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  • Published: 28 March 2024
  • ISBN: 9781405964548
  • Imprint: Penguin Audio
  • Format: Audio Download
  • RRP: $32.00

The Eastern Front

A History of the First World War

The definitive history of the Eastern Front in WWI, from the bestselling author of The Western Front

In the second volume of his landmark First World War trilogy, Professor Nick Lloyd tells the story for the first time of what Winston Churchill once called the 'unknown war': the vast conflict in Eastern Europe and the Balkans that brought about the collapse of three empires.

Much has been written about the fighting in France and Belgium, yet the Eastern Front was no less bloody. Between 1914 and 1917, huge numbers of people - perhaps as many as 16 million soldiers and two million civilians - were killed, wounded or maimed in enormous battles that sometimes ranged across a front of 100 km in length.

Through intimate eyewitness reports, diary entries and memoirs - many of which have never been translated into English before - Lloyd reconstructs the full story of a war that began in the Balkans as a local struggle between Austria-Hungary and Serbia, and which sucked in Russia, Germany and Italy, right through to the final collapse of the Habsburg Empire in 1918.

The Eastern Front paints a vivid and authoritative picture of a conflict that shook the world, and that remains central to understanding the tragic, blood-soaked trajectory of the entire twentieth century, including the current war in Ukraine.

  • Published: 28 March 2024
  • ISBN: 9781405964548
  • Imprint: Penguin Audio
  • Format: Audio Download
  • RRP: $32.00

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Praise for The Eastern Front

Artillery shells that only dent the frozen earth, mountainsides burning in the summer sun, the drone of aircraft over the wheat fields of Ukraine, whole armies in headlong retreat, flamethrowers and poison gas, and a cavalry general slipping away in the night to shoot himself in the head – this is the story of the First World War’s Eastern Front told on a Homeric scale. Nick Lloyd gives us not only a compelling account of warfare on the ‘long front’ from Riga to Thessalonica but also an intimate and disturbing portrait of the fighting taken from regimental histories, diaries, and the testimony of the dead

Martyn Rady, author of The Habsburgs

Nick Lloyd brilliantly pulls together the manifold strands and brings to life the dark realities of an often ignored but hugely important theatre which paved the way for the horrors of World War II

Adam Zamoyski, author of Napoleon

An exemplary study of a much-neglected subject. Nick Lloyd is at the very top of his game. . . . A fabulous historian.

Roger Moorhouse, author of The Forgers

Nick Lloyd searingly recreates the battlefields of the Eastern Front, Italy, and the Balkans in this taut, thrilling history in which he deploys all of his marvelous gifts to maximum effect: biography, political analysis, and operational military history. On a vast canvas extending from the Baltic coast to the Mediterranean, Lloyd depicts the strategic seesawing between the alliances and its dreadful impact on the troops of the line.

Geoffrey Wawro, author of A Mad Catastrophe: The Outbreak of the First World War and the Collapse of the Habsburg Empire

Nothing was ever quiet on the Eastern Front as is vividly demonstrated in Nick Lloyd’s magisterial history of World War I waged in the fields, mountains, and marshes of eastern Europe. The warfare that produced the fall of two empires and the socialist revolution that shook the world is presented here in all its horror and complexity by a master storyteller and an expert in the field.

Serhii Plokhy, author of The Russo-Ukrainian War

A huge achievement. Nick Lloyd’s readable and compelling narrative takes his reader into the vast geographical expanses of Eastern Europe, Italy, the Balkans and Macedonia, showing how consequential these lesser known fronts were to the struggle of 1914–18.

Alexander Watson, author of Ring of Steel: Germany and Austria-Hungary at War, 1914–1918

Lloyd brings all his formidable skills to bear in The Eastern Front, blending an authoritative synthesis of the written literature with cutting-edge research to craft a gripping narrative . . . A masterpiece of First World War history.

Sean McMeekin, author of Stalin's War

This masterly history makes well-known events feel refreshingly unfamiliar . . . One of the great strengths of Lloyd’s account, a masterly synthesis of sources from various countries, is that unlike many of the war’s participants, he never loses sight of how it all began

Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times

Nick Lloyd reminds us in The Eastern Front, his . . . highly-detailed and meticulously researched book, the consequences of the fighting in the central and south-eastern European theatres were profound for the future of the continent – indeed, of the world

Simon Heffer, Daily Telegraph

Compelling . . . The Eastern Front is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the history of that troubled region up to and including the present

Margaret MacMillan, Financial Times

Lloyd has produced a strategic and operational narrative that proceeds chronologically without ever losing coherence as it switches from one sector to another . . . rigorous in its determination to remain comparative

Hew Strachan, Times Literary Supplement