10 books like Suicide of the Empires

By Alan Clark,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Suicide of the Empires. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Testament of Youth

By Vera Brittain,

Book cover of Testament of Youth

I first began reading this just as background research, in an attempt to get the character ‘voice’ right for my own WW1 series, but, as with many other books I was pulled in against my expectations. Vera’s decision to become a VAD nurse, and her determination to do the best possible job under unthinkable circumstances, made me want to learn everything about this era and the people who lived it. It threw a cold light onto what had, until then, been a sort of fuzzy half-knowledge, and it’s an example of the best in humanity, wrapped in what could easily be an extravagant fiction; knowing it was an autobiographical account made it so much poignant. It shows how powerful the drive to help others can be, despite the hardships endured. 

Testament of Youth

By Vera Brittain,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Testament of Youth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An autobiographical account of a young nurse's involvement in World War I.


Hell's Foundations

By Geoffrey Moorhouse,

Book cover of Hell's Foundations: A Town, Its Myths and Gallipoli

A striking look at the devastating impact the war had on one English town, hundreds of whose young men died in the disastrously bungled Gallipoli campaign.

Hell's Foundations

By Geoffrey Moorhouse,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hell's Foundations as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There is no shortage of books on the ill-fated Gallipoli campaign of 1915 but this one stands out. In it Geoffrey Moorhouse moves the focus from the more familar aspects to concentrate on one small mill town, Bury, in Lancashire, and to anatomize the long-lasting effect the Dardanelles had on it.

Bury was the regimental home of the Lancashire Fusiliers. In the Gallipoli landings of 25 April 1915 it lost a large proportion of its youth. By May 1915, some 7,000 Bury men had already gone to war, to be followed by many others before Armistice Day. More than 1,600,from…


A Very Long Engagement

By Sebastien Japrisot,

Book cover of A Very Long Engagement

Unable to walk since childhood, Mathilde Donnay never lets her limitations get in her way. She is on the search for her fiancé who was reported killed in the Great War, but whom she believes might still be alive. Mathilde is feisty, caring, strategic, and driven—all things I’d like to be.

A Very Long Engagement

By Sebastien Japrisot,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked A Very Long Engagement as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1919, Mathilde Donnay, a young wheelchair-bound woman in France, begins a quest to find out if her fianc , supposedly killed in the line of duty two years earlier, might still be alive. Reprint. 50,000 first printing. (A Warner Bros. Independent Pictures film, releasing Fall 2004, directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, starring Audrey Tautou & Jodie Fo


Regeneration

By Pat Barker,

Book cover of Regeneration

Regeneration, the first novel of Pat Barker’s widely acclaimed The Regeneration Trilogy, is also a knock-out. In this novel about the psychosomatic effects of trench warfare, the angel of mercy is a psychiatric doctor based on the real-life W.H.R. Rivers, a neurologist and anthropologist holding the military rank of captain. His job at Craiglockhart War Hospital in Scotland is to heal war-traumatized patients so that they could return to the Front. Rivers, conflicted himself about the war, is as duty-bound as his patients, one of whom is Siegfried Sassoon, who later became the heralded war poet. I love this novel for its emotional and intellectual richness and for its honesty. Barker’s prose brings WWI to vivid, horrifying life—not on the battlefield but in a hospital.  

Regeneration

By Pat Barker,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Regeneration as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Calls to mind such early moderns as Hemingway and Fitzgerald...Some of the most powerful antiwar literature in modern English fiction."-The Boston Globe

The first book of the Regeneration Trilogy-a Booker Prize nominee and one of Entertainment Weekly's 100 All-Time Greatest Novels.

In 1917 Siegfried Sasson, noted poet and decorated war hero, publicly refused to continue serving as a British officer in World War I. His reason: the war was a senseless slaughter. He was officially classified "mentally unsound" and sent to Craiglockhart War Hospital. There a brilliant psychiatrist, Dr. William Rivers, set about restoring Sassoon's "sanity" and sending him back…


The Russian Army in the Great War

By David R. Stone,

Book cover of The Russian Army in the Great War: The Eastern Front, 1914-1917

There is a shortage of good books on the military aspect of the war on the Eastern Front, with some of the most prominent books in English (and for that matter in Russian) dating back nearly fifty years. Stone’s volume is a prominent exception in this regard. Stone is thoughtful, concise, and judicious throughout. Readers will emerge with a comprehensive view of combat operations – and more.

The Russian Army in the Great War

By David R. Stone,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Russian Army in the Great War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A full century later, our picture of World War I remains one of wholesale, pointless slaughter in the trenches of the Western front. Expanding our focus to the Eastern front, as David R. Stone does in this masterly work, fundamentally alters-and clarifies-that picture. A thorough, and thoroughly readable, history of the Russian front during the First World War, this book corrects widespread misperceptions of the Russian Army and the war in the east even as it deepens and extends our understanding of the broader conflict.

Of the four empires at war by the end of 1914-the Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman, German, and…


The Eastern Front 1914-1917

By Norman Stone,

Book cover of The Eastern Front 1914-1917

Not only does Stone demolish the many false ideas held about this part of the war, but he provides us with insights that allow us to understand the important connections among the three fronts of the war that impacted decisions in Paris and London—and vice versa.

The Eastern Front 1914-1917

By Norman Stone,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Eastern Front 1914-1917 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


The Fortress

By Alexander Watson,

Book cover of The Fortress: The Siege of Przemysl and the Making of Europe's Bloodlands

This book not only tells the fascinating story of the great siege in 1914-15 of the supposedly impregnable fortress of Przemyśl. It is a highly readable and often darkly humorous account, based on an extraordinary array of sources in several languages, paints a vivid picture of the political and military shambles into which the Austro-Hungarian Empire had fallen. With chilling precision, it also identifies the presence of many of the germs which would flourish into the horrors which visited the same area in the following decades.

The Fortress

By Alexander Watson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Fortress as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


A prizewinning historian tells the dramatic story of the siege that changed the course of the First World War

In September 1914, just a month into World War I, the Russian army laid siege to the fortress city of Przemysl, the Hapsburg Empire's most important bulwark against invasion. For six months, against storm and starvation, the ragtag garrison bitterly resisted, denying the Russians a quick victory. Only in March 1915 did the city fall, bringing occupation, persecution, and brutal ethnic cleansing.

In The Fortress, historian Alexander Watson tells the story of the battle for Przemysl, showing how it marked the…


Raymond Poincaré

By John F.V. Keiger,

Book cover of Raymond Poincaré

John Keiger followed his study of French foreign policy with a ground-breaking biography of the most important Frenchman of the day, Raymond Poincaré. Readers have a multitude of biographies to turn to in their quest for an explanation of the war’s origins: the rulers of Russia, Germany, and Austria-Hungary; the leading politicians, foreign ministers, strategists, and diplomats of most of the states involved. But no biographical study has surpassed Keiger’s.

Poincaré was a pivotal figure in the diplomacy and politics of Europe before the war, serving in numerous positions, including those of foreign minister, prime minister, and president. His devotion to the alliance with Russia and his distrust of Germany led his critics to denounce him for his role in the outbreak of war. Keiger’s magnificent biography provides us with an elegantly written, thoroughly researched, and nuanced account of Poincaré’s role and policies.

Raymond Poincaré

By John F.V. Keiger,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Raymond Poincaré as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This study is a scholarly biography of one of France's foremost political leaders. In a career which ran from the 1880s to the 1930s, one of the most formative periods of modern French history, Poincare held the principal offices of state. He played crucial roles in France's entry into the Great War, the organisation of the war effort, the peace settlement, the reparations question, the occupation of the Ruhr and the reorganisation of French finances in the 1920s. His life and work is surrounded by controversy and myth, from 'Poincare-la-guerre' to 'Poincare-le-franc', which this book dissects. Using a host of…


Blood on the Snow

By Graydon A. Tunstall,

Book cover of Blood on the Snow: The Carpathian Winter War of 1915

The book is a stunning tale of death and disaster. In February 1915 one Austro-Hungarian army and one German army tried to relieve the Russian-besieged Habsburg fortress of Przemyśl and its 120,000-man garrison. The Austro-Hungarian troops advanced along the 1,200-meter high ridges of the Carpathian Mountains in snowstorms and dense fog. Intermittent sleet, snow, wind, and ice battered the men. Temperatures plummeted to -25 degrees Celsius. Sudden thaws turned the battlefields into seas of mud. Men either froze to death or drowned in the ooze. Hunger, starvation, disease (typhus and cholera), frostbite, and wolves took their toll. Horses and dogs became a dietary staple. Life expectancy was down to five or six weeks. Countless troopers committed suicide.

The butcher’s bill was astronomical: 800,000 casualties, more men than would fall at Verdun or the Somme one year later. Despite the deadly relief effort, the Przemyśl garrison surrendered to the Russians on…

Blood on the Snow

By Graydon A. Tunstall,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Blood on the Snow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Carpathian campaign of 1915, described by some as the ""Stalingrad of the First World War,"" engaged the million-man armies of Austria-Hungary and Russia in fierce winter combat that drove them to the brink of annihilation. Habsburg forces fought to rescue 130,000 Austro-Hungarian soldiers trapped by Russian troops in Fortress Przemysl, but the campaign was waged under such adverse circumstances that it produced six times as many casualties as the number besieged. It remains one of the least understood and most devastating chapters of the war-a horrific episode only glimpsed previously but now vividly restored to the annals of history…


The War That Ended Peace

By Margaret MacMillan,

Book cover of The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914

If we are not killer apes, if war is not inevitable, how does it happen? Obviously because people were not up to the challenges of maintaining peace. Margaret MacMillan’s riveting account of the events leading up to the Great War, the First World War, shows in all-too-clear detail how not to go about avoiding war. The German Kaiser, Wilhelm, was petty and boastful and altogether too proud and confident of his totally inadequate abilities. The Tsar of Russia, Nicholas, was cut from the same cloth. But whereas Wilhelm made up his mind quickly and then was unmovable, Nicholas could never make up his mind. Between them, helped by other inadequates in places of high status and power, millions of young men lay dead on the fields of Flanders, in Northern France.

The War That Ended Peace

By Margaret MacMillan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The War That Ended Peace as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

WINNER of the International Affairs Book of the Year at the Political Book Awards 2014Longlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize 2013
The First World War followed a period of sustained peace in Europe during which people talked with confidence of prosperity, progress and hope. But in 1914, Europe walked into a catastrophic conflict which killed millions of its men, bled its economies dry, shook empires and societies to pieces, and fatally undermined Europe's dominance of the world. It was a war which could have been avoided up to the last moment-so why did it happen?
Beginning in the early nineteenth…


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