becomes Chancellor. In real danger from the Nazi, Heinrich has already fled, while Thomas briefly nurtures the hope that his stature as a Noble Prize winner could be a balancing force against Hitler. The novel then takes the reader back to the powerful sturm und drang of Thomas and Heinrich's outwardly comfortable early family life. Their story is rife with love, rivalry, artistic strivings, and forbidden longings. With his deep affinity for the work of these two great writers, Selig Kainer has written an intimate account of them that reveals their rivalry and innermost conflicts, and illuminates the foreboding landscape of the demonic forces unleashed in Germany during their time. "It is a wonderful novel... One need not be a reader of either Mann brother to appreciate Brothers in Exile, for here the curious interplay between life and literature, between imagination and reality, is played out to the full." Jeffery Paine, former Literary Editor of the Wilson Quarterly, a judge of the Pulitzer Prize, author of Father India, Adventures with the Buddha, and Editor of Re-enchantment: Tibetan Buddhism comes to the West. "Thomas and Heinrich Mann grew up in Germany, portrayed Germany, then finally fled Germany, ending their lives in American and Swiss exile. Now, Selig Kainer has explored their early lives, not as an historian or biographer, but as a creative novelist, using the bones of their youth to X-ray their evolution as sons of imperial Germany, as nascent artists, and as siblings. Kainer's intricate fictional journey is a Bildungsroman at once tender, profound, epic and original. Enjoy!" Nigel Hamilton, author of JFK: Reckless Youth and The Brothers Mann. "Selig Kainer dives into the complex relationship between Thomas and Heinrich Mann and comes back up with a pearl of a book. He transports us into the imagined landscape of their inner lives, their rivalries, discontents, desires and dreams. The vivid detail he brings to his story is gripping; his obsession with his characters thoroughly contagious." Andrea Weiss, author of In the Shadow of Magic Mountain: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story.

To Fight For My Country, Sir!

Donald Casey - 2009
    The book is a must read for anyone who wants to know what it really felt like to fly combat missions, to be captured and to suffer the rigors of a winter death match under armed guard, to be on an overcrowded cattle car train and transported to the Hell Hole prison at Moosburg, Germany along with 110,000 POW's, eating rancid "soup", fighting dysentery and swarming fleas, starving and finally being rescued by General Patton's Third Army at war's end (includes photo of the General at the camp). It is a riveting story that is hard to put down, written by a great story teller, now a Chicago trial lawyer for 52 years and full of cherished photos. Don Casey has waited 65 years to tell his story, now sharing it with you. The book puts you there, on aerial combat missions, and inside the prison camp! The photos are terrific. Awarded WWII Writer's Award from Sterling Cooper Publishing.

Nazi Nexus: America's Corporate Connections to Hitler's Holocaust

Edwin Black - 2009
    The biggest names and crimes are all there. IBM and its facilitation of the identification and accelerated destruction of the Jews; General Motors and its rapid motorization of the German military enabling the conquest of Europe and the capture of Jews everywhere; Ford Motor Company for its political inspiration; the Rockefeller Foundation for its financing of deadly eugenic science and the program that sent Mengele into Auschwitz; the Carnegie Institution for its proliferation of the concept of race science, racial laws, and the very mathematical formula used to brand the Jews for progressive destruction.

Rapunzel And Other Maiden In The Tower Tales From Around The World

Heidi Anne Heiner - 2009
    Just the name conjures up images of long golden hair and tall stone towers. She remains part of our popular culture thanks to countless children's books, as well as advertising, movies, and merchandise. Rapunzel, far from falling into historical obscurity, is very much a part of modern culture. However, she is far from the only maiden in a tower to be found in folklore. Her tale and those of other imprisoned women reach back hundreds of years and come from many cultures from around the world. This anthology of tales offers several stories similar to Rapunzel. A few better resemble the tale of Maid Maleen, another imprisoned daughter. Most are tales of other imprisoned maidens, princesses, and wives from around the world. Not all of the women are kept in literal towers, some are entombed instead, but all are unwilling captives. They are imprisoned by their parents for their own safety, as punishment, or to guard their virtue. Wives are imprisoned by jealous husbands hoping to avoid cuckolding. A few women are political prisoners. A surprising number of the tales come from France where tower prisons were popular devices of the French salon authors, especially Madame d'Aulnoy. This collection contains over fifty tales and stories--some well-known, some almost forgotten--reaching back to ancient myths and moving forward to recent centuries. Also included are two tales newly translated into English from the original French, "Persinette" and "Parsillette," the latter a rare variant of the tale with an unusual ending. Whether you are a student of folklore or an armchair enthusiast, this anthology offers a diverse array of tales with a unifying theme that both entertains and educates, all gathered for the first time in one helpful collection.

Rommel's Desert War: Waging World War II in North Africa, 1941-1943

Martin Kitchen - 2009
    Martin Kitchen's masterful history of the Axis campaign provides a fundamental reassessment of the key battles of 1941–3, Rommel's generalship, and the campaign's place within the broader strategic context of the war. He shows that the British were initially helpless against the operational brilliance of Rommel's Panzer divisions. However Rommel's initial successes and refusal to follow orders committed the Axis to a campaign well beyond their means. Without the reinforcements or supplies he needed to deliver a knockout blow, Rommel was forced onto the defensive and Hitler's Mediterranean strategy began to unravel. The result was the loss of an entire army which together with defeat at Stalingrad signalled a decisive shift in the course of the war.Reviews:"Rommel's Desert War is a book of outstanding importance. It will stand alongside, challenging and correcting, Liddell Hart's Rommel Papers. Martin Kitchen takes us to the heart of the Axis war effort in North Africa. His book effortlessly blends sources written in many languages into a gripping narrative. The struggle for Libya was not the 'war without hate': it was a squalid and nasty fight with enormous ramifications for world history. Kitchen captures both the brutality and the importance of the struggle. No one is going to see the Desert War in quite the same light after reading his book." - Simon Ball, author of The Bitter Sea: The Struggle for Mastery in the Mediterranean 1935-1949"Rommel's Desert War brings fresh sources and a fresh perspective to the North African campaign. Kitchen's skillful blend of policy and strategy, operations and tactics, pulls no punches. His stringent, well-documented critique of Rommel's performance in particular makes this a significant contribution to the literature on the Second World War." - Dennis Showalter author of Patton and Rommel: Men of War in the Twentieth Century"At last we have a book which provides a modern, balanced and fascinating account of the war in North Africa from the Axis point of view. Martin Kitchen reveals with real clarity the complex interaction between the two armies in the see-saw fighting of the desert. He punctures myths effortlessly and, impressively, links the fierce desert fighting with the political imperatives and realities of the fascist powers. This book is now essential reading for anyone interested in the desert war and its place in the wider history of the Second World War." - Niall Barr, author of Pendulum of War: Three Battles at El-Alamein"For too long the decisive campaign in North Africa has been viewed as a military duel between Britain and Germany, personified in the figures of Montgomery and Rommel. Now at last, making full use of Italian sources, Martin Kitchen has given us a balanced, judicious and convincing analysis of the three-handed war in the desert. It will be required reading for every World War II historian." - John Gooch, author of Mussolini and his Generals: The Armed Forces and Fascist Foreign Policy, 1922-1940"In Rommel's Desert War Kitchen has produced a fine book; highly recommended." - Adrian Gilbert,"Martin Kitchen combines policy, strategy, tactics and personality in a detailed account from the Axis perspective. ... Fascinating insights abound." - Soldier, magazine of the British Army"Thanks to Kitchen's meticulous research, there is now a compelling account of the battles from a German perspective, with a well-rounded and not altogether flattering picture of Rommel." - Foreign Affairs"Arguably the most provocative reassessment of this theater in many a year, this challenging, rich, well-argued tome forces careful revisits to dearly held truths about strategy, operations, tactics, and personalities." - World War II Magazine"Kitchen has written the definitive analysis of the North African war for our time." - Germany Studies Review, Larry L. Ping, Southern Utah University"This study gives us a vivid view of the theater from the perspective of the Afrikakorps command." -Eleanor Hancock, American Historical Review"...valuable for the specialist and interesting for the amateur of the desert war." - A.A. Nofi,

Hanns Heinz Ewers Volume I

Hanns Heinz Ewers - 2009
    Stories include: The Spider,The Crucified Minstral,Delphi,The Curve, My Burial,Anthropoovaropartus,The Death of Baron Jesus Maria von Friedel,The Button Collection,Bible Billy,The Blue Indians,My Mother the Witch,Intoxication and art,Edgar Allan Poe,and three sample chapters of the forthcoming novel Alraune

German Orientalism in the Age of Empire: Religion, Race, and Scholarship

Suzanne L. Marchand - 2009
    "Orientalism" certainly contributed to European empire-building, but it also helped to destroy a narrow Christian-classical canon. This carefully researched book provides the first synthetic and contextualized study of German Orientalistik, a subject of special interest because German scholars were the pace-setters in oriental studies between about 1830 and 1930, despite entering the colonial race late and exiting it early. The book suggests that we must take seriously German orientalism's origins in Renaissance philology and early modern biblical exegesis and appreciate its modern development in the context of nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century debates about religion and the Bible, classical schooling, and Germanic origins. In ranging across the subdisciplines of Orientalistik, German Orientalism in the Age of Empire introduces readers to a host of iconoclastic characters and forgotten debates, seeking to demonstrate both the richness of this intriguing field and its indebtedness to the cultural world in which it evolved.

The Shame of Survival: Working Through a Nazi Childhood

Ursula Mahlendorf - 2009
    Ursula Mahlendorf, born to a middle-class family in 1929, at the start of the Great Depression, was the daughter of a man who was a member of the SS at the time of his early death in 1935. For a long while during her childhood she was a true believer in Nazism--and a leader in the Hitler Youth herself.This is her vivid and unflinchingly honest account of her indoctrination into Nazism and of her gradual awakening to all the damage that Nazism had done to her country. It reveals why Nazism initially appealed to people from her station in life and how Nazi ideology was inculcated into young people. The book recounts the increasing hardships of life under Nazism as the war progressed and the chaos and turmoil that followed Germany's defeat.In the first part of this absorbing narrative, we see the young Ursula as she becomes an enthusiastic member of the Hitler Youth and then goes on to a Nazi teacher-training school at fifteen. In the second part, which traces her growing disillusionment with and anger at the Nazi leadership, we follow her story as she flees from the Russian army's advance in the spring of 1945, works for a time in a hospital caring for the wounded, returns to Silesia when it is under Polish administration, and finally is evacuated to the West, where she begins a new life and pursues her dream of becoming a teacher.In a moving Epilogue, Mahlendorf discloses how she learned to accept and cope emotionally with the shame that haunted her from her childhood allegiance to Nazism and the self-doubts it generated.