Two volumes, and they’re chunking great doorsteps both of them. These incredibly detailed books explain the contradictions and context behind Adolf Hitler’s growth as a man and evolution as a politician. Kershaw exposes the virulent anti-Semitism of pre-war Vienna: he takes us from the crucible of toxic nationalism to sit us, centre-stage, at the side of an emerging leader who idolises the socialist fantasy and goes on to become an idol. Our link will take you to Hubris, which provides essential background for many other titles; Nemesis is a magisterial account of Hitler’s later motivations; the uniqueness of Nazi radicalism; his catalytic influence on all around, and the psyche of a man whose greatest flaw was, perhaps, an inability to accept defeat. Probably not bedtime reading.