Drawing on exhaustive research, this remarkable, intimate account tells the story of how World War I reduced Europe s mightiest empires to rubble, killed twenty million people, and cracked the foundations of the world we live in today. On a summer day in 1914, a nineteen-year-old Serbian nationalist gunned down Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo. While the world slumbered, monumental forces were shaken. In less than a month, a combination of ambition, deceit, fear, jealousy, missed opportunities, and miscalculation sent Austro-Hungarian troops marching into Serbia, German troops streaming toward Paris, and a vast Russian army into war, with England as its ally. As crowds cheered their armies on, one could guess what lay ahead: four long years of slaughter, physical and moral exhaustion, and the near collapse of a civilization that until 1914 had dominated the globe.Praise for A World Undone Thundering, magnificent . . . [A World Undone] is a book of true greatness that prompts moments of sheer joy and pleasure. . . . It will earn generations of admirers. The Washington Times Meyer s sketches of the British Cabinet, the Russian Empire, the aging Austro-Hungarian Empire . . . are lifelike and plausible. His account of the tragic folly of Gallipoli is masterful. . . . [A World Undone] has an instructive value that can scarcely be measured Los Angeles Times An original and very readable account of one of the most significant and often misunderstood events of the last century. Steve Gillon, resident historian, The History Channel
G. J. Meyer is the author of three popular works of history, The Borgias, The Tudors, and A World Undone: The Story of the Great War, as well as Executive Blues and The Memphis Murders. He received an M.A. from the University of Minnesota, where he was a Woodrow Wilson Fellow, and later was awarded Harvard University s Nieman Fellowship in Journalism. He has taught at colleges in Des Moines, St. Louis, and New York, and now lives in Wiltshire, England.Meyer s upcoming book, The World Remade: America in World War I, will be published by Bantam in Spring 2017. From the Hardcover edition.