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The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914

Category: Book
By (author): Clark, Christopher
Subject:  HISTORY / Europe / General
  HISTORY / Europe / Western
  HISTORY / General
  HISTORY / Military / World War I
Audience: general/trade
Awards: Los Angeles Times Book Prize
Publisher: HarperCollins
Published: March 2014
Format: Book-paperback
Pages: 736
Size: 8.00in x 5.31in x 1.17in
Our Price:
$ 23.99
Availability:
Available to order

Additional Notes

From The Publisher*

On the morning of June 28, 1914, when Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, Sophie Chotek, arrived at Sarajevo railway station, Europe was at peace. Thirty-seven days later, it was at war. The conflict that resulted would kill more than fifteen million people, destroy three empires, and permanently alter world history.

The Sleepwalkers reveals in gripping detail how the crisis leading to World War I unfolded. Drawing on fresh sources, it traces the paths to war in a minute-by-minute, action-packed narrative that cuts among the key decision centers in Vienna, Berlin, St. Petersburg, Paris, London, and Belgrade. Distinguished historian Christopher Clark examines the decades of history that informed the events of 1914 and details the mutual misunderstandings and unintended signals that drove the crisis forward in a few short weeks.

How did the Balkans-a peripheral region far from Europe's centers of power and wealth-come to be the center of a drama of such magnitude? How had European nations organized themselves into opposing alliances, and how did these nations manage to carry out foreign policy as a result? Clark reveals a Europe racked by chronic problems-a fractured world of instability and militancy that was, fatefully, saddled with a conspicuously ineffectual set of political leaders. These rulers, who prided themselves on their modernity and rationalism, stumbled through crisis after crisis and finally convinced themselves that war was the only answer.

Meticulously researched and masterfully written, The Sleepwalkers is a magisterial account of one of the most compelling dramas of modern times.

From The Publisher*

One of The New York Times Book Review's 10 Best Books of the Year

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize (History)

The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 is historian Christopher Clark's riveting account of the explosive beginnings of World War I.

Drawing on new scholarship, Clark offers a fresh look at World War I, focusing not on the battles and atrocities of the war itself, but on the complex events and relationships that led a group of well-meaning leaders into brutal conflict.

Clark traces the paths to war in a minute-by-minute, action-packed narrative that cuts between the key decision centers in Vienna, Berlin, St. Petersburg, Paris, London, and Belgrade, and examines the decades of history that informed the events of 1914 and details the mutual misunderstandings and unintended signals that drove the crisis forward in a few short weeks.

Meticulously researched and masterfully written, Christopher Clark's The Sleepwalkers is a dramatic and authoritative chronicle of Europe's descent into a war that tore the world apart.

Review Quote*"An important book. . . . One of the most impressive and stimulating studies of the period ever published."
Review Quote*"Excellent. . . . The book is stylishly written as well as superb scholarship. No analysis of the origins of the First World War will henceforth be able to bypass this magisterial work."
Review Quote*"The most readable account of the origins of the First World War since Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August. The difference is that The Sleepwalkers is a lovingly researched work of the highest scholarship."
Review Quote*"This compelling examination of the causes of World War I deserves to become the new standard one-volume account of that contentious subject."
Review Quote*"Clark is a masterly historian. . . . His account vividly reconstructs key decision points while deftly sketching the context driving them. . . . A magisterial work."
Review Quote*"A monumental new volume. . . . Revelatory, even revolutionary. . . . Clark has done a masterful job explaining the inexplicable."
Review Quote*"Easily the best book ever written on the subject. . . . A work of rare beauty that combines meticulous research with sensitive analysis and elegant prose. The enormous weight of its quality inspires amazement and awe. . . . Academics should take note: Good history can still be a good story."
Review Quote*"A meticulously researched, superbly organized, and handsomely written account."