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Berlin: The Downfall: 1945

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  9,794 Ratings  ·  348 Reviews
Recounts, in narrowing detail, and with formidable skill, the brutal death throes of Hitler's Reich at the hands of the rampaging Red Army.
Paperback, 489 pages
Published October 4th 2007 by Penguin (first published 2002)
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Sami No, it is not a novel. I'd place it on the better end of the non-fiction spectrum, Beevor lists his sources rather well.

But it can be read like a…more
No, it is not a novel. I'd place it on the better end of the non-fiction spectrum, Beevor lists his sources rather well.

But it can be read like a novel, just like Jonathan presumed.(less)
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Soviet soldiers hoist the red flag over the Reichstag in May 1945

The grramazon description is a naff affair, I shall find proper information on a better site:

Berlin: The Downfall 1945 (aka The Fall of Berlin 1945 in the US) is a narrative history by Antony Beevor of the Battle of Berlin during World War II. It was published by Viking Press in 2002, then later by Penguin Books in 2003. The book achieved both critical
What could I possibly say that I hadn't already alluded to within my previous updates. I read "Stalingrad" in the snow outside on purpose in January of 2009, I read Beevor's "D-Day" in April of 2010 and believe that Stephen Ambrose still holds my attention best on that topic, "Paris After the Liberation" I read in November of 2011 and here on 14 January, 2013 I completed "The Fall of Berlin 1945". I believe that "Stalingrad" was brilliant, but this work on "The Fall of Berlin 1945" was even more ...more
Ένα βιβλίο που θα πρέπει να διαβασει καθε ανθρωπος,αν θελει να καταλαβει πραγματικά την φρίκη του πολέμου.
Michael Scott
In The Fall of Berlin 1945, Antony Beevor tries to depict, as graphically as possible, the atrocious actions of the Russian troops (and the clumsy non-action by their American and British allies) in the eventful taking of Berlin, the symbolic civic center of Nazi Germany.

Overall, I did not like this book: while it is informative and has some good pieces of analytical material, it has a subjective approach and a questionable goal, and uses historical fact only as buttress. (Ann Tusa and John Tus
Charles Mccain
Sep 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Red Army's invasion of Berlin in January 1945 was one of the most terrifying examples of fire and sword in history. Frenzied by terrible memories of Wehrmacht and SS brutality, the Russians wreaked havoc, leaving hundreds of thousands of civilians dead and millions more fleeing westward. Drawing upon newly available material from former Soviet files, as well as from German, American, British, French, and Swedish archives, bestselling author Antony Beevor vividly recounts the experiences of t ...more
Sep 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, history, 2017
I think my politics are already pretty transparent so let's dive in with what occupies my mind at the moment. It is frustrating that you cannot compare Trump to Hitler without being dismissed as making an argument that isn't the one you're making. It isn't the simple transitive, Hitler bad, Trump bad, therefore Trump like Hitler. Instead, it's the whole barrel of specific rotten qualities: the thin-skinned self-aggrandizement, the insistence on expertise in impressive-sounding subjects about whi ...more
Mar 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
During World War II, some of the most savage fighting took place between the Germans and the Russians on the Eastern Front. Not only was it a war of ideology between National Socialism and Communism, it was often a war of annihilation as well. This book is a fascinating read about the last days of the Third Reich, with lots of focus on the German and Soviet high commands, as well as the trials and tribulations of the German civilians caught up in the maelstrom of war. If you're looking for a boo ...more
Jun 11, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: War Fiends
Shelves: non-fiction, history
It sits at the top of the human drama, and every so often I have to go back and read about World War II. This book looked like a good chance to revisit old territory.

I was attracted by the book's promise of new accounts and insights to this battle. It turned out that a lot of what people have remarked (tanks and refugee columns, etc.) was stuff already known about: no new perfidious behaviour or atrocities to speak of.

Still, it's not bad. Who, indeed, could write a boring book about the Battle o
Jill Hutchinson
A truly amazing book that looks at the last few months of the Third Reich and the horrors visited on the population of Berlin by the Red Army. That Army was frenzied by their experiences at the hands of the Nazis when Germany invaded Russia and they wreaked unimaginable suffering in their revenge....tanks crushing civilians, mass rape, pillage and total destruction. The author does a masterful job of reconstructing the experiences of those millions caught up in the Third Reich's final collapse. ...more
Kate Forsyth
The story of the Fall of Berlin is one of terror and betrayal, destruction and bloodshed, rape and revenge, and is not one for the faint-hearted. Antony Beevor has examined every aspect of the events leading up to the cataclysmic destruction of Berlin in April 1945. The book is incredibly well-researched, and beautifully written, but is best for those who have already extensively studied the history of Germany in the Second World War, or those with a particular acute interest in warfare and batt ...more
Sep 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
In two words: utterly compelling. Antony Beevor's widely praised account of the ultimate battle for the heart of the Nazi Reich, and the pure horror of it all, is a book worthy of high praise indeed. The scene is ably set in the opening chapters with the setting of the various battle orders, the intricacies of the political machinations in fearsome effect, and the descriptions of lives interrupted on the home fronts; Beevor expertly brings the reader with him into the new year of 1945 as the fin ...more
Emilio Mendez
Oct 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Say what you will about Hitler and the Nazis, but you cant help but feel for the ordinary German people in this poignant end to Germany in WWII. They really did fight to the the bitter end, outnumbered, outgunned with no chance of victory. What would you do in this position? Antony Beevor's ability to reconstruct the helplessness of the situation, from the upper echelons of the leadership to women and children fleeing,gives a stark contrast. The most heroic acts of this battle and yet one of the ...more
Jan 30, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wwii-europe
Beevor's story of the final collapse of Nazi Germany is not great historical writing. The narrative reads as a catalogue of events without the binding literary thread necessary to weave a compelling historical tale. There is little development of the historical figures -- their stories are not fleshed out. You end the book knowing not much more about Zhukov, Guderian, Chiukov or Weidling than when you started. "The Fall of Berlin 1945" is weak alongside John Toland's "The Last 100 Days" despite ...more
Jan 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: world-war-ii
Antony Beevor's " The Fall of Berlin 1945" is an excellent account of the final battles of the Eastern Front, specifically focusing on the Soviet push into Germany in early 1945 and the subsequent battle of Berlin that April.
This work does not just focus on the operational and Geo-political aspects of the Third Reich's downfall, it also shines light on the human drama that unfolded in the midst of the horror. Woven into the book are various personal accounts of the brutal fighting between Soviet
Gary Haynes
Jul 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A seminal treatise on the end of Nazi tyranny, coupled with a scathing commentary on Stalinist cruelty. What comes across in this wonderful nonfiction work, which reads like a thriller novel, is Beevor's extraordinary grasp of his subject matter, his meticulous research, and refusal to stoop to generalities. The population of Berlin suffered for their sins, especially the woman, and Beevor does not pull any punches. This is a testament to the fact that we are one step away from brutality - one s ...more
Nov 07, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Muy bien documentada, y dentro de lo que cabe para este tipo de obras, amena en su desarrollo. Se centra en los últimos meses de la guerra, sobre todo el avance del ejército soviético y en la descomposición del estado alemán.
Intenta ser neutral aunque es difícil dada la magnitud de las salvajadas cometidas por todos los bandos, aunque unos más que otros.
Lo que más me impacto es la parte final, de la inmediata postguerra, poco conocida, de la venganza soportada por el pueblo alemán.
Neil Fox
Jun 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After a fascinating guided walking tour entitled "the last days of the Third Reich" during a recent weekend in Berlin, I felt compelled to re-read Anthony Beevor's "Berlin, the Downfall 1945" which, together with his other masterpiece Stalingrad, are among the finest military histories from World War 2. Taken together and complemented by a viewing of the Bruno Ganz movie " Downfall", these 2 books will provide the student of WW2 history with a great perspective on the unravelling of the Third Re ...more
Elliott Bignell
Apr 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had tears in my eyes as I began compiling this review, shortly before finishing the book. The suffering which it relentlessly and rather coolly lays out seems on the one hand as if it ought to be unimaginable. On the other hand, it sounds no different to accounts of the 30 Years War, except with the addition of industrial-scale killing machinery. Germany has seen this before, and at least in the mid-20th Century had still not learned from the experience.

Beevor follows up "Stalingrad" with "Ber
RJ Corby
Feb 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This is an excellent and enlightening look about what happened on the Eastern Front of World War II. This book also destroys some myths about the end of the war. Being an American, I'm often exposed to the Western slant about what happened in the war, so this read was quite refreshing. I have a natural inclination to question whatever I read - I don't just automatically believe anything. But, from what I have read, and I've done a fair amount of reading on the European theater of the war, this b
Tadas Talaikis
Jul 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history

Several additional details, but the book looked disorganized, somewhat subjective and lacks insight, unlike The Third Reich At War by Richard J. Evans.

It is the story about basically three things: 1) how "thousand year empire" (e.g. last Roman empire) with its psychotic beliefs was raped by Russians (e.g. "untermensch", like "white niggers") which would be remembered for another "thousand years", 2) how medieval "I'm not guilty, I just work here" turned into "we were lied to and betrayed, we are
Erik Graff
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: WWII fans, Germans, Russians
Recommended to Erik by: Thomas Miley
Shelves: history
This is an excellent history of the last months of Nazi Germany with a focus on Berlin and the Soviet advance. While much of it concerns day-by-day dispositions of military units, accompanied by maps, enough consists of personal accounts to allow those of us who are not military historians to enjoy this substantial book.

A major--and controversial--theme, recurring repeatedly, is that of the rape of women. According to Beevor this was wholesale, despite rules of engagement forbidding the practice
Beevor's skills as a writer simply aren't able to overcome the subject matter.

He does an admirable job of making an interesting read out of a rather excruciatingly boring topic. The clumsiness of the Soviets, the megalomania of Stalin, the naivety of the Americans, the irrelevance of the British, all play out against the pathetic condition of the German people. There are interesting stories to be told, and he presents several, but in the end there's simply not enough to support a book of this l
Jul 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a challenge because of how long it was and how much information was in it. I have to say, that the author did a great job by collecting all the facts and putting them into this book. Lots of chapters exposes the information that no one knew before and also that most people are losing their minds and their humanism during the war. Very informative and yet very hard to read at the times book which should be read by every history enthusiast and those who are into WWII history and find ...more
Nov 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Harrowing. Not for wimps.
Pete daPixie
Feb 13, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history-wwii
Brilliantly researched and written. Not just the story of Hitlers bunker, but the humanity trapped in a shell blasted hell, with the resistance by youths on cycles facing Russian tanks.
Johnny Malloy
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my sixth book by Antony Beevor and it's arguably the best. The book opens (as usual in Beevor books) with some precise context. It then begins the main narrative with the Vistula–Oder Offensive in January 1945. The book stays detailed throughout the fall of Berlin and then widens back out in the summer of 1945. Beevor does not spend too much time discussing the general aftermath of WWII, choosing mostly to tie up loose ends regarding Berlin citizens, daily life, and the Nazi party leader ...more
Mar 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Interesting read. It's obvious that in order to fully enjoy this book, you have to be interested in History and German History. It was quite an intense read, it's got a lot of interesting facts, but it does deal with some dark events that not only happened to the soldiers but also to their families. It was a good read, and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in this time frame (post ww2), enjoys History and is interested in German History.
Holly Woodward
May 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Devastating and important.
Feb 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Anthony Beevor's "The Fall of Berlin 1945" is a solid mostly military account of the final months of World War 2 as it built toward the final moments of the battle for the capital, resulting in the death blow for Nazi Germany. Beevor weaves together many accounts from various players of the battle, mostly through balanced German and Russian perspectives, which I really appreciated. Bravo to Beevor for not being tempted to only explain this story from only one side's view. While Beevor provides f ...more
James Frazier
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've found that most Americans have no idea how much rape and slaughter came with the end of Nazism. This book is a good place to start forming an idea.
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The Fall of Berlin 1945 13 106 Sep 11, 2017 02:37AM  
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Antony James Beevor is a British historian, educated at Winchester College and Sandhurst. He studied under the famous historian of World War II, John Keegan. Beevor is a former officer with the 11th Hussars who served in England and Germany for 5 years before resigning his commission. He has published several popular histories on the Second World War and 20th century in general.

More about Antony Beevor...