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Back Story: Book examines last peacetime year before outbreak of World War I
Back Story: Book examines last peacetime year before outbreak of World War I

In his recently published "1913: The Year Before The Storm," German journalist Florian Illies compiles a fascinating and exhaustively researched month-by-month compendium of the events, personalities, culture, politics, technology and fashions that shaped the year 1913, the last peacetime year before the outbreak of World War I. The period of 1900 to 1914 could be "called the Confident Years, the Buoyant Years, the Spirited Years … or perhaps named after some bright, hopeful color, like the Golden Years," Walter Lord wrote in his 1960 book "The Good Years." While Illies' book is primarily European-centered, he includes plenty of material that will...

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