Feb 23, 1945, photographer Joe Rosenthal

This month in the April A to Z Challenge, you’ll read a common phrase in my posts.  This phrase is “this novel is one of the best stories I’ve ever read”.  The war and the people who experienced it have stories to tell and these stories are so overwhelming they lend themselves to greatness.  I encourage you to sample some of these stories.  I promise you will not regret taking the time.  To help me develop an alphabetical list for this challenge, I used Goodreads.com.  Do you know that there are 883 fiction 480 nonfiction books on the website’s Listopia as voted on by members?  That is a lot of stories and facts just waiting for us to explore.


Considered the definitive book on Nazi Germany, foreign correspondent, and historian, William L. Shirer wrote what would become a classic.  In the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, we learn that Hitler boasted that The Third Reich would last a thousand years. It lasted only 12. But those 12 years contained some of the most catastrophic events Western civilization has ever known.  Having reported on the Nazis since 1925, William L. Shirer would eventually spend five years sifting through the mountain of evidence gathered from the Allied demand for unconditional surrender and before the Nazis could destroy their files.  No other powerful empire ever bequeathed such mountains of evidence about its birth and destruction as the Third Reich.  This book is a record of one of the most frightening chapters in the history of mankind.


Don’t stop there.  So many other books about or set in the time of war are available.  Here are a few links to Goodreads:

The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

River in the Sea by Tina Boscha

The Rising Tide by Jeff Shaara

Run Silent Run Deep by Edward L. Beach

Restless by William Boyd

The Rape of Nanking by Iris Chang

Rommel: The Trail of the Fox by David Irving

Retribution: The Battle for Japan 1944-1945 by Max Hastings

Rommel: The Desert Fox by Desmond Young


6 responses

  1. Arlee Bird says:

    The Nazi era is such a curious time to look back on. My wife and I tend to watch a lot of movies about the Nazis and the war. I haven’t read many books on the subject, but I tend to watch more movies than read books.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kim says:

    I’ve been meaning to give Retribution a try. One of colleagues likes it as a reference book….


  3. calensariel says:

    I actually read this while in high school though not much of it stuck with me. I think it must have lain dormant until about ten years ago. Have you read Ernst Hanfstaengl’s “Hitler: The Memoir of the Nazi Insider Who Turned Against the Fuhrer?” He was Hitler’s foreign press secretary. I may have missed it on your lists…