William L. Shirer Books In Order

20th Century Journey Books In Publication Order

  1. The Start: 1904-30 (1976)
  2. The Nightmare Years: 1930-40 (1984)
  3. A Native’s Return: 1945-1988 (1990)

Berlin Diary Books In Publication Order

  1. Berlin Diary: The Journal of a Foreign Correspondent 1934-1941 (1941)
  2. End of a Berlin Diary (1947)

Non-Fiction Books In Publication Order

  1. Midcentury Journey (1952)
  2. The Challenge of Scandinavia (1955)
  3. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany (1960)
  4. The Rise and Fall of Adolf Hitler (1961)
  5. The Sinking of the Bismarck: The Deadly Hunt (1962)
  6. The Collapse of the Third Republic (1969)
  7. Gandhi: A Memoir (1980)
  8. Love and Hatred: The Troubled Marriage of Leo and Sonya Tolstoy (1994)
  9. This Is Berlin: Reporting from Nazi Germany 1938-40 (With: ) (2014)

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William L. Shirer Books Overview

The Nightmare Years: 1930-40

As European correspondent for a number of American newspapers during the 1930s, William L. Shirer witnessed at first hand many of the pivotal events in the buildup to World War II. At the Nuremberg rallies, when Hitler roared through the streets celebrating his newly won domination of Germany, Shirer was there. In Munich, as Chamberlain abandoned the Czechs, Shirer was there. In Vienna during the night of the Anschluss, in Berlin, when Hitler loosed his Blitzkrieg on Poland and began the war, Shirer was there. Through articles, broadcasts and translations of Hitler’s speeches, Shirer tirelessly tried to warn the world of the terrible evil that was growing in Germany. The Nightmare Years, a No. I bestseller when first published in America in 1984, is not only the fascinating eyewitness account of this cataclysmic decade, but also the more personal story of a young American caught in tense and desperate times, struggling to survive and provide a life for himself and his family as the world lurched inexorably towards war. ‘More than any conventional history book, Shirer’s memoirs let a reader relive history’ People ‘A superb journalist…
Shirer was close enough to Hitler to feel the Nazi leader’s messianic personal force…
An unusually fine book’ Time ‘No one ever did more to explain the rise of the Nazis’ Barbara Tuchman ‘An outstanding achievement of journalistic history; indeed it is the best kind of accurate and absorbing history’ Washington Post REVIEWS ‘Reporting at its best…
A highly readable, absorbing story of a fascinating man and a dangerous decade…
A deeply personal account of living with history as it’s being made an absorbing narrative’ Houston Chronicle ‘More than any conventional history book, Shirer’s memoirs let a reader relive history’ People ‘A superb journalist…
Shirer was close enough to Hitler to feel the Nazi leader’s messianic personal force…
An unusually fine book’ Time ‘No one ever did more to explain the rise of the Nazis’ Barbara Tuchman ‘An outstanding achievement of journalistic history; indeed it is the best kind of accurate and absorbing history’ Washington Post

A Native’s Return: 1945-1988

The third and final volume of Shirer’s bestselling memoir chronicles his long overdue return to his homeland and his ensuing careers as a premier broadcast journalist and bestselling author. 16 pages of photographs.

Berlin Diary: The Journal of a Foreign Correspondent 1934-1941

By the acclaimed journalist and bestselling author of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, this day by day, eyewitness account of the momentous events leading up to World War II in Europe is now available in a new paperback edition. CBS radio broadcaster William L. Shirer was virtually unknown in 1940 when he decided there might be a book in the diary he had kept in Europe during the 1930s specifically those sections dealing with the collapse of the European democracies and the rise of Nazi Germany. Berlin Diary first appeared in 1941, and the timing was perfect. The energy, the passion, the electricity in it were palpable. The book was an instant success, and it became the frame of reference against which thoughtful Americans judged the rush of events in Europe. It exactly matched journalist to event: the right reporter at the right place at the right time. It stood, and still stands, as so few books have ever done a pure act of journalistic witness.

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany

Since its publication in 1960, William L. Shirer’s monumental study of Hitler’s German Empire has been widely acclaimed as the definitive record of this century’s blackest hours. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich offers an unparalleled and thrillingly told examination of how Adolf Hitler nearly succeeded in conquering the world. With millions of copies in print around the globe, it has attained the status of a vital and enduring classic.

The Rise and Fall of Adolf Hitler

At daybreak on September 1, 1939, the German army poured across the Polish border while German bombers rained destruction from the skies, WW II had begun ‘Hitler’s war,’ as the British say. As an American correspondent in Berlin, William Shirer had met Hitler, listened to his fiery speeches, and observed him firsthand. The Rise and Fall of Adolf Hitler is based on what Shirer saw and on his later research of the massive files captured by the Allies. ‘Hitler’s conquest was classic. He double crossed his friends, massacred millions, plunged the world into its bloodiest war…
and buried his own nation in the process. In Hitler, tryanny found nearly perfect exposition.’ B O T Editorial Review Board

The Sinking of the Bismarck: The Deadly Hunt

The Bismark was the greatest warship ever built, with guns so powerful and accurate it could destroy an enemy ship while safely staying outside the line of fire. But the Allies had to sink it or risk losing the war. William Shirer, famed World War II correspondent and author of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, captures every suspenseful moment of the perilous mission. Most tragic of all was the loss of the HMS Hood, the British Navy’s star battleship, sunk by the Bismark in just minutes. However, a mixture of luck and new technology including radar turned the tide in the Allies favor.

The Collapse of the Third Republic

On June 17, 1940 William L. Shirer stood in the streets of Paris and watched the unending flow of gray German uniforms along its boulevards. In just six lovely weeks in the spring and summer of 1940 a single battle brought down in total military defeat one of the world’s oldest, greatest, and most civilized powers the second mightiest empire on earth and the possessor of one of the finest military machines ever assembled. How did it happen? After nearly a decade of research in the massive archives left from World War II and after hundreds of conversations with the Third Republic’s leaders, generals, diplomats, and ordinary citizens, Shirer presents the definitive answer in his stunning re creation of why and how France fell before Hitler’s armies in 1940. His book is also a devastating examination of the confusion, corruption, and cynicism that drained the strength and toughness of a democracy which Thomas Jefferson once called ‘every man’s second country.’ This book complements and completes the dramatic story of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich and continues to rank as one of the most important works of history of our time.

Love and Hatred: The Troubled Marriage of Leo and Sonya Tolstoy

A provocative dual biography of Leo and Sonya Tolstoy offers an illuminating anecdotal study of a long and stormy marriage between two remarkable individuals and the impact of their complex relationship on Leo Tolstoy’s literary work.

This Is Berlin: Reporting from Nazi Germany 1938-40 (With: )

William Shirer, the acclaimed journalist whose The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich quickly became, and still remains, the standard work on Nazi Germany, was a masterful chronicler of the events in Europe that led up to World War II. ‘This is Berlin’ gathers together two and a half years worth of his daily CBS radio broadcasts that described the menacing steps Germany took toward World War II, just as America and the world heard them. Here is a vivid, compelling, and urgent narrative, one of the great first hand documents of the Second World War. An introduction by noted historian John Keegan and a preface by Shirer’s daughter, Inga Shirer Dean, put Shirer’s life and work into context. ‘It would be almost impossible to overstate the importance of William L. Shirer’s broadcasts from Germany…
Mr. Shirer’s descriptions…
read as well as they were heard 60 years ago.’ Dallas Morning News ‘Shirer’s broadcasts…
are models of eloquence and subterfuge…
any reader will find it hard to put down.’ Publishers Weekly, starred review ‘His broadcasts…
have an enduring freshness.’ Sunday Times

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