Best of
History

2013

Tune In


Mark Lewisohn - 2013
    Mark Lewisohn uses his unprecedented archival access and hundreds of new interviews to construct the full story of the lives and work of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr. Ten years in the making, Tune In takes the Beatles from before their childhoods through the final hour of 1962—when, with breakthrough success just days away, they stand on the cusp of a whole new kind of fame and celebrity. They’ve one hit record ("Love Me Do") behind them and the next ("Please Please Me") primed for release, their first album session is booked, and America is clear on the horizon.  This is the lesser-known Beatles story—the pre-Fab years of Liverpool and Hamburg—and in many respects the most absorbing and incredible period of them all. Here is the complete and true account of their family lives, childhoods, teenage years and their infatuation with American music, here is the riveting narrative of their unforgettable days and nights in the Cavern Club, their laughs, larks and adventures when they could move about freely, before fame closed in.  For those who’ve never read a Beatles book before, this is the place to discover the young men behind the icons. For those who think they know John, Paul, George, and Ringo, it’s time to press the Reset button and tune into the real story, the lasting word.

Blueprint for Armageddon


Dan Carlin - 2013
    But 99 years later the dam breaks and a Pandora’s Box of violence engulfs the planet.Episode 51 - Part II - 3:20:28The Great Powers all come out swinging in the first round of the worst war the planet has ever seen. Millions of men in dozens of armies vie in the most deadly and complex opening moves of any conflict in world history.Episode 52 - Part III - 3:54:08The war of maneuver that was supposed to be over quickly instead turns into a lingering bloody stalemate. Trench warfare begins, and with it, all the murderous efforts on both sides to overcome the static defenses.Episode 53 - Part IV - 3:55:51Machine guns, barbed wire and millions upon millions of artillery shells create industrialized meat grinders at Verdun and the Somme. There’s never been a human experience like it…and it changes a generation.Episode 54 - Part V - 4:29:57Politics, diplomacy, revolution and mutiny take center stage at the start of this episode, but mud, blood, shells and tragedy drown all by the end.Episode 55 - Part VI - 4:16:43The Americans are coming, but will the war be over by the time they get there? Germany throws everything into a last series of stupendous attacks in the West while hoping to avoid getting burned by a fire in the East they helped fan.

The Boy on the Wooden Box


Leon Leyson - 2013
    A remarkable memoir from Leon Leyson, one of the youngest children to survive the Holocaust on Oskar Schindler’s list.Leon Leyson (born Leib Lezjon) was only ten years old when the Nazis invaded Poland and his family was forced to relocate to the Krakow ghetto. With incredible luck, perseverance, and grit, Leyson was able to survive the sadism of the Nazis, including that of the demonic Amon Goeth, commandant of Plaszow, the concentration camp outside Krakow. Ultimately, it was the generosity and cunning of one man, a man named Oskar Schindler, who saved Leon Leyson’s life, and the lives of his mother, his father, and two of his four siblings, by adding their names to his list of workers in his factory—a list that became world renowned: Schindler’s List.This, the only memoir published by a former Schindler’s List child, perfectly captures the innocence of a small boy who goes through the unthinkable. Most notable is the lack of rancor, the lack of venom, and the abundance of dignity in Mr. Leyson’s telling. The Boy on the Wooden Box is a legacy of hope, a memoir unlike anything you’ve ever read.

The Emerald Mile: The Epic Story of the Fastest Ride in History Through the Heart of the Grand Canyon


Kevin Fedarko - 2013
    In the winter of 1983, the largest El Niño event on record—a chain of “superstorms” that swept in from the Pacific Ocean—battered the entire West. That spring, a massive snowmelt sent runoff racing down the Colorado River toward the Glen Canyon Dam, a 710-foot-high wall of concrete that sat at the head of the most iconic landscape feature in America, the Grand Canyon. As the water clawed toward the parapet of the dam, worried federal officials desperately scrambled to avoid a worst-case scenario: one of the most dramatic dam failures in history. In the midst of this crisis, beneath the light of a full moon, a trio of river guides secretly launched a small, hand-built wooden boat, a dory named the Emerald Mile, into the Colorado just below the dam’s base and rocketed toward the dark chasm downstream, where the torrents of water released by the dam engineers had created a rock-walled maelstrom so powerful it shifted giant boulders and created bizarre hydraulic features never previously seen. The river was already choked with the wreckage of commercial rafting trips: injured passengers clung to the remnants of three-ton motorboats that had been turned upside down and torn to pieces. The chaos had claimed its first fatality, further launches were forbidden, and rangers were conducting the largest helicopter evacuation in the history of Grand Canyon National Park. An insurgent river run under such conditions seemed to border on the suicidal, but Kenton Grua, the captain of that dory, was on an unusual mission: a gesture of defiance unlike anything the river world had ever seen. His aim was to use the flood as a hydraulic slingshot that would hurl him and two companions through 277 miles of some of the most ferocious white water in North America and, if everything went as planned, catapult the Emerald Mile into legend as the fastest boat ever propelled—by oar, by motor, or by the grace of God—through the heart of the Grand Canyon. Grua himself was already something of a mythic figure, a fearless boatman obsessed with the mysteries of the canyon. His quest embraced not only the trials of the speed run itself but also the larger story of his predecessors: the men who had first discovered the canyon and pioneered its exploration, as well as those who waged a landmark battle to prevent it from being hog-tied by a series of massive hydroelectric dams—a conflict that continues to this day. A writer who has worked as a river guide himself and is intimately familiar with the canyon’s many secrets, Kevin Fedarko is the ideal narrator for this American epic. The saga of The Emerald Mile is a thrilling adventure, as well as a magisterial portrait of the hidden kingdom of white water at the bottom of the greatest river canyon on earth. This book announces Fedarko as a major writing talent and at last sets forth the full story of an American legend—the legend of The Emerald Mile.

The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism


Edward E. Baptist - 2013
    But to do so robs the millions who suffered in bondage of their full legacy.As historian Edward Baptist reveals in The Half Has Never Been Told, the expansion of slavery in the first eight decades after American independence drove the evolution and modernization of the United States. In the span of a single lifetime, the South grew from a narrow coastal strip of worn-out tobacco plantations to a continental cotton empire, and the United States grew into a modern, industrial, and capitalist economy. Until the Civil War, Baptist explains, the most important American economic innovations were ways to make slavery ever more profitable. Through forced migration and torture, slave owners extracted continual increases in efficiency from enslaved African Americans. Thus the United States seized control of the world market for cotton, the key raw material of the Industrial Revolution, and became a wealthy nation with global influence.Told through intimate slave narratives, plantation records, newspapers, and the words of politicians, entrepreneurs, and escaped slaves, The Half Has Never Been Told offers a radical new interpretation of American history. It forces readers to reckon with the violence at the root of American supremacy, but also with the survival and resistance that brought about slavery’s end—and created a culture that sustains America’s deepest dreams of freedom.

The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics


Daniel James Brown - 2013
    With rowers who were the sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the University of Washington's eight-oar crew was never expected to defeat the elite teams of the East Coast and Great Britain, yet they did, going on to shock the world by challenging the German boat rowing for Adolf Hitler

March: Book One


John Lewis - 2013
    Rooted in Lewis' personal story, it also reflects on the highs and lows of the broader civil rights movement.Book One spans John Lewis' youth in rural Alabama, his life-changing meeting with Martin Luther King, Jr., the birth of the Nashville Student Movement, and their battle to tear down segregation through nonviolent lunch counter sit-ins, building to a stunning climax on the steps of City Hall.Many years ago, John Lewis and other student activists drew inspiration from the 1950s comic book Martin Luther King and the Montgomery Story. Now, his own comics bring those days to life for a new audience, testifying to a movement whose echoes will be heard for generations.(Back flap)

How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of How Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS


David France - 2013
     A riveting, powerful telling of the story of the grassroots movement of activists, many of them in a life-or-death struggle, who seized upon scientific research to help develop the drugs that turned HIV from a mostly fatal infection to a manageable disease. Ignored by public officials, religious leaders, and the nation at large, and confronted with shame and hatred, this small group of men and women chose to fight for their right to live by educating themselves and demanding to become full partners in the race for effective treatments. Around the globe, 16 million people are alive today thanks to their efforts. Not since the publication of Randy Shilts's classic And the Band Played On has a book measured the AIDS plague in such brutally human, intimate, and soaring terms. In dramatic fashion, we witness the founding of ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group), and the rise of an underground drug market in opposition to the prohibitively expensive (and sometimes toxic) AZT. We watch as these activists learn to become their own researchers, lobbyists, drug smugglers, and clinicians, establishing their own newspapers, research journals, and laboratories, and as they go on to force reform in the nation s disease-fighting agencies. With his unparalleled access to this community David France illuminates the lives of extraordinary characters, including the closeted Wall Street trader-turned-activist, the high school dropout who found purpose battling pharmaceutical giants in New York, the South African physician who helped establish the first officially recognized buyers club at the height of the epidemic, and the public relations executive fighting to save his own life for the sake of his young daughter. Expansive yet richly detailed, this is an insider's account of a pivotal moment in the history of American civil rights. Powerful, heart-wrenching, and finally exhilarating, How to Survive a Plague is destined to become an essential part of the literature of AIDS.

Five Days in November


Clint Hill - 2013
    Kennedy and Me share the stories behind the five infamous, tragic days surrounding JFK’s assassination—alongside revealing and iconic photographs—published in remembrance of the beloved president on the fiftieth anniversary of his death.On November 22, 1963, three shots were fired in Dallas, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, and the world stopped for four days. For an entire generation, it was the end of an age of innocence. That evening, a photo ran on the front pages of newspapers across the world, showing a Secret Service agent jumping on the back of the presidential limousine in a desperate attempt to protect the President and Mrs. Kennedy. That agent was Clint Hill. Now Secret Service Agent Clint Hill commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of the tragedy with this stunning book containing more than 150 photos, each accompanied by Hill’s incomparable insider account of those terrible days. With poignant narration accompanying rarely seen images, we witness three-year-old John Kennedy Jr.’s pleas to come to Texas with his parents and the rapturous crowds of mixed ages and races that greeted the Kennedys at every stop in Texas. We stand beside a shaken Lyndon Johnson as he is hurriedly sworn in as the new president. We experience the first lady’s steely courage when she insists on walking through the streets of Washington, D.C., in her husband’s funeral procession. A story that has taken Clint Hill fifty years to tell, this is a work of personal and historical scope. Besides the unbearable grief of a nation and the monumental consequences of the event, the death of JFK was a personal blow to a man sworn to protect the first family, and who knew, from the moment the shots rang out in Dallas, that nothing would ever be the same.

Hitler: Ascent 1889-1939


Volker Ullrich - 2013
    For all the literature about Adolf Hitler there have been just four seminal biographies; this is the fifth, a landmark work that sheds important new light on Hitler himself. Drawing on previously unseen papers and a wealth of recent scholarly research, Volker Ullrich reveals the man behind the public persona, from Hitler's childhood to his failures as a young man in Vienna to his experiences during the First World War to his rise as a far-right party leader. Ullrich deftly captures Hitler's intelligence, instinctive grasp of politics, and gift for oratory as well as his megalomania, deep insecurity, and repulsive worldview. Many previous biographies have focused on the larger social conditions that explain the rise of the Third Reich. Ullrich gives us a comprehensive portrait of a postwar Germany humiliated by defeat, wracked by political crisis, and starved by an economic depression, but his real gift is to show vividly how Hitler used his ruthlessness and political talent to shape the Nazi party and lead it to power. For decades the world has tried to grasp how Hitler was possible. By focusing on the man at the center of it all, on how he experienced his world, formed his political beliefs, and wielded power, this riveting biography brings us closer than ever to the answer. Translated from the German by Jefferson Chase.

Letters of Note: An Eclectic Collection of Correspondence Deserving of a Wider Audience


Shaun Usher - 2013
    Kennedy, Groucho Marx, Charles Dickens, Katharine Hepburn, Mick Jagger, Steve Martin, Clementine Churchill, Ray Bradbury, Kurt Vonnegut and many more.

The Aviators: Eddie Rickenbacker, Jimmy Doolittle, Charles Lindbergh, and the Epic Age of Flight


Winston Groom - 2013
    These cleverly interwoven tales of their heart-stopping adventures take us from the feats of World War I through the heroism of World War II and beyond, including daring military raids and survival-at-sea, and will appeal to fans of Unbroken, The Greatest Generation, and Flyboys. With the world in peril in World War II, each man set aside great success and comfort to return to the skies for his most daring mission yet. Doolittle, a brilliant aviation innovator, would lead the daring Tokyo Raid to retaliate for Pearl Harbor; Lindbergh, hero of the first solo flight across the Atlantic, would fly combat missions in the South Pacific; and Rickenbacker, World War I flying ace, would bravely hold his crew together while facing near-starvation and circling sharks after his plane went down in a remote part of the Pacific. Groom's rich narrative tells their intertwined stories--from broken homes to Medals of Honor (all three would receive it); barnstorming to the greatest raid of World War II; front-page triumph to anguished tragedy; and near-death to ultimate survival--as all took to the sky, time and again, to become exemplars of the spirit of the "greatest generation."

Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party


Joshua Bloom - 2013
    Unlike the Civil Rights Movement that called for full citizenship rights for blacks within the U.S., the Black Panther Party rejected the legitimacy of the U.S. government and positioned itself as part of a global struggle against American imperialism. In the face of intense repression, the Party flourished, becoming the center of a revolutionary movement with offices in 68 U.S. cities and powerful allies around the world.Black against Empire is the first comprehensive overview and analysis of the history and politics of the Black Panther Party. The authors analyze key political questions, such as why so many young black people across the country risked their lives for the revolution, why the Party grew most rapidly during the height of repression, and why allies abandoned the Party at its peak of influence. Bold, engrossing, and richly detailed, this book cuts through the mythology and obfuscation, revealing the political dynamics that drove the explosive growth of this revolutionary movement, and its disastrous unraveling. Informed by twelve years of meticulous archival research, as well as familiarity with most of the former Party leadership and many rank-and-file members, this book is the definitive history of one of the greatest challenges ever posed to American state power. Read an excerpt here: Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party by Joshua Bloom and Waldo E. Mart... by University of California Press Listen to an interview with the authors here:http://www.ucpress.edu/book.php?isbn=...

One Man's View of the World


Lee Kuan Yew - 2013
    This is no dry geopolitical treatise. Nor is it a thematic account of the twists and turns in global affairs. Instead, in this broad-sweep narrative that takes in America, China, Asia and Europe, he parses their society, probes the psyche of the people and draws his conclusions about their chances for survival and just where they might land in the hierarchy of tomorrow's balance of power. What makes a society tick? What do its people really believe? Can it adapt? In spare, unflinching prose that eschews political correctness, he describes a China that remains obsessed with control from the centre on its way to an unstoppable rise; an America that will have to share its pre-eminence despite its never-say-die dynamism; and a Europe that struggles with the challenges of keeping its union intact. His candid and often startling views on why Japan is closed to foreigners, why the Arab Spring won't bring one man, one vote to the Middle East, and why preventing global warming is not going to be as fruitful as preparing for it; make this a fresh and gripping read. Lee completes the book by looking into the future of Singapore, his enduring concern and by offering the reader a glimpse into his personal life and his view of death. The book is interspersed with a Q&A section in each chapter, gleaned from conversations he had with journalists from The Straits Times.

Auschwitz Escape: The Klara Wizel Story


Danny Naten - 2013
    But her spirit quails when she and her family are swept up with fifteen thousand other Hungarian Jews and forcibly transported to one of the world's most infamous concentration camps: Auschwitz-Birkenau. There Klara comes face to face with one of history’s most infamous Nazi doctors, nicknamed The Great Selector and the Murderer in White, Josef Mengele. Klara watches in horror as Mengele sends her parents, her younger brother, and her older sister to the gas chamber, leaving Klara and her two remaining sisters to be housed like animals in the women's barracks. They live in constant fear of Mengele choosing them for one of his cruel scientific experiments.As the Russian allies close in, Mengele steps up his selection process and sentences Klara to the gas chamber. But in a miraculous turn of events, Klara escapes both the chamber and Auschwitz itself and makes her way across war-torn Europe back home to Sighet.The only survivor of record to escape Mengele's notorious death selection process, Klara's is an extraordinary and inspirational story of survival and resilience in the face of deep loss and extreme cruelty.

Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety


Eric Schlosser - 2013
    A groundbreaking account of accidents, near misses, extraordinary heroism, and technological breakthroughs, Command and Control explores the dilemma that has existed since the dawn of the nuclear age: How do you deploy weapons of mass destruction without being destroyed by them? That question has never been resolved—and Schlosser reveals how the combination of human fallibility and technological complexity still poses a grave risk to mankind. While the harms of global warming increasingly dominate the news, the equally dangerous yet more immediate threat of nuclear weapons has been largely forgotten.Written with the vibrancy of a first-rate thriller, Command and Control interweaves the minute-by-minute story of an accident at a nuclear missile silo in rural Arkansas with a historical narrative that spans more than fifty years. It depicts the urgent effort by American scientists, policy makers, and military officers to ensure that nuclear weapons can’t be stolen, sabotaged, used without permission, or detonated inadvertently. Schlosser also looks at the Cold War from a new perspective, offering history from the ground up, telling the stories of bomber pilots, missile commanders, maintenance crews, and other ordinary servicemen who risked their lives to avert a nuclear holocaust. At the heart of the book lies the struggle, amid the rolling hills and small farms of Damascus, Arkansas, to prevent the explosion of a ballistic missile carrying the most powerful nuclear warhead ever built by the United States.Drawing on recently declassified documents and interviews with people who designed and routinely handled nuclear weapons, Command and Control takes readers into a terrifying but fascinating world that, until now, has been largely hidden from view. Through the details of a single accident, Schlosser illustrates how an unlikely event can become unavoidable, how small risks can have terrible consequences, and how the most brilliant minds in the nation can only provide us with an illusion of control. Audacious, gripping, and unforgettable, Command and Control is a tour de force of investigative journalism, an eye-opening look at the dangers of America’s nuclear age.

Return of a King: The Battle for Afghanistan


William Dalrymple - 2013
    In 1842, the Afghan people rose in answer to the call for jihad against the foreign occupiers, and the country exploded into violent rebellion. In what is arguably the greatest military humiliation ever suffered by the West in the East, more than eighteen thousand cold and hungry British troops, Indian sepoys and camp followers retreated through the icy mountain passes, and of the last survivors who made their final stand at the village of Gandamak, only one man, Dr Brydon, made it through to the British garrison at Jellalabad. An entire army of what was then the most powerful military nation in the world was utterly routed by poorly equipped tribesmen. The West's first disastrous entanglement in Afghanistan has clear and relevant parallels with the current deepening crisis today, with extraordinary similarities between what NATO faces in cities like Kabul and Kandahar, and that faced by the British in the very same cities, fighting the very same tribes, nearly two centuries ago. History at its most urgent, The Return of a King is the definitive analysis of the first Afghan war. With access to a whole range of previously undiscovered sources, including crucial new material in Russian, Urdu and Persian, and contemporary Afghan accounts including the autobiography of Shah Shuja himself, prize-winning and bestselling historian William Dalrymple's masterful retelling of Britain's greatest imperial disaster is a powerful and important parable of neo-colonial ambition and cultural collision, folly and hubris, for our times.

Voices of the Pacific: Untold Stories from the Marine Heroes of World War II


Adam Makos - 2013
    Unflinching, brutal, and relentless, Voices of the Pacific will leave a reader gasping for air and dumbstruck in awe of the old heroes who won the Pacific war with bare hands, bayonets, and guts.The book presents accounts of heroism and honor as told by World War II veterans Sid Phillips, R.V. Burgin, and Chuck Tatum—whose exploits were featured in the HBO mini-series The Pacific—and their Marine buddies from the legendary 1st Marine Division.These Marines trace the action from the Pearl Harbor attack and intense boot camp training through battles with the Japanese on Guadalcanal, Cape Gloucester, Peleliu, and Okinawa, to their return home after V-J Day. With unflinching honesty, these men reveal harrowing accounts of combat with an implacable enemy, the friendships and camaraderie they found—and lost—and the aftermath of the war’s impact on their lives.With unprecedented access to the veterans, never-before-seen photographs, and unpublished memoirs, Makos and Brotherton have forged Voices of the Pacific into an incredible historic record of American bravery and sacrifice.

Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America's Police Forces


Radley Balko - 2013
    As a result, our country has generally worked to keep the military out of law enforcement. But according to investigative reporter Radley Balko, over the last several decades, America’s cops have increasingly come to resemble ground troops. The consequences have been dire: the home is no longer a place of sanctuary, the Fourth Amendment has been gutted, and police today have been conditioned to see the citizens they serve as an other—an enemy.Today’s armored-up policemen are a far cry from the constables of early America. The unrest of the 1960s brought about the invention of the SWAT unit—which in turn led to the debut of military tactics in the ranks of police officers. Nixon’s War on Drugs, Reagan’s War on Poverty, Clinton’s COPS program, the post–9/11 security state under Bush and Obama: by degrees, each of these innovations expanded and empowered police forces, always at the expense of civil liberties. And these are just four among a slew of reckless programs.In Rise of the Warrior Cop, Balko shows how politicians’ ill-considered policies and relentless declarations of war against vague enemies like crime, drugs, and terror have blurred the distinction between cop and soldier. His fascinating, frightening narrative shows how over a generation, a creeping battlefield mentality has isolated and alienated American police officers and put them on a collision course with the values of a free society.

Hanns and Rudolf: The True Story of the German Jew Who Tracked Down and Caught the Kommandant of Auschwitz


Thomas Harding - 2013
    In the aftermath of the Second Word War, the first British War Crimes Investigation Team is assembled to hunt down the senior Nazi officials responsible for the greatest atrocities the world has ever seen. One of the lead investigators is Lieutenant Hanns Alexander, a German Jew who is now serving in the British Army. Rudolf Höss is his most elusive target. As Kommandant of Auschwitz, Höss not only oversaw the murder of more than one million men, women, and children; he was the man who perfected Hitler’s program of mass extermination. Höss is on the run across a continent in ruins, the one man whose testimony can ensure justice at Nuremberg. Hanns and Rudolf reveals for the very first time the full, exhilarating account of Höss’s capture, an encounter with repercussions that echo to this day. Moving from the Middle Eastern campaigns of the First World War to bohemian Berlin in the 1920s to the horror of the concentration camps and the trials in Belsen and Nuremberg, it tells the story of two German men- one Jewish, one Catholic- whose lives diverged, and intersected, in an astonishing way.

Dissolving Illusions


Suzanne Humphries - 2013
    Since that time, many countries have undergone a transformation from disease cesspools to much safer, healthier habitats. Starting in the mid-1800s, there was a steady drop in deaths from all infectious diseases, decreasing to relatively minor levels by the early 1900s. The history of that transformation involves famine, poverty, filth, lost cures, eugenicist doctrine, individual freedoms versus state might, protests and arrests over vaccine refusal, and much more. Today, we are told that medical interventions increased our lifespan and single-handedly prevented masses of deaths. But is this really true? Dissolving Illusions details facts and figures from long-overlooked medical journals, books, newspapers, and other sources. Using myth-shattering graphs, this book shows that vaccines, antibiotics, and other medical interventions are not responsible for the increase in lifespan and the decline in mortality from infectious diseases. If the medical profession could systematically misinterpret and ignore key historical information, the question must be asked, “What else is ignored and misinterpreted today?” Perhaps the best reason to know our history is so that the worst parts are never repeated.

The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic


Mark R. Levin - 2013
    The result is an ongoing and growing assault on individual liberty, state sovereignty, and the social compact. Levin argues that if we cherish our American heritage, it is time to embrace a constitutional revival. The delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia and the delegates to each state’s ratification convention foresaw a time when—despite their best efforts to forestall it—the Federal government might breach the Constitution’s limits and begin oppressing the people. Agencies such as the IRS and EPA and programs such as Obamacare demonstrate that the Framers’ fear was prescient. Therefore, the Framers provided two methods for amending the Constitution. The second was intended for our current circumstances—empowering the states to bypass Congress and call a convention for the purpose of amending the Constitution. Levin argues that we, the people, can avoid a perilous outcome by seeking recourse, using the method called for in the Constitution itself. The Framers adopted ten constitutional amendments, called the Bill of Rights, that would preserve individual rights and state authority. Levin lays forth eleven specific prescriptions for restoring our founding principles, ones that are consistent with the Framers’ design. His proposals—such as term limits for members of Congress and Supreme Court justices and limits on federal taxing and spending—are pure common sense, ideas shared by many. They draw on the wisdom of the Founding Fathers—including James Madison, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and numerous lesser-known but crucially important men—in their content and in the method for applying them to the current state of the nation. Now is the time for the American people to take the first step toward reclaiming what belongs to them. The task is daunting, but it is imperative if we are to be truly free.

The Blood Telegram: Nixon, Kissinger, and a Forgotten Genocide


Gary J. Bass - 2013
    Gary J. Bass shows how Nixon and Kissinger supported Pakistan’s military dictatorship as it brutally quashed the results of a historic free election. The Pakistani army launched a crackdown on what was then East Pakistan (today an independent Bangladesh), killing hundreds of thousands of people and sending ten million refugees fleeing to India—one of the worst humanitarian crises of the twentieth century.Nixon and Kissinger, unswayed by detailed warnings of genocide from American diplomats witnessing the bloodshed, stood behind Pakistan’s military rulers. Driven not just by Cold War realpolitik but by a bitter personal dislike of India and its leader Indira Gandhi, Nixon and Kissinger actively helped the Pakistani government even as it careened toward a devastating war against India. They silenced American officials who dared to speak up, secretly encouraged China to mass troops on the Indian border, and illegally supplied weapons to the Pakistani military—an overlooked scandal that presages Watergate.Drawing on previously unheard White House tapes, recently declassified documents, and extensive interviews with White House staffers and Indian military leaders, The Blood Telegram tells this thrilling, shadowy story in full. Bringing us into the drama of a crisis exploding into war, Bass follows reporters, consuls, and guerrilla warriors on the ground—from the desperate refugee camps to the most secretive conversations in the Oval Office. Bass makes clear how the United States’ embrace of the military dictatorship in Islamabad would mold Asia’s destiny for decades, and confronts for the first time Nixon and Kissinger’s hidden role in a tragedy that was far bloodier than Bosnia. This is a revelatory, compulsively readable work of politics, personalities, military confrontation, and Cold War brinksmanship.

Panzer Ace: The Memoirs of an Iron Cross Panzer Commander from Barbarossa to Normandy


Richard Freiherr von Rosen - 2013
    His memoirs are richly illustrated with contemporary photographs, including key confrontations of World War II.After serving as a gunlayer on a Pz.Mk.III during Barbarossa, he led a Company of Tigers at Kursk. Later he led a company of King Tiger panzers at Normandy and in late 1944 commanded a battle group (12 King Tigers and a flak Company) against the Russians in Hungary in the rank of junior, later senior lieutenant (from November 1944, his final rank.) 
Only 489 of these King Tiger tanks were ever built. They were the most powerful heavy tanks to see service, and only one kind of shell could penetrate their armor at a reasonable distance.Every effort had to be made to retrieve any of them bogged down or otherwise immobilized, which led to many towing adventures. The author has a fine memory and eye for detail. His account is easy to read and not technical, and adds substantially to the knowledge of how the German Panzer Arm operated in the Second World War.

How Asia Works: Success and Failure in the World's Most Dynamic Region


Joe Studwell - 2013
    Japan was going to dominate, then China. Countries were called “tigers” or “mini-dragons,” and were seen as not just development prodigies, but as a unified bloc, culturally and economically similar, and inexorably on the rise.Joe Studwell has spent two decades as a reporter in the region, and The Financial Times said he “should be named chief myth-buster for Asian business.” In How Asia Works, Studwell distills his extensive research into the economies of nine countries—Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, and China—into an accessible, readable narrative that debunks Western misconceptions, shows what really happened in Asia and why, and for once makes clear why some countries have boomed while others have languished.Studwell’s in-depth analysis focuses on three main areas: land policy, manufacturing, and finance. Land reform has been essential to the success of Asian economies, giving a kick start to development by utilizing a large workforce and providing capital for growth. With manufacturing, industrial development alone is not sufficient, Studwell argues. Instead, countries need “export discipline,” a government that forces companies to compete on the global scale. And in finance, effective regulation is essential for fostering, and sustaining growth. To explore all of these subjects, Studwell journeys far and wide, drawing on fascinating examples from a Philippine sugar baron’s stifling of reform to the explosive growth at a Korean steel mill.Thoroughly researched and impressive in scope, How Asia Works is essential reading for anyone interested in the development of these dynamic countries, a region that will shape the future of the world.

Imitate Their Faith


Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society - 2013
    The chapters that follow are a compilation of articles from the Imitate Their Faith series published in The Watchtower between 2008 and 2013. However, some new material has been added. Questions are provided for discussion and application. Many colorful, detailed illustrations have been created for this volume, and existing ones have been enlarged and enhanced. Other helpful features, such as a timeline and maps, have been included. Imitate Their Faith is a tool designed for personal, family, and congregation study. Many families might also enjoy simply reading the stories aloud together.May this book help you to imitate the faith of Jehovah’s loyal servants from the past—and may it help you to grow in faith as you draw closer to your heavenly Father, Jehovah!

My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel


Ari Shavit - 2013
    Facing unprecedented internal and external pressures, Israel today is at a moment of existential crisis. Through revealing stories of significant events and of ordinary individuals—pioneers, immigrants, entrepreneurs, scientists, army generals, peaceniks, settlers, and Palestinians—Israeli journalist Ari Shavit illuminates many of the pivotal moments of the Zionist century that led Israel to where it is today. We meet the youth group leader who recognized the potential of Masada as a powerful symbol for Zionism; the young farmer who bought an orange grove from his Arab neighbor in the 1920s, and with the Jaffa orange helped to create a booming economy in Palestine; the engineer who was instrumental in developing Israel’s nuclear program; the religious Zionists who started the settler movement. Over an illustrious career that has spanned almost thirty years, Shavit has had rare access to people from across the Israeli political, economic, and social spectrum, and in this ambitious work he tells a riveting story that is both deeply human and of profound historical dimension.As it examines the complexities and contradictions of the Israeli condition, My Promised Land asks difficult but important questions: Why did Israel come to be? How did it come to be? And can Israel survive? Culminating with an analysis of the issues and threats that Israel is currently facing, both internal and external, My Promised Land uses the defining events of the past to shed new light on the present. The result is a landmark portrait of a small, vibrant country living on the edge, whose identity and presence play a crucial role in today’s global political landscape.

The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914


Margaret MacMillan - 2013
    But in 1914, Europe walked into a catastrophic conflict that killed millions, bled its economies dry, shook empires and societies to pieces, and fatally undermined Europe’s dominance of the world. It was a war that could have been avoided up to the last moment—so why did it happen?Beginning in the early nineteenth century and ending with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, award-winning historian Margaret Macmillan uncovers the huge political and technological changes, national decisions, and just as important, the small moments of human muddle and weakness that led Europe from peace to disaster. This masterful exploration of how Europe chose its path towards war will change and enrich how we see this defining moment in history.

7 Men: And the Secret of Their Greatness


Eric Metaxas - 2013
    Written in a beautiful and engaging style, Seven Men addresses what it means (or should mean) to be a man today, at a time when media and popular culture present images of masculinity that are not the picture presented in Scripture and historic civil life. What does it take to be a true exemplar as a father, brother, husband, leader, coach, counselor, change agent, and wise man? What does it mean to stand for honesty, courage, and charity, especially at times when the culture and the world run counter to those values?Each of the seven biographies represents the life of a man who experienced the struggles and challenges to be strong in the face of forces and circumstances that would have destroyed the resolve of lesser men. Each of the seven men profiled—George Washington, William Wilberforce, Eric Liddell, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Jackie Robinson, John Paul II, and Charles Colson—call the reader to a more elevated walk and lifestyle, one that embodies the gospel in the world around us.

Heavenly Bodies: Cult Treasures & Spectacular Saints from the Catacombs


Paul Koudounaris - 2013
    The fully articulated skeleton of a female saint, dressed in an intricate costume of silk brocade and gold lace, withered fingers glittering with colorful rubies, emeralds, and pearls this is only one of the specially photographed relics featured in Heavenly Bodies. In 1578 news came of the discovery in Rome of a labyrinth of underground tombs, which were thought to hold the remains of thousands of early Christian martyrs. Skeletons of these supposed saints were subsequently sent to Catholic churches and religious houses in German-speaking Europe to replace holy relics that had been destroyed in the wake of the Protestant Reformation. The skeletons, known as the catacomb saints, were carefully reassembled, richly dressed in fantastic costumes, wigs, crowns, jewels, and armor, and posed in elaborate displays inside churches and shrines as reminders to the faithful of the heavenly treasures that awaited them after death. Paul Koudounaris gained unprecedented access to religious institutions to reveal these fascinating historical artifacts. Hidden for over a century as Western attitudes toward both the worship of holy relics and death itself changed, some of these ornamented skeletons appear in publication here for the first time."

The German War: A Nation Under Arms


Nicholas Stargardt - 2013
    How and why, then, did the Germans prolong the barbaric conflict for three and a half more years?In The German War, acclaimed historian Nicholas Stargardt draws on an extraordinary range of primary source materials—personal diaries, court records, and military correspondence—to answer this question. He offers an unprecedented portrait of wartime Germany, bringing the hopes and expectations of the German people—from infantrymen and tank commanders on the Eastern front to civilians on the home front—to vivid life. While most historians identify the German defeat at Stalingrad as the moment when the average German citizen turned against the war effort, Stargardt demonstrates that the Wehrmacht in fact retained the staunch support of the patriotic German populace until the bitter end.Astonishing in its breadth and humanity, The German War is a groundbreaking new interpretation of what drove the Germans to fight—and keep fighting—for a lost cause.

Our Moon Has Blood Clots: The Exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits


Rahul Pandita - 2013
    The heartbreaking story of Kashmir has so far been told through the prism of the brutality of the Indian state, and the pro-independence demands of separatists. But there is another part of the story that has remained unrecorded and buried. Our Moon Has Blood Clots is the unspoken chapter in the story of Kashmir, in which it was purged of the Kashmiri Pandit community in a violent ethnic cleansing backed by Islamist militants. Hundreds of people were tortured and killed, and about 3,50,000 Kashmiri Pandits were forced to leave their homes and spend the rest of their lives in exile in their own country. Rahul Pandita has written a deeply personal, powerful and unforgettable story of history, home and loss.

Intellectuals and Race


Thomas Sowell - 2013
    The role of intellectuals in racial strife is explored in an international context that puts the American experience in a wholly new light. The views of individual intellectuals have spanned the spectrum, but the views of intellectuals as a whole have tended to cluster. Indeed, these views have clustered at one end of the spectrum in the early twentieth century and then clustered at the opposite end of the spectrum in the late twentieth century. Moreover, these radically different views of race in these two eras were held by intellectuals whose views on other issues were very similar in both eras.Intellectuals and Race is not, however, a book about history, even though it has much historical evidence, as well as demographic, geographic, economic and statistical evidence -- all of it directed toward testing the underlying assumptions about race that have prevailed at times among intellectuals in general, and especially intellectuals at the highest levels. Nor is this simply a theoretical exercise. The impact of intellectuals' ideas and crusades on the larger society, both past and present, is the ultimate concern. These ideas and crusades have ranged widely from racial theories of intelligence to eugenics to "social justice" and multiculturalism. In addition to in-depth examinations of these and other issues, Intellectuals and Race explores the incentives, the visions and the rationales that drive intellectuals at the highest levels to conclusions that have often turned out to be counterproductive and even disastrous, not only for particular racial or ethnic groups, but for societies as a whole.

Gettysburg: The Last Invasion


Allen C. Guelzo - 2013
    Guelzo shows us the face, the sights and sounds of nineteenth-century combat: the stone walls and gunpowder clouds of Pickett's Charge; the reason that the Army of Northern Virginia could be smelled before it could be seen; the march of thousands of men from the banks of the Rappahannock in Virginia to the Pennsylvania hills. What emerges is a previously untold story: from the personal politics roiling the Union and Confederate officer ranks, to the peculiar character of artillery units. Through such scrutiny the cornerstone battle of the Civil War is given extraordinarily vivid new life.

Minding the Manor: The Memoir of a 1930s English Kitchen Maid


Mollie Moran - 2013
    She provides a rare and fascinating insight into a world that has long since vanished. Mollie left school at age fourteen and became a scullery maid for a wealthy gentleman with a mansion house in London’s Knighsbridge and a Tudor manor in Norfolk.            Even though Mollie's days were long and grueling and included endless tasks, such as polishing doorknobs, scrubbing steps, and helping with all of the food prep in the kitchen, she enjoyed her freedom and had a rich life. Like any bright-eyed teenager, Mollie also spent her days daydreaming about boys, dresses, and dances. She became fast friends with the kitchen maid Flo, dated a sweet farmhand, and became secretly involved with a brooding, temperamental footman. Molly eventually rose to kitchen maid for Lord Islington and then cook for the Earl of Leicester's niece at the magnificent Wallington Hall.

This Divided Island: Stories from the Sri Lankan War


Samanth Subramanian - 2013
    For nearly thirty years, the war's fingers had reached everywhere: into the bustle of Colombo, the Buddhist monasteries scattered across the island, the soft hills of central Sri Lanka, the curves of the eastern coast near Batticaloa and Trincomalee and the stark, hot north. With its genius for brutality, the war left few places and fewer people, untouched.What happens to the texture of life in a country that endures such bitter conflict? What happens to the country's soul? Samanth Subramanian gives us an extraordinary account of the Sri Lankan war and the lives it changed. Taking us to the ghosts of summers past and to other battles from other times, he draws out the story of Sri Lanka today-an exhausted, disturbed society, still hot from the embers of the war. Through travels and conversations, he examines how people reconcile themselves to violence, how religion and state conspire, how the powerful become cruel and how victory can be put to the task of reshaping memory and burying histories.This Divided Island is a harrowing and humane investigation of a country still inflamed.

How to Be a Victorian


Ruth Goodman - 2013
    . .We know what life was like for Victoria and Albert, but what was it like for a commoner? How did it feel to cook with coal and wash with tea leaves? Drink beer for breakfast and clean your teeth with cuttlefish? Dress in whalebone and feed opium to the baby? Catch the omnibus to work and wash laundry while wearing a corset? How To Be A Victorian is a new approach to history, a journey back in time more intimate, personal, and physical than anything before. It is one told from the inside out--how our forebears interacted with the practicalities of their world--and it's a history of those things that make up the day-to-day reality of life, matters so small and seemingly mundane that people scarcely mention them in their diaries or letters. Moving through the rhythm of the day, from waking up to the sound of a knocker-upper man poking a stick at your window, to retiring for nocturnal activities, when the door finally closes on twenty-four hours of life, this astonishing guide illuminates the overlapping worlds of health, sex, fashion, food, school, work, and play.If you liked The Time Traveller's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century or 1000 Years of Annoying the French, you will love this book.

Brave Girl: Clara and the Shirtwaist Makers' Strike of 1909


Michelle Markel - 2013
    She didn't know that young women had to go to work, that they traded an education for long hours of labor, that she was expected to grow up fast. But that did not stop Clara. She went to night school, spent hours studying English, and helped support her family by sewing in a factory. Clara never quit. And she never accepted that girls should be treated poorly and paid little. So Clara fought back. Fed up with the mistreatment of her fellow laborers, Clara led the largest walkout of women workers in the country's history. Clara had learned a lot from her short time in America. She learned that everyone deserved a fair chance. That you had to stand together and fight for what you wanted. And, most importantly, that you could do anything you put your mind to.“In her simple but powerful text Markel shows how multiple arrests, serious physical attacks, and endless misogyny failed to deter this remarkable woman as she set off on her lifelong path as a union activist.” --The Horn Book

Food: A Cultural Culinary History


Ken Albala - 2013
    As a result, whether we realize it or not, the drive to obtain food has been a major catalyst across all of history, from prehistoric times to the present. Epicure Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin said it best: "Gastronomy governs the whole life of man." In fact, civilization itself began in the quest for food. Humanity's transition to agriculture was not only the greatest social revolution in history, but it directly produced the structures and institutions we call "civilization." In 36 fascinating lectures, award-winning Professor Albala puts this extraordinary subject on the table, taking you on an enthralling journey into the human relationship to food. With this innovative course, you'll travel the world discovering fascinating food lore and culture of all regions and eras - as an eye-opening lesson in history as well as a unique window on what we eat today.

Moonfixer (Appalachian Journey Book 2)


C.C. Tillery - 2013
    In the dawning years of the 20th century, Bessie Daniels leaves her home town of Hot Springs and travels east over the mountains to live with her new husband Fletcher Elliott in the Broad River section of North Carolina.Bess and Fletch stay with Fletcher’s parents for the first five years of their married life with Bessie teaching in a one-room schoolhouse and Fletcher working at the lumber mill in Old Fort while they save to buy property of their own on Stone Mountain.In 1906, they purchase 400 acres of the old Zachariah Solomon Plantation which includes a small house with a shack beside it, a branch of Cedar Creek and a row of dilapidated slave cabins...And ghosts.Thus begins Bessie’s next phase of life where the gift of sight she inherited from her Cherokee ancestors grows stronger, her healing abilities are put to the test, and she encounters a vicious secret society that tries to force her and Fletcher to turn their backs on a family sharecropping and living in one of the cabins.When Bessie and Fletch refuse to give in to their demands, the group strikes back, bringing pain and suffering to their once serene existence on Stone Mountain.

The Dog Who Could Fly: The Incredible True Story of a WWII Airman and the Four-Legged Hero Who Flew At His Side


Damien Lewis - 2013
    One was an orphaned puppy, abandoned by his owners as they fled Nazi forces. The other was a different kind of lost soul; a Czech airman bound for the Royal Air Force and the country that he would come to call home.Airman Robert Bozdech stumbled across the tiny German shepherd - whom he named Ant - after being shot down on a daring mission over enemy lines. Unable to desert his charge, Robert hid Ant inside his jacket as he escaped. In the months that followed the pair would save each other's lives countless times as they flew together with Bomber Command. And though Ant was eventually grounded due to injury, he refused to abandon his duty, waiting patiently beside the runway for his master's return from every sortie, and refusing food and sleep until they were reunited. By the end of the war Robert and Ant had become British war heroes, and Ant was justly awarded the Dickin Medal, the Animal VC.With beautiful vintage black-and-white photos of Robert and Ant, The Dog Who Could Fly is a deeply moving story of loyalty in the face of adversity and the unshakable bond between a man and his best friend.

Their Life's Work: The Brotherhood of the 1970s Pittsburgh Steelers, Then and Now


Gary M. Pomerantz - 2013
    Four Super Bowl championships. Twelve Hall of Famers. Two hundred interviews.They were the best to ever play the game: the Pittsburgh Steelers of the 1970s. Three decades later their names echo in popular memory—Mean Joe, Bradshaw, Webster, Lambert, Ham, Blount, Franco, Swann, and Stallworth. They define not only the brother­hood and camaraderie of football, but what Americans love about their most popular sport: its artistry and its brutality. From the team’s origins in a horseplayer’s winnings to the young armored gods who immaculately beat the Raiders in 1972 to the grandfathers with hobbles in their gait, Their Life’s Work tells the full, intimate story of the Steeler dynasty. But this book does much more than that: it tells football’s story. What the game gives, what it takes, and why, to a man, every Steeler, full well knowing the costs, unhesitatingly states, “I’d do it again.”

The Great War: July 1, 1916: The First Day of the Battle of the Somme


Joe Sacco - 2013
    Crumb and Art Spiegelman” (Economist) comes a monumental, wordless depiction of the most infamous day of World War I.Launched on July 1, 1916, the Battle of the Somme has come to epitomize the madness of the First World War. Almost 20,000 British soldiers were killed and another 40,000 were wounded that first day, and there were more than one million casualties by the time the offensive halted. In The Great War, acclaimed cartoon journalist Joe Sacco depicts the events of that day in an extraordinary, 24-foot- long panorama: from General Douglas Haig and the massive artillery positions behind the trench lines to the legions of soldiers going “over the top” and getting cut down in no-man’s-land, to the tens of thousands of wounded soldiers retreating and the dead being buried en masse. Printed on fine accordion-fold paper and packaged in a deluxe slipcase with a 16-page booklet, The Great War is a landmark in Sacco’s illustrious career and allows us to see the War to End All Wars as we’ve never seen it before.

The Siege: 68 Hours Inside The Taj Hotel


Adrian Levy - 2013
    On the night of November 26, Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorists attacked targets throughout the city, including the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, one of the world’s most exclusive luxury hotels. For sixty-eight hours, hundreds were held hostage as shots rang out and an enormous fire raged. When the smoke cleared, thirty-one people were dead and many more had been injured. Only the courageous actions of staff and guests—including Mallika Jagad, Bob Nichols, and Taj general manager Binny Kang—prevented a much higher death toll.With a deep understanding of the region and its politics and a narrative flair reminiscent of Midnight in Peking, journalists Cathy Scott-Clark and Adrian Levy vividly unfold the tragic events in a real-life thriller filled with suspense, tragedy, history, and heroism.

Unfathomable City: A New Orleans Atlas


Rebecca Solnit - 2013
    More than twenty essays assemble a chorus of vibrant voices, including geographers, scholars of sugar and bananas, the city's remarkable musicians, prison activists, environmentalists, Arab and Native voices, and local experts, as well as the coauthors' compelling contributions. Featuring 22 full-color two-page-spread maps, Unfathomable City plumbs the depths of this major tourist destination, pivotal scene of American history and culture and, most recently, site of monumental disasters such as Hurricane Katrina and the BP oil spill.The innovative maps' precision and specificity shift our notions of the Mississippi, the Caribbean, Mardi Gras, jazz, soils and trees, generational roots, and many other subjects, and expand our ideas of how any city is imagined and experienced. Together with the inspired texts, they show New Orleans as both an imperiled city--by erosion, crime, corruption, and sea level rise--and an ageless city that lives in music as a form of cultural resistance. Compact, lively, and completely original, Unfathomable City takes readers on a tour that will forever change the way they think about place.Read an excerpt here: Unfathomable City: A New Orleans Atlas by Rebecca Solnit and Rebecca Snedeker by University of California PressListen to an interview with the authors here:http://www.ucpress.edu/blog/16097/new...

What Was Pearl Harbor?


Patricia Brennan Demuth - 2013
    It was a highly secretive and devastating attack: four battleships sunk, more than two thousand servicemen died, and the United States was propelled into World War II. In a compelling, easy-to-read narrative, children will learn all about a pivotal moment in American history.

The Philadelphia Chromosome: A Mutant Gene and the Quest to Cure Cancer at the Genetic Level


Jessica Wapner - 2013
    That scientist, David Hungerford, had no way of knowing that he had stumbled upon the starting point of modern cancer research—the Philadelphia chromosome. This book charts not only that landmark discovery, but also—for the first time, all in one place—the full sequence of scientific and medical discoveries that brought about the first-ever successful treatment of a lethal cancer at the genetic level.The significance of this mutant chromosome would take more than three decades to unravel; in 1990, it was recognized as the sole cause of a deadly blood cancer, chronic myeloid leukemia, or CML. This dramatic discovery launched a race involving doctors and researchers around the world, who recognized that in principle it might be possible to target CML at its genetic source.Science journalist Jessica Wapner brings extensive original reporting to this book, including interviews with more than thirty-five people with a direct role in this story. Wapner reconstructs more than forty years of crucial breakthroughs, clearly explains the science behind them, and pays tribute to the dozens of researchers, doctors, and patients whose curiosity and determination restored the promise of a future to the more than 70,000 people worldwide who are diagnosed with CML each year. Chief among them is researcher and oncologist Dr. Brian Druker, whose dedication to his patients fueled his quest to do everything within his power to save them.The Philadelphia Chromosome helps us to fully understand and appreciate just how pathbreaking, hard-won, and consequential are the achievements it recounts—and to understand the principles behind much of today’s most important cancer research, as doctors and scientists race to uncover and treat the genetic roots of a wide range of cancers.

Für Volk and Führer: The Memoir of a Veteran of the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler


Erwin Bartmann - 2013
    Convinced he was growing up in the best country in the world, he dreamt of joining the Leibstandarte, Hitler's elite Waffen SS unit. Tall, blond, blue-eyed, and just seventeen-years-old, Erwin fulfilled his dream on Mayday 1941, when he gave up his apprenticeship at the Glaser bakery in Memeler Strasse and walked into the Lichterfelde barracks in Berlin as a raw, volunteer recruit. On arrival at the Eastern Front in late summer 1941, Erwin was assigned to a frontline communications squad attached to 4.Kompanie and soon discovered that survival was a matter of luck - or the protection of a guardian angel. Good fortune finally deserted Erwin on 11 July 1943 when shrapnel sizzled through his lung during the epic Battle of Kursk-Prokhorovka. Following a period of recovery, and promotion to Unterscharfuhrer, Erwin took up a post as machine-gun instructor with the Ausbildung und Ersatz Bataillon, a training unit based close to the eastern section of the Berliner Ring Autobahn. When the Red Army launched its massive assault on the Seelow Heights, Erwin's unit, now incorporated into Regiment Falke, was deployed to the southern flank of the Berlin-Frankfurt Autobahn, close to the River Oder. The German defenses soon crumbled and with the end of the Reich inevitable, Erwin was forced to choose between a struggle for personal survival and the fulfillment of his SS oath of 'loyalty unto death'. From the war on the southern sector of the Eastern Front to a bomb-shattered Berlin populated largely by old men and demoralized lonely women, this candid eyewitness account offers a unique and sometimes surprising perspective on the life of a young Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler volunteer.

Locomotive


Brian Floca - 2013
    These pages come alive with the details of the trip and the sounds, speed, and strength of the mighty locomotives; the work that keeps them moving; and the thrill of travel from plains to mountain to ocean.

The Art of War and Other Classics of Eastern Thought


Sun Tzu - 2013
    For more than 2,000 years, its aphoristic insights and wisdom have been applied in a wide variety of disciplines, ranging from the business and legal professions to the martial arts and sports. The Art Other and Other Classics of Eastern Thought collects Sun Tzu's classic text and six other landmark books of Eastern philosophy and learning, including the Tao Te Ching of Lao Tzu, The Works of Mencius, and the Confucian Analects, Doctrine of the Mean, and Great Learning of Confucius. The Art Other and Other Classics of Eastern Thought is one of Barnes & Noble's leatherbound classics. Each volume features authoritative texts by the world's greatest authors in an exquisitely designed bonded-leather binding, with distinctive gilt edging and an attractive silk-ribbon bookmark. Decorative, durable, and collectible, these books offer hours of pleasure to readers young and old and are an indispensable cornerstone for every home library.

Clearing the Plains: Disease, Politics of Starvation, and the Loss of Aboriginal Life


James Daschuk - 2013
    Macdonald’s “National Dream.”It was a dream that came at great expense: the present disparity in health and economic well-being between First Nations and non-Native populations, and the lingering racism and misunderstanding that permeates the national consciousness to this day.

Here There Is No Why


Rachel Roth - 2013
    Joseph Mengele’s answer to Roma, the author, and to millions of Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Written to fulfill a promise made in the darkest moment of human history, this simple and eloquent story is unique in that it spans the geography of the Nazi’s Final Solution. Rachel (Roma in Polish), the teenage daughter of a journalist, relays to us the experiences of a schoolgirl and her classmates under the German occupied Warsaw Ghetto. She is a witness and participant in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. After the Nazis smoke her out of hiding, she bravely faces the reality of the gas chambers and concentration camps in Poland and Germany. Originally written in Polish, this is an eloquent and unforgettable account of survival.

The Years of Lyndon Johnson Set: The Path to Power; Means of Ascent; Master of the Senate; The Passage of Power


Robert A. Caro - 2013
    Robert A. Caro's life of Lyndon Johnson is one of the richest, most intensive and most revealing examinations ever undertaken of an American president. It is the magnum opus of a writer perfectly suited to his task: the Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer-historian, chronicler also of Robert Moses in "The Power Broker," whose inspired research and profound understanding of the nature of ambition and the dynamics of power have made him a peerless explicator of political lives. "Taken together the installments of Mr. Caro's monumental life of Johnson . . . form a revealing prism by which to view the better part of a century in American life and politics during which the country experienced tumultuous and divisive social change. . .Gripping." --Michiko Kakutani, "The New York Times " "By writing the best presidential biography the country has ever seen, Caro has forever changed the way we think, and read, American history . . . It's his immense talent as a writer that has made his biography of Johnson one of America's most amazing literary achievements . . . As absorbing as a political thriller . . .A masterpiece, unlike any other work of American history published in the past. It's true that there will never be another Lyndon B. Johnson, but there will never be another Robert A. Caro, either." -NPR "One of the truly great political biographies of the modern age. A masterpiece" --"The Times "(London) "The Path to Power "reveals the genesis of the almost superhuman drive, energy, and urge to power that set LBJ apart. Chronicling the startling early emergence of Johnson's political genius, it follows him from his Texas boyhood through the years of the Depression in the Texas Hill Country to the triumph of his congressional debut in New Deal Washington, to his heartbreaking defeat in his first race for the Senate, and his attainment, nonetheless of the national power for which he hungered. "National Book Critics Circle Award in Nonfiction " "Means of Ascent "follows Johnson through his service in World War II to the foundation of his long-concealed fortune and the facts behind the myth he created about it. The explosive heart of the book is Caro's revelation of the true story of the fiercely contested 1948 senatorial election, which Johnson had to win or face certain political death, and which he did win--by "87 votes that changed history." Caro makes us witness to a momentous turning point in American politics; the tragic last stand of the old politics versus the new--the politics of issue versus the politics of image, mass manipulation, money and electronic dazzle. "National Book Critics Circle Award in Biography " "Master of the Senate "carries Johnson's story through his twelve remarkable years in the Senate. It is an unprecedented revelation of how legislative power works in America, how the Senate works, and how Johnson, in his ascent to the presidency, mastered the Senate as no political leader before him had ever done. In a breathtaking tour de force, Caro details Johnson's amazing triumph in maneuvering to passage the first civil rights legislation since 1875. "Pulitzer Prize in Biography ""Los Angeles Times Book Award in Biography ""National Book Award in Nonfiction " "The Passage of Power "is an unparalleled account of the battle between Johnson and John Kennedy for the 1960 presidential nomination, of the machinations behind Kennedy's decision to offer Johnson the vice presidency, of Johnson's powerlessness and humiliation in that role, and of the savage animosity between Johnson and Robert Kennedy. In Caro's description of the Kennedy assassination, which "The New York Times "called "the most riveting ever," we see the events of November 22, 1963, for the first time through Lyndon Johnson's eyes. And we watch as his political genius enables him to grasp the reins of the presidency with total command and, within weeks, make it wholly his own, surmounting unprecedented obstacles in order to fulfill the highest purpose of the office. "National Book Critics Circle Award in Biography " "Brilliant . . . Important . . . Remarkable ... In sparkling detail, Caro shows Johnson's genius for getting to people--friends, foes, and everyone in between--and how he used it to achieve his goals...With this fascinating and meticulous account, Robert Caro has once again done America a great service."-- President Bill Clinton, "The New York Times Book Review "(front cover) "The politicians' political book of choice...An encyclopedia of dirty tricks that would make Machiavelli seem naive." "London Literary Review " "Making ordinary politics and policymaking riveting and revealing is what makes Caro a genius. Combined with his penetrating insight and fanatical research, Caro's Churchill-like prose elevates the life of a fairly influential president to stuff worthy of Shakespeare. . .Robert Caro stands alone as the unquestioned master of the contemporary American political biography." "The Boston Globe "

Exploding the Phone: The Untold Story of the Teenagers and Outlaws Who Hacked Ma Bell


Phil Lapsley - 2013
    Starting with Alexander Graham Bell's revolutionary "harmonic telegraph," by the middle of the twentieth century the phone system had grown into something extraordinary, a web of cutting-edge switching machines and human operators that linked together millions of people like never before. But the network had a billion-dollar flaw, and once people discovered it, things would never be the same.Exploding the Phone tells this story in full for the first time. It traces the birth of long-distance communication and the telephone, the rise of AT&T's monopoly, the creation of the sophisticated machines that made it all work, and the discovery of Ma Bell's Achilles' heel. Phil Lapsley expertly weaves together the clandestine underground of "phone phreaks" who turned the network into their electronic playground, the mobsters who exploited its flaws to avoid the feds, the explosion of telephone hacking in the counterculture, and the war between the phreaks, the phone company, and the FBI.The product of extensive original research, Exploding the Phone is a ground-breaking, captivating book.

Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! The Story of Pop Music from Bill Haley to Beyoncé


Bob Stanley - 2013
    It covers the birth of rock, soul, R&B, punk, hip hop, indie, house, techno, and more, and it will remind you why you fell in love with pop music in the first place.Bob Stanley—musician, music critic, and unabashed fan—recounts the progression from the Beach Boys to the Pet Shop Boys to the Beastie Boys; explores what connects doo wop to the sock hop; and reveals how technological changes have affected pop production. Working with a broad definition of “pop”—one that includes country and metal, disco and Dylan, skiffle and glam—Stanley teases out the connections and tensions that animate the pop charts and argues that the charts are vital social history.Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! is like the world’s best and most eclectic jukebox in book form. All the hits are here: the Monkees, Metallica, Patsy Cline, Patti Smith, new wave, New Order, “It’s the Same Old Song,” The Song Remains the Same, Aretha, Bowie, Madonna, Prince, Sgt. Pepper, A Tribe Called Quest, the Big Bopper, Fleetwood Mac, “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini,” Bikini Kill, the Kinks, Mick Jagger, Michael Jackson, Jay-Z, and on and on and on. This book will have you reaching for your records (or CDs or MP3s) and discovering countless others.For anyone who has ever thrilled to the opening chord of the Beatles’ “A Hard Day’s Night” or fallen crazy in love for Beyoncé, Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! is a vital guide to the rich soundtrack of the second half of the twentieth century.

Bolívar: American Liberator


Marie Arana - 2013
    He freed six countries from Spanish rule, traveled more than 75,000 miles on horseback to do so, and became the greatest figure in Latin American history. His life is epic, heroic, straight out of Hollywood--he fought battle after battle in punishing terrain, forged uncertain coalitions of competing forces and races, lost his beautiful wife soon after they married and never remarried (although he did have a succession of mistresses, including one who held up the revolution and another who saved his life), and he died relatively young, uncertain whether his achievements would endure.

The Crouching Beast: A United States Army Lieutenant's Account of the Battle for Hamburger Hill, May 1969


Frank Boccia - 2013
    The Rakkasans, the 3/187th, are the most highly decorated unit in the history of the United States Army, and two of those decorations were awarded for these two battles. This vivid account of the author's first seven months in Vietnam gives special attention to the events at Dong Ap Bia, following the ­hard-­hit 3/187th hour by hour through its repeated assaults on the mountain, against an unseen enemy in an ideal defensive position. It also corrects several errors that have persisted in histories and official reports of the battle. Beyond describing his own experiences and reactions, the author writes, "I want to convey the real face of war, both its mindless carnage and its nobility of spirit. Above all, I want to convey what happened to both the casual reader and the military historian and make them aware of the extraordinary spirit of the men of First Platoon, Bravo Company. They were ordinary men doing extraordinary things."

Christmas from Heaven: The True Story of the Berlin Candy Bomber


Tom Brokaw - 2013
    As a twenty-seven-year-old American pilot, Brother Halvorsen's job was to airdrop much-needed food and supplies to the people of West Berlin in the aftermath of World War II. But it was his simple gift of two sticks of gum that launched an extraordinary humanitarian endeavor and earned him the nickname "The Candy Bomber." Each day as hundreds of small white parachutes delivered treats to the children of West Germany, the wounds of war began to heal. "Operation Little Vittles" captured the imagination of people everywhere, bringing the spirit of Christmas to a world in need of peace and hope.Famed broadcast journalist and author Tom Brokaw brings this remarkable true story to life in a stunning live performance with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, captured on the accompanying DVD. Also included in the book is a template and directions for creating your own "Candy Bomber" parachutes.

What Was the Underground Railroad?


Yona Zeldis McDonough - 2013
    Including real stories about passengers on the Railroad, this book chronicles slaves' close calls with bounty hunters, exhausting struggles on the road, and what they sacrificed for freedom. With 80 black-and-white illustrations throughout and a sixteen-page black-and-white photo insert, the Underground Railroad comes alive!

Thomas Jefferson Builds a Library


Barb Rosenstock - 2013
    In fact, his massive collection eventually helped rebuild the Library of Congress—now the largest library in the world. Barb Rosenstock’s rhythmic words and John O’Brien’s whimsical illustrations capture Jefferson’s passion for the written word as well as little-known details about book collecting. Author and artist worked closely with experts to create the first picture book on Jefferson’s love of reading, writing, and books. An author’s note, bibliography, and source notes for quotations are also included.

The Wizard of Oz: The Official 75th Anniversary Companion


William Stillman - 2013
    Officially licensed with Warner Bros., this collectible edition features accessible text, a host of never-before-seen ephemera, and nine removable features.Written by the foremost authorities on the subject—Jay Scarfone and William Stillman—and designed in close collaboration with Warner Bros., The Wizard of Oz: The Official 75th Anniversary Companion delivers an entertaining and interactive experience, transporting readers over the rainbow and into the wonderful Land of Oz. The authors detail filmmaking secrets—the inspiration behind the film's realistic tornado; why Dorothy's shoes were ruby-colored; and how the filmmakers got a fleet of monkeys to fly—and reveal never-before-seen artwork from their personal collection, including, but not limited to, rare stills, Technicolor test frames, and costume and set illustrations.Additionally, the book will contain nine removable features as well as several innovative graphic components. More than your average anniversary edition, this book promises to be the most definitive look at The Wizard of Oz yet. It is comprehensive in its scope yet accessibly written and beautifully designed—perfect for The Wizard of Oz fans, film buffs of all ages, and collectors.

Unsung Eagles: True Stories of America's Citizen Airmen in the Skies of World War II


Jay A. Stout - 2013
    And so have their stories. Award-winning writer and former fighter pilot Jay A. Stout uses Unsung Eagles to save an exciting collection of those accounts from oblivion. These are not rehashed tales from the hoary icons of the war. Rather, they are stories from the masses of largely unrecognized men who in the aggregate actually won it. They are the recollections of your Uncle Frank who shared them only after having enjoyed a beer or nine, and of your old girlfriend's grandfather who passed away about the same time she dumped you. And of the craggy guy who ran the town's salvage yard; a dusty, fly-specked B-24 model hung over the counter. These are everyman accounts that are important but fast disappearing.Ray Crandall describes how he was nearly knocked into the Pacific by a heavy cruiser s main battery during the Second Battle of the Philippine Sea. Jesse Barker a displaced dive-bomber pilot tells of dodging naval bombardments in the stinking mud of Guadalcanal. Bob Popeney relates how his friend and fellow A-20 pilot was blown out of formation by German antiaircraft fire: I could see the inside of the airplane and I could see Nordstrom's eyes. He looked confused and then immediately he flipped up and went tumbling down.The combat careers of 22 different pilots from all the services are captured in this crisply written book which captivates the reader not only as an engaging oral history, but also puts personal context into the great air battles of World War II.

Who Is Michelle Obama?


Megan Stine - 2013
    Then in 1992, she married another promising young lawyer and the rest, as they say, is history. It is undeniable that President Barack Obama has changed the United States but so has Michelle Obama, the self proclaimed "Mom in Chief." This compelling, easy-to-read biography is illustrated by New Yorker artist John O'Brien.

Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims


Rush Limbaugh - 2013
    In this book, he is transported back to the deck of the Mayflower.

Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class


Ian F. Haney-López - 2013
    In trumpeting these tales of welfare run amok, Reagan never needed to mention race, because he was blowing a dog whistle: sending a message about racial minorities inaudible on one level, but clearly heard on another. In doing so, he tapped into a long political tradition that started with George Wallace and Richard Nixon, and is more relevant than ever in the age of the Tea Party and the first black president. In Dog Whistle Politics, Ian Haney Lopez offers a sweeping account of how politicians and plutocrats deploy veiled racial appeals to persuade white voters to support policies that favor the extremely rich yet threaten their own interests. Dog whistle appeals generate middle-class enthusiasm for political candidates who promise to crack down on crime, curb undocumented immigration, and protect the heartland against Islamic infiltration, but ultimately vote to slash taxes for the rich, give corporations regulatory control over industry and financial markets, and aggressively curtail social services. White voters, convinced by powerful interests that minorities are their true enemies, fail to see the connection between the political agendas they support and the surging wealth inequality that takes an increasing toll on their lives. The tactic continues at full force, with the Republican Party using racial provocations to drum up enthusiasm for weakening unions and public pensions, defunding public schools, and opposing health care reform. Rejecting any simple story of malevolent and obvious racism, Haney Lopez links as never before the two central themes that dominate American politics today: the decline of the middle class and the Republican Party's increasing reliance on white voters. Dog Whistle Politics will generate a lively and much-needed debate about how racial politics has destabilized the American middle class — white and nonwhite members alike.

Gandhi Before India


Ramachandra Guha - 2013
         Here is a revelatory work of biography that takes us from Gandhi's birth in 1869 through his upbringing in Gujarat, his 2 years as a student in London, and his 2 decades as a lawyer and community organizer in South Africa. Ramachandra Guha has uncovered a myriad of previously untapped documents, including: private papers of Gandhi's contemporaries and co-workers; contemporary newspapers and court documents; the writings of Gandhi's children; secret files kept by British Empire functionaries. Using this wealth of material in a brilliantly nuanced narrative, Guha describes the social, political and personal worlds in which Gandhi began his journey to become the modern era's most important and influential political actor. And Guha makes clear that Gandhi's work in South Africa--far from being a mere prelude to his accomplishments in India--was profoundly influential on his evolution as a political thinker, social reformer and beloved leader.

The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism


Doris Kearns Goodwin - 2013
    Doris Kearns Goodwin, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and author of Team of Rivals, captures the Progressive Era through the story of the broken friendship between Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft, culminating in their running against one another for president in 1912.

We Shall Overcome: The Story of a Song


Debbie Levy - 2013
    It only takes a few people to believe that change is possible. And when those people sing out, they can change the world. "We Shall Overcome" is one of their songs. From the song's roots in America's era of slavery through to the civil rights movement of the 1960s and today, "We Shall Overcome" has come to represent the fight for equality and freedom around the world. This important book, lyrically written by Debbie Levy and paired with elegant, collage-style art by Vanessa Brantley-Newton, pays tribute to the heroic spirit of the famous song that encompasses American history.- Jane Addams Award Honor Book- Bank Street College Best Book- NCSS Notable Social Studies Book- American Folklore Society Aesop Accolade- Chicago Public Library Best Informational Book“The power of song to bolster courage, combat bigotry, and effect change courses through this . . . . enlightening and inspiring book.” –Publishers Weekly “An inviting introduction to a spirited and spiritual anthem.” –Kirkus Reviews “An innovative capturing of history through the lens of a song and a passionate affirmation of human rights.” –Booklist

Lost Enlightenment: Central Asia's Golden Age from the Arab Conquest to Tamerlane


S. Frederick Starr - 2013
    Frederick Starr tells the fascinating but largely unknown story of Central Asia's medieval enlightenment through the eventful lives and astonishing accomplishments of its greatest minds--remarkable figures who built a bridge to the modern world. Because nearly all of these figures wrote in Arabic, they were long assumed to have been Arabs. In fact, they were from Central Asia--drawn from the Persianate and Turkic peoples of a region that today extends from Kazakhstan southward through Afghanistan, and from the easternmost province of Iran through Xinjiang, China.Lost Enlightenment recounts how, between the years 800 and 1200, Central Asia led the world in trade and economic development, the size and sophistication of its cities, the refinement of its arts, and, above all, in the advancement of knowledge in many fields. Central Asians achieved signal breakthroughs in astronomy, mathematics, geology, medicine, chemistry, music, social science, philosophy, and theology, among other subjects. They gave algebra its name, calculated the earth's diameter with unprecedented precision, wrote the books that later defined European medicine, and penned some of the world's greatest poetry. One scholar, working in Afghanistan, even predicted the existence of North and South America--five centuries before Columbus. Rarely in history has a more impressive group of polymaths appeared at one place and time. No wonder that their writings influenced European culture from the time of St. Thomas Aquinas down to the scientific revolution, and had a similarly deep impact in India and much of Asia.Lost Enlightenment chronicles this forgotten age of achievement, seeks to explain its rise, and explores the competing theories about the cause of its eventual demise. Informed by the latest scholarship yet written in a lively and accessible style, this is a book that will surprise general readers and specialists alike.

History Of The Ancient World: A Global Perspective


Gregory S. Aldrete - 2013
    The ancient world has influenced our customs and religious beliefs, our laws, and the form of our governments. It has taught us when and how we make war or pursue peace. It has shaped the buildings we live and work in and the art we hang on our walls. It has given us the calendar that organizes our year and has left its mark on the games we play.Includes a PDF course guidebook that contains 362 pages.

All The Songs: The Story Behind Every Beatles Release


Philippe Margotin - 2013
    1963) to "The Long and Winding Road" (U.S. 1970) - is dissected, discussed, and analyzed by two music historians in this lively, fully illustrated work.All the Songs delves deep into the history and origins of the Beatles and their music. This first-of-its-kind book draws upon decades of research, as music historians Margotin and Guesdon recount the circumstances that led to the composition of every song, the recording process, and the instruments used. Here, we learn that one of John Lennon's favorite guitars was a 1958 Rickenbacker 325 Capri, which he bought for £100 in 1960 in Hamburg, Germany. We also learn that "Love Me Do," recorded in Abbey Road Studios in September 1962, took 18 takes to get right, even though it was one of the first songs John and Paul ever wrote together. And the authors reveal that when the Beatles performed "I Want to Hold Your Hand" on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, John's microphone wasn't turned on, so viewers heard only Paul singing. The hundreds of photographs throughout the book include rare black-and-white publicity stills, images of Beatles instruments, and engaging shots of the musicians in-studio.All the Songs is the must-have book for the any true Beatles fan.

Those Angry Days: Roosevelt, Lindbergh, and America's Fight Over World War II, 1939-1941


Lynne Olson - 2013
       At the center of this controversy stood the two most famous men in America: President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who championed the interventionist cause, and aviator Charles Lindbergh, who, as unofficial leader and spokesman for America’s isolationists, emerged as the president’s most formidable adversary. Their contest of wills personified the divisions within the country at large, and Lynne Olson makes masterly use of their dramatic personal stories to create a poignant and riveting narrative. While FDR, buffeted by political pressures on all sides, struggled to marshal public support for aid to Winston Churchill’s Britain, Lindbergh saw his heroic reputation besmirched—and his marriage thrown into turmoil—by allegations that he was a Nazi sympathizer.   Spanning the years 1939 to 1941, Those Angry Days vividly re-creates the rancorous internal squabbles that gripped the United States in the period leading up to Pearl Harbor. After Germany vanquished most of Europe, America found itself torn between its traditional isolationism and the urgent need to come to the aid of Britain, the only country still battling Hitler. The conflict over intervention was, as FDR noted, “a dirty fight,” rife with chicanery and intrigue, and Those Angry Days recounts every bruising detail. In Washington, a group of high-ranking military officers, including the Air Force chief of staff, worked to sabotage FDR’s pro-British policies. Roosevelt, meanwhile, authorized FBI wiretaps of Lindbergh and other opponents of intervention. At the same time, a covert British operation, approved by the president, spied on antiwar groups, dug up dirt on congressional isolationists, and planted propaganda in U.S. newspapers. Among the notable figures involved in the struggle were future U.S. presidents John F. Kennedy and Gerald Ford, Peace Corps director Sargent Shriver, and authors Gore Vidal and Kurt Vonnegut.   The stakes could not have been higher. The combatants were larger than life. With the immediacy of a great novel, Those Angry Days brilliantly recalls a time fraught with danger when the future of democracy and America’s role in the world hung in the balance.  Praise for Lynne Olson’s Citizens of London  “Engaging and original, rich in anecdote and analysis, this is a terrific work of history.”—Jon Meacham   “Citizens of London is a great read about the small band of Americans and their courageous role in helping Britain through the darkest days of early World War II. I thought I knew a lot about this dangerous period, but Lynne Olson has taught me so much more.”—Tom Brokaw

The Family: Three Journeys into the Heart of the Twentieth Century


David Laskin - 2013
    With cinematic power and beauty, bestselling author David Laskin limns his own genealogy to tell the spellbinding tale of the three drastically different paths that his family members took across the span of 150 years. In the latter half of the nineteenth century Laskin’s great-great-grandfather, a Torah scribe named Shimon Dov HaKohen, raised six children with his wife, Beyle, in a yeshiva town at the western fringe of the Russian empire. The pious couple expected their sons and daughters to carry the family tradition into future generations. But the social and political upheavals of the twentieth century decreed otherwise. The HaKohen family split off into three branches. One branch emigrated to America and founded the fabulously successful Maidenform Bra Company; one branch went to Palestine as pioneers and participated in the contentious birth of the state of Israel; and the third branch remained in Europe and suffered the Holocaust. In tracing the roots of his own family, Laskin captures the epic sweep of twentieth-century history. A modern-day scribe, Laskin honors the traditions, the lives, and the choices of his ancestors: revolutionaries and entrepreneurs, scholars and farmers, tycoons and truck drivers. The Family is an eloquent masterwork of true grandeur—a deeply personal, dramatic, and universal account of a people caught in a cataclysmic time in world history.

The Last of the Doughboys: The Forgotten Generation and Their Forgotten World War


Richard Rubin - 2013
    But then, he found another. And another. Eventually he managed to find dozens, aged 101 to 113, and interview them. All are gone now.A decade-long odyssey to recover the story of a forgotten generation and their Great War led Rubin across the United States and France, through archives, private collections, and battlefields, literature, propaganda, and even music. But at the center of it all were the last of the last, the men and women he met: a new immigrant, drafted and sent to France, whose life was saved by a horse; a Connecticut Yankee who volunteered and fought in every major American battle; a Cajun artilleryman nearly killed by a German aeroplane; an 18-year-old Bronx girl “drafted” to work for the War Department; a machine-gunner from Montana; a Marine wounded at Belleau Wood; the 16-year-old who became America’s last WWI veteran; and many, many more.They were the final survivors of the millions who made up the American Expeditionary Forces, nineteenth-century men and women living in the twenty-first century. Self-reliant, humble, and stoic, they kept their stories to themselves for a lifetime, then shared them at the last possible moment, so that they, and the World War they won – the trauma that created our modern world – might at last be remembered. You will never forget them.

Act of War: Lyndon Johnson, North Korea, and the Capture of the Spy Ship Pueblo


Jack Cheevers - 2013
    Packed with advanced electronic-surveillance equipment and classified intelligence documents, the USS Pueblo was poorly armed and lacked backup by air or sea. Its crew, led by a charismatic, hard-drinking ex-submarine officer named Pete Bucher, was made up mostly of untested sailors in their teens and twenties.On a frigid January morning while eavesdropping near the port of Wonsan, the Pueblo was challenged by a North Korean gunboat. When Bucher tried to escape, his ship was quickly surrounded by more patrol boats, shelled and machine-gunned, and forced to surrender. One American was killed and ten wounded, and Bucher and his young crew were taken prisoner by one of the world’s most aggressive and erratic totalitarian regimes.Less than forty-eight hours before the Pueblo’s capture, North Korean commandos had nearly succeeded in assassinating South Korea’s president in downtown Seoul. Together, the two explosive incidents pushed Cold War tensions toward a flashpoint as both North and South Korea girded for war—with fifty thousand American soldiers caught between them. President Lyndon Johnson rushed U.S. combat ships and aircraft to reinforce South Korea, while secretly trying to negotiate a peaceful solution to the crisis.Act of War tells the riveting saga of Bucher and his men as they struggled to survive merciless torture and horrendous living conditions in North Korean prisons. Based on extensive interviews and numerous government documents released through the Freedom of Information Act, this book also reveals new details of Johnson’s high-risk gambit to prevent war from erupting on the Korean peninsula while his negotiators desperately tried to save the sailors from possible execution. A dramatic tale of human endurance against the backdrop of an international diplomatic poker game, Act of War offers lessons on the perils of covert intelligence operations as America finds itself confronting a host of twenty-first-century enemies.

Wealth and Power: China's Long March to the Twenty-first Century


Orville Schell - 2013
    By examining what they thought and what they did through lively and absorbing portraits, Schell and Delury chart how China made its tortured transformation from a weak, humiliated country under foreign assault to its astonishing rise in the early 21st century. In so doing, they provide us with a deeper and richer understanding of China's present success story.

Beachbum Berry's Potions of the Caribbean: 500 Years of Tropical Drinks and the People Behind Them


Jeff Beachbum Berry - 2013
    Even more delicious are the stories of the people who created, or served, or simply drank these drinks. As a hybrid of street-smart gumshoe, anthropologist and mixologist (The Los Angeles Times), Jeff "Beachbum" Berry is uniquely qualified to tell this epic story-with-recipes, lavishly illustrated with vintage graphics and rare historical photos.

World War I: The Definitive Visual History from Sarajevo to Versailles


R.G. Grant - 2013
    G. Grant, and created by DK's award-winning editorial and design team, "World War I" charts the developments of the war from a global perspective. Using illustrated timelines, detailed maps, and personal accounts, readers will see the oft-studied war in a new light. Key episodes are set clearly in the wider context of the conflict, in-depth profiles look at the key generals and political leaders, and full-color photo galleries showcase the weapons, inventions, and new technologies that altered the course of history.A vivid portrait of the confrontation on land, sea, and sky, "World War I: The Definitive Visual Guide" offers readers a bold and thoughtful new look at this complex and explosive moment in history.

LEGO® Minifigure Year by Year: A Visual History


Daniel Lipkowitz - 2013
    Fans will learn little-known facts about their favorite minifigures in this first-ever publishing of the evolution of the famous LEGO minifigure.

One Summer: America, 1927


Bill Bryson - 2013
    Meanwhile, the titanically talented Babe Ruth was beginning his assault on the home run record, which would culminate on September 30 with his sixtieth blast, one of the most resonant and durable records in sports history. In between those dates a Queens housewife named Ruth Snyder and her corset-salesman lover garroted her husband, leading to a murder trial that became a huge tabloid sensation. Alvin “Shipwreck” Kelly sat atop a flagpole in Newark, New Jersey, for twelve days—a new record. The American South was clobbered by unprecedented rain and by flooding of the Mississippi basin, a great human disaster, the relief efforts for which were guided by the uncannily able and insufferably pompous Herbert Hoover. Calvin Coolidge interrupted an already leisurely presidency for an even more relaxing three-month vacation in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The gangster Al Capone tightened his grip on the illegal booze business through a gaudy and murderous reign of terror and municipal corruption. The first true “talking picture,” Al Jolson’s The Jazz Singer, was filmed and forever changed the motion picture industry. The four most powerful central bankers on earth met in secret session on a Long Island estate and made a fateful decision that virtually guaranteed a future crash and depression.     All this and much, much more transpired in that epochal summer of 1927, and Bill Bryson captures its outsized personalities, exciting events, and occasional just plain weirdness with his trademark vividness, eye for telling detail, and delicious humor. In that year America stepped out onto the world stage as the main event, and One Summer transforms it all into narrative nonfiction of the highest order.

Brave Genius: A Scientist, a Philosopher, and Their Daring Adventures from the French Resistance to the Nobel Prize


Sean B. Carroll - 2013
    In the spring of 1940, the aspiring but unknown writer Albert Camus and budding scientist Jacques Monod were quietly pursuing ordinary, separate lives in Paris. After the German invasion and occupation of France, each joined the Resistance to help liberate the country from the Nazis, ascended to prominent, dangerous roles, and were very lucky to survive. After the war and through twists of circumstance, they became friends, and through their passionate determination and rare talent, they emerged as leading voices of modern literature and biology, each receiving the Nobel Prize in their respective fields. Drawing upon a wealth of previously unpublished and unknown material gathered over several years of research, Brave Genius tells the story of how each man endured the most terrible episode of the twentieth century and then blossomed into extraordinarily creative and engaged individuals. It is a story of the transformation of ordinary lives into exceptional lives by extraordinary events--of courage in the face of overwhelming adversity, the flowering of creative genius, deep friendship, and of profound concern for and insight into the human condition.

The Great War: A Combat History of the First World War


Peter Hart - 2013
    Millions died; empires collapsed; new ideologies and political movements arose; poison gas, warplanes, tanks, submarines, and other technologies appeared. -Total war- emerged as a grim, mature reality. In The Great War, Peter Hart provides a masterful combat history of this global conflict. Focusing on the decisive engagements, Hart explores the immense challenges faced by the commanders on all sides. He surveys the belligerent nations, analyzing their strengths, weaknesses, and strategic imperatives. Russia, for example, was obsessed with securing an exit from the Black Sea, while France--having lost to Prussia in 1871, before Germany united--constructed a network of defensive alliances, even as it held a grudge over the loss of Alsace-Lorraine. Hart offers deft portraits of the commanders, the prewar plans, and the unexpected obstacles and setbacks that upended the initial operations.

Amsterdam: A History of the World's Most Liberal City


Russell Shorto - 2013
    But the deeper history of Amsterdam, what makes it one of the most fascinating places on earth, is bound up in its unique geography-the constant battle of its citizens to keep the sea at bay and the democratic philosophy that this enduring struggle fostered. Amsterdam is the font of liberalism, in both its senses. Tolerance for free thinking and free love make it a place where, in the words of one of its mayors, "craziness is a value." But the city also fostered the deeper meaning of liberalism, one that profoundly influenced America: political and economic freedom. Amsterdam was home not only to religious dissidents and radical thinkers but to the world's first great global corporation. In this effortlessly erudite account, Russell Shorto traces the idiosyncratic evolution of Amsterdam, showing how such disparate elements as herring anatomy, naked Anabaptists parading through the streets, and an intimate gathering in a sixteenth-century wine-tasting room had a profound effect on Dutch-and world-history. Weaving in his own experiences of his adopted home, Shorto provides an ever-surprising, intellectually engaging story of Amsterdam from the building of its first canals in the 1300s, through its brutal struggle for independence, its golden age as a vast empire, to its complex present in which its cherished ideals of liberalism are under siege.

After the Music Stopped: The Financial Crisis, the Response, and the Work Ahead


Alan S. Blinder - 2013
    financial system, which had grown far too complex for its own good-and too unregulated for the public good-experienced a perfect storm beginning in 2007. When America's financial structure crumbled, the damage proved to be not only deep, but wide. It took the crisis for the world to discover, to its horror, just how truly interconnected-and fragile-the global financial system is. The second part of the story explains how American and international government intervention kept us from a total meltdown. Many of the U.S. government's actions, particularly the Fed's, were previously unimaginable. And to an amazing-and certainly misunderstood-extent, they worked. The worst did not happen. Blinder offers clear-eyed answers to the questions still before us, even if some of the choices ahead are as divisive as they are unavoidable. After the Music Stopped is an essential history that we cannot afford to forget, because one thing history teaches is that it will happen here again.

50 Core American Documents: Required Reading for Students, Teachers, and Citizens


Christopher Burkett - 2013
    Many of the documents emphasize America’s uniqueness and contributions to the world, but they also present different views on some of the major issues and disputes in American history and government, especially on the meaning of liberty, the injustice of slavery, and the demands of progress. Taken as such, the documents reveal a kind of political dialogue to readers, an ongoing and profoundly consequential conversation about how Americans have agreed and often disagreed on the meaning of freedom and self-government. 50 Core American Documents invites teachers and citizens alike to join in this American political dialogue.The Ashbrook Center restores and strengthens the capacities of the American people for constitutional self-government. The Center teaches students and teachers across our country why America is exceptional and what America represents in the long history of the world. Ashbrook is the nation’s largest university-based educator in the enduring principles and practice of free government in the United States, offering programs and resources for students, teachers, and citizens.

NIV, The Chronological Study Bible, eBook


Anonymous - 2013
    Features include full-color illustrations of places, artifacts, and cultural phenomena, contextual articles that connect Biblical times and world history and culture, daily life notes, time panels and charts that show the flow of Biblical history, and in-text and full-color maps. Part of the Signature Series line of Thomas Nelson Bibles Chronological Study Bibles sold to date: More than 400,000 Thomas Nelson Bibles is a proud supporter of World Vision in eradicating poverty and preventable deaths among children. Learn more and discover what you can do at www.seegodswordinaction.com.

When I Die I'm Going to Heaven 'Cause I've Spent My Time in Hell: A Memoir of My Year As an Army Nurse in Vietnam


Barbara Kautz - 2013
     With less than six months of nursing experience, she was assigned to the 24th Evacuation Hospital in South Vietnam. True tales of the war that are by turns horrifying and humorous, told with an eye for detail, by a woman who was in the thick of it.

From the Inside Out: Harrowing Escapes from the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center


Erik O. Ronningen - 2013
    After an incredible, near miraculous journey down through the acrid, smoke-filled building, Erik tried to get to the Security Command Center in the South Tower. Unable to do so, he was the last person to make it out of the South Tower alive. Here is the story of his harrowing escape interwoven with the accounts of fourteen others who were lucky enough to be able to recount them. Altogether, these accounts document the bravery and heroism, selflessness and generosity demonstrated by hundreds of people when their normal everyday lives were suddenly plunged into a fiery scramble for survival. The astonishing photograph on the cover of this book was taken by survivor Jim Usher as he lay on the concrete outside the WTC losing consciousness, so his family could see what he saw during what he thought were the last moments of his life. And yes, that flag was really there! This photograph has never before been made public.

Warsaw 1944: Hitler, Himmler, and the Warsaw Uprising


Alexandra Richie - 2013
    A year later, they threatened to complete the city’s destruction by deporting its remaining residents. A sophisticated and cosmopolitan community a thousand years old was facing its final days—and then opportunity struck. As Soviet soldiers turned back the Nazi invasion of Russia and began pressing west, the underground Polish Home Army decided to act. Taking advantage of German disarray and seeking to forestall the absorption of their country into the Soviet empire, they chose to liberate the city of Warsaw for themselves.      Warsaw 1944 tells the story of this brave, and errant, calculation. For more than sixty days, the Polish fighters took over large parts of the city and held off the SS’s most brutal forces. But in the end, their efforts were doomed. Scorned by Stalin and unable to win significant support from the Western Allies, the Polish Home Army was left to face the full fury of Hitler, Himmler, and the SS. The crackdown that followed was among the most brutal episodes of history’s most brutal war, and the celebrated historian Alexandra Richie depicts this tragedy in riveting detail. Using a rich trove of primary sources, Richie relates the terrible experiences of individuals who fought in the uprising and perished in it. Her clear-eyed narrative reveals the fraught choices and complex legacy of some of World War II’s most unsung heroes.

A Storm Too Soon: A True Story of Disaster, Survival and an Incredible Rescue


Michael J. Tougias - 2013
    TOUGIAS COMES A NEW, HEART-STOPPING TRUE-LIFE TALE OF MARITIME DISASTER, SURVIVAL, AND DARING RESCUE, HIS MOST THRILLING AND AMAZING STORY YET. Seventy-foot waves batter a torn life raft 250 miles out to sea in one of the world’s most dangerous places, the Gulf Stream. Hanging on to the raft are three men, a Canadian, a Brit, and their captain, JP de Lutz, a dual citizen of America and France. Their capsized forty-seven-foot sailboat has filled with water and disappeared below the tempestuous sea. The giant waves repeatedly toss the men out of their tiny vessel, and JP, with nine broken ribs, is hypothermic and on the verge of death. The captain, however, is a remarkably tough character, having survived a brutal boyhood, and now he must rely on the same inner strength to outlast the storm. Trying to reach these survivors before it’s too late are four brave Coast Guardsmen battling hurricane- force winds in their Jayhawk helicopter. They know the waves will be extreme, but when they arrive they are astounded to find that the monstrous seas have waves reaching eighty feet. Lowering the wind-whipped helicopter to drop a rescue swimmer into such chaos will be extremely dangerous. The pilots wonder if they have a realistic chance of saving the sailors clinging to the broken life raft, and if they will be able to even retrieve their own rescue swimmer from the towering seas. Once they commit to the rescue, they find themselves in almost as much trouble as the survivors, facing one life-and-death moment after the next. Also caught in the storm are three other boats, each one in a Mayday situation. Of the ten people on these boats, only six will ever see land again. Spellbinding, harrowing, and meticulously researched, A Storm Too Soon is a vivid account about the powerful collision between the forces of nature and the human will to survive. Author Michael J. Tougias, known for his fast-paced writing style and character-driven stories, tells this true saga in the present tense to give the reader a thrilling, edge-of-your-seat immediacy. A Storm Too Soon is Tougias at his masterful best and a heart-pounding narrative of survival, the power of the human spirit, and one of the most incredible rescues ever attempted.

Who Was Laura Ingalls Wilder?


Patricia Brennan Demuth - 2013
    Now young readers will see just how similar Laura's true-life story was to her books. Born in 1867 in the "Big Woods" in Wisconsin, Laura experienced both the hardship and the adventure of living on the frontier. Her life and times are captured in engaging text and 80 black-and-white illustrations.

Barbed Wire Baseball


Marissa Moss - 2013
    Yet he grows up to be a successful player, playing with Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig! When the Japanese attack Pearl Harbor in 1941, Zeni and his family are sent to one of ten internment camps where more than 110,000 people of Japanese ancestry are imprisoned without trials. Zeni brings the game of baseball to the camp, along with a sense of hope.This true story, set in a Japanese internment camp during World War II, introduces children to a little-discussed part of American history through Marissa Moss’s rich text and Yuko Shimizu’s beautiful illustrations. The book includes author and illustrator notes, archival photographs, and a bibliography.

Who Was Nelson Mandela?


Meg Belviso - 2013
    As a child he dreamt of changing South Africa; as a man he changed the world.  Nelson Mandela spent his life battling apartheid and championing a peaceful revolution.  He spent twenty-seven years in prison and emerged as the inspiring leader of the new South Africa.  He became the country’s first black president and went on to live his dream of change.  This is an important and exciting addition to the Who Was...? series.From the Trade Paperback edition.

"The President Has Been Shot!": The Assassination of John F. Kennedy


James L. Swanson - 2013
    As he did in his bestselling Scholastic YA book, CHASING LINCOLN'S KILLER, Swanson will deploy his signature "you are there" style -- a riveting, ticking-clock pace, with an unprecedented eye for dramatic details and impeccable historical accuracy -- to tell the story of the JFK assassination as it has never been told before.

Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters


Kate Brown - 2013
    To contain secrets, American and Soviet leaders created plutopias--communities of nuclear families living in highly-subsidized, limited-access atomic cities. Fully employed and medically monitored, the residents of Richland and Ozersk enjoyed all the pleasures of consumer society, while nearby, migrants, prisoners, and soldiers were banned from plutopia--they lived in temporary "staging grounds" and often performed the most dangerous work at the plant. Brown shows that the plants' segregation of permanent and temporary workers and of nuclear and non-nuclear zones created a bubble of immunity, where dumps and accidents were glossed over and plant managers freely embezzled and polluted. In four decades, the Hanford plant near Richland and the Maiak plant near Ozersk each issued at least 200 million curies of radioactive isotopes into the surrounding environment--equaling four Chernobyls--laying waste to hundreds of square miles and contaminating rivers, fields, forests, and food supplies. Because of the decades of secrecy, downwind and downriver neighbors of the plutonium plants had difficulty proving what they suspected, that the rash of illnesses, cancers, and birth defects in their communities were caused by the plants' radioactive emissions. Plutopia was successful because in its zoned-off isolation it appeared to deliver the promises of the American dream and Soviet communism; in reality, it concealed disasters that remain highly unstable and threatening today.An untold and profoundly important piece of Cold War history, Plutopia invites readers to consider the nuclear footprint left by the arms race and the enormous price of paying for it.

Living the French Revolution and the Age of Napoleon


Suzanne Desan - 2013
    This era shook the foundations of the old world and marked a permanent shift for politics, religion, and society - not just for France, but for all of Europe. An account of the events alone reads like something out of a thrilling novel: France’s oppressed and hungry masses rise up against their government. In Paris, crowds storm the Bastille looking for bread and weaponry. Rumors, panic, and fear grip the nation as it faces an uncertain future. The National Assembly adopts the Declaration of the Rights of Man, the first bold step toward the invention of democratic politics and a republican state. A young Corsican named Napoleon Bonaparte stuns Europe with his military strategy and political boldness.Living the French Revolution and the Age of Napoleon is your opportunity to learn the full story of this captivating period. Taught by Dr. Suzanne M. Desan, these 48 exciting lectures give you a broad and comprehensive survey of one of the most important eras in modern history.Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.©2013 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2013 The Great Courses

Margaret Thatcher: The Authorized Biography, Volume 1: From Grantham to the Falklands


Charles Moore - 2013
    Charles Moore's biography of Margaret Thatcher, published after her death on 8 April 2013, immediately supersedes all earlier books written about her. At the moment when she becomes a historical figure, this book also makes her into a three dimensional one for the first time. It gives unparalleled insight into her early life and formation, especially through her extensive correspondence with her sister, which Moore is the first author to draw on. It recreates brilliantly the atmosphere of British politics as she was making her way, and takes her up to what was arguably the zenith of her power, victory in the Falklands. (This volume ends with the Falklands Dinner in Downing Street in November 1982.) Moore is clearly an admirer of his subject, but he does not shy away from criticising her or identifying weaknesses and mistakes where he feels it is justified. Based on unrestricted access to all Lady Thatcher's papers, unpublished interviews with her and all her major colleagues, this is the indispensable, fully rounded portrait of a towering figure of our times.

On the Trail of Genghis Khan: An Epic Journey Through the Land of the Nomads


Tim Cope - 2013
    Among them were the Mongols of the thirteenth century – a small tribe, which, under the charismatic leadership of Genghis Khan, created the largest contiguous land empire in history. Inspired by the extraordinary life nomads lead, Tim Cope embarked on a journey that hadn't been successfully completed since those times: to travel on horseback across the entire length of the Eurasian steppe, from Karakorum, the ancient capital of Mongolia, through Kazakhstan, Russia, Crimea and the Ukraine to the Danube River in Hungary.From horse-riding novice to spending months in the saddle, he learnt to fend off wolves and would-be horse-thieves, and grapple with the haunting extremes of the steppe as he crossed sub-zero plateaux, the scorching deserts of Kazakhstan and the high-mountain passes of the Carpathians. As he travelled he formed a close bond with his horses and especially his dog Tigon, and encountered essential hospitality – the linchpin of human survival on the steppe – from those he met along the way.Cope bears witness to how the traditional ways hang in the balance in the post-Soviet world – an era that has brought new-found freedom, but also the perils of corruption and alcoholism, and left a world bereft of both the Communist system upon which it once relied, and the traditional knowledge of the nomadic forefathers.A journey of adventure, endurance and eventual triumph, On the Trail of Genghis Khan is at once a celebration of and an elegy for an ancient way of life.

The Disneyland Story: The Unofficial Guide to the Evolution of Walt Disney's Dream


Sam Gennawey - 2013
    Despite his successors' battles with the whims of history and their own doubts and egos, Walt’s vision maintained momentum, thrived, and taught future generations how to do it Walt Disney's way.

The Man He Became: How FDR Defied Polio to Win the Presidency


James Tobin - 2013
    In 1921, at the age of thirty-nine, Roosevelt was the brightest young star in the Democratic Party. One day he was racing his children around their summer home. Two days later he could not stand up. Hopes of a quick recovery faded fast. “He’s through,” said allies and enemies alike. Even his family and close friends misjudged their man, as they and the nation would learn in time.With a painstaking reexamination of original documents, James Tobin uncovers the twisted chain of accidents that left FDR paralyzed; he reveals how polio recast Roosevelt’s fateful partnership with his wife, Eleanor; and he shows that FDR’s true victory was not over paralysis but over the ancient stigma attached to the crippled. Tobin also explodes the conventional wisdom of recent years—that FDR deceived the public about his condition. In fact, Roosevelt and his chief aide, Louis Howe, understood that only by displaying himself as a man who had come back from a knockout punch could FDR erase the perception that had followed him from childhood—that he was a pampered, too smooth pretty boy without the strength to lead the nation. As Tobin persuasively argues, FDR became president less in spite of polio than because of polio.The Man He Became affirms that true character emerges only in crisis and that in the shaping of this great American leader character was all.