Review of Modern Times: The World from the Twenties to the Nineties

This book is something else. It is not for the faint of heart but is definitely worth the effort (in my case about 7 months). Obviously, Paul Johnson is conservative, but it is hard to be upset about a historian doing what all historians do-he judges stuff as good or bad. He is able to take situations and go beyond the pure facts and into the implications or results. This is what a good historian does in my eyes.
The book switches flawlessly between subjects. It is a masterpiece. I’ll be reading along and without even noticing the topic switches. Its fluid and well done. Without such transitions, a book covering such a length of time and geography would be impossible. Paul Johnson does the impossible.
There are a few issues. Number one is I don’t know French and some passages from French politicians are not translated into English. That is annoying. Also, I noticed in the topics about Germany, there are a lot of names that aren’t introduced so the reader is required to have a solid background. For most parts I was okay, for a few chapters (about Germany and much of the third world) I was lost at times.
Overall, well worth the time and effort. You feel good when its done. 4 of 5 stars.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s