Sunday, November 23, 2008

A must read for History buffs !!!

If you have a passion for history as I do, then reading cannot but be a natural hobby. A love for history and reading go hand in hand. This is because much of the love for history is realized by reading (and of course watching movies and documentaries to an extent). History, as a hobby, is obviously not something that can you can practise like, say, music or cricket. So therefore, the more of the great historical works you read, the more your love for history is intensified. The book that I am currently reading is definitely one of those works.

William Shirer's 'The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich' gives a detailed account of the German Third Riech under Adolf Hitler. At a colossal 1040 pages, this book (in PDF format) is certainly a magnum opus in terms of size. It essentially follows the life of the German dictator, right from his birth and early life, then his rise in German politics and the formation of the Nazi party which further leads to his becoming the Chancellor in 1933. Then it talks about the change from Chancellor to Fuehrer (a word that I quite liked ;-) and of how he prepares his nation for a confrontation with Britian and France. Then in 1939 of course, WW II breaks out. And the book chronicles this great war in great detail, right upto the fall of the Third Reich in 1945 that signalled its end. The author uses a virtual mountain of captured German and Allied documents and his personal experiences (he lived in Germany at the time) to breathtakingly reconstruct not just the events leading to the war but the actual war as well. The great detail in which the events are laid down makes the reader feel like a fly on the wall of every meeting related to the war whether it be in Berlin, London, Paris or Moscow. One can almost visualize Hitler arousing German passions in one of his long speeches in his immitable oratorial style. Or one can imagine personally listening to Winston Churchill addressing the House of Commons during the war. Also, the books has been beautifully arranged as well so that the reader does not have to flip back and forth between the pages. He can read the entire book in sequence much like a crime thriller. And this book is much better than any crime thriller !!. I have come to about 700 pages now, and each time I feel like finishing off the remainder of the book at one go. However, other duties come in the way ;-).

So for all history buffs, this is something not to be missed. Go ahead and grab a copy !!!!...



Monsieur K said...

Sounds like quite an interesting read :)
Mail me the pdf if u have it! ;-)

Dhananjay said...

Interesting book it is.
I remember reading the marathi translation years back in engg days. While on Hitler do check this wonderful movie: Downfall
It plots the last days of hitlers in his bunker