King Richard: Nixon and Watergate -- An American Tragedy by Michael DobbsWhat it is: a richly detailed chronicle of the Watergate scandal written by historian Michael Dobbs.
Why you should read it: Likening the Nixon administration to a Shakespearean tragedy, Dobbs' riveting history unfolds in four acts and includes a dramatis personae.
Featuring: research drawn from recently released audio recordings that reveals previously unknown aspects of the scandal.
X Troop: The Secret Jewish Commandos of World War II by Leah GarrettWhat it's about: Britain's X Troop, an elite World War II commando unit comprised solely of German, Austrian, and Hungarian Jewish refugees.
Read it for: a dramatic account of wartime heroism supplemented by extensive research, including access to newly declassified materials.
Reviewers say: "Garrett's tale of a little-known unit shows that there are still many stories about the war yet to be uncovered" (Library Journal).
Life on the Line: Young Doctors Come of Age in a Pandemic by Emma GoldbergWhat it's about: In early 2020, six New York City medical school students graduated early from their programs to help combat rising COVID-19 cases at understaffed hospitals.
Who it's for: At turns sobering and inspiring, Life on the Line will appeal to readers who enjoy real-time accounts of hospital life in the midst of a crisis, like Sheri Fink's Five Days at Memorial.
Don't miss: the new doctors taking the Hippocratic Oath via Zoom.
War on the Border: Villa, Pershing, the Texas Rangers, and an American Invasion by Jeff GuinnWhat it is: a fast-paced and suspenseful account of the Punitive Expedition of 1916, the United States military operation conducted to quash Mexican revolutionary forces led by Pancho Villa.
Why you might like it: This engaging latest from bestselling Road to Jonestown author Jeff Guinn offers an accessible overview of early 20th-century tensions between the U.S. and Mexico, illuminating how these events contributed to contemporary U.S.-Mexico border conflicts.
How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by Clint SmithWhat it is: poet and Atlantic staff writer Clint Smith's moving debut exploring the history -- and future -- of landmarks tied to slavery.
Read it for: a compelling travelogue that reflects on the role collective memory plays in obfuscating American history.
On the itinerary: Monticello; the Whitney Plantation; Angola Prison; Blandford Cemetery; Gorée Island, Senegal; and more.
Red Famine: Stalin's War on Ukraine by Anne ApplebaumThe thesis: In the early 1930s, Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin deliberately created famine conditions in Ukraine as an act of genocide, resulting in the deaths of nearly four million Ukrainians.
Why you should read it: Featuring oral histories and testimonies from survivors, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Anne Applebaum's thought-provoking account sheds light on the ongoing tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
Book buzz: Red Famine was named an Economist Best Book of 2017.
Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe by Kapka KassabovaWhat it's about: Bulgarian-born poet and writer Kapka Kassabova's return visits home to Eastern Europe between 2013-2015.
What happened: In the complex area where Bulgaria, Turkey, and Greece meet, Kassabova traveled through mountains and forests and spoke with villagers, ex-border guards, people who'd tried to escape Communist Bulgaria, incoming Syrian refugees, and more.
Read it for: a clever, lyrical, and acutely observed examination of Eastern European borderlands; references to myths and folktales.
The Seine: The River That Made Paris by Elaine SciolinoWhat it is: an entertaining and richly detailed look at the Seine River, from its modest Burgundy source to its end at the English Channel.
What's inside: an engaging exploration of the Seine's role in shaping Parisian culture; stories about the ancient goddess Sequana, after whom the river is named; talks with locals, including a grape grower in Champagne, Paris booksellers, and River Brigade members.
About the author: Elaine Sciolino is a former New York Times Paris bureau chief and the bestselling author of The Only Street in Paris.
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