By Robert K. Massie
In a piece of striking narrative energy, packed with excellent personalities and vibrant scenes of dramatic motion, Robert ok. Massie, the Pulitzer Prize–winning writer of Peter the good, Nicholas and Alexandra, and Dreadnought, elevates to its right old value the position of sea energy within the successful of the good War.
The fundamental snapshot of this primary global conflict is of dust and ditchs, barbed cord, computing device weapons, poison fuel, and slaughter. A new release of ecu manhood used to be massacred, and a wound used to be inflicted on eu civilization that required the rest of the 20 th century to heal.
But with all its sacrifice, trench war didn't win the conflict for one facet or lose it for the opposite. Over the process 4 years, the traces at the Western entrance moved scarcely in any respect; makes an attempt to wreck via led purely to the lengthening of the already unbearably lengthy casualty lists.
For the genuine tale of army upheaval, we needs to glance to the ocean. at the eve of the struggle in August 1914, nice Britain and Germany possessed the 2 maximum navies the realm had ever obvious. while battle got here, those fleets of dreadnoughts—gigantic floating castles of metal capable of hurl colossal shells at an enemy miles away—were able to attempt their negative strength opposed to each one other.
Their struggles came about within the North Sea and the Pacific, on the Falkland Islands and the Dardanelles. They reached their climax whilst Germany, suffocated by means of an implacable naval blockade, determined to strike opposed to the British ring of metal. the outcome was once Jutland, a big conflict of fifty-eight dreadnoughts, each one the house of 1000 men.
When the German excessive Seas Fleet retreated, the kaiser unleashed unrestricted U-boat struggle, which, in its indiscriminate violence, introduced a reluctant the USA into the warfare. during this approach, the German attempt to “seize the trident” through defeating the British army ended in the autumn of the German empire.
Ultimately, the distinguishing function of Castles of metal is the writer himself. the data, realizing, and literary strength Massie brings to this tale are unprecedented. His portrayals of Winston Churchill, the British admirals Fisher, Jellicoe, and Beatty, and the Germans Scheer, Hipper, and Tirpitz are beautiful of their veracity and artistry.
Castles of Steel is set battle at sea, management and command, braveness, genius, and folly. some of these components are given really good scope through Robert okay. Massie’s detailed and largely hailed literary mastery.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Extra info for Castles of Steel: Britain, Germany, and the Winning of the Great War at Sea
Pale green licks of light pulsed and faded across it. Living lights. Their fires lobbed over, higher, higher, then died out in blackness. At times the whole sky was ringed in shooting points and puckers of light gathering and falling, pulsing, fading, rhythmical as breathing. All of a piece. As if the sky were a pat tern of nerves and our thought and memories traveled across it. As if the sky were one gigantic memory for us all. Or a dance hall. And all the world’s wandering souls were dancing there.
For she was the definite most-hard trial to anyone’s endurance, even when they started out with veils of wretched love upon their eyes. I was that girl who thought the black hem of her garment would help me rise. Veils of love which was only hate petrified by longing— that was me. I was like those bush Indians who stole the holy black hat of a Jesuit and swallowed little scraps of it to cure their fevers. But the hat itself carried smallpox and was kill ing them with belief. Veils of faith! I had this confidence in Leopolda.
King hardly noticed my weight. He pushed her lower. So I had no choice then. I jumped on his back and bit his ear. My teeth met and blood filled my mouth. He reeled backward, bucking me off, and I flew across the room, hit the refrigerator solidly, and got back on my feet. His hands were cocked in boxer’s fists. He was deciding who to hit first, I thought, me or Lipsha. I glanced around. I was alone. I stared back at King, scared for the first time. Then the fear left and I was mad, just mad, at Lipsha, at King, at Lynette, at June.