Books by Alex Kershaw

Alex Kershaw is the author of the widely acclaimed book, The Bedford Boys, and two biographies: Jack London, and more recently, Blood and Champagne: The Life and Times of Robert Capa. He lives in Vermont.


Released: May 14, 2019

"World War II buffs will find this an engaging, unchallenging read."
An account of the soldiers who were the first to land at D-Day, paying a terrible price for their valor. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"A tenderly engaging saga of solid research and emotional connection."
The saga of a well-situated American doctor and his Swiss-born wife caught up in Resistance activity in occupied Paris. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 30, 2012

"This engrossing wartime narrative offers a fresh look at the European campaign and an intimate sense of the war's toll on individual participants."
Well-researched, sprawling account of unforgiving combat in World War II, told with pulpy immediacy. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 1, 2010

"The life of a courageous, righteous man well told."
Popular historian Kershaw (Escape from the Deep: A True Story of Courage and Survival During World War II, 2009, etc.) looks at the work of Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg and his still mysterious disappearance. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: May 26, 2008

"Reads like the best suspense fiction."
Kershaw (The Few, 2006, etc.) fashions a gripping, novelistic account of the U.S. submarine Tang's tragic final patrol. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 11, 2006

"A delight for military buffs."
Rousing story of idealistic Americans who fought against the Nazis with Britain's Royal Air Force long before the U.S. entered World War II. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 23, 2003

"A worthy introduction to an adventurous life."
Fast-paced biography of the daredevil war photographer who died in combat at age 40. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: June 1, 2003

"For war buffs who can't get enough of Saving Private Ryan."
By-the-numbers saga of a bruised and bullet-riddled combat unit in WWII. Read full book review >
JACK LONDON by Alex Kershaw
NONFICTION
Released: Jan. 30, 1998

Another tame biographer lamely follows the call of Jack London's wild life. Kershaw, like many London biographers, suffers from an anxiety of reference, which started with the subject himself. London's bestselling versions of his life established him as not merely the California-bred, Klondike-hardened creator of the classic boys' adventure stories White Fang and The Call of the Wild, but also a celebrity—adventurer, drinker, sailor, war correspondent, socialist, revolutionary, though never wholly any of these. A self-educated literary Ragged Dick, London found his authorial calling after enduring miserable poverty, factory jobs, and rough living as a wharf rat, oyster-bed raider, and seal hunter. Rising mainly by obsessive determination, he would churn out reams of short stories, muck-raking articles, socialist tracts, and general ephemera before his death in 1924 at age 40. Adding to this voluminous output, his second wife, Charmian, would devote two volumes to him, The Book of Jack London, and his elder daughter by his failed first marriage, Joan, tried to work out their difficult relationship in Jack London and His Daughters, as well as a full-scale biography. Without making any contribution of his own, Kershaw, a contributing editor to GQ, patches together his work from these sources, as well as the two main London biographies, Irving Stone's romantic Sailor on Horseback (1938) and Richard O'Connor's stolid Jack London: A Biography (1964). The result mixes novelistic scenes and reconstructed dialogue with half-digested research and Cliff Notes summaries of London's works. Nowhere is there any real analysis of his contradictory character—the passionate socialist would take yellow journalism assignments from Hearst, his socialism was overshadowed by his social Darwinism—nor any significant attempt, aside from local color, to place him in the context of his wild times. In trying to track down the real Jack London, Kershaw retraces everyone else's footsteps. (16 pages b&w photos, not seen; maps) Read full book review >