Hester’s first book Surviving Hitler’s War (Palgrave, 2010) was shortlisted for the Women’s History Network Prize and won the Fraenkel Prize for Contemporary History. It examines how the family relationships of Germans were affected by separation and reunion during and after the Second World War. Using first-hand accounts from letters and diaries, it captures the experiences of ordinary Germans in wartime
Her second major book was Born in the GDR, Living in the Shadow of the Wall (Oxford University Press, 2014). It tells the stories of eight East Germans who went from living under communism one minute to capitalism the next after the Berlin Wall fell.
Hester also authored an edited a collection of government propaganda posters from the postwar era, which shows how the British government sought to influence everything from the jobs people did to what they ate and drank, how they saved their money and behaved on the road. This collection is called Keep Britain Tidy and other posters from the Nanny State (Thames and Hudson, 2014).
Most recently, Hester worked on In Their Own Words. Letters from History (Bloomsbury, 2016), a collection of letters, postcards and telegraphs brought together from 100 miles of records held at The National Archives.