Best of
History

2005

The Great War for Civilisation: The Conquest of the Middle East


Robert Fisk - 2005
    A book of searing drama as well as lucid, incisive analysis, The Great War for Civilisation is a work of major importance for today's world.

Black Rednecks and White Liberals


Thomas Sowell - 2005
    As late as the 1940s and 1950s, he argues, poor Southern rednecks were regarded by Northern employers and law enforcement officials as lazy, lawless, and sexually immoral. This pattern was repeated by blacks with whom they shared a subculture in the South. Over the last half century poor whites and most blacks have moved up in class and affluence, but the ghetto remains filled with black rednecks. Their attempt to escape, Sowell shows, is hampered by their white liberal friends who turn dysfunctional black redneck culture into a sacrosanct symbol of racial identity. In addition to Black Rednecks and White Liberals, the book takes on subjects ranging from Are Jews Generic? to The Real History of Slavery.

Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945


Tony Judt - 2005
    Postwar is the first modern history that covers all of Europe, both east and west, drawing on research in six languages to sweep readers through thirty-four nations and sixty years of political and cultural change-all in one integrated, enthralling narrative. Both intellectually ambitious and compelling to read, thrilling in its scope and delightful in its small details, Postwar is a rare joy.Finalist for the Pulitzer PrizeWinner of the Council on Foreign Relations Arthur Ross Book AwardOne of the New York Times' Ten Best Books of the Year.Table of contentsAbout the authorCopyright pageDedicationPreface & acknowledgementIntroductionPART ONE - Post-War: 1945-19531. The legacy of war2. Retribution3. The rehabilitation of Europe4. The impossible settlement5. The coming of the Cold War6. Into the whirlwind7. Culture warsCODA The end of old EuropePART TWO - Prosperity and its discontents: 1953-19718. The politics of stability9. Lost illusions10. The age of affluencePOSTSCRIPT: A Tale of two economies11. The Social Democrat moment12. The spectre of revolution13. The end of the affairPART THREE - Recessional: 1971-198914. Diminished expectations15. Politics in a new key16. A time of transition17. The new realism18. The power of the powerless19. The end of the old orderPART FOUR - After the Fall: 1989-200520. A fissile continent21. The reckoning22. The old Europe -and the new23. The varieties of Europe24. Europe as a way of lifePhoto crditsSuggestions for further readings

Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome: America's Legacy of Enduring Injury and Healing


Joy DeGruy - 2005
    Slavery produced centuries of physical, psychological and spiritual injury. Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome: America's Legacy of Enduring Injury and Healing lays the groundwork for understanding how the past has influenced the present, and opens up the discussion of how we can use the strengths we have gained to heal.

Auschwitz


Laurence Rees - 2005
    Yet its story is not fully known. In Auschwitz, Laurence Rees reveals new insights from more than 100 original interviews with Auschwitz survivors and Nazi perpetrators who speak on the record for the first time. Their testimonies provide a portrait of the inner workings of the camp in unrivalled detail—from the techniques of mass murder, to the politics and gossip mill that turned between guards and prisoners, to the on-camp brothel in which the lines between those guards and prisoners became surprisingly blurred.Rees examines the strategic decisions that led the Nazi leadership to prescribe Auschwitz as its primary site for the extinction of Europe's Jews—their "Final Solution." He concludes that many of the horrors that were perpetrated in Auschwitz were driven not just by ideological inevitability but as a "practical" response to a war in the East that had begun to go wrong for Germany. A terrible immoral pragmatism characterizes many of the decisions that determined what happened at Auschwitz. Thus the story of the camp becomes a morality tale, too, in which evil is shown to proceed in a series of deft, almost noiseless incremental steps until it produces the overwhelming horror of the industrial scale slaughter that was inflicted in the gas chambers of Auschwitz

Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln


Doris Kearns Goodwin - 2005
    Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry.Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war. That Lincoln succeeded, Goodwin demonstrates, was the result of a character that had been forged by experiences that raised him above his more privileged and accomplished rivals. He won because he possessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires.It was this capacity that enabled Lincoln as president to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to the task of preserving the Union and winning the war.We view the long, horrifying struggle from the vantage of the White House as Lincoln copes with incompetent generals, hostile congressmen, and his raucous cabinet. He overcomes these obstacles by winning the respect of his former competitors, and in the case of Seward, finds a loyal and crucial friend to see him through.This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.

The 33 Strategies of War


Robert Greene - 2005
    In The 33 Strategies of War, Greene has crafted an important addition to this ruthless and unique series.Spanning world civilizations, synthesizing dozens of political, philosophical, and religious texts and thousands of years of violent conflict, The 33 Strategies of War is a comprehensive guide to the subtle social game of everyday life informed by the most ingenious and effective military principles in war. Structured in Greene’s trademark style, The 33 Strategies of War is the I-Ching of conflict, the contemporary companion to Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.Abundantly illustrated with examples from history, including the folly and genius of everyone from Napoleon to Margaret Thatcher, Shaka the Zulu to Lord Nelson, Hannibal to Ulysses S. Grant, as well as movie moguls, Samurai swordsmen, and diplomats, each of the thirty-three chapters outlines a strategy that will help you win life’s wars. Learn the offensive strategies that require you to maintain the initiative and negotiate from a position of strength, or the defensive strategies designed to help you respond to dangerous situations and avoid unwinnable wars. The great warriors of battlefields and drawing rooms alike demonstrate prudence, agility, balance, and calm, and a keen understanding that the rational, resourceful, and intuitive always defeat the panicked, the uncreative, and the stupid. An indispensable book, The 33 Strategies of War provides all the psychological ammunition you need to overcome patterns of failure and forever gain the upper hand.

102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers


Jim Dwyer - 2005
    Over the next 102 minutes, each would become part of a drama for the ages, one witnessed only by the people who lived it-until now. Of the millions of words written about this wrenching day, most were told from the outside looking in. New York Times reporters Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn have taken the opposite-and far more revealing-approach. Reported from the perspectives of those inside the towers, 102 Minutes captures the little-known stories of ordinary people who took extraordinary steps to save themselves and others. Beyond this stirring panorama stands investigative reporting of the first rank. An astounding number of people actually survived the plane impacts but were unable to escape, and the authors raise hard questions about building safety and tragic flaws in New York's emergency preparedness.Dwyer and Flynn rely on hundreds of interviews with rescuers, thousands of pages of oral histories, and countless phone, e-mail, and emergency radio transcripts. They cross a bridge of voices to go inside the infernos, seeing cataclysm and heroism, one person at a time, to tell the affecting, authoritative saga of the men and women-the nearly 12,000 who escaped and the 2,749 who perished-as they made 102 minutes count as never before.  102 Minutes is a 2005 National Book Award Finalist for Nonfiction.

सम्भाजी


Vishwas Patil - 2005
    He offered himself but did not bow down in front of the Mughal Emperor; he died a hero`s death at a very young age, when he was just 32 years old. For the past 325 years, Sambhaji was often painted in black. He had a poetic mind, he was a very intelligent person, he was concerned about his people, he was brave, he was a great thinker, but all his good qualities were over-looked; his personality was always looked upon with suspicion. Vishwas Patil, the most gifted author today, tells us more about Sambhaji Raje, as he has seen him through the references in history, as he has found him in the very valuable yet ignored documents, as he has heard him in the hilly regions of Sahyadri mountain ranges, among the creeks of the Arabian sea. Sambhaji, son of Shivaji Maharaj, a novel personality with his equally impressive, breath-taking, spectacular, stormy yet very true story.

Forgotten Voices of The Holocaust: A new history in the words of the men and women who survived


Lyn Smith - 2005
    As well as revealing the story of the Holocaust as directly experienced by victims, these testimonies also illustrate how, even enduring the most harsh conditions, degrading treatment and suffering massive family losses, hope, the will to survive, and the human spirit still shine through.

The Wolves at the Door: The True Story of America's Greatest Female Spy


Judith L. Pearson - 2005
    The secret story of Virginia Hall, America's greatest World War II spy heroine.

Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide


Andrea Lee Smith - 2005
    In Conquest, Smith places Native American women at the center of her analysis of sexual violence, challenging both conventional definitions of the term and conventional responses to the problem.Beginning with the impact of the abuses inflicted on Native American children at state-sanctioned boarding schools from the 1880s to the 1980s, Smith adroitly expands our conception of violence to include environmental racism, population control and the widespread appropriation of Indian cultural practices by whites and other non-natives. Smith deftly connects these and other examples of historical and contemporary colonialism to the high rates of violence against Native American women—the most likely women in the United States to die of poverty-related illnesses, be victims of rape and suffer partner abuse.Essential reading for scholars and activists, Conquest is the powerful synthesis of Andrea Smith’s intellectual and political work to date. By focusing on the impact of sexual violence on Native American women, Smith articulates an agenda that is compelling to feminists, Native Americans, other people of color and all who are committed to creating viable alternatives to state-based “solutions.”

Biggest Brother: The Life of Major Dick Winters, the Man Who Led the Band of Brothers


Larry Alexander - 2005
    They were Easy Company, 101st Army Airborne--the World War II fighting unit legendary for their bravery against nearly insurmountable odds and their loyalty to one another in the face of death. Every soldier in this band of brothers looked to one man for leadership, devotion to duty, and the embodiment of courage: Major Dick Winters.This is the riveting story of an ordinary man who became an extraordinary hero. After he enlisted in the army's arduous new Airborne division, Winters's natural combat leadership helped him rise through the ranks, but he was never far from his men. Decades later, Stephen E. Ambrose's Band of Brothers made him famous around the world.Full of never-before-published photographs, interviews, and Winters's candid insights, Biggest Brother is the fascinating, inspirational story of a man who became a soldier, a leader, and a living testament to the valor of the human spirit--and of America.

Conspiracy of Fools


Kurt Eichenwald - 2005
    . .

1453: The Holy War for Constantinople and the Clash of Islam and the West


Roger Crowley - 2005
    Roger Crowley's readable and comprehensive account of the battle between Mehmed II, sultan of the Ottoman Empire, and Constantine XI, the 57th emperor of Byzantium, illuminates the period in history that was a precursor to the current jihad between the West and the Middle East.

Bury the Chains


Adam Hochschild - 2005
    In early 1787, twelve men - a printer, a lawyer, a clergyman, and others united by their hatred of slavery - came together in a London printing shop and began the world's first grass-roots movement, battling for the rights of people on another continent. Masterfully stoking public opinion, the movement's leaders pioneered a variety of techniques that have been adopted by citizens' movements ever since, from consumer boycotts to wall posters and lapel buttons to celebrity endorsements. A deft chronicle of this groundbreaking antislavery crusade and its powerful enemies, Bury the Chains gives a little-celebrated human rights watershed its due at last.

Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Tsar and Tsarina


Lund Humphries - 2005
    A picture is also given of political conditions in Russia during the reign of the last Romanovs. The story is illustrated with the magnificent coronation costumes and regalia designed by Faberge, personal objects relating to the family lives of Nicholas and Alexandra, and icons and religious objects demonstrating the role of Church and State during this period.

The Boys of Winter: The Untold Story of a Coach, a Dream, and the 1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Team


Wayne Coffey - 2005
    They were the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team, a blue-collar bunch led by an unconventional coach, and they engineered what Sports Illustrated called the greatest sports moment of the twentieth century. Their “Miracle on Ice” has become a national fairy tale, but the real Cinderella story is even more remarkable. Wayne Coffey casts a fresh eye on this seminal sports event, giving readers an ice-level view of the amateurs who took on a Russian hockey juggernaut at the height of the Cold War. He details the unusual chemistry of the Americans—formulated by their fiercely determined coach, Herb Brooks—and seamlessly weaves portraits of the boys with the fluid action of the game itself. Coffey also traces the paths of the players and coaches since their stunning victory, examining how the Olympic events affected their lives.Told with warmth and an uncanny eye for detail, The Boys of Winter is an intimate, perceptive portrayal of one Friday night in Lake Placid and the enduring power of the extraordinary.Also available as an eBook

David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism


Gregory A. Prince - 2005
    McKay served as president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1951 until his death in 1970. Under his leadership, the church experienced unparalleled growth—nearly tripling in total membership—and becoming a significant presence throughout the world. The first book to draw upon the David O. McKay Papers at the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah, in addition to some two hundred interviews conducted by the authors, David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism focuses primarily on the years of McKay's presidency. During some of the most turbulent times in American and world history, McKay navigated the church through uncharted waters as it faced the challenges of worldwide growth in an age of communism, the civil rights movement, and ecumenism. Gregory Prince and Robert Wright have compiled a thorough history of the presidency of a much-loved prophet who left a lasting legacy within the LDS Church. Winner of the Evans Handcart Award.  Winner of the Mormon History Association Turner-Bergera Best Biography Award.

Roberts Ridge: A Story of Courage and Sacrifice on Takur Ghar Mountain, Afghanistan


Malcolm MacPherson - 2005
    In the early morning darkness on a frigid mountaintop, a U.S. soldier is stranded, alone, surrounded by fanatical al Qaeda fighters. For the man’s fellow Navy SEALs, and for waiting teams of Army Rangers, there was only one rule now: leave no one behind. In this gripping you-are-there account–based on stunning eyewitness testimony and painstaking research–journalist Malcolm MacPherson thrusts us into a drama of rescue, tragedy, and valor in a place that would be known as...ROBERTS RIDGEFor an elite team of SEALs, the mission seemed straightforward enough: take control of a towering 10,240-foot mountain peak called Takur Ghar. Launched as part of Operation Anaconda–a hammer-and-anvil plan to smash Taliban al Qaeda in eastern Afghanistan –the taking of Takur Ghar would offer U.S. forces a key strategic observation post. But the enemy was waiting, hidden in a series of camouflaged trenches and bunkers–and when the Special Forces chopper flared on the peak to land, it was shredded by a hail of machine-gun, small arms, and RPG rounds. A red-haired SEAL named Neil Roberts was thrown from the aircraft. And by the time the shattered helicopter crash-landed on the valley floor seven miles away, Roberts’s fellow SEALs were determined to return to the mountain peak and bring him out–no matter what the cost.Drawing on the words of the men who were there–SEALs, Rangers, medics, combat air controllers, and pilots–this harrowing true account, the first book of its kind to chronicle the battle for Takur Ghar, captures in dramatic detail a seventeen-hour pitched battle fought at the highest elevation Americans have ever waged war. At once an hour-by-hour, bullet-by-bullet chronicle of a landmark battle and a sobering look at the capabilities and limitations of America’s high-tech army, Roberts Ridge is the unforgettable story of a few dozen warriors who faced a single fate: to live or die for their comrades in the face of near-impossible odds.

The Fate of Africa: A History of Fifty Years of Independence


Martin Meredith - 2005
    As Europe's colonial powers withdrew, dozens of new states were launched amid much jubilation and to the world's applause. African leaders stepped forward with energy and enthusiasm to tackle the problems of development and nation-building, boldly proclaiming their hopes of establishing new societies that might offer inspiration to the world at large. The circumstances seemed auspicious. Independence came in the midst of an economic boom. On the world stage, African states excited the attention of the world's rival power blocs; in the Cold War era, the position that each newly independent state adopted in its relations with the West or the East was viewed as a matter of crucial importance. Africa was considered too valuable a prize to lose." "Today, Africa is spoken of only in pessimistic terms. The sum of its misfortunes - its wars, its despotisms, its corruption, its droughts - is truly daunting. No other area of the world arouses such a sense of foreboding. Few states have managed to escape the downward spiral: Botswana stands out as a unique example of an enduring multi-party democracy; South Africa, after narrowly avoiding revolution, has emerged in the post-apartheid era as a well-managed democratic state. But most African countries are effectively bankrupt, prone to civil strife, subject to dictatorial rule, weighted down by debt, and heavily dependent on Western assistance for survival." "So what went wrong? What happened to this vast continent, so rich in resources, culture and history, to bring it so close to destitution and despair in the space of two generations?" Focusing on the key personalities, events and themes of the independence era, Martin Meredith's narrative history seeks to explore and explain the myriad problems that Africa has faced in the past half-century, and faces still. The Fate of Africa is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand how it came to this — and what, if anything, is to be done.

The Unfolding of Language: An Evolutionary Tour of Mankind's Greatest Invention


Guy Deutscher - 2005
    If we started off with rudimentary utterances on the level of "man throw spear," how did we end up with sophisticated grammars, enormous vocabularies, and intricately nuanced degrees of meaning?Drawing on recent groundbreaking discoveries in modern linguistics, Deutscher exposes the elusive forces of creation at work in human communication, giving us fresh insight into how language emerges, evolves, and decays. He traces the evolution of linguistic complexity from an early "Me Tarzan" stage to such elaborate single-word constructions as the Turkish sehirlilestiremediklerimizdensiniz ("you are one of those whom we couldn't turn into a town dweller"). Arguing that destruction and creation in language are intimately entwined, Deutscher shows how these processes are continuously in operation, generating new words, new structures, and new meanings.

America's Constitution: A Biography


Akhil Reed Amar - 2005
    Incisive, entertaining, and occasionally controversial, this “biography” of America’s framing document explains not only what the Constitution says but also why the Constitution says it. We all know this much: the Constitution is neither immutable nor perfect. Amar shows us how the story of this one relatively compact document reflects the story of America more generally. (For example, much of the Constitution, including the glorious-sounding “We the People,” was lifted from existing American legal texts, including early state constitutions.) In short, the Constitution was as much a product of its environment as it was a product of its individual creators’ inspired genius.Despite the Constitution’s flaws, its role in guiding our republic has been nothing short of amazing. Skillfully placing the document in the context of late-eighteenth-century American politics, America’s Constitution explains, for instance, whether there is anything in the Constitution that is unamendable; the reason America adopted an electoral college; why a president must be at least thirty-five years old; and why–for now, at least–only those citizens who were born under the American flag can become president. From his unique perspective, Amar also gives us unconventional wisdom about the Constitution and its significance throughout the nation’s history. For one thing, we see that the Constitution has been far more democratic than is conventionally understood. Even though the document was drafted by white landholders, a remarkably large number of citizens (by the standards of 1787) were allowed to vote up or down on it, and the document’s later amendments eventually extended the vote to virtually all Americans. We also learn that the Founders’ Constitution was far more slavocratic than many would acknowledge: the “three fifths” clause gave the South extra political clout for every slave it owned or acquired. As a result, slaveholding Virginians held the presidency all but four of the Republic’s first thirty-six years, and proslavery forces eventually came to dominate much of the federal government prior to Lincoln’s election.Ambitious, even-handed, eminently accessible, and often surprising, America’s Constitution is an indispensable work, bound to become a standard reference for any student of history and all citizens of the United States.

Shockwave: Countdown to Hiroshima


Stephen Walker - 2005
    Walker has extensively interviewed American soldiers, Los Alamos scientists, and Japanese survivors that were involved in the bombing, and thus is able to tell the story through truly alive-on-the-page characters. The result is a narrative that—without either trivializing the tragedy of the bombing or ignoring its importance in WWII’s end—tells the real story of why and how one of the most important events of the 20th century took place. Shockwave might not change anyone’s opinion about the justification of the Hiroshima bombing, but it will provide readers with an unprecedented viewpoint that is sure to educate and enthrall its audience.

We Few: U.S. Special Forces in Vietnam


Nick Brokhausen - 2005
      In 1970, on his second tour to Vietnam, Nick Brokhausen served in Recon Team Habu, CCN. Officially, it was known as the Studies and Observations group. In fact, this Special Forces squad, which Brokhausen calls “an unwashed, profane, ribald, joyously alive fraternity,” undertook some of the most dangerous and suicidal reconnaissance missions ever in the enemy-controlled territory of Cambodia and Laos. But they didn’t infiltrate the jungles alone. They fought alongside the Montagnards—oppressed minorities from the mountain highlands, trained by the US military in guerilla tactics, armed, accustomed to the wild, and fully engaged in a war against the North Vietnamese. Together this small unit formed the backbone of ground reconnaissance in the Republic of Vietnam, racking up medals for valor—but at a terrible cost.   “In colorful, military-jargon-laced prose leavened by gallows humor, Brokhausen pulls few punches describing what it was like to navigate remote jungle terrain under the constant threat of enemy fire. A smartly written, insider’s view of one rarely seen Vietnam War battleground.” —Booklist

Nineteenth-Century Fashion in Detail


Lucy Johnston - 2005
    The photographs are richly supplemented by detailed commentary and illustrations.

John Brown, Abolitionist: The Man Who Killed Slavery, Sparked the Civil War, and Seeded Civil Rights


David S. Reynolds - 2005
    Reynolds presents an informative and richly considered new exploration of the paradox of a man steeped in the Bible but more than willing to kill for his abolitionist cause. Reynolds locates Brown within the currents of nineteenth-century life and compares him to modern terrorists, civil-rights activists, and freedom fighters. Ultimately, he finds neither a wild-eyed fanatic nor a Christ-like martyr, but a passionate opponent of racism so dedicated to eradicating slavery that he realized only blood could scour it from the country he loved. By stiffening the backbone of Northerners and showing Southerners there were those who would fight for their cause, he hastened the coming of the Civil War. This is a vivid and startling story of a man and an age on the verge of calamity.

Persian Fire: The First World Empire and the Battle for the West


Tom Holland - 2005
    Its success should have been a formality. For seventy years, victory—rapid, spectacular victory—had seemed the birthright of the Persian Empire. In the space of a single generation, they had swept across the Near East, shattering ancient kingdoms, storming famous cities, putting together an empire which stretched from India to the shores of the Aegean. As a result of those conquests, Xerxes ruled as the most powerful man on the planet. Yet somehow, astonishingly, against the largest expeditionary force ever assembled, the Greeks of the mainland managed to hold out. The Persians were turned back. Greece remained free. Had the Greeks been defeated in the epochal naval battle at Salamis, not only would the West have lost its first struggle for independence and survival, but it is unlikely that there would ever have been such an entity as the West at all.Tom Holland’s brilliant new book describes the very first “clash of Empires” between East and West. As he did in the critically praised Rubicon, he has found extraordinary parallels between the ancient world and our own. There is no other popular history that takes in the entire sweep of the Persian Wars, and no other classical historian, academic or popular, who combines scholarly rigor with novelistic depth with a worldly irony in quite the fashion that Tom Holland does.

The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey


Candice Millard - 2005
    Indians armed with poison-tipped arrows haunt its shadows; piranhas glide through its waters; boulder-strewn rapids turn the river into a roiling cauldron.After his humiliating election defeat in 1912, Roosevelt set his sights on the most punishing physical challenge he could find, the first descent of an unmapped, rapids-choked tributary of the Amazon. Together with his son Kermit and Brazil’s most famous explorer, Cândido Mariano da Silva Rondon, Roosevelt accomplished a feat so great that many at the time refused to believe it. In the process, he changed the map of the western hemisphere forever.Along the way, Roosevelt and his men faced an unbelievable series of hardships, losing their canoes and supplies to punishing whitewater rapids, and enduring starvation, Indian attack, disease, drowning, and a murder within their own ranks. Three men died, and Roosevelt was brought to the brink of suicide. The River of Doubt brings alive these extraordinary events in a powerful nonfiction narrative thriller that happens to feature one of the most famous Americans who ever lived.From the soaring beauty of the Amazon rain forest to the darkest night of Theodore Roosevelt’s life, here is Candice Millard’s dazzling debut.

A Writer at War: Vasily Grossman with the Red Army


Vasily Grossman - 2005
    A Writer at War – based on the notebooks in which Grossman gathered raw material for his articles – depicts the crushing conditions on the Eastern Front, and the lives and deaths of soldiers and civilians alike. It also includes some of the earliest reportage on the Holocaust. In the three years he spent on assignment, Grossman witnessed some of the most savage fighting of the war: the appalling defeats of the Red Army, the brutal street fighting in Stalingrad, the Battle of Kursk (the largest tank engagement in history), the defense of Moscow, the battles in Ukraine, and much more.Historian Antony Beevor has taken Grossman’s raw notebooks, and fashioned them into a narrative providing one of the most even-handed descriptions – at once unflinching and sensitive – we have ever had of what he called “the ruthless truth of war.”From the Hardcover edition.

No god but God: The Origins, Evolution and Future of Islam


Reza Aslan - 2005
    This updated edition addresses the events of the past decade, analyzing how they have influenced Islam’s position in modern culture. Aslan explores what the popular demonstrations pushing for democracy in the Middle East mean for the future of Islam in the region, how the Internet and social media have affected Islam’s evolution, and how the war on terror has altered the geopolitical balance of power in the Middle East. He also provides an update on the contemporary Muslim women’s movement, a discussion of the controversy over veiling in Europe, an in-depth history of Jihadism, and a look at how Muslims living in North America and Europe are changing the face of Islam. Timely and persuasive, No god but God is an elegantly written account that explains this magnificent yet misunderstood faith.

Darkest Before Dawn


Katie Flynn - 2005
    Harry gets a job as warehouse manager and his wife, Martha, works in a grocer's shop, whilst Seraphina trains as a teacher, Angela works in Bunney's Department Store and young Evie starts at regular school.Then circumstances change and Seraphina takes a job as a nippy in Lyon's Corner House. Customers vie for her favours, including an old friend, Toby.When war is declared the older girls join up, leaving Evie and Martha to cope with rationing, shortages, and the terrible raids on Liverpool which devastate the city. Meanwhile, Toby is a Japanese POW, working on the infamous Burma railway and dreaming of Seraphina...Darkest Before Dawn is a warm passionate story that makes it easy to see why Katie Flynn is one of Britain's most popular saga writers.

Brotherhood of Heroes: The Marines at Peleliu, 1944--The Bloodiest Battle of the Pacific War


Bill Sloan - 2005
    Peleliu was the setting for one of the most savage struggles of modern times, a true killing ground that has been all but forgotten—until now. Drawing on interviews with Peleliu veterans, Bill Sloan's gripping narrative seamlessly weaves together the experiences of the men who were there, producing a vivid and unflinching tableau of the twenty-four-hour-a-day nightmare of Peleliu.Emotionally moving and gripping in its depictions of combat, Brotherhood of Heroes rescues the Corps's bloodiest battle from obscurity and does honor to the Marines who fought it.

The Liberation Trilogy Boxed Set


Rick Atkinson - 2005
    Pulitzer Prize-winning and New York Times bestselling author Rick Atkinson brings great drama and exquisite detail to the retelling of these battles and gives life to a cast of characters, from the Allied leaders to rifleman in combat. His accomplishment is monumental: the Liberation Trilogy is the most vividly told, brilliantly researched World War II narrative to date.

Men in Black: How Judges are Destroying America


Mark R. Levin - 2005
    Levin in his explosive book, Men in Black. “But today, our out-of-control Supreme Court imperiously strikes down laws and imposes new ones to suit its own liberal whims––robbing us of our basic freedoms and the values on which our country was founded.” In Men in Black: How the Supreme Court Is Destroying America , Levin exposes countless examples of outrageous Supreme Court abuses, from promoting racism in college admissions, expelling God and religion from the public square, forcing states to confer benefits on illegal aliens, and endorsing economic socialism to upholding partial-birth abortion, restraining political speech, and anointing terrorists with rights.  Levin writes: “Barely one hundred justices have served on the United States Supreme Court. They’re unelected, they’re virtually unaccountable, they’re largely unknown to most Americans, and they serve for life…in many ways the justices are more powerful than members of Congress and the president.… As few as five justices can and do dictate economic, cultural, criminal, and security policy for the entire nation.” In Men in Black, you will learn: How the Supreme Court protects virtual child pornography and flag burning as forms of free speech but denies teenagers the right to hear an invocation mentioning God at a high school graduation ceremony because it might be “coercive.” How a former Klansman and virulently anti-Catholic Supreme Court justice inserted the words “wall of separation” between church and state in a 1947 Supreme Court decision––a phrase repeated today by those who claim to stand for civil liberty. How Justice Harry Blackmun, a one-time conservative appointee and the author of Roe v. Wade, was influenced by fan mail much like an entertainer or politician, which helped him to evolve into an ardent activist for gay rights and against the death penalty. How the Supreme Court has dictated that illegal aliens have a constitutional right to attend public schools, and that other immigrants qualify for welfare benefits, tuition assistance, and even civil service jobs.

Pirates of the Caribbean: From the Magic Kingdom to the Movies


Jason Surrell - 2005
    A behind-the-scenes look at the forty-year history of the popular Disney theme park ride and film adaptation, Pirates of the Caribbean, includes illustrations and photographs, recollections of cast and crew, and early story concepts.

Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires


Selwyn Raab - 2005
    For decades these Five Families ruled New York and built the American Mafia (or Cosa Nostra) into an underworld empire. Today, the Mafia is an endangered species, battered and beleaguered by aggressive investigators, incompetent leadership, betrayals and generational changes that produced violent and unreliable leaders and recruits. A twenty year assault against the five families in particular blossomed into the most successful law enforcement campaign of the last century. Five Families is the vivid story of the rise and fall of New York's premier dons from Lucky Luciano to Paul Castellano to John Gotti and more. The book also brings the reader right up to the possible resurgence of the Mafia as the FBI and local law enforcement agencies turn their attention to homeland security and away from organized crime.

Tending the Wild: Native American Knowledge and the Management of California's Natural Resources


M. Kat Anderson - 2005
    But as this groundbreaking book demonstrates, what Muir was really seeing when he admired the grand vistas of Yosemite and the gold and purple flowers carpeting the Central Valley were the fertile gardens of the Sierra Miwok and Valley Yokuts Indians, modified and made productive by centuries of harvesting, tilling, sowing, pruning, and burning. Marvelously detailed and beautifully written, Tending the Wild is an unparalleled examination of Native American knowledge and uses of California's natural resources that reshapes our understanding of native cultures and shows how we might begin to use their knowledge in our own conservation efforts.M. Kat Anderson presents a wealth of information on native land management practices gleaned in part from interviews and correspondence with Native Americans who recall what their grandparents told them about how and when areas were burned, which plants were eaten and which were used for basketry, and how plants were tended. The complex picture that emerges from this and other historical source material dispels the hunter-gatherer stereotype long perpetuated in anthropological and historical literature. We come to see California's indigenous people as active agents of environmental change and stewardship. Tending the Wild persuasively argues that this traditional ecological knowledge is essential if we are to successfully meet the challenge of living sustainably.

Riding With Reagan: From the White House to the Ranch


John R. Barletta - 2005
    But what most of us did not see was the man who always rode just a few steps away.John Barletta was a Vietnam veteran and Secret Service agent who spent over a decade with the Reagans, poised to give his own life at any moment to save the 40th president of the United States. His superior riding skills made Barletta the perfect choice to protect Reagan during his frequent visits to the ranch. Over time, he got to know Reagan as few others did. But what did these two men talk about during their long solitary hours on horseback--and how did they become the unlikeliest of friends and confidants?In Riding With Reagan, John Barletta shares his one-of-a-kind memories of the President, painting a picture of a relaxed Reagan at his very best. Through his eyes, we see a rugged man who thrived outdoors, deeply loved his wife and children, and was a prankster at heart. Barletta recalls watching Reagan take pleasure in clearing the brush from the grounds, spending quiet time with Nancy, and entertaining world figures like Mikhail Gorbachev and Queen Elizabeth, both of whom were surprised by the spare simplicity of the Reagan ranch.Barletta also recalls the sad times: watching a once-robust Reagan fade into the dark shadows of Alzheimer's disease, and the painful moment when he had to tell the former president that his days of horseback riding had come to an end.Poignant and candid, Riding With Reagan is an intimate portrait of the man who remains one of the most popular presidents in our nation's history. A stirring ode to friendship, brotherhood, and the great outdoors, it celebrates a true hero whose life and spirit are the embodiment of what it means to be an American.

War For the Hell of It: A Fighter Pilot's View of Vietnam


Ed Cobleigh - 2005
    With well-crafted prose that puts you into the Phantom's cockpit, Cobleigh vividly recounts the unexplainable loss of his wingman, the useless missions he flew, the need to trust his reflexes, eyesight, and aggressiveness, and his survival instincts in the heat of combat. He discusses the deaths of his squadron mates and the contradictions of a dirty, semi-secret war fought from beautiful, exotic Thailand. This is an unprecedented look into the state of mind of a pilot as he experiences everything from the carnage of a crash to the joy of flying through a star-studded night sky, from the illogical political agendas of Washington to his own dangerous addiction to risk. Cobleigh gives a stirring and emotional description of one man's journey into airborne hell and back, recounting the pleasures and the pain. the wins and the losses. and ultimately, the return.

White Flight: Atlanta and the Making of Modern Conservatism


Kevin M. Kruse - 2005
    Over the course of the 1960s and 1970s, however, so many whites fled the city for the suburbs that Atlanta earned a new nickname: "The City Too Busy Moving to Hate."In this reappraisal of racial politics in modern America, Kevin Kruse explains the causes and consequences of "white flight" in Atlanta and elsewhere. Seeking to understand segregationists on their own terms, White Flight moves past simple stereotypes to explore the meaning of white resistance. In the end, Kruse finds that segregationist resistance, which failed to stop the civil rights movement, nevertheless managed to preserve the world of segregation and even perfect it in subtler and stronger forms.Challenging the conventional wisdom that white flight meant nothing more than a literal movement of whites to the suburbs, this book argues that it represented a more important transformation in the political ideology of those involved. In a provocative revision of postwar American history, Kruse demonstrates that traditional elements of modern conservatism, such as hostility to the federal government and faith in free enterprise, underwent important transformations during the postwar struggle over segregation. Likewise, white resistance gave birth to several new conservative causes, like the tax revolt, tuition vouchers, and privatization of public services. Tracing the journey of southern conservatives from white supremacy to white suburbia, Kruse locates the origins of modern American politics.

King George: What Was His Problem?: Everything Your Schoolbooks Didn't Tell You About the American Revolution


Steve Sheinkin - 2005
    This isn't one of them." What it is, instead, is utterly interesting, antedotes (John Hancock fixates on salmon), from the inside out (at the Battle of Eutaw Springs, hundreds of soldiers plunged into battle "naked as they were born") close-up narrative filled with little-known details, lots of quotes that capture the spirit and voices of the principals ("If need be, I will raise one thousand men, subsist them at my own expense, and march myself at their head for the relief of Boston" -- George Washington), and action, It's the story of the birth of our nation, complete with soldiers, spies, salmon sandwiches, and real facts you can't help but want to tell to everyone you know.King George: What Was His Problem? is a 2009 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.

When Affirmative Action Was White: An Untold History of Racial Inequality in Twentieth-Century America


Ira Katznelson - 2005
    Through mechanisms designed by Southern Democrats that specifically excluded maids and farm workers, the gap between blacks and whites actually widened despite postwar prosperity. In the words of noted historian Eric Foner, "Katznelson's incisive book should change the terms of debate about affirmative action, and about the last seventy years of American history."

1 Dead in Attic: Post-Katrina Stories


Chris Rose - 2005
    It is a roller coaster ride of observations, commentary, emotions, tragedy and even humor - in a way that only Rose could find in a devastated wasteland. They are stories of the dead and the living, stories of survivors and believers, stories of hope and despair. And stories about refrigerators. With photographs by British photojournalist Charlie Varley, 1 Dead in Attic freeze frames New Orleans caught between an old era and a new, New Orleans in its most desperate time, as it struggled out of floodwaters and willed itself back to life in the autumn and early winter of 2005.

The Imjin War: Japan's Sixteenth-Century Invasion of Korea and Attempt to Conquer China


Samuel Hawley - 2005
    His objective: to conquer Korea, then China, and then the whole of Asia. The resulting seven years of fighting, known in Korea as imjin waeran, the “Imjin invasion,” after the year of the water dragon in which it began, dwarfed contemporary conflicts in Europe and was one of the most devastating wars to grip East Asia in the past thousand years.The Imjin War is the most comprehensive account ever published in English of this cataclysmic event, so little known in the West. It begins with the political and cultural background of Korea, Japan and China, explores the diplomatic impasse that led to the war, describes every major incident and battle from 1592 to 1598 and introduces a fascinating cast of characters along the way. There is Hideyoshi, hosting garden parties as his armies march toward Beijing; Korean admiral Yi Sun-sin, emerging from a prison cell to take on the Japanese navy with just thirteen ships; Chinese commander Zhao Chengxun, suffering defeat after promising to “scatter the Japanese to the four winds”; the courtesan Chu Non-gae, luring a samurai into her arms and then jumping into the Nam River with him locked in her embrace.One nation fighting to expand, another to survive. Shockwaves extending across China and beyond. The Imjin War is an epic tale of grand perspective and intimate detail of an upheaval that would shape East Asia for centuries to come.

The Last Days of Henry VIII


Robert Hutchinson - 2005
    But much less attention has been paid to his monarchy, especially the closing years of his reign.Rich with information including details from new archival material and written with the nail-biting suspense of a modern thriller, The Last Days of Henry VIII offers a superb fresh look at this fascinating figure and new insight into an intriguing chapter in history.Robert Hutchinson paints a brilliant portrait of this egotistical tyrant who governed with a ruthlessness that rivals that of modern dictators; a monarch who had "no respect or fear of anyone in this world," according to the Spanish ambassador to his court. Henry VIII pioneered the modern "show trial": cynical propaganda exercises in which the victims were condemned before the proceedings even opened, proving the most powerful men in the land could be brought down overnight.After thirty-five years in power, Henry was a bloated, hideously obese, black-humored old recluse. And despite his having had six wives, the Tudor dynasty rested on the slight shoulders of his only male heir, the nine-year-old Prince Edward -- a situation that spurred rival factions into a deadly conflict to control the throne.The Last Days of Henry VIII is a gripping and compelling history as fascinating and remarkable as its subject.

The Golden Spruce: A True Story of Myth, Madness, and Greed


John Vaillant - 2005
    Five months earlier, logger-turned-activist Grant Hadwin had plunged naked into a river in British Columbia's Queen Charlotte Islands, towing a chainsaw. When his night's work was done, a unique Sitka spruce, 165 feet tall and covered with luminous golden needles, teetered on its stump. Two days later it fell.As vividly as John Krakauer puts readers on Everest, John Vaillant takes us into the heart of North America's last great forest.

Under the Wire: The bestselling memoir of an American Spitfire pilot and legendary POW escaper


William Ash - 2005
    From the lean days of Depression-era Texas to the thrill of being one of the few who flew Spitfires, from a death-defying crash landing in Occupied France to capture and torture by the Gestapo, imprisonment in the Great Escape camp, Stalag Luft III, and years spent becoming a serial escape artist, this is the wartime memoir of a true hero, a real-life Cooler King. Recounted in a wonderfully honest and self-deprecating voice, William Ashs Under the Wire is a classic in the makinga riveting story of bravery by one of the last of his generation. QUOTES Ashs book is full of such wit, and held together with the sort of wry adventure story that begs to be immortalized on film as a cross between Tom Jones and The Great Escape. Metro News Toronto (4 of 5 stars) [A] remarkable story. Toronto Star

A War Like No Other: How the Athenians & Spartans Fought the Peloponnesian War


Victor Davis Hanson - 2005
    Now he juxtaposes an ancient conflict with modern concerns to create his most engrossing work to date, A War Like No Other. Over the course of a generation, the Hellenic poleis of Athens & Sparta fought a bloody conflict that resulted in the collapse of Athens & the end of its golden age. Thucydides wrote the standard history of the Peloponnesian War, which has given readers throughout the ages a vivid & authoritative narrative. But Hanson offers something new: a complete chronological account that reflects the political background of the time, the strategic thinking of the combatants, the misery of battle in multifaceted theaters & insight into how these events echo in the present. He compellingly portrays the ways Athens & Sparta fought on land & sea, in city & countryside, & details their employment of the full scope of conventional & nonconventional tactics, from sieges to targeted assassinations, torture & terrorism. He also assesses the crucial roles played by warriors such as Pericles & Lysander, artists, among them Aristophanes, & thinkers including Sophocles & Plato. Hanson’s perceptive analysis of events & personalities raises many thought-provoking questions: Were Athens & Sparta like America & Russia, two superpowers battling to the death? Is the Peloponnesian War echoed in the endless, frustrating conflicts of Vietnam, Northern Ireland & the current Middle East? Or was it more like America’s own Civil War, a brutal rift that rent the fabric of a glorious society, or even this century’s “red state—blue state” schism between liberals & conservatives, a cultural war that manifestly controls military policies? Hanson daringly brings the facts to life & unearths the often surprising ways in which the past informs the present. Brilliantly researched, dynamically written, A War Like No Other is like no other history of this important war.

Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler's Shadow


Susan Campbell Bartoletti - 2005
    Sibert Award-winner Susan Campbell Bartoletti explores the riveting and often chilling story of Germany's powerful Hitler Youth groups.In her first full-length nonfiction title since winning the Robert F. Sibert Award, Susan Campbell Bartoletti explores the riveting and often chilling story of Germany's powerful Hitler Youth groups."I begin with the young. We older ones are used up . . . But my magnificent youngsters! Look at these men and boys! What material! With them, I can create a new world." --Adolf Hitler, Nuremberg 1933 By the time Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, 3.5 million children belonged to the Hitler Youth. It would become the largest youth group in history. Susan Campbell Bartoletti explores how Hitler gained the loyalty, trust, and passion of so many of Germany's young people. Her research includes telling interviews with surviving Hitler Youth members.

Black Liberation and Socialism


Ahmed Shawki - 2005
    and much more—with essential lessons for today’s struggles.In the 40 years since the civil rights movement, many gains have been made—but there is still far to go to win genuine change. Here is a badly needed primer on the history and future of the struggle against racism.Ahmed Shawki is the editor of the International Socialist Review. A member of the National Writers Union, he is also a contributor to The Struggle for Palestine (Haymarket). He lives in Chicago, Illinois.

Bess of Hardwick: First Lady of Chatsworth, 1527-1608


Mary S. Lovell - 2005
    Bess Hardwick, the fifth daughter of an impoverished Derbyshire nobleman, did not have an auspicious start in life. Widowed at sixteen, she nonetheless outlived four monarchs, married three more times, built the great house at Chatsworth, and died one of the wealthiest and most powerful women in English history.In 1527 England was in the throes of violent political upheaval as Henry VIII severed all links with Rome. His daughter, Queen Mary, was even more capricious and bloody, only to be followed by the indomitable and ruthless Gloriana, Elizabeth I. It could not have been more hazardous a period for an ambitious woman; by the time Bess's first child was six, three of her illustrious godparents had been beheaded.Using journals, letters, inventories, and account books, Mary S. Lovell tells the passionate, colorful story of an astonishingly accomplished woman, among whose descendants are counted the dukes of Devonshire, Rutland, and Portland, and, on the American side, Katharine Hepburn.

Out of the Depths: An Unforgettable WWII Story of Survival, Courage, and the Sinking of the USS Indianapolis


Edgar Harrell - 2005
    The ship is sailing unescorted, assured by headquarters the waters are safe. It is midnight, and Marine Edgar Harrell and several others have sacked out on deck rather than spend the night in their hot and muggy quarters below. Fresh off a top-secret mission to deliver uranium for the atomic bombs that would ultimately end World War II, they are unaware their ship is being watched. Minutes later, six torpedoes are slicing toward the "Indy" . . .For five horrifying days and nights after their ship went down, Harrell and his shipmates had to fend for themselves in the open seas. Plagued by dehydration, exposure, saltwater poisoning, and shark attacks, their numbers were cruelly depleted before they were miraculously rescued. This is one man's story of courage, ingenuity, and faith in God's providence in the midst of the worst naval disaster in U.S. history.

How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization


Thomas E. Woods Jr. - 2005
    But what is the ultimate source of these gifts? Bestselling author and professor Thomas E. Woods, Jr. provides the long neglected answer: the Catholic Church. Woods’s story goes far beyond the familiar tale of monks copying manuscripts and preserving the wisdom of classical antiquity. In How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization, you’ll learn: · Why modern science was born in the Catholic Church · How Catholic priests developed the idea of free-market economics five hundred years before Adam Smith · How the Catholic Church invented the university · Why what you know about the Galileo affair is wrong · How Western law grew out of Church canon law · How the Church humanized the West by insisting on the sacredness of all human life No institution has done more to shape Western civilization than the two-thousand-year-old Catholic Church—and in ways that many of us have forgotten or never known. How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization is essential reading for recovering this lost truth.

Agincourt: Henry V and the Battle that Made England


Juliet Barker - 2005
    Although almost six centuries old, the Battle of Agincourt still captivates the imaginations of men and women on both sides of the Atlantic. It has been immortalized in high culture (Shakespeare's Henry V) and low (the New York Post prints Henry's battle cry on its editorial page each Memorial Day). It is the classic underdog story in the history of warfare, and generations have wondered how the English -- outnumbered by the French six to one -- could have succeeded so bravely and brilliantly. Drawing upon a wide range of sources, eminent scholar Juliet Barker casts aside the legend and shows us that the truth behind Agincourt is just as exciting, just as fascinating, and far more significant. She paints a gripping narrative of the October 1415 clash between outnumbered English archers and heavily armored French knights. But she also takes us beyond the battlefield into palaces and common cottages to bring into vivid focus an entire medieval world in flux. Populated with chivalrous heroes, dastardly spies, and a ferocious and bold king, Agincourt is as earthshaking as its subject -- and confirms Juliet Barker's status as both a historian and a storyteller of the first rank.

Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History


Norman G. Finkelstein - 2005
    Finkelstein moves from an iconoclastic interrogation of the new anti-Semitism to a meticulously researched exposé of the corruption of scholarship on the Israel-Palestine conflict.Bringing to bear the latest findings on the conflict and recasting the scholarly debate, Finkelstein points to a consensus among historians and human rights organizations on the factual record. Why, then, does so much controversy swirl around the conflict? Finkelstein’s answer, copiously documented, is that apologists for Israel contrive controversy. Whenever Israel comes under international pressure, another media campaign alleging a global outbreak of anti-Semitism is mounted.Finkelstein also scrutinizes the proliferation of distortion masquerading as history. Recalling Joan Peters’ book From Time Immemorial, published to great fanfare in 1984 but subsequently exposed as an academic hoax, he asks deeply troubling questions here about the periodic reappearance of spurious scholarship and the uncritical acclaim it receives. The most recent addition to this genre, Finkelstein argues, is Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz’s bestseller, The Case for Israel.The core analysis of Beyond Chutzpah sets Dershowitz’s assertions on Israel’s human rights record against the findings of the mainstream human rights community. Sifting through thousands of pages of reports from organizations such as Amnesty International, B’Tselem, and Human Rights Watch, Finkelstein argues that Dershowitz has misrepresented the facts.Thoroughly researched and tightly argued, Beyond Chutzpah lifts the veil of controversy shrouding the Israel-Palestine conflict.

The Journey That Saved Curious George: The True Wartime Escape of Margret and H.A. Rey


Louise Borden - 2005
    They began their harrowing journey on bicycles, pedaling to Southern France with children's book manuscripts among their few possessions.Louise Borden combed primary resources, including Hans Rey's pocket diaries, to tell this dramatic true story. Archival materials introduce readers to the world of Hans and Margret Rey while Allan Drummond dramatically and colorfully illustrates their wartime trek to a new home.Follow the Rey's amazing story in this unique large format book that resembles a travel journal and includes full-color illustrations, original photos, actual ticket stubs and more. A perfect book for Curious George fans of all ages.

A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare: 1599


James Shapiro - 2005
     James Shapiro illuminates both Shakespeare’s staggering achievement and what Elizabethans experienced in the course of 1599, bringing together the news and the intrigue of the times with a wonderful evocation of how Shakespeare worked as an actor, businessman, and playwright. The result is an exceptionally immediate and gripping account of an inspiring moment in history.

On the Edge: The Spectacular Rise and Fall of Commodore


Brian Bagnall - 2005
    Before Apple, IBM, or Dell, Commodore was the first computer maker to market its machines to the public, selling an estimated 22 million Commodore 64s. These halcyon days were tumultuous, however, owing to the expectations and unsparing tactics of founder Jack Tramiel. Engineers and managers with the company between 1976 and 1994 share their experiences of the groundbreaking moments, soaring business highs, and stunning employee turnover that came along with being on top of the PC world in the early days.

India's Ancient Past


R.S. Sharma - 2005
    This is a volume meant for all those who want a masterly, lucid, yet eminently readable introduction to, and overview of, India's early history by one of the master-scholars of Indian history---be it students, tourists, or the interested lay reader.

Who Was Thomas Alva Edison?


Margaret Frith - 2005
    The electric light bulb was only one of thousands of Edison’s inventions, which include the phonograph and the kinetoscope, an early precursor to the movie camera.As a boy, observing a robin catch a worm and then take flight, he fed a playmate a mixture of worms and water to see if she could fly! Here’s an accessible, appealing biography with 100 black-and-white illustrations.

1776


David McCullough - 2005
    It is the story of Americans in the ranks, men of every shape, size, and color, farmers, schoolteachers, shoemakers, no-accounts, and mere boys turned soldiers. And it is the story of the King's men, the British commander, William Howe, an his highly disciplined redcoats who looked on their rebel foes with contempt and fought with a valor too little known.At the center of the drama, with Washington, are two young American patriots, who, at first, knew no more of war than what they had read in books - Nathaniel Green, a Quaker who was made a general at thirty-three, and Henry Knox, a twenty-five-year-old bookseller who had the preposterous idea of hauling the guns of Fort Ticonderoga overland to Boston in the dead of Winter.But it is the American commander-in-chief who stands foremost - Washington, who had never before led an army in battle. Written as a companion work to his celebrated biography of John Adams, David McCullough's 1776 is another landmark in the literature of American history.

Who Was Leonardo da Vinci?


Roberta Edwards - 2005
    Leonardo da Vinci was a gifted painter, talented musician, and dedicated scientist and inventor, designing flying machines, submarines, and even helicopters.  Yet he had a hard time finishing things, a problem anyone can relate to.  Only thirteen paintings are known to be his; as for the illustrated encyclopedia he intended to create, all that he left were thousands of disorganized notebook pages.  Here is an accessible portrait of a fascinating man who lived at a fascinating time—Italy during the Renaissance.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Bronx is Burning: 1977, Baseball, Politics, and the Battle for the Soul of a City


Jonathan Mahler - 2005
    Buried beneath these parallel conflicts--one for the soul of baseball, the other for the soul of the city--was the subtext of race. Deftly intertwined by journalist Jonathan Mahler, these braided Big Apple narratives reverberate to reveal a year that also saw the opening of Studio 54, the acquisition of the New York Post by Rupert Murdoch, a murderer dubbed the "Son of Sam," the infamous blackout, and the evolution of punk rock. As Koch defeated Cuomo, and as Reggie Jackson rescued a team racked with dissension, 1977 became a year of survival--and also of hope.

Helen of Troy: Goddess, Princess, Whore


Bettany Hughes - 2005
    As soon as men began writing they made Helen of Troy their subject. For close to 3000 years she's been both the embodiment of absolute female beauty & a reminder of the terrible power beauty can wield. Because of her double marriage to the Greek king Menelaus & the Trojan prince Paris, Helen was held responsible for enmity between East & West. For millennia she's been viewed as an agent of extermination. But who was she? Helen exists in many guises: a matriarch from the Heroic Age who ruled over one of the most fertile areas of the Mycenaean world; Helen of Sparta, the focus of a cult that conflated the heroine with a pre-Greek fertility goddess; the home-wrecker of the Iliad; the bitch-whore of Greek tragedy; the pin-up of Romantic artists. Focusing on the “real” Helen–-a flesh-&-blood aristocrat from the Greek Bronze Age–-Hughes reconstructs the life context of this prehistoric princess. Thru the eyes of a young Mycenaean woman, she examines the physical, historical & cultural traces that Helen has left on locations in Greece, N. Africa & Asia Minor. This book unpacks the facts & myths surrounding one of the most enigmatic & notorious figures of all time.IllustrationsText AcknowledgementsMapsTimelineDramatis PersonaeFamily TreesForeword & AcknowledgementsIntroductionCherchez la femmeAn evil destiny Helen-hunting Goddess, princess, whore1. Helen's birth in pre-historyA dangerous landscapeA rape, a birthThe lost citadelThe MycenaeansThe pre-historic princess2. The land of beautiful womenThe rape of 'fair Hellen'Sparte kalligynaikaTender-eyed girls 3. The world's desireA trophy for heroes The kingmaker A royal wedding4. KourotrophosHermione A welcome burdenHelen, high priestessLa belle Hélène 5. A lover's gameThe golden apple Bearing gifts Alexander Helenam RapuitThe female of the species is more deadly than the male6. Eros & ErisHelen the whoreThe pain of AphroditeThe sea's foaming lanes7. Troy beckonsEast is east & west is westThe fair Troad The topless towers of IliumThe golden houses of the eastA fleet sets sail8. Troy besiegedHelen, destroyer of citiesDeath's dark cloud A beautiful death, Kalos ThanatosThe fall of Troy 9. Immortal HelenHome to Sparta The death of a queenThe age of heroes ends'Fragrant treasuries' The daughter of the ocean10. The face that launched a thousand shipsHelen in AthensHelen lost & Helen foundHelen, Homer & the chances of survivalVeyn fablesHelen of Troy & the bad SamaritanPerpulchra, more than beautifulDancing with the devilHelen's nemesisAppendicesThe Minotaur's islandLa ParisienneWomen of stone & clay & bronzeElemental Helen, she-gods & she-devilsRoyal purple, the color of congealed bloodEpilogue: Myth, history & historiaAbbreviationsNotesBibliographyIndex

How Rich Countries Got Rich And Why Poor Countries Stay Poor


Erik S. Reinert - 2005
    Reinert suggests that this set of policies in various combinations has driven successful development from Renaissance Italy to the modern Far East. Yet despite its demonstrable sucess, orthodox developemt economists have largely ignored this approach and insisted instead on the importance of free trade. Reinart shows how the history of economics has long been torn between the continental Renaissance tradition on one hand and the free market theories of English and later American economies on the other. Our economies were founded on protectionism and state activism—look at China today—and could only later afford the luxury of free trade. When our leaders come to lecture poor countries on the right road to riches they do so in almost perfect ignorance of the real history of national affluence.

Bound for Canaan: The Epic Story of the Underground Railroad, America's First Civil Rights Movement


Fergus M. Bordewich - 2005
    But the beginnings of slavery's denouement can be traced to a courageous band of ordinary Americans, black and white, slave and free, who joined forces to create what would come to be known as the Underground Railroad, a movement that occupies as romantic a place in the nation's imagination as the Lewis and Clark expedition. The true story of the Underground Railroad is much more morally complex and politically divisive than even the myths suggest. Against a backdrop of the country's westward expansion arose a fierce clash of values that was nothing less than a war for the country's soul. Not since the American Revolution had the country engaged in an act of such vast and profound civil disobedience that not only challenged prevailing mores but also subverted federal law.Bound for Canaan tells the stories of men and women like David Ruggles, who invented the black underground in New York City; bold Quakers like Isaac Hopper and Levi Coffin, who risked their lives to build the Underground Railroad; and the inimitable Harriet Tubman. Interweaving thrilling personal stories with the politics of slavery and abolition, Bound for Canaan shows how the Underground Railroad gave birth to this country's first racially integrated, religiously inspired movement for social change.

The Patchwork Path: A Quilt Map to Freedom


Bettye Stroud - 2005
    . . . Works well as a story and also as a lesson in African-American history." — SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNALNow that Hannah’s papa has decided to make the run for freedom, her patchwork quilt is not just a precious memento of Mama — it’s a series of hidden clues that will guide them along the Underground Railroad to Canada. A fictionalized account of a fascinating oral history, THE PATCHWORK PATH tells the story of a two of the thousands who escaped a life of slavery and made the dangerous journey to freedom — a story of courage, determination, and hope.- A Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Bigotry and Human Rights Outstanding Book, Honorable Mention- An Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award Winner

This Is the Dream


Diane Z. Shore - 2005
    Nearly two hundred years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, slavery had been abolished but America was still segregated.Then: Enter the students who marched into the first desegregated school, the passengers who boycotted the buses, and the leaders who stood up and spoke out. When they started, it was all just a dream. . . .Through striking, powerful verse and gorgeous, detailed illustrations, this is the dream catalogs the American experience before, during, and after the civil rights movement. Come along on this incredible journey, and see how far we've come in attaining freedom and justice for all.

The Peabody Sisters: Three Women Who Ignited American Romanticism


Megan Marshall - 2005
    The story of these remarkable sisters — and their central role in shaping the thinking of their day — has never before been fully told. Twenty years in the making, Megan Marshall's monumental biograpy brings the era of creative ferment known as American Romanticism to new life. Elizabeth, the oldest sister, was a mind-on-fire thinker. A powerful influence on the great writers of the era — Emerson, Hawthorne, and Thoreau among them — she also published some of their earliest works. It was Elizabeth who prodded these newly minted Transcendentalists away from Emerson's individualism and toward a greater connection to others. Mary was a determined and passionate reformer who finally found her soul mate in the great educator Horace Mann. The frail Sophia was a painter who won the admiration of the preeminent society artists of the day. She married Nathaniel Hawthorne — but not before Hawthorne threw the delicate dynamics among the sisters into disarray. Marshall focuses on the moment when the Peabody sisters made their indelible mark on history. Her unprecedented research into these lives uncovered thousands of letters never read before as well as other previously unmined original sources. The Peabody Sisters casts new light on a legendary American era. Its publication is destined to become an event in American biography. This book is highly recommended for students and reading groups interested in American history, American literature, and women's studies. It is a wonderful look into 19th-century life.

The Reformation: A History


Diarmaid MacCulloch - 2005
    Acclaimed as the definitive account of these epochal events, Diarmaid MacCulloch's award-winning history brilliantly recreates the religious battles of priests, monarchs, scholars, and politicians--from the zealous Martin Luther and his Ninety-Five Theses to the polemical John Calvin to the radical Igantius Loyola, from the tortured Thomas Cranmer to the ambitious Philip II. Drawing together the many strands of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation, and ranging widely across Europe and the New World, MacCulloch reveals as never before how these dramatic upheavals affected everyday lives--overturning ideas of love, sex, death, and the supernatural, and shaping the modern age.

Captivity


György Spiró - 2005
    Set in the tumultuous first century A.D., between the year of Christ’s death and the outbreak of the Jewish War, Captivity recounts the adventures of the feeble-bodied, bookish Uri, a young Roman Jew.Frustrated with his hapless son, Uri’s father sends the young man to the Holy Land to regain the family’s prestige. In Jerusalem, Uri is imprisoned by Herod and meets two thieves and (perhaps) Jesus before their crucifixion. Later, in cosmopolitan Alexandria, he undergoes a scholarly and sexual awakening—but must escape a pogrom. Returning to Rome at last, he finds an entirely unexpected inheritance.Equal parts Homeric epic, brilliantly researched Jewish history, and picaresque adventure, Captivity is a dramatic tale of family, fate, and fortitude. In its weak-yet-valiant hero, fans will be reminded of Robert Graves’ classics of Ancient Rome, I, Claudius and Claudius the God. Restless Books will publish the first English edition of this important, 1,100-page work in four installments in 2015.Translated from the Hungarian by Tim Wilkinson“György Spiró presents a theory in novelistic form about the interwovenness of religion and politics, lays bare the inner workings of power, and gives insight into the art of survival…. This book is an incredible page turner; it reads easily and avidly like the greatest bestsellers while also going as deep as the greatest thinkers of European philosophy.”—Aegon Literary Award 2006 jury recommendation“A novel of education and a novel of adventure that brings to life ancient Rome, Alexandria, and Jerusalem with a vividness of detail that is stunning. Spiró’s prose is crisp and colloquial, the kind of prose that aims for precision rather than literary thrills. A serious and sophisticated novel that is also engrossing and highly readable is a rare thing. Captivity is such a novel.”—Ivan Sanders, Columbia University“Impossibly engrossing from the very first page…. Building on a huge volume of reference material, the novel rings true from both a historical and a literary point of view.”—Magda Ferch, Magyar NemzetBorn in 1946 in Budapest, award-winning dramatist, novelist, and translator György Spiró has earned a reputation as one of postwar Hungary’s most prominent and prolific literary figures. He teaches at ELTE University of Budapest, where he specializes in Slavic literatures.Tim Wilkinson gave up his job in the pharmaceutical industry to translate Hungarian literature and history. He is the primary translator of Nobel Prize-winner Imre Kertész. Wilkinson’s translation of Kertész’s Fatelessness won the PEN Club/Book of the Month Club Translation Prize in 2005.

Well Done, Those Men: Memoirs of a Vietnam Veteran


Barry Heard - 2005
    From inadequate basic training to the horrors of the war itself, as well as the guilt, anxiety, and alienation felt upon returning home, the account documents the psychology, trauma, and ultimate redemption of one veteran of a lost war.

The Last Explorer: Hubert Wilkins, Hero of the Great Age of Polar Exploration


Simon Nasht - 2005
    Hubert Wilkins was the most successful explorer in history: no one saw with his own eyes more undiscovered land and sea. Largely self-taught, he was a celebrated reporter, pilot, spy, war hero, scientist, and adventurer. He captured in his lens war and famine, cheated death repeatedly, met world leaders like Lenin, Mussolini, and King George V, and circled the globe on a zeppelin. Knighted for being the first person to fly across the North Pole, Wilkins was also the first to fly in the Antarctic, discover land by airplane, and take a submarine under the Arctic ice.

Grant and Sherman: The Friendship That Won the Civil War


Charles Bracelen Flood - 2005
    They began their unique collaboration ten months into the war, at the Battle of Shiloh, each carefully taking the other's measure. They shared the demands of family life and the heartache of personal tragedy. They shared similar philosophies of battle, employed similar strategies and tactics, and remained in close, virtually daily communication throughout the conflict. They were incontestably two of the Civil War's most important figures, and the deep, abiding friendship they shared made the Union's ultimate victory possible.Poignant, riveting, and elegantly written, Grant and Sherman is a remarkable portrait of two extraordinary men and a singular friendship, forged on the battlefield, that would change the course of history.

The Godfather Legacy: The Untold Story of the Making of the Classic Godfather Trilogy Featuring Never-Before-Published Production Stills


Harlan Lebo - 2005
    The director was a renegade filmmaker who'd never made a profitable picture. The producer was hired because he could stay below budget. The star had a reputation for being difficult. A formula for disaster?No, the makings of one of the greatest films of all time.The Godfather Legacy explores the fascinating behind-the-scenes intrigue and uproar during the making of all three films:The clashes between Coppola and the studio chiefs during the filming of The Godfather, the pressurized production schedule, and the project's near cancellationThe real story behind the cooperation of the Mafia in the creation of The GodfatherThe worldwide acclaim and stunning financial success following the release of The Godfather -- a triumph that set the stage for the film industry's renaissanceThe production of The Godfather Part II and the rise of Coppola, Al Pacino, and others to the loftiest heights of power in HollywoodThe creation of The Godfather Part III two decades after the original film and the completion of video projects that unified the three films for the first timeFeaturing production records, credits, reviews, and interviews with many of the principals involved, The Godfather Legacy is a rare and vivid peek into the making of three of the most compelling films in Hollywood history.

Who Was Charles Darwin?


Deborah Hopkinson - 2005
    Yet his passion for the natural world was so strong that he suffered through terrible seasickness during his five-year voyage aboard The Beagle. Darwin collected new creatures from the coasts of Africa, South America, and the Galapagos Islands, and expanded his groundbreaking ideas that would change people's understanding of the natural world. About 100 illustrations and a clear, exciting text will make Darwin and his theory of evolution an exciting discovery for every young reader.

Forever Free: The Story of Emancipation and Reconstruction


Eric Foner - 2005
    We see African Americans as active agents in overthrowing slavery, in shaping Reconstruction, and creating a legacy long obscured and misunderstood. He compellingly refutes long-standing misconceptions of Reconstruction, and shows how the failures of the time sowed the seeds of the Civil Rights struggles of the 1950s and 60s. Richly illustrated and movingly written, this is an illuminating and essential addition to our understanding of this momentous era.

A Sense of the World: How a Blind Man Became History's Greatest Traveler


Jason Roberts - 2005
    He was James Holman, who lived from 1786 to 1857.

Khartoum: The Ultimate Imperial Adventure


Michael Asher - 2005
    The story begins with the massacre of the 11,000 strong Hicks Pasha column in 1883. Sent to evacuate the country, British hero General Gordon was surrounded and murdered in Khartoum by an army of dervishes led by the Mahdi. The relief mission arrived 2 days too late. The result was a national scandal that shocked the Queen and led to the fall of the British government. Twelve years later it was the brilliant Herbert Kitchener who struck back. Achieving the impossible he built a railway across the desert to transport his troops to the final devastating confrontation at Omdurman in 1898. Desert explorer and author Michael Asher has reconstructed this classic tale in vivid detail. Having covered every inch of the ground and examined all eyewitness reports, he brings to bear new evidence questioning several accepted aspects of the story. The result is an account that sheds new light on the most riveting tale of honour, courage, revenge and savagery of late Victorian times.

The Man Behind the Microchip: Robert Noyce and the Invention of Silicon Valley


Leslie Berlin - 2005
    The Man Behind the Microchip Robert Noyce and the Invention of Silicon Valley published in the year 2005 was published by Oxford University Press. The author of this book is Leslie Berlin. ed page displaying collection of Leslie Berlin books here. This is the Hardback version of the title "The Man Behind the Microchip Robert Noyce and the Invention of Silicon Valley" and have around pp. xiii + 402 pages. The Man Behind the Microchip Robert Noyce and the Invention of Silicon Valley is currently Available with us.

Night Draws Near: Iraq's People in the Shadow of America's War


Anthony Shadid - 2005
    Born and raised in Oklahoma, of Lebanese descent, Shadid, a fluent Arabic speaker, has spent the last three years dividing his time between Washington, D.C., and Baghdad. The only journalist to win a Pulitzer Prize for his extraordinary coverage of Iraq, Shadid is also the only writer to describe the human story of ordinary Iraqis weathering the unexpected impact of America's invasion and occupation. Through the moving stories of individual Iraqis, Shadid shows how Saddam's downfall paved the way not just for hopes of democracy but also for the importation of jihad and the rise of a bloody insurgency. "A superb reporter's book," wrote Seymour Hersh; Night Draws Near is, according to Mark Danner, "essential."

Amelia to Zora: Twenty-Six Women Who Changed the World


Cynthia Chin-Lee - 2005
    From Amelia Earhart, pilot and adventurer, to Zora Neale Hurston, writer and anthropologist, learn about the hardships and triumphs that inspired each woman to change the world around her. Detailed collages and illustrations draw from various events in the women's lives.

Brotherhood of Warriors: Behind Enemy Lines with a Commando in One of the World's Most Elite Counterterrorism Units


Aaron Cohen - 2005
    He was determined to be a part of Israel's most elite security cadre, akin to the American Green Berets and Navy SEALs. After fifteen months of grueling training designed to break down each individual man and to rebuild him as a warrior, Cohen was offered the only post a non-Israeli can hold in the special forces. In 1996 he joined a top-secret, highly controversial unit that dispatches operatives disguised as Arabs into the Palestinian-controlled West Bank to abduct terrorist leaders and bring them to Israel for interrogation and trial.Between 1996 and 1998, Aaron Cohen would learn Hebrew and Arabic; become an expert in urban counterterror warfare, the martial art of Krav Maga, and undercover operations; and participate in dozens of life-or-death missions. He would infiltrate a Hamas wedding to seize a wanted terrorist and pose as an American journalist to set a trap for one of the financiers behind the Dizengoff Massacre, taking him down in a brutal, hand-to-hand struggle. A propulsive, gripping read, Cohen's story is a rare, fly-on-the-wall view into the shadowy world of "black ops" that redefines invincible strength, true danger, and inviolable security.

The Lore of the Land: A Guide to England's Legends, from Spring-Heeled Jack to the Witches of Warboys


Jennifer Westwood - 2005
    Where can you find the 'Devil's footprints'? What happened at the 'hangman's stone'? Did Sweeney Todd, the demon barber of Fleet Street, ever really exist? Where was King Arthur laid to rest? Bringing together tales of hauntings, highwaymen, family curses and lovers' leaps, this magnificent guide will take you on a magical journey through England's legendary past.

Standing Next to History: An Agent's Life Inside the Secret Service


Joseph Petro - 2005
    For four of those years he stood by the side of Ronald Reagan.Following his career as a Navy Lieutenant, during which he patrolled the rivers and canals along the Vietnamese-Cambodian border, he worked his way up through the Secret Service to become one of the key men in charge of protecting the President. That journey through the Secret Service provides an individual look inside the most discreet law enforcement agency in the world, and a uniquely intimate account of the Reagan presidency.Engagingly, Joseph Petro tells "first hand" stories of: riding horses with the Reagans; eluding the press and sneaking the President and Mrs. Reagan out of the White House; rehearsing assassination attempts and working, then re-working every detail of the president's trips around the world; negotiating the president's protection with the KGB; diverting a 26 car presidential motorcade in downtown Tokyo; protecting Vice-President Dan Quayle at Rajiv Gandhi's funeral where he was surrounded by Yassir Arafat's heavily armed bodyguards; taking charge of the single largest protective effort in the history of the Secret Service-Pope John Paul II's 1987 visit to the United States; and being only one of three witnesses at the private meeting between President Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev that ushered in the end of the Cold War.Joseph Petro provides an original and fascinating perspective of the Secret Service, the inner workings of the White House and a little seen view of world leaders, as a man who stood next to history.

Everything was Forever, Until it was No More: The Last Soviet Generation


Alexei Yurchak - 2005
    To the people who lived in that system the collapse seemed both completely unexpected and completely unsurprising. At the moment of collapse it suddenly became obvious that Soviet life had always seemed simultaneously eternal and stagnating, vigorous and ailing, bleak and full of promise. Although these characteristics may appear mutually exclusive, in fact they were mutually constitutive. This book explores the paradoxes of Soviet life during the period of “late socialism” (1960s-1980s) through the eyes of the last Soviet generation.Focusing on the major transformation of the 1950s at the level of discourse, ideology, language, and ritual, Alexei Yurchak traces the emergence of multiple unanticipated meanings, communities, relations, ideals, and pursuits that this transformation subsequently enabled. His historical, anthropological, and linguistic analysis draws on rich ethnographic material from Late Socialism and the post-Soviet period.The model of Soviet socialism that emerges provides an alternative to binary accounts that describe that system as a dichotomy of official culture and unofficial culture, the state and the people, public self and private self, truth and lie — and ignore the crucial fact that, for many Soviet citizens, the fundamental values, ideals, and realities of socialism were genuinely important, although they routinely transgressed and reinterpreted the norms and rules of the socialist state.

American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer


Kai Bird - 2005
    Robert Oppenheimer, "father of the atomic bomb," the brilliant, charismatic physicist who led the effort to capture the awesome fire of the sun for his country in time of war. Immediately after Hiroshima, he became the most famous scientist of his generation-one of the iconic figures of the twentieth century, the embodiment of modern man confronting the consequences of scientific progress. He was the author of a radical proposal to place international controls over atomic materials-an idea that is still relevant today. He opposed the development of the hydrogen bomb and criticized the Air Force's plans to fight an infinitely dangerous nuclear war. In the now almost-forgotten hysteria of the early 1950s, his ideas were anathema to powerful advocates of a massive nuclear buildup, and, in response, Atomic Energy Commission chairman Lewis Strauss, Superbomb advocate Edward Teller and FBI director J. Edgar Hoover worked behind the scenes to have a hearing board find that Oppenheimer could not be trusted with America's nuclear secrets. American Prometheus sets forth Oppenheimer's life and times in revealing and unprecedented detail. Exhaustively researched, it is based on thousands of records and letters gathered from archives in America and abroad, on massive FBI files and on close to a hundred interviews with Oppenheimer's friends, relatives and colleagues.We follow him from his earliest education at the turn of the twentieth century at New York City's Ethical Culture School, through personal crises at Harvard and Cambridge universities. Then to Germany, where he studied quantum physics with the world's most accomplished theorists; and to Berkeley, California, where he established, during the 1930s, the leading American school of theoretical physics, and where he became deeply involved with social justice causes and their advocates, many of whom were communists. Then to Los Alamos, New Mexico, where he transformed a bleak mesa into the world's most potent nuclear weapons laboratory-and where he himself was transformed. And finally, to the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, which he directed from 1947 to 1966. American Prometheus is a rich evocation of America at midcentury, a new and compelling portrait of a brilliant, ambitious, complex and flawed man profoundly connected to its major events—the Depression, World War II and the Cold War. It is at once biography and history, and essential to our understanding of our recent past—and of our choices for the future.

Empires of the Word: A Language History of the World


Nicholas Ostler - 2005
    From the uncanny resilience of Chinese through twenty centuries of invasions to the engaging self-regard of Greek and to the struggles that gave birth to the languages of modern Europe, these epic achievements and more are brilliantly explored, as are the fascinating failures of once "universal" languages. A splendid, authoritative, and remarkable work, it demonstrates how the language history of the world eloquently reveals the real character of our planet's diverse peoples and prepares us for a linguistic future full of surprises.

Cinderella Man: James Braddock, Max Baer, and the Greatest Upset in Boxing History


Jeremy Schaap - 2005
    James J. Braddock, dubbed "Cinderella Man" by Damon Runyon, was a once promising light heavyweight for whom a string of losses in the ring and a broken right hand happened to coincide with the Great Crash of 1929. With one good hand, Braddock was forced to labor on the docks of Hoboken. Only his manager, Joe Gould, still believed in him, finding fights for Braddock to help feed his wife and children. The diminutive, loquacious Jew and the burly, quiet Irishman made one of boxing's oddest couples, but together they staged the greatest comeback in fighting history. In twelve months Braddock went from the relief rolls to face heavyweight champion Max Baer, the Livermore Butcher Boy, renowned for having allegedly killed two men in the ring. A charismatic, natural talent and in every way Braddock's foil, Baer was a towering opponent, a Jew from the West Coast who was famously brash and made great copy both in and out of the ring. A ten-to-one underdog, Braddock carried the hopes and dreams of the working class on his shoulders. And when boxing was the biggest sport in the world, when the heavyweight champion was the biggest star in the world, his unlikely upset made Braddock the most popular champion boxing had ever seen. Against the gritty backdrop of the Depression, Cinderella Man brings this dramatic all-American story to life, evoking a time when the sport of boxing resonated with a country trying desperately to get back on its feet. Schaap paints a vivid picture of the fight world in its golden age, populated by men of every class and ethnic background and covered voluminously by writers who elevated sports writing to art. Rich in anecdote and color, steeped in history, and full of human interest, Cinderellla Man is a classic David and Goliath tale that transcends the sport.

Operation Certain Death


Damien Lewis - 2005
    The West Side Boys were a strange-looking bunch, wearing pink shades, shower caps, fluorescent wigs and voodoo charms they believed made them invulnerable to bullets - an impression re-enforced by ganja, heroine, crack cocaine and gallons of sweet palm wine. In 1999 a twelve man patrol of Royal Irish Rangers, who were training government troops in Sierra Leone, were captured and held hostage by the West Side Boys. They were held prisoner in a fortified jungle hideaway, with severed heads decorating the palisades, defended by some 400 heavily armed soldiers. Operation Barras, the rescue mission, was a combined force of 100 Paras, twelve members of the Special Boat Squadron, helicopters from the Navy and RAF and, spearheading the operation, 40-strong D squadron of the SAS. Against amazing odds the hostages were rescued - over 150 of the enemy were killed. Operation Certain Death is a thrilling true story of all out war. No hostages taken. Blood-letting on a vast scale inflicted on a very blood-thirsty enemy. A gripping piece of true military history, perfect for fans of action adventure stories and anyone interested in the top secret division of the British Army.

A Life in Secrets: Vera Atkins and the Missing Agents of WWII.


Sarah Helm - 2005
    Throughout the war, Atkins recruited, trained, and mentored the agents for the SOE's French Section, which sent more than four hundred young men and women into occupied France, at least one hundred of whom never returned and were reported MPD (missing presumed dead) after the war. Twelve of these were women and among Atkins' most cherished spies. When the war ended in 1945, she made it her personal mission to find out what happened to them and the other agents lost behind enemy lines, tracing rigorously their horrific final journeys. But as the woman who carried out this astonishing search appeared quintessentially English, Atkins was nothing of the sort. As we follow her through the devastation of postwar Germany, we learn Atkins herself covered her life in mystery so that even her closest family knew almost nothing of her past.In A Life in Secrets Sarah Helm has stripped away Vera Atkins' many veils. Drawing on recently released sixty-year-old government files and her unprecedented access to the private papers of the Atkins family, Helm vividly reconstructs a complex and extraordinary life.

The Knife Man: Blood, Body Snatching, and the Birth of Modern Surgery


Wendy Moore - 2005
    In this sensational and macabre story, we meet the surgeon who counted not only luminaries Benjamin Franklin, Lord Byron, Adam Smith, and Thomas Gainsborough among his patients but also “resurrection men” among his close acquaintances. A captivating portrait of his ruthless devotion to uncovering the secrets of the human body, and the extraordinary lengths to which he went to do so—including body snatching, performing pioneering medical experiments, and infecting himself with venereal disease—this rich historical narrative at last acknowledges this fascinating man and the debt we owe him today.

Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling


Richard L. Bushman - 2005
    Richard Bushman, an esteemed cultural historian and a practicing Mormon, moves beyond the popular stereotype of Smith as a colorful fraud to explore his personality, his relationships with others, and how he received revelations. An arresting narrative of the birth of the Mormon Church, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling also brilliantly evaluates the prophet’s bold contributions to Christian theology and his cultural place in the modern world.

Islam and the Blackamerican: Looking Toward the Third Resurrection


Sherman A. Jackson - 2005
    Jackson notes that no one has offered a convincing explanation of why Islam spread among Blackamericans (a coinage he explains and defends) but not among white Americans or Hispanics. The assumption has been that there is an African connection. In fact, Jackson shows, none of the distinctive features of African Islam appear in the proto-Islamic, black nationalist movements of the early 20th century. Instead, he argues, Islam owes its momentum to the distinctively American phenomenon of "Black Religion," a God-centered holy protest against anti-black racism.Islam in Black America begins as part of a communal search for tools with which to combat racism and redefine American blackness. The 1965 repeal of the National Origins Quota System led to a massive influx of foreign Muslims, who soon greatly outnumbered the blacks whom they found here practicing an indigenous form of Islam. Immigrant Muslims would come to exercise a virtual monopoly over the definition of a properly constituted Islamic life in America. For these Muslims, the nemesis was not white supremacy, but "the West." In their eyes, the West was not a racial, but a religious and civilizational threat. American blacks soon learned that opposition to the West and opposition to white supremacy were not synonymous. Indeed, says Jackson, one cannot be anti-Western without also being on some level anti-Blackamerican. Like the Black Christians of an earlier era struggling to find their voice in the context of Western Christianity, Black Muslims now began to strive to find their black, American voice in the context of the super-tradition of historical Islam. Jackson argues that Muslim tradition itself contains the resources to reconcile blackness, American-ness, and adherence to Islam. It is essential, he contends, to preserve within Islam the legitimate aspects of Black Religion, in order to avoid what Stephen Carter calls the domestication of religion, whereby religion is rendered incapable of resisting the state and the dominant culture. At the same time, Jackson says, it is essential for Blackamerican Muslims to reject an exclusive focus on the public square and the secular goal of subverting white supremacy (and Arab/immigrant supremacy) and to develop a tradition of personal piety and spirituality attuned to distinctive Blackamerican needs and idiosyncrasies.

Ivan's War: Life and Death in the Red Army, 1939-1945


Catherine Merridale - 2005
    They were the men and women of the Red Army, a ragtag mass of soldiers who confronted Europe's most lethal fighting force and by 1945 had defeated it. Sixty years have passed since their epic triumph, but the heart and mind of Ivan -- as the ordinary Russian soldier was called -- remain a mystery. We know something about hoe the soldiers died, but nearly nothing about how they lived, how they saw the world, or why they fought.Drawing on previously closed military and secret police archives, interviews with veterans, and private letters and diaries, Catherine Merridale presents the first comprehensive history of the Soviet Union Army rank and file. She follows the soldiers from the shock of the German invasion to their costly triumph in Stalingrad, where life expectancy was often a mere twenty-four hours. Through the soldiers' eyes, we witness their victorious arrival in Berlin, where their rage and suffering exact an awful toll, and accompany them as they return home full of hope, only to be denied the new life they had been fighting to secure.A tour de force of original research and a gripping history, Ivan's War reveals the singular mixture of courage, patriotism, anger, and fear that made it possible for these underfed, badly led troops to defeat the Nazi army. In the process Merridale restores to history the invisible millions who sacrificed the most to win the war.

Becoming Justice Blackmun: Harry Blackmun's Supreme Court Journey


Linda Greenhouse - 2005
    In clear and forceful prose, Becoming Justice Blackmun tells a judicial Horatio Alger story and a tale of a remarkable transformation . . . A page-turner."--The New York Times Book ReviewIn this acclaimed biography, Linda Greenhouse of The New York Times draws back the curtain on America's most private branch of government, the Supreme Court. Greenhouse was the first print reporter to have access to the extensive archives of Justice Harry A. Blackmun (1908-99), the man behind numerous landmark Supreme Court decisions, including Roe v. Wade.Through the lens of Blackmun's private and public papers, Greenhouse crafts a compelling portrait of a man who, from 1970 to 1994, ruled on such controversial issues as abortion, the death penalty, and sex discrimination yet never lost sight of the human beings behind the legal cases. Greenhouse also paints the arc of Blackmun's lifelong friendship with Chief Justice Warren E. Burger, revealing how political differences became personal, even for two of the country's most respected jurists.From America's preeminent Supreme Court reporter, this is a must-read for everyone who cares about the Court and its impact on our lives.

I Could Do That!: Esther Morris Gets Women the Vote


Linda Arms White - 2005
    Start her own business at the age of nineteen? Why, she could do that, too. But one thing Esther and other women could NOT do was vote. Only men could do that.With lively text and humorous illustrations as full of spirit as Esther herself, this striking picture book biography shows how one girl's gumption propels her through a life filled with challenges until, in 1869, she wins the vote for women in Wyoming Territory – the first time ever in the United States!I Could Do That! is a 2006 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.

The Encyclopedia of Fantastic Victoriana


Jess Nevins - 2005
    Wells, to Russian newspaper serials and Chinese martial arts novels, The Encyclopedia of Fantastic Victoriana is a truly exhaustive look at every aspect of fantastic literature in the days of Queen Victoria.

The Tyrannicide Brief: The Story of the Man Who Sent Charles I to the Scaffold


Geoffrey Robertson - 2005
    The man they briefed was the radical lawyer John Cooke. His Puritan conscience, political vision, and love of civil liberties gave him the courage to bring the King's trial to its dramatic conclusion: the creation of the English Republic. Cooke would pay dearly for role in the trial. Charles I was found guilty and beheaded, but eleven years later Cooke himself was arrested, tried, and brutally executed at the hands of Charles II.Geoffrey Robertson, an internationally renowned human rights lawyer, provides a vivid new reading of the tumultuous Civil War years, exposing long-hidden truths: that the King was guilty as charged, that his execution was necessary to establish the sovereignty of Parliament, that the regicide trials were rigged and their victims should be seen as national heroes.John Cooke sacrificed his own life to make tyranny a crime. His trial of Charles I, the first trial of a head of state for waging war on his own people, became a forerunner of the trials of Augusto Pinochet, Slobodan Milosevic, and Saddam Hussein. This is a superb work of history that casts a revelatory light on some of the most important issues of our time.