The 23 Greatest Solo Piano Works


Robert Greenberg - 2013
    The 23 works you’ll study represent the selections of an internationally respected composer and music historian, carefully chosen to highlight the most significant compositional and pianistic achievements in the solo piano repertoire.These 24 engrossing lectures guide you through more than 200 years of music. Beginning with the towering figure of Bach, followed by Mozart and Beethoven, you encounter the piano music of such great 19th-century masters as Chopin, Schumann, and Liszt, before moving forward to visionary modernists including Scriabin, Debussy, and Prokofiev. In Professor Greenberg’s trademark style, each lecture focuses on a single work in a fresh, accessible encounter with the musical substance of the piece, welcoming listeners new to concert music as well as experienced concert music lovers.In addition to your study of the music, the lectures expose you to a rich panorama of music history. You dig deeply into the artistic and social environments that the compositions reflect, shedding light on what inspired these great works and how they were created. As a third key layer of the course, you delve into the extraordinary history of the piano itself, discovering the ways in which the evolution of the instrument directly affected the music that composers wrote for it.

The Labyrinth: Memoirs Of Walter Schellenberg, Hitler's Chief Of Counterintelligence


Walter Schellenberg - 1956
    Schellenberg recounts with firsthand knowledge the motivations and machinations surrounding the Nazi Army's every move in Poland, Austria, and Russia. But this remarkable inside account is perhaps most memorable for its riveting portraits of Reinhard Heydrich, Heinrich Himmler, Heinrich Mueller, Ernst Kaltenbrunner—men whom Schellenberg calls, with stunning lack of irony, ”Hitler's willing executioners.”

The Man in the Black Fur Coat: A Soldier's Adventures on the Eastern Front


Oskar Scheja - 2014
    The Russian army was camped on the other side. When the signal came to begin Operation Barbarossa he and his comrades from the German Wehrmacht stormed over the River and began an assault that took millions of Germans deep into Russian territory. For some the journey was brief. For others, like Oskar, it would last for years, and the struggle did not end when the fighting was over. This is the story of one German soldier’s experience in combat and captivity. It is the story of bravery, despair, deception, and survival.

Rick Steves' Northern European Cruise Ports


Rick Steves - 2013
    As always, he has a plan to help you have a meaningful cultural experience while you're there—even with just a few hours in port.Inside you'll find one-day itineraries for sightseeing at or near the major Northern Europe ports of call, including:Southampton and Dover (London)Le Havre (Paris and Normandy)Zeebrugge (Bruges and Brussels)AmsterdamOsloCopenhagenWarnemünde/Rostock (Berlin)StockholmHelsinkiTallinnSt. PetersburgRick Steves' Northern Europe Cruise Ports explains how to get into town from the cruise terminal, shares sightseeing tips, and includes self-guided walks and tours. You'll learn which destinations are best for an excursion—and which you can confidently visit on your own. You'll also get tips on booking a cruise, plus hints for saving time and money on the ship and in port.You can count on Rick Steves to tell you what you really need to know when cruising through Northern Europe.

Saint-Germain-des-Pres: Paris's Rebel Quarter


John Baxter - 2016
    It’s where Marat printed L’Ami du Peuple and Thomas Paine wrote The Rights of Man. Napoleon, Hemingway, and Sartre have all called it home. Descartes is buried there. Now bestselling author and Paris expert, John Baxter takes readers and travelers on a narrative tour of Saint-Germain-des-Pres, which is also where Baxter makes his home.Tucked along the shores of the Left Bank, Saint-Germain-des-Pres embodies so much of what makes Paris special. Its cobblestone streets and ancient facades survive to this day, spared from modernization thanks to a quirk in their construction. Traditionally cheap rents attracted outsiders and political dissidents from the days of Robespierre to the student revolts of the 1960s. And its intellectual pedigree boasts such luminaries as Pablo Picasso, Arthur Rimbaud, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Simone de Beauvoir, Gertrude Stein, and Albert Camus. Baxter reveals all, guiding readers to the cafes, gardens, shops, and monuments that bring this hidden history to life.Part-history, part-guidebook, Saint-Germain-des-Pres is a fresh look at one of the City of Light’s most iconic quarters, and a delight for new tourists and Paris veterans alike.

Stalingrad: The Battle that Shattered Hitler's Dream of World Domination


Rupert Matthews - 2012
    The relentless and unstoppable German advances that had seen the panzers sweep hundreds of miles into Russia was finally brought to a halt. The elite German 6th Army was first fought to a standstill, then surrounded and forced to surrender.Over 1.5 million people lost their lives during the six months of fighting, many of them civilians caught up in the campaign. For the first time in the war, the German army had been defeated on the field of battle. Before Stalingrad the Russians never won; after Stalingrad they could not lose.This book looks at the titanic struggle that ended in the total destruction of the second city of the Soviet Union, the greatest battle the world has ever seen.

The Congress of Vienna


Harold Nicolson - 1946
    His father, Sir Arthur Nicolson, was a diplomat as he himself was in early adulthood being a member of the British delegation to the Paris Peace Conference of 1919 as well as serving in other capacities. A later historian of the Congress, Adam Zamoyski, has described it in the following way: 'The reconstruction of Europe at the Congress of Vienna is probably the most seminal episode in modern history'. Harold Nicolson's classic account written piquantly just after the Second World War is memorable not just for its adroit grasp of the many complex issues but also for its numerous vivid character sketches of the principal peacemakers: Alexander I of Russia, Metternich, Talleyrand, Castlereagh and others are brought brilliantly to life. 'Mr Nicolson has written a vivid, entertaining and penetrating book about an episode in nineteenth-century history with which has gifts and his own education most particularly qualified him to deal. Moreover he often makes valuable generalisations...In a short review it is impossible to convey by quotation those qualities which will make it eagerly sought after: its vivid portraits and scenes from the past: its clear analysis of political situations as they arise; its shrewd comments on the characters of the men who dealt with them' - Desmond MacCarthy, "Sunday Times". Faber Finds is reissuing all of Harold Nicolson's works of diplomatic history: "The Congress of Vienna: A Study in Allied Unity, 1812-1822"; "Lord Carnock: A Study in Old Diplomacy: Peacemaking, 1919" and "Curzon: The Last Phase, 1919-1925".

Boldness Be My Friend


Richard Pape - 1954
    Stirling bomber goes on a special mission to destroy Goering's residence which is used as operational headquarters for the air defence of Berlin. His aircraft, after the operation has been successfully accomplished, is shot down. Wounded, he is hunted across Holland, joins the Dutch underground and is captured in Leyden waiting to be taken off by a British submarine.The description of the Berlin raid, the last moments of the aircraft and the pursuit across Holland are among the best dramatic passages to come out of the war. But this is only the beginning of the most fantastic tale, which, interspersed with intrigue and violence, with setbacks and recapture, takes Pape across the breadth of German-occupied Europe; to Poland and Czechoslovakia; to Austria and Hungary and almost to the Yugoslav partisans.

Catherine The Great: Last Empress Of Russia


Michael W. Simmons - 2016
    Destiny had other plans for her: summoned to Russia, then considered by most Europeans to be a vast, primitive wasteland, devoid of culture or sophistication, she became the Grand Duchess Ekaterina, wife of the future emperor Peter III. What followed her short, unhappy marriage was a legendary rise to supreme power. At the age of 33, the Grand Duchess Catherine became the Empress Catherine II, ruler in her own right of the largest empire on earth. In this book, you will learn how, during Catherine’s lonely years as a neglected wife in the court of the Empress Elisabeth, she bided her time and amassed the necessary political and military support to overthrow the heir to the Romanov dynasty and seize his throne. You will also learn why, over the course of her 34-year reign, which saw rebellions, foreign wars, popular uprisings, and a string of jealous lovers vying for her favor, she came to be remembered by history under the name conferred upon her by her own people: Catherine the Great.

What Was the Berlin Wall?


Nico Medina - 2019
    Now readers can find out why it was built in the first place; and what it meant for Berliners living on either side of it. Here's the fascinating story of a city divided.In 1961, overnight a concrete border went up, dividing the city of Berlin into two parts - East and West. . The story of the Berlin Wall holds up a mirror to post-WWII politics and the Cold War Era when the United States and the USSR were enemies, always on the verge of war. The wall meant that no one from Communist East Berlin could travel to West Berlin, a free, democratic area. Of course that didn't stop thousands from trying to breech the wall - more than one hundred of them dying in the attempt. (One East Berliner actually ziplined to freedom!) Author Nico Medina explains the spy-vs-spy politics of the time as well as what has happened since the removal of one of the most divisive landmarks in modern history.

A Passion for Paris: Romanticism and Romance in the City of Light


David Downie - 2015
    The art and architecture, the cityscape, riverbanks, and the unparalleled quality of daily life are part of the equation.But the city’s allure derives equally from hidden sources: querulous inhabitants, a bizarre culture of heroic negativity, and a rich historical past supplying enigmas, pleasures and challenges. Rarely do visitors suspect the glamor and chic and the carefree atmosphere of the City of Light grew from and still feed off the dark fountainheads of riot, rebellion, mayhem and melancholy—and the subversive literature, art and music of the Romantic Age.Weaving together his own with the lives and loves of Victor Hugo, Georges Sand, Charles Baudelaire, Balzac, Nadar and other great Romantics Downie delights in the city’s secular romantic pilgrimage sites asking , Why Paris, not Venice or Rome—the tap root of "romance"—or Berlin, Vienna and London—where the earliest Romantics built castles-in-the-air and sang odes to nightingales? Read A Passion for Paris: Romanticism and Romance in the City of Light and find out.

A History of Eastern Europe


Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius - 2015
    It has also been, and continues to be, pivotal in the course of world events. A History of Eastern Europe offers a sweeping 1,000-year tour with a particular focus on the region's modern history. In 24 insightful lectures, you'll observe waves of migration and invasion, watch empires rise and fall, witness wars and their deadly consequences - and come away with comprehensive knowledge of one of the world's most fascinating places.In examining this region's remarkable diversity and contested borders, you'll better understand the ever-present tension between the connections between East and West and the areas of marked contrast. These disparities were clear as the world globalized and the US and Soviet superpowers jockeyed for spheres of influence - epitomized by the imposition of the Iron Curtain across Europe and the rise of the Berlin Wall. And yet, throughout the 20th century and into current times, the connectedness of Eastern Europe to the rest of the world continues to be demonstrated beyond question. This region has made itself felt across the globe through:The political and cultural reverberations of peace movements and armed conflictsThe crises of huge population migrations and the new expressions of cultural and economic exchange they sparkThe successes and struggles of NATO and the European Union And more Explore the grand sweep of this epic history, from a series of early invasions to the rise of empires to the collapse of communism and into the new challenges of the 21st century. Meet brilliant poets, writers, artists, and other cultural figures who made an impact on Eastern European history.

The Bronski House


Philip Marsden - 1995
    It was 53 years since the day she'd been forced to flee. In part, this is the remarkable story of what she found, the account of a woman coming face-to-face with her own past. But it is also the reconstruction of a world which vanished in 1939 when Soviet tanks rolled into eastern Poland.

War on the Eastern Front: The German Soldier in Russia 1941-1945


James Sidney Lucas - 1980
    Few of them were to survive the five long years of bitter struggle.A posting to the Eastern Front during the Second World War was rightly regarded with dread by the German soldiers. They were faced by the unremitting hostility of the climate, the people and even, at times, their own leadership. They saw epic battles such as Stalingrad and Kursk, and yet it was a daily war of attrition which ultimately proved fatal for Hitler s ambition and the German military machine. In this classic account leading military historian James Lucas examines different aspects of the fighting, from war in the trenches to a bicycle-mounted antitank unit fighting against the oncoming Russian hordes. Told through the experiences of the German soldiers who endured these nightmarish years of warfare, War on the Eastern Front is a unique record of this cataclysmic campaign."

Heroes: David Bowie and Berlin


Tobias Rüther - 2008
    The rocker settled in Berlin, where he would make his “Berlin Trilogy”—the albums Low, Heroes, and Lodger, which are now considered some of the most critically acclaimed and innovative of the late twentieth century. But Bowie’s time in Berlin was about more than producing new music. As Tobias Rüther describes in this fascinating tale of Bowie’s Berlin years, the musician traveled to West Berlin—the capital of his childhood dreams and the city of Expressionism—to repair his body and mind from the devastation of drug addiction, delusions, and mania.             Painting a vivid picture of Bowie’s life in the Schöneberg area of the city, Rüther describes the artist’s friendships and collaborations with his roommate, Iggy Pop, as well as Brian Eno and Tony Visconti. Rüther illustrates Bowie’s return to painting, days cycling to the Die Brücke museum, and his exploration of the city’s nightlife, both the wild side and the gay scene. In West Berlin, Bowie also met singer and actress Romy Haag; came to know Hansa Studios, where he would record Low and Heroes; and even landed the part of a Prussian aristocrat in Just a Gigolo, starring alongside Marlene Dietrich. Eventually Rüther uses Bowie and his explorations of the cultural and historical undercurrents of West Berlin to examine the city itself: divided, caught in the Cold War, and how it began to redefine itself as a cultural metropolis, turning to the arts to start a new history. Tying in with an exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, in September, 2014, Heroes tells the fascinating story of how the music of the future arose from the spirit of the past. It is an unforgettable look at one of the world’s most renowned musicians in one of its most inspiring cities.