Named Book of the Year by the Sunday Times, TLS, Spectator, Sunday Telegraph, Daily Mail and Scotland on Sunday, Ian Kershaw's The End is a searing account of the final months of Nazi Germany, laying bare the fear and fanaticism that drove a nation to destruction.
In almost every major war there comes a point where defeat looms for one side and its rulers cut a deal with the victors, if only in an attempt to save their own skins. In Hitler's Germany, nothing of this kind happened: in the end the regime had to be stamped out town by town with an almost unprecedented level of brutality.
Just what made Germany keep on fighting?
Why did its rulers not cut a deal to save their own skins?
And why did ordinary people continue to obey the Fuhrer's suicidal orders, with countless Germans executing their own countrymen for desertion or defeatism?
'Nuanced and sophisticated ... undoubtedly a masterpiece' - Mail on Sunday
'Gripping yet scholarly ... the best attempt by far to answer the complex question of why Nazi Germany carried on fighting to total self-destruction' - Antony Beevor, Telegraph
'Masterly ... Kershaw's gripping and boldly intelligent work of scholarship ... will surely become the standard account of the Nazi system's terrible final phase' - Financial Times
'Brilliant ... utterly terrifying' - Sunday Times, Books of the Year
A remarkable feat of historical scholarship and intelligent analysis
Masterly ... Kershaw's gripping and boldly intelligent work of scholarship ... will surely become the standard popularly accessible account of the Nazi system's terrible final phase
Gripping yet scholarly ... the best attempt by far to answer the complex question of why Nazi Germany carried on fighting to total self-destruction. Kershaw, the author of the best biography of Hitler, is the finest sort of academic, for he combines impeccable scholarship with an admirable clarity of thought and prose
Brilliant ... nuanced and sophisticated ... undoubtedly a masterpiece
Well-written, penetrating ... and ground-breaking
Magisterial ... distinguished
Kershaw is a sure-footed guide through the Hades of the final dark months of the war in Europe ... his is a thoughtful and thought-provoking account, which admirably combines analysis, historiography and commentary within a very readable narrative
No one is better qualified to tell this grim story than Kershaw ... A master of both the vast scholarly literature on Nazism and the extraordinary range of its published and unpublished record, Kershaw combines vivid accounts of particular human experiences with wise reflections on big interpretive and moral issues ... No one has written a better account of the human dimensions of Nazi Germany's end
A compelling account of the bloody and deluded last days of the Third Reich ... this is far from being of mere academic interest ... The greatest strength of Kershaw's narrative is that he gives us much more than the view from the top ... Interwoven are insights into German life and death at all levels of society
Kershaw says that his book is not a military history. Nevertheless he offers an admirably clear, coherent discussion of the military situation and insightful portraits of the leading figures in the German armed forces ... The End is sober, judicious, clearly written and superbly well researched - a definitive history of the last months of the Third Reich