Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
Dreadnought: Britain, Germany, and the Coming of the Great War Paperback – September 15, 1992
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
From Publishers Weekly
Massie's sweeping narrative centers around the naval rivalry between Britain and Germany after the death of Queen Victoria in 1901, highlighting this as one of the major tensions that led to WW I. Photos.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
This is a case study in the limits of a particular style of history. Massie's previous biographically focused narrative histories, Peter the Great ( LJ 9/15/80) and Nicholas and Alexandra ( LJ 7/67), succeeded intellectually because of the nature of autocratic decision making. The British and German systems were too complicated and too democratic to respond to a biographical focus. This massive volume, while reminding us of the importance of individuals in decision making, nevertheless ultimately misrepresents the Anglo-German rivalry as essentially a conflict of personalities. The naval race, purportedly the book's focus, is submerged in a sea of anecdotes about ministers and monarchs. Many are interesting; few are original. Moreover, neither Massie's text nor his bibliography shows significant traces of the immense body of German-language scholarship on this complex subject. Long and intricate for the general reader, this is incomplete for the serious student. Paul Kennedy's equally massive The Rise of the Anglo-German Antagonism (Allen & Unwin, 1980) is no less well written and provides a much more comprehensive account. BOMC main selection.
- D.E. Showalter, U.S. Air Force Acad., Colorado Springs
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Top customer reviews
What makes this book so great is that Massie goes beyond policies and digs deep into the personalities of the naval and political leadership of both Britain and Germany. He develops Kaiser Wilhelm II (Massie uses the English William), Queen Victoria and the Kings of England, Chancellors and Prime Ministers, First Lords, Sea Lords, and Admirals, writes about they interacted and how their relationships impacted events and policy. I got more insight into Wilhelm II in Dreadnought than any other book I’ve read on World War I. I also have a better understanding of Asquith, Grey, Haldane, Bismarck, Bulow, Tirpitz, and other politicians and officials of the time. By getting inside their heads and helping us understand what the Admirals and politicians were thinking, Massie gives us a better understanding of how and why things unfolded the way they did in the years leading to World War I.
I imagine one complaint about Dreadnought is that it leaves you hanging at the end. Having previously read Castles of Steel – Britain, Germany, and the Winning of the Great War at Sea, I recognized that what Dreadnought does is set the reader up for Castles of Steel. Having read both in the opposite order of what I should have, I can strongly recommend reading them in the correct order – Dreadnought first, Castles of Steel (which I’m now re-reading) second. This is an extraordinary book, a very easy read that you don’t want to put down. It’s a long book but one that you don’t get tired of reading because of Massie’s rich, descriptive writing and the human detail he puts in. Even if you’re not interested in the Naval aspect of World War I, read this book simply for the insight Massie offers into the political leadership of Britain and Germany, you won’t regret it. This is without a doubt one of the best books I’ve read recently and it’s fully deserving of five stars!
The book covers not only the interactions of the families but also the intrigue between the great powers that eventually lead up to and drug much of Europe into war without the benefit of finding another way to solve the issues.
If your an avid history buff and want to understand the underlying causes of WW I, much of the intrigue that set the stage for WW II and, eventually, what drives the world today this is a good read.