THE NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER
‘RECOUNTS, IN HARROWING DETAIL AND WITH FORMIDABLE SKILL, THE BRUTAL DEATH-THROES OF HITLER’S REICH AT THE HANDS OF THE RAMPAGING RED ARMY’ Boyd Tonkin, Independent
‘Makes us feel the chaos and the fear as if every drop of blood was our own . . . compellingly readable, deeply researched, and beautifully written’ Simon Sebag Montefiore, Spectator
‘An irresistibly compelling narrative, of events so terrible that they still have the power to provoke wonder and awe’ Adam Sisman, Observer
‘A masterpiece’ Michael Burleigh, Guardian
‘Brilliant. Combines a soldier’s understanding of war’s realities with a novelist’s eye for detail’ Orlando Figes, Sunday Times
‘Startling, chilling, compelling. Beevor’s writing burns like a torch at night in a landscape of ruins’ LiteraryReview
‘Powerful, diligently researched and beautifully written . . . even better than Stalingrad’ Andrew Roberts, Mail on Sunday
The Red Army had much to avenge when it finally reached the frontiers of the Reich in January 1945. Political instructors rammed home the message of Wehrmacht and SS brutality. The result was the most terrifying example of fire and sword ever known, with tanks crushing refugee columns under their tracks, mass rape, pillage and destruction. Hundreds of thousands of women and children froze to death or were massacred because Nazi Party chiefs, refusing to face defeat, had forbidden the evacuation of civilians. Over seven million fled westwards from the terror of the Red Army.
Antony Beevor reconstructs the experiences of those millions caught up in the nightmare of the Third Reich’s final collapse, telling a terrible story of pride, stupidity, fanatacism, revenge and savagery, but also one of astonishing endurance, self-sacrifice and survival against all odds.