Book The Tenth

Human Smoke by Nicholson Baker

This is an interesting history book – in format as well as information. Baker has taken a wide variety of sources and rewritten them as a series of related vignettes that examine the years leading up to and into the Second World War.

Although the book is a bit of a mess at times – the dates that Baker has chosen are pretty arbitrary, and he skims pretty quickly over a bunch of stuff I personally would have thought merited greater attention – it shows the lesser known side of the thirties and early forties: the anti-Semitic tendencies of Roosevelt, the fact that Churchill would not consider peace with Germany even when public opinion was for it, and Germany was suing for same, and such forth.

(It also has a lot of stuff about how much of a dick Hitler was, just in case you’re worried about bias…)

Well worth a read.


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