0021 | Berlin – Antony Beevor



REVIEW:
A graphic and often moving account of the final moments of the Third Reich, this is a must read for anyone with any interest at all in WWII.

It wasn’t, however, as good as I expected. At times, Beevor drifts into paragraphs of tactical, strategic information more suited to the military strategist than the armchair historian. Thankfully, he’s done well to weave a large number of personal accounts of the tragedy into the narrative, particularly from the perspective of the mauled civilian population. This is predominantly in the form of descriptions of rape victims and so this book, in contrast to many others, tells their tale with grim detail.

OPENING LINE
Berliners, gaunt from short rations and stress, had little to celebrate at Christmas in 1944.

WORDS
tulle: fine mesh used for bridal veils, and sometimes in wedding gowns.
schadenfreude: delight in another person’s misfortune
lugubrious: excessively mournful
ersatz: substitute
enfilade: To fire at the flank or down the length (line) of troops rather than at its front.

CLOSING LINE
The incompetence, the frenzied refusal to accept reality and the inhumanity of the Nazi regime were revealed all too clearly in its passing.
RATING:
terrible > poor > mediocre > okay > good > very good > excellent > superb

FINISHED:2007 – Apr

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