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Keith Lowe's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Keith Lowe recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Keith Lowe's favorite book recommendations of all time.

An autobigraphical account of the armed resistance movement and related circumstances in Lithuania under Soviet occupation. less
Recommended by Keith Lowe, and 1 others.

Keith LoweIf you were in Ukraine, the Baltic states, and in bits of Poland, the war began for you not when the Germans invaded but when the Soviet Union invaded – in areas of Poland in 1939 and the Baltic states in 1940. So the fact that Germans took over most of Europe subsequently is kind of neither here nor there because the war ends with the Soviets still in control. So if you’re a Lithuanian or a... (Source)

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From the author Graham Greene called "one of our best writers, not of any particular decade but of our century," comes a masterpiece about a war-ravaged city under occupation
As a young intelligence officer stationed in Naples following its liberation from Nazi forces, Norman Lewis recorded the lives of a proud and vibrant people forced to survive on prostitution, thievery, and a desperate belief in miracles and cures. The most popular of Lewis's twenty-seven books, Naples '44 is a landmark poetic study of the agony of wartime occupation and its ability to bring out the...
Recommended by Keith Lowe, and 1 others.

Keith LoweStrictly speaking it’s not a book about the postwar period as it’s about Naples in 1944 rather than in 1945 or 1946, but I chose it because it shows what life was like immediately after the liberation of the south of Italy. This was the first area of Europe to be liberated so it was the first sight the Allies had of what they were dealing with, which was pretty chaotic. Naples in 1944 was a city... (Source)

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A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice

For eight weeks in 1945, as Berlin fell to the Russian army, a young woman kept a daily record of life in her apartment building and among its residents. The anonymous author depicts her fellow Berliners in all their humanity, as well as their cravenness, corrupted first by hunger and then by the Russians. A Woman in Berlin tells of the complex relationship between civilians and an occupying army and the shameful indignities to which women in a conquered city are always subject--the mass rape suffered...
Recommended by Antony Beevor, Keith Lowe, and 2 others.

Antony BeevorThis book, A Woman in Berlin, is one of the great diaries of the whole war. (Source)

Keith LoweIt’s by a German housewife in Berlin who was repeatedly raped when the Russians arrive in 1945. It’s heart-rending but, miraculously, not depressing. (Source)

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Groundbreaking and remarkably relevant to modern emergency relief efforts, The Long Road Home tells the epic story of how the mammoth refugee problem in the wake of World War II was painstakingly solved.
While the war was still going on, the Western Allies began to plan for the humanitarian crisis they knew would come when the shooting stopped. Haunted by memories of the chaos and loss of life at war’s end a generation earlier, they were determined to get it right this time.

But what faced aid workers in 1945 was not what they had planned...
Recommended by Keith Lowe, and 1 others.

Keith LoweDuring the war, Germany was in dire need of labour. They had conscripted as many people as they possibly could into the army, which had left a gaping hole in their workforce. Rather than use women to fill the hole, which happened in Britain, they went to all the occupied countries and conscripted forced labour. Quite often they would round up people and ship them to Germany and use them quite... (Source)

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Almost a decade in the making, this much-anticipated grand history of postwar Europe from one of the world's most esteemed historians and intellectuals is a singular achievement. Postwar is the first modern history that covers all of Europe, both east and west, drawing on research in six languages to sweep readers through thirty-four nations and sixty years of political and cultural change-all in one integrated, enthralling narrative. Both intellectually ambitious and compelling to read, thrilling in its scope and delightful in its small details, Postwar is a rare joy.
Recommended by David Marquand, Keith Lowe, and 2 others.

David MarquandThis book is all about the way that Europe has managed – not always totally successfully, but managed nevertheless – to come to terms with its bloody and horrible past. (Source)

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