by Blaine Taylor
Stroud, Eng.: Fonthill / Philadelphia: Casemate, 2020. . Pp. 416.
Illus., maps, append., chron., biblio. $55.00. ISBN: 178155773X
The German Generals of the Great War
With a number of books in military history under his belt, in his latest volume American historian Taylor gives us a look at Germany’s senior commanders in the Great War, carrying their story through the years of the Weimar Republic, those of the Third Reich, and into the post-war era.
Taylor does this in a unusual way. Rather than a listing of officers as is customary in a biographical dictionary, he wraps the lot up in what is sort of a combined biography of Paul von Hindenburg and a history of the German Army from the 1840s on through the 1950s. As this history unfolds – at times through flash back or fast forward -- Taylor has profiles of various people; the Kaiser, many other blue bloods, many soldiers, and some women, mostly German, with a sprinkling of Russians, Britons, French, Turks, and others as they are tied to Hindenburg’s career or to help explain the course of the Great War and events that followed, including many leaders of the Hitlerite era. Some profiles run pages, and at times are covered in part across several chapters, as the person turns up again in another situation. These profiles offer looks into the person’s origins and career, often with critical comments on their abilities, and at times good use of is made of anecdotes that help illustrate their personality.
A very readable and informative book, Teutonic Titans is marred by the lack of references and particularly of an index,
Note: Teutonic Titans is also available in several e-editions.