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Moscow 1941: A City and Its People at War
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Moscow 1941: A City and Its People at War

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  342 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
In 1941 close to one million Russian soldiers died defending Moscow from German invasion–more causalities than that of the United States and Britain during all of World War II. Many of these soldiers were in fact not soldiers at all, but instead ordinary people who took up arms to defend their city. Students dropped their books for guns; released prisoners exchanged their ...more
ebook, 448 pages
Published November 4th 2009 by Vintage (first published November 3rd 2005)
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Oct 08, 2011 Dеnnis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Overall an excellent effort! Bravo! I read criticisms by those who rated the book low and found that they contradict each other: one thinks it’s shallow, another – too detailed, one lacks personal accounts, another complains about their unnecessary abundance.

My humble Muscovite’s impression is that it is a well-balanced take on the extremely important, but bitterly disputed matter. The author doesn’t just through you into the midst of the battle for the last 100 miles to the city, but first he s
Daniel Tkachenko
Jan 11, 2015 Daniel Tkachenko rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the year 1941 Moscow, Russia was invaded by the Germans during The Second World War. The book Moscow 1941: A City and Its People at War describes the trouble the people had to got through and the desperate things they had to do to stay alive. To defend for their city the Russians had to make difficult decisions that would question them morally. Women at the time were not involved in war because they were considered not equal to men. They had to make choice and they chose to allow women to fig ...more
Christopher Bashforth
Books about the Eastern Front of World War 2 are like Dan Brown books for the Religious Conspiracy crowd – I just can’t get enough of them. However, I felt very disappointed after reading this one. For a start I thought it would be a description of the military events surrounding the pivotal events of the Battle of Moscow – for many people the turning point of the war. However, the military events were skipped. I am disappointed but the back cover did say that there would be a description of how ...more
Jun 28, 2009 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: for people having general knowledge about WWII
Shelves: history
Bardzo dobra książka dla osób, które orientują się w historii II Wojny Światowej. Nie odkrywa ona Ameryki, ale pozwala spojrzeć na bitwę o Moskwę od strony zwykłych ludzi - żołnierzy i mieszkańców Moskwy. Pojawiają znane postacie historyczne - politycy i dowódcy tacy jak Stalin, Guderian, Żukow czy Rokossowski, ale też ludzie jak Wasilij Grossman [korespondent gazety Armii Czerwonej Krasnaya Zvezda (Czerwona Gwiazda):].
Apr 30, 2016 Scottnshana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The conventional wisdom is that to fully understand current events we need to revisit the past, and I think Ambassador Braithwaite (British Embassy in Moscow 1988-92; not light and easy days on the job, I'll bet) has provided a good snapshot of what the Soviet capital was going through when the Nazis were raining bombs and shells on it. His research puts some light on Stalin's regime and how it operated under pressure. For example, on a single page the reader learns that as Russian soldiers defe ...more
Jan 14, 2015 Stevemid rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Since the cold war, the US government and news media have continuously demonized Russia and ignored the role that Russia played in defeating Germany in WWII. So too the popular culture: growing up as I did on a diet on war films, I was under the impression that my heroes Audie Murphy and Lee Marvin had themselves defeated Hitler. In a recent diplomatic scuffle, the US Ambassador to Czechoslovakia was made no longer welcome in the Czech Republic because he criticised the Czech President's plan to ...more
Joe Johnson
Moscow 1941 is a very interesting book. It tells the story of the first year, more or less, of the German attack on the Soviet Union as viewed through the eyes of the people of Moscow. We do step back a few years on occasion to discuss the Revolution and Stalin's rise to power and the purges of the 1930s which affected the Soviet armed forces. And we do see the end of the story with the fall of Berlin, but the focus is on the time period beginning in June 1941 through the end of the Soviet count ...more
Aug 04, 2014 Avempace rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those rare books that opens one's eyes to the reality of war beyond the senseless numbers, battlefield jargon and the clatter of arms. The battle of Moscow was arguably the largest battle of the second world war, and perhaps the most decisive. Millions of combatants engaged over several months in a protracted struggle for the city, which was saved but barely so from the German onslaught. There are many accounts of operations Barbarossa, the 1941 summer invasion of the Soviet Union ...more
David Bird
A range of reviews for this one suggest, as was my feeling, that what it does well, it does very well, but that there are also notable weaknesses. For familiar events, like D-Day, finding new personal stories has become the means of justifying yet another book. Here, I think the diversity of reviews reflects whether the reader in question knows the overall story or not. I don't have the sense that the author has a vivid picture of his ideal reader.

Braithwaite brings an obvious fascination with M
Sep 16, 2016 KevinS rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lengthy book full of personal accounts and details. Worth reading but I thought a few too many of the stories lacked attribution and had the smell of anecdotes or popular legend but not necessarily fact. The author is a clear Russophile and that flavored his reporting on the Russian government. A more balanced account would have dwelt a little more on the arbitrary and murderous actions Stalin took. It seemed sort of dismissive of his programs of collectivization and purges.
The people of Mosc
Jun 28, 2015 Bruce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very interesting book about the effects of Hitler's attack on Russia opening a second front in World War II on the population of Moscow. The lives and deaths of many individuals are told as are the actions of numerous others. Stalin's ruthlessness (and that of his underlings) is once more exposed as is his failure to listen to his military experts leading to mistaken strategy. His ability to order the impossible promising additional men and material he knew weren't available. When his faulty p ...more
Jan 17, 2013 Mike rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a rewarding read. Throughout the book, though, I was continually appalled at the seeming disregard for human life on the part of Soviet leaders. I found myself wanting to strangle Stalin and other Party leaders who so needlessly threw away thousands of lives (both civilian and soldier). In the end, though, I found myself cheering on the Russians actually fighting against the Germans and was impressed by first-hand patriotic accounts. What a thoroughly moving conclusion, too.

Even though I al
David Bales
Aug 28, 2013 David Bales rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
An amazing history of the defense of Moscow during 1941, and the build-up to World War II. Stalin decimated the Red Army in terrible purges in 1937 and 1938 and the Soviets initially were overwhelmed by the Germans but the furious will and courage of the ordinary people, (and Stalin's ruthlessness) ultimately turned it around. This is the story of the greatest--greatest meaning worst--war in human history, the struggles of which are now being forgotten. There are great profiles of various Soviet ...more
This is an interesting look at how the Second World War unfolded in the Soviet Empire. It gives a critical look at how Moscow weathered the invasion from a variety of viewpoints. From Stalin to the worker to the frontline solider the coming advance of the German armies is analyzed well. It is by no means a comprehensive look at each stage of the battle nor a purely domestic history. It covers snapshots of life in Moscow and assess how the invasion impacted the city and the war.

I do share some of
Dec 20, 2016 Dave rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Moscow 1941" is a powerful book that tells the story of one of World War II's largest battles. While largely unknown to Western readers, the Battle of Moscow was a pivotal engagement that saw Nazi Germany suffer its first major defeat in the war, while also ensuring that the Russian capital would not fall into German hands. Braithwaite does a spectacular job of focusing on all aspects of the battle, from Stalin and his generals down to the peasants and soldiers in the field. Relying on many fir ...more
Scott Martin
(Audiobook). This was not a bad audiobook for a series of long commutes. It combines the geo-political and social-economic concerns for the city and people of Moscow in 1941 at the time of the Nazi invasion and near occupation of the city. Following the high level actions of Stalin and his cadres of leadership all the way down to the commoners. It is a mix of heroism, buffoonery, and survival of a city and people. While the focus is from June-Dec 1941, elements of the story vary from the Napoleo ...more
Jul 21, 2012 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: world-war-ii
Great info on the panic in the city as the Germans advanced....that was about the only new info...way more chaotic and dissary then was generally known....But after several reads on the War on the Eastern Front, I fairly confident to say that Stalin would have stayed and probably either been killed or had to fight his way out. And most certainly, that Soviets would have NOT surrendered...Hitler would've had what he wanted an eternal war on the East resembling something of the Wild West which Der ...more
bibliotekker Holman
I finished this some time ago and it still echoes in my head. The Eastern Front in the Second World War was of such a different character that it is almost like a separate conflict from what went on in the rest of Europe. Despite lingering on for several more years, and killing millions more, the conflict before Moscow, in the late fall and winter of 1941 was decisive for the ultimate outcome for both the Soviets and the Nazis. An excellent book that includes many interesting accounts and provid ...more
-Irregular y algo falto de rumbo, en ocasiones.-

Género. Historia.

Lo que nos cuenta. Con el subtítulo Una ciudad y su pueblo en guerra, aproximación a la actitud del pueblo soviético, con especial atención a los moscovitas pero no exclusivamente, antes, durante y algo después de la ofensiva alemana de verano de 1941 que introdujo a la URSS en la Segunda Guerra Mundial y llevó al enemigo muy cerca de Moscú.

¿Quiere saber más de este libro, sin spoilers? Visite:
Jan 29, 2012 Rick rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: world-war-ii
Braithwaite’s Moscow 1941 is an illuminating presentation of the seminal German assault on the Russian capital in World War II. His narrative touches on both the civilian and military impacts of the battle, which turned out to be one of Germany’s first great defeats. A chart listing the main characters and their relationship to each other would have helped the reader navigate the blizzard of Russian names, but this remains an entertaining read.
May 10, 2010 Nathan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A windy, unwieldy account that wobbles confusingly between focusing on the human histories of common Muscovites and the broader military scene. The prose is colorless and vague; the author is aware of his story's import but helpless to do it justice, instead delivering a painfully prosaic narrative that tapers off, leaving the impression of history done by rote.
Russell Berg
Sometimes ends up being a list of people who were killed but gives a good overview of the incredible sacrifice that the Russian people made to win the war for us all. From before D-Day until the end of the war 4/5's of Hitler's forces where on the Eastern Front.
Jul 22, 2014 Elliott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Braithwaite's Moscow 1941 is one of the most complete monographs I've read on any subject. He provides so many valuable details, giving us as much of the story as possible of Moscow life before and during Russia's Great Patriotic War.
An interesting look into Moscow 1941. It does a great job of driving overall points home with repetition, but not too much. A nice balance between military and civilian involvement. The only thing I wish it did was define some specific terms that are used often in the book.
Oct 15, 2007 Andrew rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a 26 year old white male, I'm genetically predisposed to loving books about WWII. This one I read in preparation for Vasily Grossman's epic novel, Life and Fate. It's interesting, but sometimes gets bogged down in pedestrian detail. Which is fine, if you like that kind of thing.
Mark Darling
I haven't read much about the Great Patriotic War from the Soviet/Russian perspective. Thia was interesting.
Joe Giles
Jan 24, 2014 Joe Giles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Devastating portrait of Moscow under siege from the German invasion -- but also of an evil system that will destroy its own people to survive.
Singleton Mosby
Altough the subject of this book is very interesting indeed it could do with a little more structure and many more personal accounts.
Chris Maguire
Jun 27, 2009 Chris Maguire rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty good history of the Battle of Moscow from the perspective of regular people living in the city. Shows how bleak the time was.
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