The Earth is Weeping: The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West by Peter CozzensIn The Earth is Weeping, historian Peter Cozzens draws on oral histories, military records, and other historical accounts to present a comprehensive account of U.S. westward expansion after the Civil War and its effects on Native Americans. Emphasizing the complexity of both white and Native opinions on the conflicts, he draws sensitive and insightful portraits of the leading figures as well as responses to them from within their own groups. Booklist calls this study a "beautifully written work of understanding and compassion."
The Plots Against Hitler by Danny OrbachWhile several attempts to assassinate Adolf Hitler are well known -- a 2008 film based on the Valkyrie plot starred Tom Cruise -- the extensive underground resistance within Germany is less familiar. In The Plots Against Hitler, historian Danny Orbach discusses the interconnected groups that tried to bring Hitler down between 1938 and 1943. Focusing on General Hans Oster, who was involved in several plots, and Claus von Stauffenberg of Operation Valkyrie fame, Orbach derives some of his material from newly available diaries and other documents. This study offers a compelling portrait of the conspirators' moral courage in the face of deadly risk.
Les Parisiennes: How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved, and Died under Nazi Occupation by Anne SebbaIn Nazi-occupied Paris, women faced different dangers from those imposed on men at the war front or in forced labor camps. Biographer Anne Sebba examines the experiences of many different women in this complex study of collaborators and resistors, rich and poor, Jewish and gentile. While striving to maintain a semblance of normality at home and among friends, many women also risked their freedom and even their lives on a daily basis. Sebba's chronicle offers a kaleidoscope of details depicting the fates of specific individuals. Paris history and World War II buffs will be especially pleased at the women's history recounted here.
America the Anxious: How Our Pursuit of Happiness Is Creating a Nation of Nervous... by Ruth WhippmanAfter moving to California, British journalist Ruth Whippman discovers that the trademark American pursuit of happiness seems to dominate daily existence, creating more anxiety than contentment. Terming this phenomenon the "commercial happiness machine," she attends courses and conferences, investigates organizations known for their contented employees, looks at famously happy religious movements, and tries out meditation practices. America the Anxious deflates the positive psychology movement, skewers parenting techniques aimed at raising happy children, and concludes that the happiness quest won't necessarily yield a satisfying life. This social history make a "delightfully witty, enjoyable" book, says Kirkus Reviews.
Forty Autumns: A Family's Story of Courage and Survival on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall by Nina WillnerAuthor Nina Willner, the first female U.S. Army intelligence officer to work in East Germany, had a whole family living behind the Iron Curtain. While her mother Hanna had escaped from East Berlin in 1948, marrying an American and raising her children there, all of Hanna's relatives remained behind. In Forty Autumns, Willner relates their story, including her grandfather's brutal "re-education" in a mental institution and the family's loving solidarity in the face of Communist oppression. The Berlin Wall's destruction in 1989 allowed Hanna's first reunion with her relatives in 40 years. Gripping, heartrending, and inspiring, this combined history and family memoir relates the history of the Cold War in personal terms.
Pearl Harbor: Controversy and Consequences
Cultures of War: Pearl Harbor / Hiroshima / 9-11 / Iraq by John W. DowerIn Cultures of War, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian John Dower offers an eye-opening discussion of wars involving the U.S. during the past 75 years. He persuasively argues that four crucial events and their historical contexts -- Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, 9/11, and the 2003 invasion of Iraq -- share characteristics that make them ironically similar. While his analysis may be controversial, this study offers well-researched and extensively footnoted examples and raises incisive questions about leadership and cultural attitudes that drive decisions to go to war and sustain popular support for it. Booklist calls this a "forceful indictment of warlike attitudes."
Pearl Harbor: FDR Leads the Nation into War by Steven M. GillonAlthough U.S. leaders expected their country would ultimately join the Allies in World War II and knew the Japanese were planning an assault somewhere on American-held territory, the attack on Pearl Harbor came as a surprise. Focusing on the hours after the devastating assault, historian Steven Gillon details how President Franklin Roosevelt and his close advisors dealt with the news and considered how America would respond. Illuminating the drama of their deliberations with contextual information and biographies of key figures, Pearl Harbor supplies an "excellent introduction to Roosevelt and his times" (Kirkus Reviews).
Those Angry Days: Roosevelt, Lindbergh, and America's Fight over World War II, 1939-1941 by Lynne OlsonBetween 1939, following Germany's invasion of Poland, and December 1941, Americans were sharply divided about the prospect of joining the war in Europe. Leading the isolationist faction was aviator Charles Lindbergh, while President Franklin Roosevelt supported intervention. The debate intensified after Germany had conquered mainland Europe, leaving Britain as the final bulwark against the Third Reich's bid for world domination. Those Angry Days vividly recreates the intrigue, dirty tricks, and propaganda campaigns that preceded Pearl Harbor, which inexorably pulled the U.S. into the war. Author Lynne Olson's insights into the isolationist movement add value to this accessible account of the period.
Infamy: The Shocking Story of the Japanese-American Internment in World War II by Richard ReevesIn Infamy, historian Richard Reeves draws on interviews with survivors and on personal records from the period to provide a thorough examination of America's World War II internment of Japanese nationals legally residing in the U.S. and Japanese-American citizens. He offers disturbing depictions of white Americans' prejudice against the Japanese and the fear and shame the internees experienced. While he also describes positive responses that mitigate the darkness of this historical episode, his "authoritative" (Library Journal) narrative pulls no punches. For another compelling account of American treatment of foreign nationals during the war, try Jan Jarboe Russell's The Train to Crystal City.
Pearl Harbor Christmas: A World at War, December 1941 by Stanley WeintraubJapan's brutal December 7th attack on Pearl Harbor left Americans both reluctant to embrace the season of joy soon to come and longing for the feelings of peace and hope the Christmas holiday traditionally symbolizes. Pearl Harbor Christmas presents a thought-provoking cultural chronicle of how great world leaders and everyday people alike navigated this difficult season. Starting with Winston Churchill's precipitous arrival in Washington on December 22, this insightful chronicle weaves together Adolf Hitler's sarcasm as revealed in Nazi dispatches, wistful Christmas advertising, and personal observations from those involved in U.S.-British negotiations at the end of 1941. World War II buffs can't go wrong with this snapshot of a critical period.
Contact your librarian for more great books!