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In the summer of 1914, three great empires dominated Europe: Germany, Russia, and Austria-Hungary. Four years later all had vanished in the chaos of World War I. One event precipitated the conflict, and at its heart was a tragic love story.
When Austrian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand married for love against the wishes of the emperor, he and his wife, Sophie, were humiliated and shunned. Yet they remained devoted to each other and to their children. The two bullets fired in Sarajevo not only ended their love story but also led to war and a century of conflict.
Set against a backdrop of glittering privilege, The Assassination ofthe Archduke combines royal history, touching romance, and political murder in a moving portrait of the end of an era. One hundred years after the event, it offers the startling truth behind the Sarajevo assassinations, including Serbian complicity, and examines rumors of conspiracy and official negligence.
Events in Sarajevo also doomed the couple's children to lives of loss, exile, and the horrors of Nazi concentration camps, their plight echoing the horrors unleashed by their parents' deaths. Challenging a century of myth, The Assassination of the Archduke resonates as a very human story of love destroyed by murder, revolution, and war.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Meyer on 06-29-14
Sarajevo trip in riveting slow motion
This book is not perfect by any means, the first half is plodding and somewhat repetitive, but the second half more than makes up for it with its minute and absolutely riveting account of how the ill fated Sarajevo trip came to happen, as well as the actual trip and everything that happened on Sarajevo on June 28th. This is "Chronicle of a Death Foretold" , and you will read in shock as you see the events unfold and ask " Why did not someone stop the trip? Why did they decide to keep their schedule on June 28th when that same day they had already been attacked?". So this is basically two books: the first one is interesting but a missed opportunity; the story of Franz Ferdinand and his "forbidden" marriage too Sophie is very interesting and out of high class melodrama, however the lack of context on Austrian politics and society is a big hole. The emphasis on the romance is probably due to the fact that the authors had direct access to the descendants of the Archduke. However, the secon half is absolutely priceless, as you see in dramatic slow motion the event which would lead to catastrophe. Recommended to anyone interested in World War I and as far as I know the only book in English whose main subject is the Archduke.
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