Reviews

  • The vividly written and well-researched The Fortress is a masterpiece. It deserves to become a classic of military history.

    Lawrence James, The Times
  • Superb, revelatory, haunting ... he brings the suffocating, cataclysmic siege burningly alive ... It is excellent history, a marvellously readable, though tragic, story of its time and of how the clock can be made to turn backwards under siege conditions.

    Julian Evans, Daily Telegraph
  • Alexander Watson tells this story beautifully, giving the reader a vivid sense of the city ... His exposure of the breathtaking incompetence of the Austrian high command is both shocking and hilarious; his wit and keen sense of the ridiculous alternate with his evident compassion in describing this black farce ... This is a hugely enjoyable book that anyone seeking to make sense of the dark side of 20th-century Europe would do well to read.

    Adam Zamoyski, Literary Review
  • Brilliantly researched and superbly written ... Pryzemysl offered a bleak preview of what was coming: nationalism, anti-Semitism and a whirlwind of hatred. Grim stuff, but magnificently done.

    Dominic Sandbrook, BBC History Magazine
  • Marvellous ... Watson uses the fortress city like a jeweller's glass to show how war distorted and transformed the pre-war civilian world ... Watson's splendid book combines great evocative power (and flashes of sharp humour) with the ethical authority of the best history writing.

    Christopher Clark, The Guardian
  • Gripping ... Watson's book is an impressive telling of a story almost entirely unknown, and it makes clear how much we have yet to learn about the first world war away from the western front.

    Mark Mazower, Financial Times

More from this Author