The West End Front
The Wartime Secrets of London's Grand Hotels
Partly thanks to their potentially bomb-resistant solidity, The Ritz, the Savoy, Claridges and the Dorchester became central to the cultural and political life of the country during the Second World War. This colourful history explores a remarkable period when cabinet ministers, military officials, exiled foreign dignitaries, journalists, spies, artists and chancers all used the hotels as meeting places, makeshift offices, temporary embassies and social centres.
How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved and Died in the 1940s
How did the women of Paris survive the grim years of German occupation – and how, in the aftermath of liberation, did they come to terms with their actions? This first in-depth account of the lives of ordinary women in the occupied city charts the experiences of collaborators and resisters, actresses and prostitutes, teachers and writers, Nazis and Jews, in an atmosphere where sex became currency and life-or-death decisions were faced every day.
The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva
Growing up in the Kremlin, Svetlana Stalin knew nothing of her father’s tyranny, but could not escape tragedy: her mother’s suicide, the loss of two brothers, and the exile of her lover to Siberia. With access to FBI, CIA and Russian state archives, this biography charts her growing awareness of Stalin’s crimes, her defection to the West, her struggle to escape his terrible legacy – and her horrified realization, with the rise of Putin, that ‘they haven’t changed a bit’.
The Making of the Modern World
For the Hungarian historian and journalist Victor Sebestyen, 1946 was the year that shaped the modern world: ideologies and an Iron Curtain divided East and West, India was moving towards independence, European empires were dying, the Chinese communists were nearing victory, and the decision was taken to create a Jewish homeland. Sebestyen’s authoritative study evokes the beginning of the Cold War in the devastated aftermath of the Second World War and shows how decisions made in 1946 continue to affect our world.
Hitler's Violent Youth
How Trench Warfare and Street Fighting Moulded Hitler
Bob Carruthers combines his two previous books, Private Hitler’s War and Hitler’s Demons, into a single, revised volume which, drawing on the memoirs of Hitler’s former companion and business partner Reinhold Hanisch, as well as the intimate testimonies of his opponents Moritz Frey and Otto Strasser, examines the Führer’s commitment to resolving political problems through decisive acts of violence, a belief he nurtured as a young ideologue in the trenches of France and the beer halls of Bavaria.
British Nannies & the Great War
How Norland's Regiment of Nannies Coped with Conflict & Childcare in the Great War
‘The older children will play their war games; but… above all things we must not allow them to grow up to love war for war’s sake.’ This moving social history of how the Norland Institute and its meticulously trained nannies adapted to the First World War is pieced together from Norland’s archives, including numerous letters sent to the Institute from Norland nurses employed by upper-class and royal households in war-torn London, Europe and beyond.
Royal Prussia, Imperial Germany and the First World War 1825–1918
Blaine Taylor presents an illustrated study of Prussian and German railways – personnel, lines, locomotives, rolling stock and stations – from 1825, through the Wars of Unification (1864–71) to the Armistice in November 1918.
A Biography by Curt Riess
Based mainly on first-hand information painstakingly gathered by Curt Reiss (1902–1993) and first published in 1949, this book remains a compelling biography of Goebbels, the Nazi Minister of Propaganda. This edition has a new introduction and 96 photographs.
The War Letters of Friedrich Reiner Niemann: A German Soldier on the Eastern Front
A soldier in the Germany infantry, Friedrich Reiner Niemann (1922–1945) served on the Eastern Front from 1941 until his disappearance during the Soviet Vistula-Oder Offensive. He wrote over 100 letters home; translated and introduced here by Denis Havel.
The Last Days of the Spanish Republic
On 5 March 1939, Colonel Segismundo Casado launched a coup against Juan Negrin's Republican government, which he falsely accused of being a puppet of the Communists. Although the defeat of the Republic was already in sight, Casado's decision destroyed any chance of a negotiated peace ending the Spanish Civil War, and it was to cause a massive loss of life. Here a leading historian of 20th-century Spain gives the first detailed account in English of this shocking – and avoidable – tragedy.
A History of 177 Tunnelling Company RE from 1915 to 1919
Stung by the success of German mines beneath British trenches in 1914, the British rapidly recruited mining experts to the Royal Engineers. Illustrated with contemporary maps and plans, this book explains their crucial role in the conflict through the operational history of 177 Tunnelling Company.
Imperial Russian Air Force 1898–1917
In Photographs at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century
Compared with the US and France, Russian colonization of the skies was almost a decade behind, but by 1910 a nascent aviation industry, with its flying schools, festivals and maiden flights, began capturing the nation’s imagination. This collection of over 400 photographs documents the flying machines of pre-revolutionary Russia, from turn of the century balloons and dirigibles to First World War bombers, and portrays the enthusiasts and aviators that made the Russian skies come alive.
St George and the Chinese Dragon
Written by Colonel Vaughan of the 7th Rajputs, this is a colourful account of the expedition to relieve the International Legations – 900 soldiers, marines and citizens of eleven foreign powers, including Britain – besieged in Peking for 55 days during the Boxer Uprising. The book covers Vaughan’s perilous march from the coast to Peking, the capture of the Legations Quarter and subsequent occupation of Peking. An extensive forword is complimented by maps, photographs and watercolours by the author.
To Free the Romanovs
Royal Kinship and Betrayal in Europe 1917–1919
When Russia erupted in revolution, some members of the imperial family managed to flee abroad, but for the tsar, the tsarina and their children, months of imprisonment ended in brutal death. Why, when they were so closely related to all the ruling houses of Europe, were they not helped to escape? This searching history examines the responses of their royal cousins in Britain, Germany, Norway and Denmark, and asks whether enough was done to save the Romanovs.
The Great War for Peace
While the First World War is generally seen as the seminal catastrophe of the 20th century, William Mulligan looks anew at the aspirations of the statesmen, soldiers, intellectuals and civilians who were involved in the war and at the new ideas about peace that emerged. Beginning with the collapse of ‘great power peace’ between 1911 and 1914, he shows how the experience of the war expanded the understanding of peace, focusing political attention on building a better world order.
The Colonel Who Would Not Repent
The Bangladesh War and Its Unquiet Legacy
Muslim and Bengali-speaking Bangladesh was once East Pakistan, created when India achieved independence in 1947. The country gained its own independence from Pakistan in 1971 after a war in which many hundreds of thousands died. More conflict was to follow, exacerbated by natural disaster, famine and corruption. Salil Tripathi, an Indian journalist and Bengali-speaker, presents the first in-depth account of Bangladesh’s struggle for independence and the troubled aftermath.
Domestic Life, Devastation and Survival 1900–1950
From 1917 to 1945, Paul Ginsborg views great events and transitions through the lens of family life, examining the role of families (and radical alternatives to families) in the social and political life of the nation-state. The book focuses on five nations: revolutionary Russia and the Soviet Union; Turkey in the transition from Ottoman Empire to republic; Italy under Fascism; Spain during and after the Civil War; and Germany from the failure of the Weimar Republic to the Nazi state.
When Constructivism emerged after the 1917 Revolution in Russia, its central aesthetic principles concerned the nature of materials, konstruktsiya (constructedness), efficiency and rationality. In this study, Taylor examines the legacy of Constructivism, tracing a path from the Cubists in Paris and Tatlin, Malevich and Rodchenko in Russia to artists such as Anish Kapoor, Amy Sillman and Tomma Abts working in the 21st century. With 144 illustrations.
Our History of the 20th Century
As Told in Diaries, Journals and Letters
From Queen Victoria’s journal entry for 1 January 1900, (‘full of anxiety & fear of what may be before us!’) to MP Oona King’s lament at spending the end of the millennium in a queue, Elborough’s compilation presents personal, contemporary and candid responses to world history as it happened. The book features over 100 diarists and provides one or more writers’ reaction to every major event or trend, whether a world war, the 1975 Europe Referendum or the latest Star Wars movie.
Friends of Alice Wheeldon
The Anti-War Activist Accused of Plotting to Kill Lloyd George
Sheila Rowbotham’s 1986 play Friends of Alice Wheeldon dramatized the trial of a Derby socialist and feminist accused by an undercover agent during the First World War of plotting to kill the prime minister, Lloyd George. This new edition includes a carefully researched historical introduction that describes the interaction between workplace militants and anti-war activists, the intrigues of politicians and the intelligence agencies, and the campaign to clear Wheeldon’s name.
The First World War Galleries
This richly illustrated companion to the Imperial War Museum’s First World War Galleries draws on the museum’s collection of imagery and artefacts to chart the social, political and military history of the war and its devastating impact. Through photographs, posters, works of art, uniforms, weaponry and personal effects, alongside quotations from contemporary diaries and letters, the book evokes the experiences of both soldiers and civilians, providing a poignant and compelling narrative of the conflict.
The A-B-C Guide to London (Old House)
First published in 1905, this illustrated pocket guide offers a fascinating glimpse of London in its Edwardian heyday. Alongside its descriptions of the city’s great monuments are advertisements for gents’ outfitters and details of schools, pubs and omnibus routes.
The Spies of Winter
The GCHQ Codebreakers Who Fought the Cold War
At the end of the Second World War, many of the Bletchley Park codebreakers were moved on to the newly formed GCHQ to keep tabs on Britain's new foe, the Soviet Union. This book explores their work in the early period of the Cold War as Western and Eastern blocs were established and cryptanalysts attempted to uncover the secrets behind flashpoints such as the Berlin Blockade, the Cambridge spy ring and the revolution in China.