Customer Reviews for

Dreadnought: Britain, Germany, and the Coming of the Great War

Average Rating 4.5
( 13 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Magisterial

Don't beleive the bias baloney. This book is superb. It covers absolutely everything, the politics, colonialization, the Boer war,the Boxer Rebellion, Fashoda, the Morrocco Crisis, Agadir, the scheming of France, England, Germany and Russia and of course the building o...
Don't beleive the bias baloney. This book is superb. It covers absolutely everything, the politics, colonialization, the Boer war,the Boxer Rebellion, Fashoda, the Morrocco Crisis, Agadir, the scheming of France, England, Germany and Russia and of course the building of the Dreadnought. The characters are true, the prose is crisp and each chapter easily accomplishes the writers goal of advancing the narrative. A 900 page book that never flags. The Germans are more intersting to me than the British. Kaiser William, Admiral Tirpitz, Bulow, Bismarck etc make for somewhat more compelling figures than Asquith, Lloyd George, Grey and Churchill. There is no panegyric to Churchill. He comes across as egotistical, pretentious, overconfident - all of which he was. And could there be a worse mother than Jennie Churchill? And at the end when the Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey praises the German Ambassador Lichnowsky, ' for no man had worked harder to avert war...or more genuinely hated this coming war' you realize how the sweep of events had outstripped these men's abilities to control them. Of course, the book is also blessed with Mister Massie's perspicacious observations and analysis. A triumph by every meassure.

posted by Anonymous on May 13, 2006

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

More biased history.

This is a deaply flawed book.It buys into all the old anti-German propaganda myths about the events leading up to WWI.In fact the naval rivalry was started by the British militarists such as Churchill(who never met a war he didn't like) and Balfour as an excuse to buil...
This is a deaply flawed book.It buys into all the old anti-German propaganda myths about the events leading up to WWI.In fact the naval rivalry was started by the British militarists such as Churchill(who never met a war he didn't like) and Balfour as an excuse to build up its fleet.In fact the German fleet was never a threat to the British fleet,as the war showed, and it certainly was no threat to the combined fleets of England,France and Russia.The naval rivaly,largely imaginary to start out with,ended on Feb. 7,1913 when Germany agreed to build only 10 battleships for every 16 the British built,giving the British a permanent naval superiority.Unfortunately this did nothing to prevent the war because the British had already decided to destroy Germany.Of course the book contains the obligitory anti-German bias all books like this always have.Most of the German figures in the book are portrayed as monsters or lunatics of one sort or another while,of course,the war mongering British militarists like Balfour,Fisher and Churchill are all portrayed as heros.All in all this book is little more than yet another replay of 90 year old propaganda.

posted by Anonymous on September 19, 2002

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2006

    Magisterial

    Don't beleive the bias baloney. This book is superb. It covers absolutely everything, the politics, colonialization, the Boer war,the Boxer Rebellion, Fashoda, the Morrocco Crisis, Agadir, the scheming of France, England, Germany and Russia and of course the building of the Dreadnought. The characters are true, the prose is crisp and each chapter easily accomplishes the writers goal of advancing the narrative. A 900 page book that never flags. The Germans are more intersting to me than the British. Kaiser William, Admiral Tirpitz, Bulow, Bismarck etc make for somewhat more compelling figures than Asquith, Lloyd George, Grey and Churchill. There is no panegyric to Churchill. He comes across as egotistical, pretentious, overconfident - all of which he was. And could there be a worse mother than Jennie Churchill? And at the end when the Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey praises the German Ambassador Lichnowsky, ' for no man had worked harder to avert war...or more genuinely hated this coming war' you realize how the sweep of events had outstripped these men's abilities to control them. Of course, the book is also blessed with Mister Massie's perspicacious observations and analysis. A triumph by every meassure.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2002

    More biased history.

    This is a deaply flawed book.It buys into all the old anti-German propaganda myths about the events leading up to WWI.In fact the naval rivalry was started by the British militarists such as Churchill(who never met a war he didn't like) and Balfour as an excuse to build up its fleet.In fact the German fleet was never a threat to the British fleet,as the war showed, and it certainly was no threat to the combined fleets of England,France and Russia.The naval rivaly,largely imaginary to start out with,ended on Feb. 7,1913 when Germany agreed to build only 10 battleships for every 16 the British built,giving the British a permanent naval superiority.Unfortunately this did nothing to prevent the war because the British had already decided to destroy Germany.Of course the book contains the obligitory anti-German bias all books like this always have.Most of the German figures in the book are portrayed as monsters or lunatics of one sort or another while,of course,the war mongering British militarists like Balfour,Fisher and Churchill are all portrayed as heros.All in all this book is little more than yet another replay of 90 year old propaganda.

    3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2006

    Excellent

    This is the way history should be written.This is not so much about the battleship Dreadnaught as it is a fascinating detailed and above all readable treatise about the Victorian era politics of Britain and Germany.It is outstanding even though it is long you simply cannot put it down. But then this is Massie one not only of the best historians but also a very gifted writer. (Oh how I wish Niall Ferguson were that colorful of a writer!).Politics could be a very dry subject but Massie makes the characters come very alive even people that are somewhat colorless like Salisbury and Bethmann-Hollweg. Churchill and Bismarck are easy to describe vividly. Salisbury and Bethmann-Hollweg are not. Yet Massie manages that. Battleships and John Arbuthnot Fisher are entertaining. Yet Massie manages all his characters to be vivid and relevant. Truly great book.The only one that tops it is his Castles of Steel and Tuchman's Guns of August.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    Cole

    Very creative

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    SnowStorm

    Thats funny!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    Dreaded Day Chapter 2

    I woke up looking forward to anothr a great day. I got up and bounded out the door. I got on the bus and there were snickers. And whispering. I just shrugged when i got to school i walked in homeroom. Our teacher Mrs.Santagio looked at me "Did you sleep in this morning miss Haring?" She asked. "No why?" Sarah whispered "Look down." I did but i almost wish i hadnt. I was wearing my pink feety pajamas with bunnies on the feet. I was mortified i got up and ran out. It was the second day of school and i had made a fool of myself. I ran into the bathroom locked the stall and cried. I heard footsteps and someone walked past the stall. I knew those shoes. They were Derek's i realized i had ran into the boys bathroom! I ran out tears streaming down my face i had made a complete fool of myself twice. My crush saw me run from the boys bathroom i was doomed

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    EUROPEAN HISTORY

    I am finding this book to be very imformative as to what transpired in Europe during the forty, or so, years prior to World War 1.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2007

    A reviewer

    I'm not a World War I buff, but the author very much held my interest. He seemed to try very hard to present all viewpoints fairly.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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