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Cover for The Long Night

The Long Night

William L. Shirer and the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich

Steve Wick


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Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (8/2/2011)


Published to widespread media attention, "The Long Night" follows the tremendous journey of legendary American journalist William L. Shirer. During the 1930s, Shirer brought the events in Europe to the English speaking world through his broadcasts on Edward R. Murrow's CBS. Despite the Nazis best attempts to control the airwaves, he broadcast live reports of the Germans annexation of Austria and the occupation of Paris. Unlike other foreign correspondents, Shirer never believed the Nazis and was the first to warn the world of the danger that lay ahead. After the war, Shirer penned the classic The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, published in 1960. Although he left behind diaries of his war years, this is the first biography of the maverick reporter who continues to inspire fleets of journalists and historians.

Praise For The Long Night: William L. Shirer and the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich

“It’s this Shirer — the human being, a man of determination and steely nerve — that Mr. Wick gets onto the pages of his book.” --Dwight Garner, The New York Times 

"Illuminating . . . Wick has done an excellent job in bringing together the man's life and work in this detailed and probing biography." – The St. Petersburg Times

"The Long Night is indeed an adventure story, with short chapters and a fast-paced narrative drive. But Mr. Wick has documented the story with scrupulous attention to detail, too, drawing on Shirer's published works as well as his papers and correspondence." -- The Wall Street Journal

 "Steve Wick makes excellent use of Shirer’s letters and papers to chronicle his often fraught relationships . . . A seasoned journalist, Wick knows how to tell a good story, and for long stretches his book reads like a novel . . . [It] has much of interest to say about the life of a foreign correspondent in the war-torn Europe of the 1930s and early 1940s." -- Richard Evans, The New Republic

"A suspenseful recasting of the same period covered in Berlin Diary, using the published diary but more importantly the original handwritten pages Shirer smuggled out of Berlin . . . Wick has used his resources scrupulously and illuminates, more than does the 1941 book, the heavy personal toll that remaining in Berlin took on Shirer and his family." --Columbia Journalism Review

"A gripping account of a courageous journalist's efforts to alert the world to Hitler's plan, and an engaging discussion of the relationship between journalism and personal integrity, which is as relevant today as it was then."--Kirkus Reviews

"Wick offers an absorbing and very detailed account, the perfect companion piece to Shirer's masterwork." --Publishers Weekly 

"Thorough, fast-paced, and absorbing." --World War II Magazine

"An intimate portrayal of a pioneering broadcasting icon." -- Baltimore Jewish Times 

"A thought-provoking and accessible exposition about the man, the times in which he worked, and the book itself." --Jewish Book World

“Working as a foreign correspondent in Hitler's Germany was a harrowing experience, but William L. Shirer was among those who delivered exceptional journalism despite the circumstances.  In The Long Night, Steve Wick skillfully describes Shirer's courage and persistence during these years.”--Philip Seib, author of Broadcasts from the Blitz: How Edward R. Murrow Helped Lead America into War

"Steve Wick tells the human story behind William Shirer's brilliant and perceptive radio broadcasts from Nazi Berlin.  Making extensive use of Shirer's private papers, he succeeds in incorporating the high politics, the everyday and the personal in a single, elegantly-written and engaging narrative."--Roger Moorhouse, author of Killing Hitler

“In Steve Wick’s talented hands, The Long Night puts you in the shoes of William Shirer and lets you experience the frightful, yet fascinating buildup of the Nazi regime for yourself. This account of one gutsy journalist witnessing history in the making is top-notch, an engrossing page turner that will have you eager to see what happens next. The Long Night stands out as a keen telling of  one man’s eventful life, while also offering a unique perspective on an important moment in time. A compelling read.”--Greg Freeman, author of The Last Mission of the Wham Bam Boys

Palgrave MacMillan, 9780230341616, 264pp.

Publication Date: October 2, 2012

About the Author

Steve Wick is a senior editor at Newsday and the author of Bad Company: Drugs, Hollywood and the Cotton Club Murder, among others. He has been a journalist for 30 years and has won dozens of writing and reporting awards, including sharing in two Pulitzer Prizes for local reporting.