Future readings for a WWII enthusiast

#1
Hi,

I've just finished reading Albert Speer - Inside the third reich, and am wondering where I could go next, after reading the following :

Shirer - Rise and fall of the third reich
Hitler - Mein Kampf (official english translation)
Churchill - The second world war 6 book set
Dick Winters - beyond band of brothers, war memoirs of mjr winters
Herbert Dix - Hirohito and the making of modern japan
Simon Sebag Montefiore - Stalin : The court of the red tsar
.. And a FDR biography I can't remember the author.

I feel less knowledgeable about the japanese and soviet points of view, not mentioning Mussolini's Italy and Franco's Spain.. and start to feel a certain redundance in purely descriptive books about the european front.

Any inputs on reliable books I should consider next ?
 

diddyriddick

Historum Emeritas
May 2009
14,692
A tiny hamlet in the Carolina Sandhills
#2
Hi,

I've just finished reading Albert Speer - Inside the third reich, and am wondering where I could go next, after reading the following :

Shirer - Rise and fall of the third reich
Hitler - Mein Kampf (official english translation)
Churchill - The second world war 6 book set
Dick Winters - beyond band of brothers, war memoirs of mjr winters
Herbert Dix - Hirohito and the making of modern japan
Simon Sebag Montefiore - Stalin : The court of the red tsar
.. And a FDR biography I can't remember the author.

I feel less knowledgeable about the japanese and soviet points of view, not mentioning Mussolini's Italy and Franco's Spain.. and start to feel a certain redundance in purely descriptive books about the european front.

Any inputs on reliable books I should consider next ?
I've read the Dix book, but I wasn't particularly impressed. He sets out to prove that the Emperor was responsible for Japanese excesses. By itself, that wouldn't be a problem. But he really didn't prove his point, imho.

If I were looking for a single volume on the Pacific War, then I still recommend Rising Sun by John Toland.

I also liked At Dawn We Slept and Miracle at Midway by Gordon Prange.
 

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
34,586
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#3
If you're interested in the Nazis and what they were thinking, I can recommend G.M. Gilbert's "Nuremberg Diary".

Gitta Sereny's "Albert Speer: His Battle with Truth" is a good companion to Inside the Third Reich.

Beevor's "Berlin: The Downfall 1945" is also an excellent book, particularly in conjunction with the film Der Untergang (The Downfall), although the two aren't related, as far as I'm aware.

You can also read the full transcript of the Nuremberg Trials here:
Avalon Project - The International Military Tribunal for Germany

It is really fascinating, and if you use it alongside Gilbert's book, it provides a great view of the proceedings from different sides.
 
Jul 2011
193
Crossett, AR, USA
#4
I just started "Inferno" (U.S. title, original title is "All Hell Let Loose") by Max Hastings for my World War II class and I'm enjoying it so far.

"With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa" by Eugene Sledge is a fantastic memoir of his time as a Marina infantryman in the Pacific.
 
Apr 2012
121
Jerk Store
#6
I am now reading

[ame="http://www.amazon.com/Heinrich-Himmler-Life-Peter-Longerich/dp/0199592322/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1349798022&sr=1-1&keywords=himmler"]Heinrich Himmler: A Life: Peter Longerich: 9780199592326: Amazon.com: Books@@AMEPARAM@@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/518r-e%2BsHRL.@@AMEPARAM@@518r-e%2BsHRL[/ame]

So I am just gonna recommend it even though I am only about 100 pages in but at least I am not yet disappointed. Have to also second that already mentioned Gitta Serenys book as it is one of the best books I have ever read. Just FYI side note for "fans" of Speer, they have the quality German film Speer & Hitler in youtube:[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMZaMkyhxlQ"]Speer and Hitler #1 - YouTube[/ame]
 

unclefred

Ad Honorem
Dec 2010
6,731
Oregon coastal mountains
#7
This is the one I'm interested in now:

[ame="http://www.amazon.com/Human-Game-Escape-Murders-Gestapo/dp/0425252736/ref=tmm_hrd_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1349384272&sr=1-1"]Human Game: The True Story of the 'Great Escape' Murders and the Hunt for the Gestapo Gunmen: Simon Read: 9780425252734: Amazon.com: Books@@AMEPARAM@@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51xfPDhWSLL.@@AMEPARAM@@51xfPDhWSLL[/ame]

The mass breakout of seventy-six Allied airmen from the infamous Stalag Luft III became one of the greatest tales of World War II, immortalized in the film The Great Escape. But where Hollywood’s depiction fades to black, another incredible story begins . . .

Not long after the escape, fifty of the recaptured airmen were taken to desolate killing fields throughout Germany and shot on the direct orders of Hitler. When the nature of these killings came to light, Churchill’s government swore to pursue justice at any cost. A revolving team of military police, led by squadron leader Francis P. McKenna, was dispatched to Germany seventeen months after the killings to pick up a trail long gone cold.
 
Jan 2013
39
Arizona
#8
"The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich" - William Shirer.

Excellent book. It has 1000+ pages, but is very well written. It goes into Hitler's Background and also gives a good account of Wolrd War II.

I'd recommend that book to anyone.
 
Sep 2011
443
#9
I am just finishing Alan Warren's very good Burma 1942.

Spearhead, James E.T.Hopkins ( Merrill's Marauders )

Burma- The Longest War- Louis Allen

But Not In Shame -John Toland
 
Nov 2012
1,621
Pax juxta probitatem
#10
Not a military or exciting WW2 theme, I accept. However, I read a great book many years ago, probably around 1989 when it was published. The great Spandau Prison in Berlin had gone when we arrived for duty but its story has been told in this book:​

"Spandau" ("The Last of the Hitler Gang") by Jack Fishman. This book relates the seven Nazi inmates' private lives inside the prison, and their attitudes towards their crimes. I remember it has photographs of Spandau Prison in the front pages, and interviews with inmates' families and friends. A great read and a great insight.​

Now there are rumours that it wasn't Hess in there, stories of the Duke of Kent and Hess dying in a plane crash, and a Hess double who served his time in Spandau. Who knows.​
 

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