Nothing Less Than War

  • by Justus D. Doenecke
  • Narrated by Tom Lennon
  • 16 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

When war broke out in Europe in 1914, political leaders in the United States were swayed by popular opinion to remain neutral; yet less than three years later, the nation declared war on Germany. In Nothing Less Than War: A New History of America's Entry into World War I, Justus D. Doenecke examines the clash of opinions over the war during this transformative period and offers a fresh perspective on America's decision to enter World War I.
Doenecke reappraises the public and private diplomacy of President Woodrow Wilson and his closest advisors and explores in great depth the response of Congress to the war. He also investigates the debates that raged in the popular media and among citizen groups that sprang up across the country as the US economy was threatened by European blockades and as Americans died on ships sunk by German U-boats.
The decision to engage in battle ultimately belonged to Wilson, but as Doenecke demonstrates, Wilson's choice was not made in isolation. Nothing Less Than War provides a comprehensive examination of America's internal political climate and its changing international role during the seminal period of 1914-1917.
The book is published by The University Press of Kentucky.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Interesting and unknown period in America

If you could sum up Nothing Less Than War in three words, what would they be?

Educational, Detailed, Fascinating


Who was your favorite character and why?

Most Americans know very little about this period in history and Woodrow Wilson. This really gives insight into his personality and thought process.


Any additional comments?

This is not an easy read, or listen. The language is archaic and at limes tedious as much of the text is excerpts from letters and newspaper reports from the early 1900s. The comprehension and enjoyment would have both been better had the author simply restated the facts in more familiar modern day prose. Almost every sentence contain a quotation from an obscure source of the period. Keep your dictionary handy.The narrator's voice is very pleasant for long hours of listening, but he obviously also struggled at times with the style of writing and context. I give him a B for effort.

It is as if the book was published in 1917, not this century. I certainly didn't count, but it seems the average sentence length is probably 50 words!As a text book with a valuable lesson to be learned about an important, fascinating, and unknown period in American History this is 5 stars. As a read, or listen on the beech this summer - better pass.

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- Matt

Important knowledge most American's lack

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. This is a period little known in American history today. Everyone knows the US did fight with the Triple Entente in WWI, but almost no one asks, why? Why we were we not on the Central Alliance side? Why fight at all? We were never attacked. No treaties bound us to enter. There were almost as many Monarchs on both sides, so defending democracy was not a very valid excuse.

This book explains why. Unfortunately, especially in hindsight, the reasoning that led to our ultimate entry late into the conflict is greatly flawed in many areas.


Which character – as performed by Tom Lennon – was your favorite?

There were no characters as this was a non-fiction book. He did a commendable job with a very long book frequently full of very dry material and kept my interest all the way.


Any additional comments?

This may be one of those cases where a "condensed" version might be able to convey all the important information and be a more enjoyable experience.

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- Amazon Customer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-08-2015
  • Publisher: University Press Audiobooks