2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
If you read one book on Nazi Germany - Make this it,
This review is from: The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany (Paperback)
Albert Shirer's Rise and Fall of the Third Reich's 1100 pages remain to this day one of the best single volume histories of Nazi Germany. The Author, who worked in journalism in Germany during the 1930's personally recorded much of what he writes but also used copious research to create a book that is both academic and journalistic. While this book is an investment of time I believe it will be well enjoyed by the reader and also provides a great resource for further reading through a fantastic bibliography. If you are looking for a book that focuses on World war two this book really might not be for you. This book is definitely more political than military but with the vast selections of combat histories and memoirs a book that solidly describes the politics that caused the Hitler's Rise to power and the political climate that caused and lasted through WWII is an important resource. The book differs vastly from other histories of this time period as it really attempts to explain the issues at several levels by describing life for the ordinary German and political Climates in England, France and other countries. This may be its best feature.
Being a journalist, Shirer focuses on events more than character. While he does use character portraits to some extent in describing Ernst Roehm, Goering and of course Hitler, this book really is about dates actions and events. This does not detract as these are important to understanding history on the whole. If you are looking for a great foundation to an understanding of the third reich this is a great start