The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William L. Shirer

This past week I finally finished William L. Shirer's "The Rise and Fall of The Third Reich."  I must admit that I cheated a little bit by getting the audiobook from Audible.  Overall it was ~60 hours of listening.

I know a lot has been written and scrutinized about Shirer's work but I found it very interesting and engrossing to listen to.  The narrator (Grover Gardner) was excellent and I loved the inflection in his voice; so much so that I purchased his reading of Shelby Foote's "The Civil War" (all 150 hours worth!).  I don't think anyone would be disappointed in reading this work.

If you're looking for a military novel, this certainly is not the book as it focuses more on the political and foreign aspects of the Third Reich.  As mentioned, I really enjoyed it from start to finish but there was a considerable amount of time dedicated to those conspiring to kill Hitler from within Germany (Operation Valkyrie, etc.); almost a little too much...

If you realize that Shirer spent a great deal more time in Germany leading up to World War II than during the war, you will understand why more time in the book is spent on the "Rise" of the Reich rather than the "Fall".  The latter of which does seem a little lacking in details and focus.  However, with this understanding in mind I think this book was time well spent.

1 comment:

  1. Tanner, I have a book by William Shirer called "Berlin Diary 1934-1941 The Rise of the Third Reich". It is an interesting read in that its a great 'on the spot' account of events and feelings leading up to the invation of Russia. One surprise for me was the shortges experienced by German citizens and their lack of support for Hitler and the Nazis in the Winter months leading up to the invasion of France.



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