Jocelyn McClurg


Promiscuous (and, for a time, Nazi-loving) Martha Dodd and her stoic father, Willam Dodd, the U.S. ambassador to Germany in the 1930s, are now posthumous superstars thanks to Erik Larson's best seller In the Garden of Beasts. The duo are back in Andrew Nagorski's engaging if chilling Hitlerland, a broader look at Americans who had a ringside seat to Hitler's rise. It's a fascinating cast, from journalists such as William Shirer and Dorothy Thompson to public figures including novelist Thomas Wolfe and aviator Charles Lindbergh. Some tried to sound the alarm. Others failed to grasp Hitler's hypnotic power over the German people or had fascist leanings themselves. Nagorski, a formerNewsweek bureau chief in Berlin, tells a fast-paced tale.— Jocelyn McClurg


American Eyewitnesses to the Nazi Rise to Power

Hitler’s rise to power, Germany’s march to the abyss, as seen through the eyes of Americans—diplomats, military, expats, visiting authors, Olympic athletes—who watched horrified and up close. By tapping a rich vein of personal testimonies, Hitlerland offers a gripping narrative full of surprising twists—and a startlingly fresh perspective on this heavily dissected era.