The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914
If you read only one book about World War I, this should be it, although it doesn’t actually cover the War itself. Rather, it explores the countries, causes, and, most of all, personalities that led to the war. It is a wonderful history, excellently written and a story excellently told. Author Margaret MacMillan thoroughly delves into the players involved, starting about twenty years previous. She gives the reader a view of what conditions were like in Europe, country by country. The reader comes to know the leaders and advisors whose intense personalities influenced and ricocheted off each other, reinforcing distrusts and prior biases. Past political entanglements are examined, along with their repercussions for the web of alliances that led to world-wide conflict; the incongruity of some of the alliances are also explained. War never ‘makes sense’, least of all this particularly horrendous and inane one, which for the (admittedly tragic) death of a minor ruler led to the slaughter of millions. But in The War That Ended Peace, finally the causes are at least understandable – but perhaps, as one sees how things could have been otherwise, more tragic for that after all.
|Page Count||784 pages|
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