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Germany

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  1. 34.8 hrs • 9/1/2016 • Unabridged

    A major new biography-an extraordinary, penetrating study of the man who has become the personification of evil. For all the literature about Adolf Hitler there have been just four seminal biographies; this is the fifth, a landmark work that sheds important new light on Hitler himself. Drawing on previously unseen papers and a wealth of recent scholarly research, Volker Ullrich reveals the man behind the public persona, from Hitler's childhood to his failures as a young man in Vienna to his experiences during the First World War to his rise as a far-right party leader. Ullrich deftly captures Hitler's intelligence, instinctive grasp of politics, and gift for oratory as well as his megalomania, deep insecurity, and repulsive worldview. Many previous biographies have focused on the larger social conditions that explain the rise of the Third Reich. Ullrich gives us a comprehensive portrait of a postwar Germany humiliated by defeat, wracked by political crisis, and starved by an economic depression, but his real gift is to show vividly how Hitler used his ruthlessness and political talent to shape the Nazi party and lead it to power. For decades the world has tried to grasp how Hitler was possible. By focusing on the man at the center of it all, on how he experienced his world, formed his political beliefs, and wielded power, this riveting biography brings us closer than ever to the answer. Translated from the German by Jefferson Chase.

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    Hitler

    Translated by Jefferson Chase
    Read by Don Hagen
    34.8 hrs • 9/1/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 24.2 hrs • 4/12/2016 • Unabridged

    A major new history of the Third Reich that explores the German psyche. As early as 1941, Allied victory in World War II seemed all but assured. How and why, then, did the Germans prolong the barbaric conflict for three and a half more years? In The German War, acclaimed historian Nicholas Stargardt draws on an extraordinary range of primary source materials—personal diaries, court records, and military correspondence—to answer this question. He offers an unprecedented portrait of wartime Germany, bringing the hopes and expectations of the German people—from infantrymen and tank commanders on the Eastern Front to civilians on the home front—to vivid life. While most historians identify the German defeat at Stalingrad as the moment when the average German citizen turned against the war effort, Stargardt demonstrates that the Wehrmacht in fact retained the staunch support of the patriotic German populace until the bitter end. Astonishing in its breadth and humanity, The German War is a groundbreaking new interpretation of what drove the Germans to fight—and keep fighting—for a lost cause.

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    The German War by Nicholas Stargardt

    The German War

    24.2 hrs • 4/12/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 0 reviews 0 5 3 3 out of 5 stars 3/5
    7.3 hrs • 2/2/2016 • Unabridged

    Created by Heinrich Himmler, the Lebensborn program abducted as many as half a million children from across Europe. Through a process called Germanization, they were to become the next generation of the Aryan master race in the second phase of the Final Solution. In the summer of 1942, parents across Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia were required to submit their children to medical checks designed to assess racial purity. One such child, Erika Matko, was nine months old when Nazi doctors declared her fit to be a “Child of Hitler.” Taken to Germany and placed with politically vetted foster parents, Erika was renamed Ingrid von Oelhafen. Many years later, Ingrid began to uncover the truth of her identity. Though the Nazis destroyed many Lebensborn records, Ingrid unearthed rare documents, including Nuremberg trial testimony about her own abduction. Following the evidence back to her place of birth, Ingrid discovered an even more shocking secret: a woman named Erika Matko, who as an infant had been given to Ingrid’s mother as a replacement child. Hitler’s Forgotten Children is both a harrowing personal memoir and a devastating investigation into the awful crimes and monstrous scope of the Lebensborn program.

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    Hitler’s Forgotten Children

    7.3 hrs • 2/2/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 9.0 hrs • 1/26/2016 • Unabridged

    The dark story of Adolf Hitler’s life in 1924. Adolf Hitler spent 1924 away from society and surrounded by co-conspirators of the failed Beer Hall Putsch. Behind bars in a prison near Munich, Hitler passed the year with deep reading and intensive writing, a year of slowly walking gravel paths while working feverishly on his book Mein Kampf. This was the year of Hitler’s final transformation into the self-proclaimed savior and infallible leader who would appropriate Germany’s historical traditions and bring them into his vision for the Third Reich. Until now, no one has devoted an entire book to the single, dark year of Hitler’s incarceration following his attempted coup. Peter Ross Range richly depicts this year that bore to the world a monster.

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    1924

    9.0 hrs • 1/26/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 20.0 hrs • 8/20/2015 • Unabridged

    This is a story of the unexpected. In Destined to Witness, Hans Massaquoi has crafted a beautifully rendered memoir—an astonishing true tale of how he came of age as a black child in Nazi Germany. The son of a prominent African and a German nurse, Hans remained behind with his mother when Hitler came to power, due to concerns about his fragile health, after his father returned to Liberia. Like other German boys, Hans went to school; like other German boys, he swiftly fell under the Fuhrer’s spell. So he was crushed to learn that, as a black child, he was ineligible for the Hitler Youth. His path to a secondary education and an eventual profession was blocked. He now lived in fear that, at any moment, he might hear the Gestapo banging on the door—or Allied bombs falling on his home. Ironic, moving, and deeply human, Massaquoi’s account of this lonely struggle for survival brims with courage and intelligence.

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    Destined to Witness

    20.0 hrs • 8/20/15 • Unabridged
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  6. 13.2 hrs • 6/30/2015 • Unabridged

    History remembers the Soviets and the Nazis as bitter enemies and ideological rivals, the two opposing totalitarian regimes of World War II whose conflict would be the defining and deciding clash of the war. Yet for nearly a third of the conflict’s entire time span, Hitler and Stalin stood side by side as partners. The pact that they agreed on had a profound and bloody impact on Europe, and is fundamental to understanding the development and denouement of the war. The Devils’ Alliance explores the causes and implications of the Nazi-Soviet Pact, whose creation and dissolution were crucial turning points in World War II. Forged by Joachim von Ribbentrop, and his Soviet counterpart, Vyacheslav Molotov, the non aggression treaty briefly united the two powers in a brutally efficient collaboration. The Germans and Soviets quickly conquered and divided central and eastern Europe. Hundreds of thousands of people caught between Hitler and Stalin were expropriated, deported, or killed. Fortunately for the Allies, the partnership ultimately soured. Ironically, however, the powers’ exchange of material, blueprints, and technological expertise during the period of the Pact made possible a far more bloody and protracted war than would have otherwise been conceivable. Combining comprehensive research with a gripping narrative, The Devils’ Alliance is the authoritative history of the Nazi-Soviet Pact.

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    The Devils' Alliance

    13.2 hrs • 6/30/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    28.8 hrs • 5/5/2015 • Unabridged

    As a young man, Joseph Goebbels was a budding narcissist with a constant need of approval. Through political involvement, he found personal affirmation within the German National Socialist Party. In this comprehensive volume, Peter Longerich documents Goebbels’ descent into anti-Semitism and ideology and ascent through the ranks of the Nazi party, where he became an integral member of Hitler’s inner circle and where he shaped a brutal campaign of Nazi propaganda. In life and in his grisly family suicide, Goebbels was one of Hitler’s most loyal acolytes. Though powerful in the party and in wartime Germany, Longerich’s Goebbels is a man dogged by insecurities and consumed by his fierce adherence to the Nazi cause. Longerich engages and challenges the careful self-portrait that Goebbels left behind in his diaries, and, as he delves deep into the mind of Hitler’s master propagandist, Longerich discovers firsthand how the Nazi message was conceived. This complete portrait of the man behind the message is sure to become a standard for historians and students of the holocaust for years to come.

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    Goebbels

    Translated by Jeremy Noakes, Lesley Sharpe , and Alan Bance
    28.8 hrs • 5/5/15 • Unabridged
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  8. 11.1 hrs • 3/10/2015 • Unabridged

    A meticulously researched historical tour de force in the style of the bestselling In the Garden of Beasts Historian Andrew Morton’s 17 Carnations combines his considerable research background with his proven talent for addictive and readable narrative, giving us a true story steeped in intrigue, suspense, and historical drama. 17 Carnations tells the story of the feckless Edward VIII, Duke of Windsor, and his wife Wallis Simpson, whose affair with Joachim von Ribbentrop embroiled the duke in a German plot to use him as a puppet king during their takeover of the British Empire. Although we know that the war ended with Hitler’s defeat, Edward’s story was far from over. The duke’s collaboration with Hitler had resulted in piles of correspondence between them. This damning correspondence, now hidden in a German castle that had fallen to American soldiers, could forever tarnish the reputation of the royal family. 17 Carnations reveals, for the first time in history, the story of the cover-up of those letters, starting with a daring heist—by order of Churchill and the king themselves—to bring the letters back safely to England and out of American hands. Morton’s unique experience and training make him the perfect person to tell this story as it’s never been told before, fusing history and entertainment to create a vivid, atmospheric chronicle of the Windsors’ darkest secrets. The shadowy connection between the House of Windsor, the German aristocracy, and Hitler has hovered on the edge of public consciousness for decades, but no royal biography or historical chronicle has been able to tell the full story—until now. Drawing on FBI documents, material from the German and British Royal Archives, and the personal correspondence of Churchill, Truman, Eisenhower, and the Windsors themselves, 17 Carnations is a dazzling historical drama full of adventure, intrigue, and startling revelations by a master of the genre.

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    17 Carnations

    11.1 hrs • 3/10/15 • Unabridged
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  9. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    13.5 hrs • 1/21/2015 • Unabridged

    Robert Forczyk’s definitive English-language work on the savage battle for the Crimea, Where the Iron Crosses Grow sheds new light on this vital aspect of the Eastern Front. The Crimea was one of the crucibles of the war on the Eastern Front, where first a Soviet and then a German army were surrounded, fought desperate battles, and were eventually destroyed. The fighting in the region was unusual for the Eastern Front in many ways in that naval supply, amphibious landings, and naval evacuation played major roles, while both sides were also conducting ethnic cleansing as part of their strategy—the Germans eliminating the Jews and the Soviets purging the region of Tartars. From 1941, when the Soviets first created the Sevastopol fortified region, the Crimea was a focal point of the war in the East. German forces under the noted commander Manstein conquered the area in 1941–42, which was followed by two years of brutal colonization and occupation before the Soviet counteroffensive in 1944 destroyed the German 17th Army.

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    Where the Iron Crosses Grow

    13.5 hrs • 1/21/15 • Unabridged
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  10. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    16.1 hrs • 12/15/2014 • Unabridged

    In the highly anticipated new book from the bestselling author of Judgment of Paris, George M. Taber reveals the integral role gold played in World War II, from its influence on the Nazi war machine to the ultimate triumph by the Allies and the fall of Berlin. For the entire history of human civilization, gold has enraptured people around the globe. The Nazis were no less enthralled by it and felt gold was the solution to funding Hitler’s war machine. Gold was also on the mind of FDR across the Atlantic, as he worked with Europe’s other leaders to bring the United States and the rest of the world out of a severe depression. FDR was hardly the first head of state to turn to gold in difficult times. Throughout history, it has been the refuge of both nations and people in trouble, working at times when nothing else does. Desperate people can buy a loaf of bread or bribe a border guard. Gold can get desperate nations oil to keep tanks running or munitions to fight a war. If the price is right, there is always someone somewhere willing to buy or sell gold. And it was to become the Nazi’s most important medium of exchange during the war. Chasing Gold is the story of how the Nazis attempted to grab Europe’s gold to finance history’s bloodiest war. It is filled with high drama and close escapes, laying bare the palate of human emotions. Walking through the tale are giants of world history, as well as ordinary people called upon to undertake heroic action in an extraordinary time.

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    Chasing Gold by George M. Taber

    Chasing Gold

    16.1 hrs • 12/15/14 • Unabridged
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  11. 7.2 hrs • 10/21/2014 • Unabridged

    The remarkable story of Josef Hartinger, the German prosecutor who risked everything to bring to justice the first killers of the Holocaust and whose efforts would play a key role in the Nuremberg tribunal. Before Germany was engulfed by Nazi dictatorship, it was a constitutional republic. And just before Dachau Concentration Camp became a site of Nazi genocide, it was a state detention center for political prisoners, subject to police authority and due process. The camp began its irrevocable transformation from one to the other following the execution of four Jewish detainees in the spring of 1933. Timothy W. Ryback’s gripping and poignant historical narrative focuses on those first victims of the Holocaust and the investigation that followed, as Hartinger sought to expose these earliest cases of state-condoned atrocity.  In documenting the circumstances surrounding these first murders and Hartinger’s unrelenting pursuit of the SS perpetrators, Ryback indelibly evokes a society on the brink—one in which civil liberties are sacrificed to national security, in which citizens increasingly turn a blind eye to injustice, in which the bedrock of judicial accountability chillingly dissolves into the martial caprice of the Third Reich. We see Hartinger, holding on to his unassailable sense of justice, doggedly resisting the rising dominance of Nazism. His efforts were only a temporary roadblock to the Nazis, but Ryback makes clear that Hartinger struck a lasting blow for justice. The forensic evidence and testimony gathered by Hartinger provided crucial evidence in the postwar trials. Hitler’s First Victims exposes the chaos and fragility of the Nazis’ early grip on power and dramatically suggests how different history could have been had other Germans followed Hartinger’s example of personal courage in that time of collective human failure.

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    Hitler’s First Victims

    7.2 hrs • 10/21/14 • Unabridged
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  12. 0 reviews 0 5 4.5 4 out of 5 stars 4.5/5
    44.7 hrs • 5/15/2014 • Unabridged

    A national bestseller with more than 370,000 copies in print, this is “the first book that anyone who wants to learn about Hitler or the war in Europe must read” (Newsweek). Based on previously unpublished documents, diaries, notes, photographs, and dramatic interviews with Hitler’s colleagues and associates, this is the definitive biography of one of the most despised yet fascinating figures of the twentieth century. Eminently readable and painstakingly documented, it is a work that will not soon be forgotten.

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    Adolf Hitler by John Toland

    Adolf Hitler

    44.7 hrs • 5/15/14 • Unabridged
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  13. 4.8 hrs • 3/26/2014

    In Europe’s Dark Journey, Beth A. Griech-Polelle examines the factors that led to the ascendance of Adolf Hitler during the rebuilding of post–World War I Germany. Moving from the birth of modern Germany through the First World War, Polelle then focuses on Hitler’s early years and the creation of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. She illustrates how Hitler consolidated power—resulting in a society divided against itself and at war with a major portion of the world—and also maintains a special focus on the persecution of the Jewish population, both inside Nazi Germany and in conquered parts of Europe.

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  14. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    7.4 hrs • 2/1/2014 • Unabridged

    As the Nazi war machine caused death and destruction throughout Europe, one man in the fatherland began his own reign of terror. This is the true story of the pursuit and capture of a serial killer in the heart of the Third Reich. For all appearances, Paul Ogorzow was a model German. An employed family man, party member, and sergeant in the infamous Brownshirts, he had worked his way up in the Berlin railroad from a manual laborer laying track to assistant signalman. But he also had a secret need to harass and frighten women. Then he was given a gift from the Nazi high command. Due to Allied bombing raids, a total blackout was instituted throughout Berlin, including on the commuter trains—trains often used by women riding home alone from the factories. Under cover of darkness and with a helpless flock of victims to choose from, Ogorzow’s depredations grew more and more horrific. He escalated from simply frightening women to physically attacking them, eventually raping and murdering them. Beginning in September 1940, he started casually tossing their bodies off the moving train. Though the Nazi party tried to censor news of the attacks, the women of Berlin soon lived in a state of constant fear. It was up to Wilhelm Lüdtke, head of the Berlin police’s serious crimes division, to hunt down the madman in their midst. For the first time, the gripping full story of Ogorzow’s killing spree and Lüdtke’s relentless pursuit is told in dramatic detail.

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    A Serial Killer in Nazi Berlin

    7.4 hrs • 2/1/14 • Unabridged
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  15. 11.6 hrs • 11/1/2013 • Unabridged

    I Shall Live tells the gripping true story of a Jewish family in Germany and Russia as the Nazi party gains power in Germany. When Henry Orenstein and his siblings end up in a series of concentrations camps, Orenstein’s bravery and quick thinking help him to save himself and his brothers from execution by playing a role in the greatest hoax ever pulled on the upper echelons of Nazi command. Orenstein’s lucid prose recreates this horrific time in history and his constant struggle for survival as the Nazis move him and his brothers through five concentration camps. His description of their roles in the fake Chemical Commando sheds new light on an incredible and generally unknown event in the history of the Holocaust. This edition of I Shall Live contains new evidence about this false Commando, including letters signed to and from Himmler himself. Orenstein, aside from being a Holocaust survivor, has made a name for himself as a toymaker who called for the production of Transformers, as well as a poker player.

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    I Shall Live

    11.6 hrs • 11/1/13 • Unabridged
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  16. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    8.4 hrs • 10/8/2013 • Unabridged

    Wendy Lower’s stunning account of the role of German women on the Eastern Front—not only as plunderers and direct witnesses but as actual killers—powerfully revises history. Many young nurses, teachers, secretaries, and wives saw the emerging Nazi empire as a kind of “Wild East” of opportunity, yet they could not have imagined what they would do there. Lower, drawing on twenty years of archival research and fieldwork on the Holocaust, access to post-Soviet documents, and interviews with German witnesses, presents compelling evidence that these women went on “shopping sprees” and romantic outings to the Jewish ghettos of Poland, Ukraine, and Belarus, and that they were present at killing-field picnics, not only providing refreshment but also taking part in the shooting of Jews. And Lower uncovers the stories of SS wives—with children of their own—whose brutality is as chilling as any in history. Hitler’s Furies will challenge our deepest beliefs using evidence hidden for seventy years: women can be just as brutal as men.

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    Hitler’s Furies by Wendy Lower

    Hitler’s Furies

    8.4 hrs • 10/8/13 • Unabridged
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