There have been a lot of sources used while researching content for History of the Great War. This list will be ever growing as we progress through the events of the war.
This list mainly includes the major sources that I have used in multiple episodes over the course of the show and does not include the plethora of websites, news articles, and journal articles that have been used for specific facts in specific episodes.
I would like to do a more detailed review/report on each source but I'm still not certain what form that will take. Look for updates on that in the future.
General War Histories
A World Undone by G.J. Meyer
A solid general history of the war that is an easy read and gives a great overview of the events of the 4 years of the war.
The First World War by John Keegan
Considered one of the definitive histories of the war at this point. I actually have the large illustrated hardback edition which is excellent, but also very heavy.
The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914 by Margaret Macmillan
The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 by Christopher Clark
Both of these books are really detailed in their coverage of the events leading up to the war. The provide amazing levels of detail into what led to the war. That said, I don't know if I would consider them great books to just sit down and read. I find the tone for both books a bit dry and maybe in need of a strenuous editor which makes them not exactly entertaining and fun the read. As I said though they are really detailed which made them perfect for research.
The Guns of August: The Outbreak of World War I by Barbara W. Tuchman
By far my favorite book of the bunch The Guns of August is my default recommendation for anybody looking for a book about World War 1. Its greatest strength if Tuchman's ability to provide the information in a way that makes it an entertaining read. This was the book that pulled me into World War 1 history several years ago.
The Eastern Front 1914-1917 by Norman Stone
I love the detail in this book, especially for the Eastern Front where my background knowledge is far weaker. However, I think that Stone writes in a way that can be confusing if the reader doesn't have much background knowledge to help them follow along. He focuses on details that in the grand scheme of things aren't important for most readers which slows down the narrative.
Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War by Max Hastings
This is a very new book that I really like. It has been a great source for all of the events in 1914 and is usually the first source I go to for a topic. It doesn't spend much time on the build up to the war but its information on the actions after war was declared is really great. I particularly like the section on the home fronts during the first months of the war.