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History and Current Events January 2014
"From the end spring new beginnings."
~ Pliny the Elder (23-79), Roman author and naturalist
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New and Recently Released!
The aviators: Eddie Rickenbacker, Jimmy Doolittle, Charles Lindbergh, and the epic age of flight - Winston Groom
Check Library Catalogue Share The aviators%3a Eddie Rickenbacker, Jimmy Doolittle, Charles Lindbergh, and the epic age of flight ISBN-13: 9781426211560
ISBN-10: 1426211562
Three great American aviators made huge contributions to the development of flight from before World War I to the 1940s: Eddie Rickenbacker, Jimmy Doolittle, and Charles Lindbergh. In this engaging triple biography, author Winston Groom recounts their lives and vividly depicts their respective contributions to the practice and science of aeronautics. He also relates how the men viewed German re-armament after World War I and gave varied opinions on how to respond to Adolf Hitler's escalating preparations for war. Anyone interested in 20th century international politics, the history of aviation, or the lives of these three celebrity pilots will find The Aviators compelling.
Farewell, Fred Voodoo : a letter from Haiti - Amy Wilentz
Check Library Catalogue Share Farewell, Fred Voodoo %3a  a letter from Haiti ISBN-13: 9781451643978
ISBN-10: 1451643977
The National Book Critics Circle Award-nominated foreign correspondent and author of The Rainy Season describes her long and painful relationship with Haiti before and after the 2010 earthquake, tracing the country's turbulent history and its present-day status as a symbol of human rights activism and social transformation.
Grey wolf : the escape of Adolf Hitler - Simon Dunstan
Check Library Catalogue Share Grey wolf %3a  the escape of Adolf Hitler ISBN-13: 9781402796197
ISBN-10: 1402796196
This book looks at extensive evidence, some recently declassified, that suggests Hitler fled Berlin and took refuge in Argentina. It identifies escape routes, vehicles and hideouts that might have been used. Did Hitler (code name 'Grey Wolf') really die in 1945? The evidence says no. Here's the gripping story of what might have happened....
Amsterdam : a history of the world's most liberal city - Russell Shorto
Check Library Catalogue Share Amsterdam %3a  a history of the world ISBN-13: 9780385534574
ISBN-10: 0385534574
Amsterdam is not just any city. Despite its relative size it has stood alongside its larger cousins Paris, London, Berlin and has influenced the modern world to a degree that few other cities have. Sweeping across the city's colourful thousand year history, Amsterdam brings the place to life: its sights and smells; its politics and people. Concentrating on two significant periods the late 1500s to the mid 1600s and then from the Second World War to the present, Russell Shorto's masterful biography looks at Amsterdam's central preoccupations. Just as fin-de-siecle Vienna was the birthplace of psychoanalysis, seventeenth century Amsterdam was the wellspring of liberalism, and today it is still a city that takes individual freedom very seriously. A wonderfully evocative book that takes Amsterdam's dramatic past and present and populates it with a whole host of colourful characters, this is the definitive work on this great city.
The dark box : a secret history of confession - John Cornwell
Check Library Catalogue Share The dark box %3a  a secret history of confession ISBN-13: 9780465039951
ISBN-10: 0465039952
Would you tell your deepest secrets to a relative stranger? And if you did, would you feel vulnerable? Cleansed? Or perhaps even worse than you did before? This is the sacred and profane history of confession in the Catholic Church, with a shocking new expose of its role in the child abuse scandals of the twentieth century.
Breakfast: a history - Heather Arndt Anderson
Check Library Catalogue Share Breakfast%3a a history ISBN-13: 9780759121638
ISBN-10: 075912163X
From corn flakes to pancakes, Breakfast: A History explores this "most important meal of the day" as a social and gastronomic phenomenon. It explains how and why the meal emerged, what is eaten commonly in this meal across the globe, why certain foods are considered indispensable, and how it has been depicted in art and media. Heather Arndt Anderson's detail-rich, culturally revealing, and entertaining narrative thoroughly satisfies.
Gaddafi's harem - Annick Cojean
Check Library Catalogue Share Gaddafi ISBN-13: 9780802121721
ISBN-10: 0802121721
The shocking true story of a schoolgirl's abduction into Colonel Gaddafi's secret harem of sex slaves. Award-winning French journalist Annick Cojean has given a voice to the horrific and moving story of Soraya, a 15-year-old girl who was summoned to Gaddafi's palatial compound near Tripoli in Libya after the dictator 'chose' her on one of his school visits. There she joined dozens of young women who were systematically abused, raped and degraded by Gaddafi. In public, the women were disguised as Gaddafi's security personnel.  In private, they were confined to basement apartments, on hand for the depraved and violent impulses of one of the twentieth century's most malevolent dictators.
The Pope and Mussolini: the secret history of Pius XI and the rise of Fascism in Europe - David I. Kertzer
Check Library Catalogue Share The Pope and Mussolini%3a the secret history of Pius XI and the rise of Fascism in Europe ISBN-13: 9780812993462
ISBN-10: 0812993462
Both Pope Pius XI and Mussolini came to power in Rome in 1922. One was scholarly and devout, the other a violent bully. Yet they also had traits in common. Both had explosive tempers. Both bristled at the charge of being the patsy of the other. Both demanded unquestioned obedience from their subordinates, whose knees literally quaked in fear of provoking their wrath. Both came to be disillusioned by the other, yet dreaded what would happen if their alliance were to end. The book unravels for the first time the key role played between pope and dictator by the shadowy Jesuit go-between, dubbed Mussolini's Rasputin. It also reveals the details of the secret agreement worked out by Mussolini with the pope's personal envoy, offering Vatican support for Italy's notorious, anti-Semitic 'racial laws'.
Servants: a downstairs history of Britain from the nineteenth century to modern times - Lucy Lethbridge
Check Library Catalogue Share Servants%3a a downstairs history of Britain from the nineteenth century to modern times ISBN-13: 9780393241099
ISBN-10: 0393241092
Until the end of World War II, British society relied on a rigid class structure that assigned precisely defined roles to the wealthy and aristocrats on one hand, and the poor and uneducated on the other. Covering about two centuries of British history, journalist Lucy Lethbridge examines in detail how this social structure made it possible to maintain large families in giant houses through the work of multitudes of servants. Fans of television's Upstairs, Downstairs and Downton Abbey or of Edwardian period novels will recognize the situations and people Lethbridge engagingly portrays in Servants, which Kirkus Reviews says "adds poignancy to the master-servant dynamic."
Focus on: Beginnings
Human smoke: the beginnings of World War II, the end of civilization - Nicholson Baker
Check Library Catalogue Share Human smoke%3a the beginnings of World War II, the end of civilization ISBN-13: 9781416572466
ISBN-10: 1416572465
Assembling excerpts from historical documents and newspaper accounts of the period from 1892 to the end of 1941, author Nicholson Baker provides a "you were there" sense of the origins of World Wars I and II. In Human smoke, as he weaves the themes of aggression and pacifism together into a provocative, panoramic examination of the causes of war and its devastating effects, Baker's dominant theme supports a pacifist stance towards the World Wars and war in general. Both those who tend to agree with Baker and those who are not persuaded will find themselves questioning whether war is effective or necessary.
Turing's Cathedral: the origins of the digital universe - George Dyson
Check Library Catalogue Share Turing ISBN-13: 9780375422775
ISBN-10: 0375422773
This "mesmerizing tale, brilliantly told" (Kirkus Reviews) by acclaimed science historian George Dyson (son of renowned physicist Freeman Dyson) recounts how scientists at Princeton's Institute for Advanced Studies built a machine called MANIAC -- short for Mathematical Analyzer, Numerical Integrator, and Computer. Inspired by mathematician Alan Turing's dream of a "a single machine which can be used to compute any computational sequence," Hungarian-American polymath John von Neumann assembled a team of geniuses -- including Kurt Gödel, Julian Bigelow, and others -- to bring this vision to life in the 1940s and '50s. If you enjoyed the scope of James Gleick's The Information, you'll be enthralled by this sprawling history of the computer.
The origins of political order: from prehuman times to the French Revolution - Francis Fukuyama
Check Library Catalogue Share The origins of political order%3a from prehuman times to the French Revolution ISBN-13: 9780374227340
ISBN-10: 0374227349
Acclaimed political theorist Francis Fukuyama contends that primitive tribal cultures developed political systems in response to societal needs: adaptive systems persisted longest, eventually becoming institutions from which our modern nation states evolved. In this first of two volumes, superbly chosen examples of state formation (including China, India, and Middle-Eastern regions) affirm the global scope of The Origins of Political Order. Readers interested in history's big sociopolitical questions (think Machiavelli's The Prince) will find big answers here, drawn from modern studies in anthropology, macroeconomics, legal history, and related specialties.
The Colonel and Little Missie: Buffalo Bill, Annie Oakley, and the beginnings of superstardom in America - Larry McMurtry
Check Library Catalogue Share The Colonel and Little Missie%3a Buffalo Bill, Annie Oakley, and the beginnings of superstardom in America ISBN-13: 9780743271721
ISBN-10: 0743271726
Author Larry McMurtry, best known for his award-winning Western novels, including the Lonesome Dove trilogy, explores the development of superstardom in The Colonel and Little Missie, a dual biography of Buffalo Bill Cody and Annie Oakley. McMurtry's vivid, engaging style brings these stars of the Wild West Show to life, relating how Cody's showmanship attracted fans from ordinary Americans to Queen Victoria who emerged from mourning to see the spectacle. Devotees of Wild West history, fans of sharpshooter Annie and Indian fighter Bill, and anyone interested in the origins of showbiz will find this an enthralling read.
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