Despite its unfortunate title, this is a fascinating and well-written book about how two nations embraced the prospect of war. By examining a turbulent year from the ground up, Taylor has inadvertently exposed crucial differences in national characteristics. The Germans, despite all their feverish enthusiasm for Hitler’s militaristic ambitions, were spiritually ill- prepared for war. The British, in contrast, had no martial enthusiasm, but fatalistically accepted war’s inevitability. Between Munich and the Polish crisis, they prepared themselves for their finest hour.