Hitler's Private Library: The Books That Shaped His Life

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Jan 12, 2010 - History - 320 pages
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A Washington Post Notable Book
With a new chapter on eugenicist Madison Grant’s The Passing of the Great Race

In this brilliant and original exploration of some of the formative influences in Adolf Hitler’s life, Timothy Ryback examines the books that shaped the man and his thinking.

Hitler was better known for burning books than collecting them but, as Ryback vividly shows us, books were Hitler’s constant companions throughout his life. They accompanied him from his years as a frontline corporal during the First World War to his final days before his suicide in Berlin. With remarkable attention to detail, Ryback examines the surviving volumes from Hitler’s private book collection, revealing the ideas and obsessions that occupied Hitler in his most private hours and the consequences they had for our world.

A feat of scholarly detective work, and a captivating biographical portrait, Hitler’s Private Library is one of the most intimate and chilling works on Hitler yet written.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - SESchend - LibraryThing

Interesting book looking at the books known to be in Hitler's libraries; not a hagiography or a psychological analysis but more a look at what the books added to Hitler's "dilettantish" self-education and what he gleaned from them (via looking at his marginalia or lack thereof). A good, quick read. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Shrike58 - LibraryThing

A consideration of Hitler's political thought by examining his surviving books, Ryback contrasts what Hitler liked to read (popular fiction, military history, occult & spiritualist works) with the ... Read full review


THREE The Hitler Trilogy
SEVEN Divine Inspiration
Afterword The Fates of Books
Appendix C
Appendix D

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About the author (2010)

Timothy W. Ryback is the author of The Last Survivor: Legacies of Dachau, a New York Times Notable Book for 1999. He has written for The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times. He is cofounder and codirector of the Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation and lives in Paris with his wife and three children.

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