Hitler’s Last Day

On 30th April 1945 the world is in chaos...

Jonathan Mayo, Emma Craigie

Published by Short Books in Hardback (£14.99) on 19-03-2015

American and Russian forces have linked up in the middle of Germany, but the fighting continues. The roads of Germany are full of people – Jews who have survived concentration camps, Allied POWs trying to get home, and Nazis on the run. The civilian population under German control will run out of food in less than a fortnight. The man whose dream of a thousand-year Reich began this nightmare is in a bunker beneath the streets of Berlin saying his farewells. By 3pm he will be dead.

Hitler’s Last Day: Minute by Minute, is pure chronological narrative, as seen through the eyes of those who were there in the bunker, those waiting for news back home, or fighting in the streets of Germany, or pacing the corridors of power in Washington, London and Moscow. It was a day of endings and beginnings when ordinary people were placed often in extraordinary situations.

Take Sisi Wilczek, fleeing the advancing Russians with her family’s vast fortune in a shoebox; President Truman, weighing up the consequences of using the atomic bomb that his Secretary for War calls ‘the most terrible weapon ever known in human history’; German officer Rudolf Weiss, fleeing Berlin by stealing a canoe from a boat club; or Allied aircrews tying parachutes to their own food parcels so they can drop them to the starving Dutch population.

 

Jonathan Mayo joined the BBC in 1987, first working in radio and then television, where he won awards for his documentaries. He is the author of The Assassination of JFK: Minute by Minute and D-Day: Minute by Minute. He lives in Surrey with his wife and son.

Emma Craigie is a writer and teacher. She is the author of Chocolate Cake with Hitler and Who Was… King Henry VIII. She lives in Somerset with her husband and four children.

PR Collective’s current campaigns

See more campaigns →

Radical Revenge

We all know what it’s like to want revenge, but where does that urge come from?  Why is it so hard to give up?  And why can some people only satisfy it through extreme and brutal acts?  In her new book, Radical Revenge, Renée Danziger draws on psychoanalytic thinking to offer a fresh perspective on […]

Read more →

Light to Life

In this fascinating, revelatory new book, biologist Raffael Jovine takes us on a journey of discovery into the intricate, beautiful and often surprising processes that convert energy from the sun into life and how all-important these are to our survival. Despite the unprecedented challenges the Earth faces from global warming, habitat loss, air pollution and […]

Read more →

The Art of Repair

It all started with a pair of socks… White, woollen – my favourite pair. The heels had become thin and threadbare; then a small hole appeared on one of the toes. Too precious to throw away, I decided to mend them. I chose a ball of yarn from my mother’s wool collection and she found me her old darning mushroom, which had once belonged to my granny, and explained the basics. I remember the feeling of it: threading the needle with a strand of contrasting grey wool, while pulling the heel over the domed wooden mushroom; weaving my needle in and out of the surviving strands; making little bridges back and forth like a lawn mower; slowly closing the hole. The process was instinctive. I can still recall the feeling of pride and achievement when I had finally finished. Sure my darn looked a little rustic, but I had given my socks
a new lease of life, a second chance.

Read more →