Germania by Simon Winder
I was intrigued to find a book by an Englishman with a strong interest in Germany and its history, being such a person myself. Having just finished the book, I’m not sure what I thought of it overall.
In parts it was quite insightful and funny, with the author’s wry observations about Germany, its people and its idiosyncracies bringing me out in knowing laughter. Some of the more obscure historical facts were new to me as well. However, I found the structure very disjointed, frustratingly switching to a new topic just as it was getting interesting. Meanwhile, I found Winder’s small-town obsession a little too much, and he seemed far too keen to be negative about some of Germany’s great cities, particularly Munich, one of my favourite cities anywhere.
All in all, there was enough good stuff in there to make glad I read it, but it was hard work at times and there were almost as many things I disliked as liked about it.