The best books about the Eastern Front in World War II 📚

Browse the best books on the Eastern Front in World War II as recommended by authors, experts, and creators. Along with notes on why they recommend those books.

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Book cover of The Eastern Front 1914-1917

The Eastern Front 1914-1917

By Norman Stone

Why this book?

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.

From the list:

The best books on the other fronts in WW1

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Book cover of Suicide of the Empires: The Battles on the Eastern Front, 1914-18

Suicide of the Empires: The Battles on the Eastern Front, 1914-18

By Alan Clark

Why this book?

This book brings to life a part of the war Western readers know far too little about: the vast battles that ranged back and forth across Eastern Europe and Russia. Two of the three armies involved, those of Tsarist Russia and Austria-Hungary, were spectacularly incompetent, and saw their soldiers needlessly slaughtered by the millions before these two empires dissolved under the war’s impact.

From the list:

The best books on the human impact of World War I

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Book cover of White Eagles

White Eagles

By Elizabeth Wein

Why this book?

I could have picked any one of Elizabeth Wein’s World War II novels; all are unique and profound, and all consider aspects of the war we don’t read about too often, or that we don’t often consider through the lens of women’s roles. But I chose White Eagles, about a young Polish female pilot modeled closely on Anna Leska, because I appreciate the attention it draws to the air war on the Eastern Front and because this is another story built mainly on the humanity of its characters; pilot Kristina’s poignant relationships both with her brother and with her…

From the list:

The best unusual YA books about WWII

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

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

By David R. Stone

Why this book?

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.

From the list:

The best and most recent books on Russia in World War I

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Book cover of And Where Were You, Adam?

And Where Were You, Adam?

By Heinrich Boll, Leila Vennewitz

Why this book?

Boll, a Second World War veteran, tells this episodic story from the perspective of a German soldier during the last year of the war. Loosely episodic and propelled by a kind of grim, fatalistic absurdity, it follows the hapless infantryman Feinhals as he lurches from misadventure to misadventure on the Eastern Front. What really stuck with me is the awfulness of the predicaments Feinhals finds himself in, such as the moment when a soldier sets out to surrender a hospital full of wounded men, only to accidentally set off a dud shell beside the hospital’s cesspool. The Soviets, thinking they…

From the list:

The best books on the war within: the mental strain of modern warfare

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Book cover of Winston's War

Winston's War

By Sir Max Hastings

Why this book?

Churchill is perhaps best remembered for his bulldog premiership during the Second World War. Max Hasting’s excellent study graphically portrays the enormous political and strategic stresses and strains endured by Churchill. Coalition warfare was one of vigorously competing interests and Hastings shows how Churchill achieved a quite remarkable juggling act.

From the list:

The best books on Winston Churchill and which book to start with

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