1917: War, Peace, and Revolution

Written by David Stevenson
Review by Justin M. Lindsay

After nearly three years of worldwide global conflict and warfare the likes of which the world had never seen, the battle lines had grown largely stagnant. 1917, however, would emerge as a year of supreme importance as new drives were made to push the enemy out of their trenches, European soil saw American forces arrive en masse, and the Russian revolution began. Stevenson gives an in-depth treatment to the impact that the German submarine warfare made on the American decision to enter the fray, how the disastrous spring offensive caused the French army to mutiny, and what exactly led to Tsar Nicholas’s abdication.

This book is a deep look at the pivotal events of 1917. It is thorough and would be enjoyable to many well-versed in World War I history. For a lay readership, it may run a bit dry. Though Stevenson gives great insights into the decisions that led to the convoy program, and tonnage of shipping saved, etc., there is little in the way of anecdote or the following of particular threads that gives the reader a “page turner” experience. Recommended for amateur historians of WWI.