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John Michael Hope

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Catastrophe: Europe Goes to War 1914
Catastrophe: Europe Goes to War 1914
by Max Hastings
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £15.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The trumpet's call, 7 Dec 2013
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Max Hastings is an accomplished journalist and he uses all his skills in this very readable account of the outbreak of war in 1914. He is particularly good at describing the way in which cavalry wearing shining breastplates with nodding plumes on their shakos accompanied by bands playing martial tunes were sent to charge artillery and machine-guns with predictably horrific results. He is devastating in his damning description of Britain's contribution to the early fighting.


But What Do You Actually Do?: A Literary Vagabondage
But What Do You Actually Do?: A Literary Vagabondage
by Sir Alistair Horne CBE
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £21.83

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An author's lede, 7 Dec 2013
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I read this book because I followed Alistair Horne as foreign correspondent for the Daily Telegraph in Bonn and I have consequently interested myself in his career which needless to say is a great deal more distinguished than own. He is a clear, very readable author although I found his claim to friendship with a large number of notable people a bit tiresome. I would highly recommend the book to any near contemporary of his/mine.


Iron Kingdom: The Rise and Downfall of Prussia, 1600-1947
Iron Kingdom: The Rise and Downfall of Prussia, 1600-1947
by Christopher Clark
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.09

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Prussian Perspective, 18 Jun 2013
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The most surprising thing about this cool and definitive history of Prussia is the revelation is that it was not from the 18th century a modern Sparta, devoted to the martial arts, but a cultured almost Athenian society with a large and efficient army. Its indeterminate boundaries in the centre of constantly war-torn Europe gave it a feeling of vulnerability and its history veers between periods of precocious success and perilous weakness. Highly recommended


A Delicate Truth
A Delicate Truth
by John le Carré
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £15.19

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fake goings on in Gibraltar, 18 Jun 2013
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This review is from: A Delicate Truth (Hardcover)
A relaxed and delightfully written tale of how a minor British diplomat was recruited for an anti-terrorist stunt in Gibraltar which proved, as he discovered years later, to have been a mismanaged and criminal fake. There are 2 distinct halves - the stunt (a supposed kidnapping) itself and the revelation to the now-knighted diplomat by a participant of what really happened. The efforts by ther authorities to effect a cover-up are chilling.


A Man Without Breath (Bernie Gunther)
A Man Without Breath (Bernie Gunther)
by Philip Kerr
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £15.19

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Massacre in Katyn Wood, 18 Jun 2013
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As always in Philip Kerr's tales about the sardonic ex-Berlin policeman Bernie Gunther the cast of characters, often senior Nazis and Wehrmacht officers, are real figures and this adds to the tales' verisimilitude. In this case the central event is the massacre of several thousand Polish officers by the Russians whose graves the German invaders discovered and sought to use for its propaganda value. The tale is darkly exciting. Throroughly recommended


An English Affair
An English Affair
by Richard Davenport-Hines
Edition: Hardcover

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Seedily Glamorous 60s, 18 Jun 2013
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This review is from: An English Affair (Hardcover)
Hardly a single player involved in the Profumo affair comes out of this very thorough account with their reputation intact - whether a senior politician, judge or newspaper hack. The tone however is rather monotonously censorious and I don't think I would recommend it to anyone without a close interest in the period.


The End: Hitler's Germany, 1944-45 (Allen Lane History)
The End: Hitler's Germany, 1944-45 (Allen Lane History)
by Ian Kershaw
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £25.17

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Total Defeat, 25 Sep 2011
This is a vivid and enthralling account of the terrible last days of Hitler's Third Reich and sets out to explain why the Germans continued fighting up to the very bitter end in May 1945. Kershaw authoritatively examines the various factors contributing to this - lingering loyalty to a previously successful leader, the Wehrmacht's oath of allegiance to him, readiness of the civilian authorities to continue performing their duties amid appalling violence and above all the terror which the Nazis had exerted elsewhere in Europe and now visited on the German people.


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