1941: The Year Germany Lost the War

1941: The Year that Germany lost the War

A fresh look at the decisive year 1941, when Hitler’s miscalculations and policy of terror propelled Churchill, FDR, and Stalin into a powerful new alliance that defeated Nazi Germany. 

 

“[a] vivid, incisive account”
William Taubman
“a vivid account”
Jon Meacham
"an essential text...vivid and compelling detail"
The Washington Post
"a lively, opinionated account of a critical year"
Kirkus Review
“a seamlessly written…fast-paced narrative”
Douglas Brinkley
"entertaining... Nagorski tells it well"
The Wall Street Journal
"a portrait of hubris and megalomania"
Overseas Press Club
“gripping, deeply researched”
Lynne Olson
"keen psychological insights into the world leaders involved"
Booklist
“gripping narrative and eye-popping revelation”
Evan Thomas
"gripping drama"
Washington Independent Review of Books
"Nagorski tells it well"
Foreign Affairs
"successful history...a clear and lucid writer"
Publishers Weekly
"a very well-written treatise"
Israel Journal of Foreign Affairs

In early 1941, Hitler’s armies ruled most of Europe. Churchill’s Britain was an isolated holdout against the Nazi tide, but German bombers were attacking its cities and German U-boats were attacking its ships. Stalin was observing the terms of the Nazi-Soviet Pact, and Roosevelt was vowing to keep the United States out of the war. Hitler was confident that his aim of total victory was within reach.

By the end of 1941, all that changed. Hitler had repeatedly gambled on escalation and lost: by invading the Soviet Union and committing a series of disastrous military blunders; by making mass murder and terror his weapons of choice, and by rushing to declare war on the United States after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. Britain emerged with two powerful new allies—Russia and the United States. By then, Germany was doomed to defeat.

Nagorski illuminates the actions of the major characters of this pivotal year as never before. The Year Germany Lost the War is a stunning examination of unbridled megalomania versus determined leadership. It also reveals how 1941 set the Holocaust in motion, and presaged the postwar division of Europe, triggering the Cold War. 1941 was a year that forever defined our world.

Literaturesalon's Blog, Claudia Moscovici

We tend to think of D-Day as the turning point of WWII: the day the Allies landed in Normandy to liberate France, and the entire Europe, from the Nazi invaders. But Andrew Nagorski’s new book, 1941: The Year Germany Lost the War (New York, Simon & Schuster, 2019), persuasively...

The Washington Post, Jonathan Kirsch

War is one human endeavor that invites us to play the irresistible but entirely imaginary game of singling out the turning points in history. The Soviet victory in the Battle of Stalingrad in 1943, for example, is commonly cited as the tipping point that signaled the inevitable defeat of Nazi...

The Wall Street Journal, Daniel Todman

France may have fallen quickly, but war planners on both sides could see that Germany lacked the aerial or naval power to defeat Britain. Hitler invaded Russia to seize more resources, but soon was fighting unwinnable wars on two fronts

Viewed from the perspective of 1939,...

Eugene L. Meyer, Washington Independent Review of Books

What a difference a year makes. Or so argues Andrew Nagorski in his newest book, 1941. That, in his view, was the year Germany lost World War II. Others might suggest 1944, when the Allied invasion of Normandy forced Hitler to fight on two fronts,...

New York Journal of Books

“Nagorski provides a compelling narrative of the war’s major events, developments, and personalities in 1941.”

Military historians often identify key battles or events that in hindsight are deemed “turning points” of a war. The most commonly identified turning points of...

Publishers Weekly

In this successful history, journalist Nagorski isolates 1941 as a turning point in world history, persuasively arguing it was the year Adolf Hitler’s political and military decisions ensured the downfall of the Third Reich. A year that began with the Soviet Union and Germany carving up occupied...

Overseas Press Club

OPC member Andrew Nagorski, an award-winning journalist who worked for more than three decades for Newsweek, has taken another deep dive into World War II, this time with a close look at the early days of Hitler’s campaign and its galvanizing affect on allies. 1941: The Year Germany Lost the War...

Kirkus Review

Because Nazi Germany lacked the means to win a prolonged war, each year of the war could qualify as significant, but few readers will object to this expert history of 1941, a year when Hitler made a flurry of stupid decisions. Award-winning former Newsweek journalist Nagorski (The...

"Andrew Nagorski’s vivid, incisive account shows how and why 1941 marked not just the beginning, but the beginning of the end, of World War II.”—William Taubman, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Khrushchev: The Man and His Era and Gorbachev: His Life and Times...

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Deborah Kalb

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