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History

Midnight in Chernobyl

Midnight in Chernobyl

Higginbotham, Adam
$19.00
A New York Times Best Book of the Year
A Time Best Book of the Year
A Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction Book of the Year
2020 Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence Winner

From journalist Adam Higginbotham, the New York Times bestselling "account that reads almost like the script for a movie" (The Wall Street Journal)--a powerful investigation into Chernobyl and how propaganda, secrecy, and myth have obscured the true story of one of the history's worst nuclear disasters.

Early in the morning of April 26, 1986, Reactor Number Four of the Chernobyl Atomic Energy Station exploded, triggering one of the twentieth century's greatest disasters. In the thirty years since then, Chernobyl has become lodged in the collective nightmares of the world: shorthand for the spectral horrors of radiation poisoning, for a dangerous technology slipping its leash, for ecological fragility, and for what can happen when a dishonest and careless state endangers its citizens and the entire world. But the real story of the accident, clouded from the beginning by secrecy, propaganda, and misinformation, has long remained in dispute.

Drawing on hundreds of hours of interviews conducted over the course of more than ten years, as well as letters, unpublished memoirs, and documents from recently-declassified archives, Adam Higginbotham brings the disaster to life through the eyes of the men and women who witnessed it firsthand. The result is a "riveting, deeply reported reconstruction" (Los Angeles Times) and a definitive account of an event that changed history: a story that is more complex, more human, and more terrifying than the Soviet myth.

"The most complete and compelling history yet" (The Christian Science Monitor), Higginbotham's "superb, enthralling, and necessarily terrifying...extraordinary" (The New York Times) book is an indelible portrait of the lessons learned when mankind seeks to bend the natural world to his will--lessons which, in the face of climate change and other threats, remain not just vital but necessary.

Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars

Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars

Holt, Nathalia
$27.00
The riveting true story of the women who launched America into space.

In the 1940s and 50s, when the newly minted Jet Propulsion Laboratory needed quick-thinking mathematicians to calculate velocities and plot trajectories, they didn't turn to male graduates. Rather, they recruited an elite group of young women who, with only pencil, paper, and mathematical prowess, transformed rocket design, helped bring about the first American satellites, and made the exploration of the solar system possible.

For the first time, Rise of the Rocket Girls tells the stories of these women -- known as "human computers" -- who broke the boundaries of both gender and science. Based on extensive research and interviews with all the living members of the team, Rise of the Rocket Girls offers a unique perspective on the role of women in science: both where we've been, and the far reaches of space to which we're heading.

"If Hidden Figures has you itching to learn more about the women who worked in the space program, pick up Nathalia Holt's lively, immensely readable history, Rise of the Rocket Girls." -- Entertainment Weekly

Spying on the South

Spying on the South

Horwitz, Tony
$18.00
The New York Times-bestselling final book by the beloved, Pulitzer-Prize winning historian Tony Horwitz.

With Spying on the South, the best-selling author of Confederates in the Attic returns to the South and the Civil War era for an epic adventure on the trail of America's greatest landscape architect. In the 1850s, the young Frederick Law Olmsted was adrift, a restless farmer and dreamer in search of a mission. He found it during an extraordinary journey, as an undercover correspondent in the South for the up-and-coming New York Times.

For the Connecticut Yankee, pen name "Yeoman," the South was alien, often hostile territory. Yet Olmsted traveled for 14 months, by horseback, steamboat, and stagecoach, seeking dialogue and common ground. His vivid dispatches about the lives and beliefs of Southerners were revelatory for readers of his day, and Yeoman's remarkable trek also reshaped the American landscape, as Olmsted sought to reform his own society by creating democratic spaces for the uplift of all. The result: Central Park and Olmsted's career as America's first and foremost landscape architect.

Tony Horwitz rediscovers Yeoman Olmsted amidst the discord and polarization of our own time. Is America still one country? In search of answers, and his own adventures, Horwitz follows Olmsted's tracks and often his mode of transport (including muleback): through Appalachia, down the Mississippi River, into bayou Louisiana, and across Texas to the contested Mexican borderland. Venturing far off beaten paths, Horwitz uncovers bracing vestiges and strange new mutations of the Cotton Kingdom. Horwitz's intrepid and often hilarious journey through an outsized American landscape is a masterpiece in the tradition of Great Plains, Bad Land, and the author's own classic, Confederates in the Attic.

Churchill Factor : How One Man Made History

Churchill Factor : How One Man Made History

Johnson, Boris
$27.95
From London's inimitable mayor, Boris Johnson, the story of how Churchill's eccentric genius shaped not only his world but our own.

On the fiftieth anniversary of Churchill's death, Boris Johnson celebrates the singular brilliance of one of the most important leaders of the twentieth century. Taking on the myths and misconceptions along with the outsized reality, he portrays--with characteristic wit and passion--a man of contagious bravery, breathtaking eloquence, matchless strategizing, and deep humanity.

Fearless on the battlefield, Churchill had to be ordered by the king to stay out of action on D-Day; he pioneered aerial bombing and few could match his experience in organizing violence on a colossal scale, yet he hated war and scorned politicians who had not experienced its horrors. He was the most famous journalist of his time and perhaps the greatest orator of all time, despite a lisp and chronic depression he kept at bay by painting. His maneuvering positioned America for entry into World War II, even as it ushered in England's post-war decline. His openmindedness made him a trailblazer in health care, education, and social welfare, though he remained incorrigibly politically incorrect. Most of all, he was a rebuttal to the idea that history is the story of vast and impersonal forces; he is proof that one person--intrepid, ingenious, determined--can make all the difference.

Organ Thieves: The Shocking Story of the First Heart Transplant in the Segregated South

Organ Thieves: The Shocking Story of the First Heart Transplant in the Segregated South

Jones, Chip
$28.00
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks meets Get Out in this landmark investigation of racial inequality at the core of the heart transplant race.

In 1968, Bruce Tucker, a black man, went into Virginia's top research hospital with a head injury, only to have his heart taken out of his body and put into the chest of a white businessman. Now, in The Organ Thieves, Pulitzer Prize-nominated journalist Chip Jones exposes the horrifying inequality surrounding Tucker's death and how he was used as a human guinea pig without his family's permission or knowledge. The circumstances surrounding his death reflect the long legacy of mistreating African Americans that began more than a century before with cadaver harvesting and worse. It culminated in efforts to win the heart transplant race in the late 1960s.

Featuring years of research and fresh reporting, The Organ Thieves is a story that resonates now more than ever, when issues of race and healthcare are the stuff of headlines and horror stories.

Last Kings of Shanghai

Last Kings of Shanghai

Kaufman, Jonathan
$28.00
In vivid detail... examines the little-known history of two extraordinary dynasties.--The Boston Globe

Not just a brilliant, well-researched, and highly readable book about China's past, it also reveals the contingencies and ironic twists of fate in China's modern history.--LA Review of Books

An epic, multigenerational story of two rival dynasties who flourished in Shanghai and Hong Kong as twentieth-century China surged into the modern era, from the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist

Shanghai, 1936. The Cathay Hotel, located on the city's famous waterfront, is one of the most glamorous in the world. Built by Victor Sassoon--billionaire playboy and scion of the Sassoon dynasty--the hotel hosts a who's who of global celebrities: Noel Coward has written a draft of Private Lives in his suite and Charlie Chaplin has entertained his wife-to-be. And a few miles away, Mao and the nascent Communist Party have been plotting revolution.

By the 1930s, the Sassoons had been doing business in China for a century, rivaled in wealth and influence by only one other dynasty--the Kadoories. These two Jewish families, both originally from Baghdad, stood astride Chinese business and politics for more than 175 years, profiting from the Opium Wars; surviving Japanese occupation; courting Chiang Kai-shek; and losing nearly everything as the Communists swept into power. In The Last Kings of Shanghai, Jonathan Kaufman tells the remarkable history of how these families participated in an economic boom that opened China to the world, but remained blind to the country's deep inequality and to the political turmoil at their doorsteps. In a story stretching from Baghdad to Hong Kong to Shanghai to London, Kaufman enters the lives and minds of these ambitious men and women to forge a tale of opium smuggling, family rivalry, political intrigue, and survival.

The book lays bare the moral compromises of the Kadoories and the Sassoons--and their exceptional foresight, success, and generosity. At the height of World War II, they joined together to rescue and protect eighteen thousand Jewish refugees fleeing Nazism. Though their stay in China started out as a business opportunity, the country became a home they were reluctant to leave, even on the eve of revolution. The lavish buildings they built and the booming businesses they nurtured continue to define Shanghai and Hong Kong to this day. As the United States confronts China's rise, and China grapples with the pressures of breakneck modernization and global power, the long-hidden odysseys of the Sassoons and the Kadoories hold a key to understanding the present moment.

Say Nothing

Say Nothing

Keefe, Patrick Radden
$16.95
WINNER OF THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FOR NONFICTION

A NEW YORK TIMES TOP TEN BOOK OF THE YEAR

LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD

WINNER OF THE ORWELL PRIZE


BEST NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR - TIME MAGAZINE

A WASHINGTON POST TOP TEN BOOK OF THE YEAR

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Named a best book of the year by The Wall Street Journal, EW, The Economist, The Chicago Tribune, GQ, Slate, NPR, Variety, Slate, TIME, Minneapolis Star Tribune, St. Louis Post Dispatch, The Dallas Morning News, Buzzfeed, Kirkus Reviews, and BookPage

Named a best book of the decade by Literary Hub and EW

Masked intruders dragged Jean McConville, a 38-year-old widow and mother of 10, from her Belfast home in 1972. In this meticulously reported book -- as finely paced as a novel -- Keefe uses McConville's murder as a prism to tell the history of the Troubles in Northern Ireland. Interviewing people on both sides of the conflict, he transforms the tragic damage and waste of the era into a searing, utterly gripping saga. - New York Times Book Review, Ten Best Books of the Year

From award-winning New Yorker staff writer Patrick Radden Keefe, a stunning, intricate narrative about a notorious killing in Northern Ireland and its devastating repercussions

In December 1972, Jean McConville, a thirty-eight-year-old mother of ten, was dragged from her Belfast home by masked intruders, her children clinging to her legs. They never saw her again. Her abduction was one of the most notorious episodes of the vicious conflict known as The Troubles. Everyone in the neighborhood knew the I.R.A. was responsible. But in a climate of fear and paranoia, no one would speak of it. In 2003, five years after an accord brought an uneasy peace to Northern Ireland, a set of human bones was discovered on a beach. McConville's children knew it was their mother when they were told a blue safety pin was attached to the dress--with so many kids, she had always kept it handy for diapers or ripped clothes.

Patrick Radden Keefe's mesmerizing book on the bitter conflict in Northern Ireland and its aftermath uses the McConville case as a starting point for the tale of a society wracked by a violent guerrilla war, a war whose consequences have never been reckoned with. The brutal violence seared not only people like the McConville children, but also I.R.A. members embittered by a peace that fell far short of the goal of a united Ireland, and left them wondering whether the killings they committed were not justified acts of war, but simple murders. From radical and impetuous I.R.A. terrorists such as Dolours Price, who, when she was barely out of her teens, was already planting bombs in London and targeting informers for execution, to the ferocious I.R.A. mastermind known as The Dark, to the spy games and dirty schemes of the British Army, to Gerry Adams, who negotiated the peace but betrayed his hardcore comrades by denying his I.R.A. past--Say Nothing conjures a world of passion, betrayal, vengeance, and anguish.

Nora says: A brilliant, beautifully written account of “The Troubles,” seen through the lens of one tragedy among many.

Saving Stalin

Saving Stalin

Kelly, John
$30.00
During World War II, the Allied leaders banded together, forged a great victory--and created a new and dangerous post-war world.
In the summer of 1941, Harry Hopkins, Franklin Roosevelt's trusted advisor, arrived in Moscow to assess whether the US should send aid to Russia as it had to Britain. Unofficially, he was there to determine whether Josef Stalin--the man who had killed over six million Ukrainians during the 1930s--was worth saving.
In this riveting and sweeping narrative, author John Kelly chronicles the turbulent wartime relationship between the great leaders--Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin--and military commanders of America, Britain, and the Soviet Union. Faced with the greatest challenge of the century, the Allied leaders and their war managers struggled against a common enemy--and each other. The story behind how victory was forged is an epic story, rich in drama, passion and larger-than-life personalities. The Allies eventually triumphed, but at what cost?
Using his trademark character-rich writing style and focusing on unique, unknown, and unexplored aspects of the story, Kelly offers a fresh perspective on the decision-making that changed the course of the war--and the course of history.
Saving Stalin brings to vivid life the epic story of the century's greatest human catastrophe. It is an unforgettable master work in historical narrative.
Stamped from the Beginning

Stamped from the Beginning

Kendi, Ibram X.
$19.99

The National Book Award winning history of how racist ideas were created, spread, and deeply rooted in American society.

Some Americans insist that we're living in a post-racial society. But racist thought is not just alive and well in America--it is more sophisticated and more insidious than ever. And as award-winning historian Ibram X. Kendi argues, racist ideas have a long and lingering history, one in which nearly every great American thinker is complicit.

In this deeply researched and fast-moving narrative, Kendi chronicles the entire story of anti-black racist ideas and their staggering power over the course of American history. He uses the life stories of five major American intellectuals to drive this history: Puritan minister Cotton Mather, Thomas Jefferson, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, W.E.B. Du Bois, and legendary activist Angela Davis.

As Kendi shows, racist ideas did not arise from ignorance or hatred. They were created to justify and rationalize deeply entrenched discriminatory policies and the nation's racial inequities.

In shedding light on this history, Stamped from the Beginning offers us the tools we need to expose racist thinking. In the process, he gives us reason to hope.

Praise for Stamped from the Beginning:

"We often describe a wonderful book as 'mind-blowing' or 'life-changing' but I've found this rarely to actually be the case. I found both descriptions accurate for Ibram X. Kendi's Stamped from the Beginning... I will never look at racial discrimination again after reading this marvellous, ambitious, and clear-sighted book." - George Saunders, Financial Times, Best Books of 2017

"Ambitious, well-researched and worth the time of anyone who wants to understand racism." --Seattle Times

"A deep (and often disturbing) chronicling of how anti-black thinking has entrenched itself in the fabric of American society." --The Atlantic

  • Winner of the 2016 National Book Award for Nonfiction
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A Washington Post Bestseller
  • On President Obama's Black History Month Recommended Reading List
  • Finalist for the 2016 National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction
  • Named one of the Best Books of the Year by the Boston Globe, Washington Post, Chicago Review of Books, The Root, Buzzfeed, Bustle, and Entropy
  • First Wave

    First Wave

    Kershaw, Alex
    $18.00
    NATIONAL BESTSELLER - Alex Kershaw, author of The Longest Winter and The Liberator, returns with an utterly immersive, adrenaline-driven account of D-Day combat.

    "Meet the assaulters: pathfinders plunging from the black, coxswains plowing the whitecaps, bareknuckle Rangers scaling sheer rock . . . Fast-paced and up close, this is history's greatest story reinvigorated as only Alex Kershaw can."--Adam Makos, New York Times bestselling author of Spearhead and A Higher Call


    Beginning in the predawn darkness of June 6, 1944, The First Wave follows the remarkable men who carried out D-Day's most perilous missions. The charismatic, unforgettable cast includes the first American paratrooper to touch down on Normandy soil; the glider pilot who braved antiaircraft fire to crash-land mere yards from the vital Pegasus Bridge; the brothers who led their troops onto Juno Beach under withering fire; as well as a French commando, returning to his native land, who fought to destroy German strongholds on Sword Beach and beyond. Readers will experience the sheer grit of the Rangers who scaled Pointe du Hoc and the astonishing courage of the airborne soldiers who captured the Merville Gun Battery in the face of devastating enemy counterattacks. The first to fight when the stakes were highest and the odds longest, these men would determine the fate of the invasion of Hitler's fortress Europe--and the very history of the twentieth century.

    The result is an epic of close combat and extraordinary heroism. It is the capstone Alex Kershaw's remarkable career, built on his close friendships with D-Day survivors and his intimate understanding of the Normandy battlefield. For the seventy-fifth anniversary, here is a fresh take on World War II's longest day.

    Praise for The First Wave

    "Masterful... readers will feel the sting of the cold surf, smell the acrid cordite that hung in the air, and duck the zing of machine-gun bullets whizzing overhead. The First Wave is an absolute triumph."--James M. Scott, bestselling author of Target Tokyo

    "These pages ooze with the unforgettable human drama of history's most consequential invasion."--John C. McManus, author of The Dead and Those About to Die

    Signing Their Rights Away

    Signing Their Rights Away

    Kiernan, Denise
    $15.99
    An entertaining and essential collection of stories about the surprising and strange fates of the thirty-nine statesmen who created the U.S. Constitution.

    Now in paperback with a brand-new cover, this companion volume to Signing Their Lives Away tells the untold stories of the signers of the U.S. Constitution and comes at a time when our constitutional rights are at the forefront of everyone's minds.

    Remember when our elected officials knew how to compromise? Here are short, irreverent, fun, and fact-filled biographies of the 39 men who set aside their differences and signed their names to the U.S. Constitution--the oldest written constitution of any nation in the world. You'll meet:

    - The Signer Who Believed in Aliens
    - The Signer Who Was Shot in the Stomach
    - The Signer Who Went Bankrupt
    - The Peg-Legged Signer
    - And many more colorful colonists!

    Complete with portraits of every signatory, Signing Their Rights Away provides an entertaining and enlightening narrative for students, history buffs, politicos, and Hamilton fans alike.

    Chasing Chopin: A Musical Journey Across Three Centuries, Four Countries, and a Half-Dozen Revolutions

    Chasing Chopin: A Musical Journey Across Three Centuries, Four Countries, and a Half-Dozen Revolutions

    LaFarge, Annik
    $27.00
    A modern take on a classical icon: this original, entertaining, well-researched book uses the story of when, where, and how Chopin composed his most famous work, uncovering many surprises along the way and showing how his innovative music still animates popular culture centuries later.

    The Frédéric Chopin Annik LaFarge presents here is not the melancholy, sickly, romantic figure so often portrayed. The artist she discovered is, instead, a purely independent spirit: an innovator who created a new musical language, an autodidact who became a spiritually generous, trailblazing teacher, a stalwart patriot during a time of revolution and exile.

    In Chasing Chopin she follows in his footsteps during the three years, 1837-1840, when he composed his iconic "Funeral March"--dum dum da dum--using its composition story to illuminate the key themes of his life: a deep attachment to his Polish homeland; his complex relationship with writer George Sand; their harrowing but consequential sojourn on Majorca; the rapidly developing technology of the piano, which enabled his unique tone and voice; social and political revolution in 1830s Paris; friendship with other artists, from the famous Eugène Delacroix to the lesser known, yet notorious in his time, Marquis de Custine. Each of these threads--musical, political, social, personal--is woven through the "Funeral March" in Chopin's Opus 35 sonata, a melody so famous it's known around the world even to people who know nothing about classical music. But it is not, as LaFarge discovered, the piece of music we think we know.

    As part of her research into Chopin's world, then and now, LaFarge visited piano makers, monuments, churches, and archives; she talked to scholars, jazz musicians, video game makers, software developers, music teachers, theater directors, and of course dozens of pianists.

    The result is extraordinary: an engrossing, page-turning work of musical discovery and an artful portrayal of a man whose work and life continue to inspire artists and cultural innovators in astonishing ways.

    A companion website, WhyChopin, presents links to each piece of music mentioned in the book, organized by chapter in the order in which it appears, along with photos, resources, videos, and more.

    Hidden History of Sarasota

    Hidden History of Sarasota

    LaHurd, Jeff
    $19.99

    From a one-horse farming town to the thriving winter residence of the Ringling Brothers Circus and flocks of snowbirds.


    Sarasota has more than its fair share of unusual stories and intriguing individuals. Learn about the illustrious John Ringling, from the details of his daily breakfast to the fifty-five year saga that determined his final resting place. Find out the real identity of A NO. 1, the King of Hobos, who spent a night in Sarasota's finest hotel. Witness the most memorable wedding in Sarasota- between two gorillas. Join longtime resident and historian Jeff LaHurd as he chronicles the fascinating, forgotten stories that made Sarasota the exceptional city it is today.

    Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage

    Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage

    Lansing, Alfred
    $16.99
    The harrowing tale of British explorer Ernest Shackleton's 1914 attempt to reach the South Pole, one of the greatest adventure stories of the modern age.

    In August 1914, polar explorer Ernest Shackleton boarded the Endurance and set sail for Antarctica, where he planned to cross the last uncharted continent on foot. In January 1915, after battling its way through a thousand miles of pack ice and only a day's sail short of its destination, the Endurance became locked in an island of ice. Thus began the legendary ordeal of Shackleton and his crew of twenty-seven men. When their ship was finally crushed between two ice floes, they attempted a near-impossible journey over 850 miles of the South Atlantic's heaviest seas to the closest outpost of civilization.

    In Endurance, the definitive account of Ernest Shackleton's fateful trip, Alfred Lansing brilliantly narrates the harrowing and miraculous voyage that has defined heroism for the modern age.

    Franklin & Washington

    Franklin & Washington

    Larson, Edward J.
    $29.99

    Larson's elegantly written dual biography reveals that the partnership of Franklin and Washington was indispensable to the success of the Revolution. --Gordon S. Wood

    From the Pulitzer Prize-winning historian comes a masterful, first-of-its-kind dual biography of Benjamin Franklin and George Washington, illuminating their partnership's enduring importance.

    NATIONAL BESTSELLER -One of Washington Post's 10 Books to Read in February - One of USA Today's "Must-Read Books of Winter 2020 - One of Publishers Weekly's Top Ten Spring 2020 Memoirs/Biographies

    Theirs was a three-decade-long bond that, more than any other pairing, would forge the United States. Vastly different men, Benjamin Franklin--an abolitionist freethinker from the urban north--and George Washington--a slavehold-ing general from the agrarian south--were the indispensable authors of American independence and the two key partners in the attempt to craft a more perfect union at the Constitutional Convention, held in Franklin's Philadelphia and presided over by Washington. And yet their teamwork has been little remarked upon in the centuries since.

    Illuminating Franklin and Washington's relationship with striking new detail and energy, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Edward J. Larson shows that theirs was truly an intimate working friendship that amplified the talents of each for collective advancement of the American project.

    During the French and Indian War, Franklin supplied the wagons for General Edward Braddock's ill-fated assault on Fort Duquesne, and Washington buried the general's body under the dirt road traveled by those retreating wagons. After long sup-porting British rule, both became key early proponents of inde-pendence. Rekindled during the Second Continental Congress in 1775, their friendship gained historical significance during the American Revolution, when Franklin led America's diplomatic mission in Europe (securing money and an alliance with France) and Washington commanded the Continental Army. Victory required both of these efforts to succeed, and success, in turn, required their mutual coordination and cooperation. In the 1780s, the two sought to strengthen the union, leading to the framing and ratification of the Constitution, the founding document that bears their stamp.

    Franklin and Washington--the two most revered figures in the early republic--staked their lives and fortunes on the American experiment in liberty and were committed to its preservation. Today the United States is the world's great super-power, and yet we also wrestle with the government Franklin and Washington created more than two centuries ago--the power of the executive branch, the principle of checks and balances, the electoral college--as well as the wounds of their compromise over slavery. Now, as the founding institutions appear under new stress, it is time to understand their origins through the fresh lens of Larson's Franklin & Washington, a major addition to the literature of the founding era.

    In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin QZ

    In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin QZ

    Larson, Erik
    $18.00
    Erik Larson, New York Times bestselling author of Devil in the White City, delivers a remarkable story set during Hitler's rise to power.

    The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America's first ambassador to Hitler's Nazi Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history.

    A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the "New Germany," she has one affair after another, including with the suprisingly honorable first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels.

    But as evidence of Jewish persecution mounts, confirmed by chilling first-person testimony, her father telegraphs his concerns to a largely indifferent State Department back home. Dodd watches with alarm as Jews are attacked, the press is censored, and drafts of frightening new laws begin to circulate. As that first year unfolds and the shadows deepen, the Dodds experience days full of excitement, intrigue, romance--and ultimately, horror, when a climactic spasm of violence and murder reveals Hitler's true character and ruthless ambition.

    Suffused with the tense atmosphere of the period, and with unforgettable portraits of the bizarre Göring and the expectedly charming--yet wholly sinister--Goebbels, In the Garden of Beasts lends a stunning, eyewitness perspective on events as they unfold in real time, revealing an era of surprising nuance and complexity. The result is a dazzling, addictively readable work that speaks volumes about why the world did not recognize the grave threat posed by Hitler until Berlin, and Europe, were awash in blood and terror.

    Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz

    Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz

    Larson, Erik
    $32.00
    #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake delivers an intimate chronicle of Winston Churchill and London during the Blitz--an inspiring portrait of courage and leadership in a time of unprecedented crisis

    "One of [Erik Larson's] best books yet . . . perfectly timed for the moment."--Time

    NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review - Time - The Washington Post - The New York Public Library - One of Chicago Tribune's Best Books of the Year So Far - "A bravura performance by one of America's greatest storytellers."--NPR

    On Winston Churchill's first day as prime minister, Adolf Hitler invaded Holland and Belgium. Poland and Czechoslovakia had already fallen, and the Dunkirk evacuation was just two weeks away. For the next twelve months, Hitler would wage a relentless bombing campaign, killing 45,000 Britons. It was up to Churchill to hold his country together and persuade President Franklin Roosevelt that Britain was a worthy ally--and willing to fight to the end.

    In The Splendid and the Vile, Erik Larson shows, in cinematic detail, how Churchill taught the British people "the art of being fearless." It is a story of political brinkmanship, but it's also an intimate domestic drama, set against the backdrop of Churchill's prime-ministerial country home, Chequers; his wartime retreat, Ditchley, where he and his entourage go when the moon is brightest and the bombing threat is highest; and of course 10 Downing Street in London. Drawing on diaries, original archival documents, and once-secret intelligence reports--some released only recently--Larson provides a new lens on London's darkest year through the day-to-day experience of Churchill and his family: his wife, Clementine; their youngest daughter, Mary, who chafes against her parents' wartime protectiveness; their son, Randolph, and his beautiful, unhappy wife, Pamela; Pamela's illicit lover, a dashing American emissary; and the advisers in Churchill's "Secret Circle," to whom he turns in the hardest moments.

    The Splendid and the Vile takes readers out of today's political dysfunction and back to a time of true leadership, when, in the face of unrelenting horror, Churchill's eloquence, courage, and perseverance bound a country, and a family, together.

    If Then

    If Then

    Lepore, Jill
    $28.95

    Longlisted - National Book Award (Nonfiction)
    Best Books of 2020 - Financial Times
    Best Books of Fall 2020: O, The Oprah Magazine, The Observer, Boston.com
    Most Anticipated Books of Fall 2020: TIME

    A revelatory account of the Cold War origins of the data-mad, algorithmic twenty-first century, from the author of the acclaimed international bestseller These Truths.

    This America

    This America

    Lepore, Jill
    $16.95
    With dangerous forms of nationalism on the rise, Lepore, a Harvard historian and New Yorker staff writer, repudiates nationalism here by explaining its long history--and the history of the idea of the nation itself--while calling for a "new Americanism" a generous patriotism that requires an honest reckoning with America's past.

    Lepore begins her argument with a primer on the origins of nations, explaining how liberalism, the nation-state, and liberal nationalism, developed together. Illiberal nationalism, however, emerged in the United States after the Civil War--resulting in the failure of Reconstruction, the rise of Jim Crow, and the restriction of immigration. Much of American history, Lepore argues, has been a battle between these two forms of nationalism, liberal and illiberal, all the way down to the nation's latest, bitter struggles over immigration.

    Defending liberalism, as This America demonstrates, requires making the case for the nation. But American historians largely abandoned that defense in the 1960s when they stopped writing national history. By the 1980s they'd stopped studying the nation-state altogether and embraced globalism instead. "When serious historians abandon the study of the nation," Lepore tellingly writes, "nationalism doesn't die. Instead, it eats liberalism." But liberalism is still in there, Lepore affirms, and This America is an attempt to pull it out. "In a world made up of nations, there is no more powerful way to fight the forces of prejudice, intolerance, and injustice than by a dedication to equality, citizenship, and equal rights, as guaranteed by a nation of laws."

    A manifesto for a better nation, and a call for a "new Americanism," This America reclaims the nation's future by reclaiming its past.
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    Checkpoint Charlie

    MacGregor, Iain
    $30.00
    A "constantly captivating...well-researched and often moving" (The Wall Street Journal) history of Checkpoint Charlie, the famous military gate on the border of East and West Berlin where the United States confronted the USSR during the Cold War.

    In the early 1960s, East Germany committed a billion dollars to the creation of the Berlin Wall, an eleven-foot-high barrier that consisted of seventy-nine miles of fencing, 300 watchtowers, 250 guard dog runs, twenty bunkers, and was operated around the clock by guards who shot to kill. Over the next twenty-eight years, at least five thousand people attempt to smash through it, swim across it, tunnel under it, or fly over it.

    In 1989, the East German leadership buckled in the face of a civil revolt that culminated in half a million East Berliners demanding an end to the ban on free movement. The world's media flocked to capture the moment which, perhaps more than any other, signaled the end of the Cold War. Checkpoint Charlie had been the epicenter of global conflict for nearly three decades.

    Now, "in capturing the essence of the old Cold War [MacGregor] may just have helped us to understand a bit more about the new one" (The Times, London)--the mistrust, oppression, paranoia, and fear that gripped the world throughout this period. Checkpoint Charlie is about the nerve-wracking confrontation between the West and USSR, highlighting such important global figures as Eisenhower, Stalin, JFK, Nikita Khrushchev, Mao Zedung, Nixon, Reagan, and other politicians of the period. He also includes never-before-heard interviews with the men who built and dismantled the Wall; children who crossed it; relatives and friends who lost loved ones trying to escape over it; military policemen and soldiers who guarded the checkpoints; CIA, MI6, and Stasi operatives who oversaw operations across its borders; politicians whose ambitions shaped it; journalists who recorded its story; and many more whose living memories contributed to the full story of Checkpoint Charlie.

    Agent Sonya

    Agent Sonya

    Macintyre, Ben
    $28.00
    The "master storyteller" (San Francisco Chronicle) behind the New York Times bestseller The Spy and the Traitor uncovers the true story behind the Cold War's most intrepid female spy.

    NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Foreign Affairs - Kirkus Reviews - Library Journal

    In 1942, in a quiet village in the leafy English Cotswolds, a thin, elegant woman lived in a small cottage with her three children and her husband, who worked as a machinist nearby. Ursula Burton was friendly but reserved, and spoke English with a slight foreign accent. By all accounts, she seemed to be living a simple, unassuming life. Her neighbors in the village knew little about her.

    They didn't know that she was a high-ranking Soviet intelligence officer. They didn't know that her husband was also a spy, or that she was running powerful agents across Europe. Behind the facade of her picturesque life, Burton was a dedicated Communist, a Soviet colonel, and a veteran agent, gathering the scientific secrets that would enable the Soviet Union to build the bomb.

    This true-life spy story is a masterpiece about the woman code-named "Sonya." Over the course of her career, she was hunted by the Chinese, the Japanese, the Nazis, MI5, MI6, and the FBI--and she evaded them all. Her story reflects the great ideological clash of the twentieth century--between Communism, Fascism, and Western democracy--and casts new light on the spy battles and shifting allegiances of our own times.

    With unparalleled access to Sonya's diaries and correspondence and never-before-seen information on her clandestine activities, Ben Macintyre has conjured a page-turning history of a legendary secret agent, a woman who influenced the course of the Cold War and helped plunge the world into a decades-long standoff between nuclear superpowers.

    Operation Mincemeat : How a Dead Man and a Bizarre Plan Fooled the Nazis and Assured an Allied Victory

    Operation Mincemeat : How a Dead Man and a Bizarre Plan Fooled the Nazis and Assured an Allied Victory

    MacIntyre, Ben
    $17.00
    "Pure catnip to fans of World War II thrillers and a lot of fun for everyone else."--Joseph Kanon, Washington Post Book World

    "Thrilling . . . What makes Operation Mincemeat so winning, in addition to Mr. Macintyre's meticulous research and the layers of his historcal understanding, is his elegant, jaunty, and very British high style."--Dwight Garner, New York Times

    SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE - NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE NEW YORK TIMES

    Near the end of World War II, two British naval officers came up with a brilliant and slightly mad scheme to mislead the Nazi armies about where the Allies would attack southern europe. To carry out the plan, they would have to rely on the most unlikely of secret agents: a dead man.

    Ben Macintyre's dazzling, critically acclaimed bestseller chronicles the extraordinary story of what happened after British officials planted this dead body--outfitted in a British military uniform with a briefcase containing false intelligence documents--in Nazi territory, and how this secret mission fooled Hitler into changing military positioning, paving the way for the Allies to overtake the Nazis.

    War: How Conflict Shaped Us

    War: How Conflict Shaped Us

    MacMillan, Margaret
    $30.00
    Is peace an aberration? The bestselling author of Paris 1919 offers a provocative view of war as an essential component of humanity.

    NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW

    "Margaret MacMillan has produced another seminal work. . . . She is right that we must, more than ever, think about war. And she has shown us how in this brilliant, elegantly written book."--H.R. McMaster, author of Dereliction of Duty and Battlegrounds: The Fight to Defend the Free World

    The instinct to fight may be innate in human nature, but war--organized violence--comes with organized society. War has shaped humanity's history, its social and political institutions, its values and ideas. Our very language, our public spaces, our private memories, and some of our greatest cultural treasures reflect the glory and the misery of war. War is an uncomfortable and challenging subject not least because it brings out both the vilest and the noblest aspects of humanity.

    Margaret MacMillan looks at the ways in which war has influenced human society and how, in turn, changes in political organization, technology, or ideologies have affected how and why we fight. War: How Conflict Shaped Us explores such much-debated and controversial questions as: When did war first start? Does human nature doom us to fight one another? Why has war been described as the most organized of all human activities? Why are warriors almost always men? Is war ever within our control?

    Drawing on lessons from wars throughout the past, from classical history to the present day, MacMillan reveals the many faces of war--the way it has determined our past, our future, our views of the world, and our very conception of ourselves.

    Code Name Madeleine

    Code Name Madeleine

    Magida, Arthur J.
    $27.95

    Raised in a lush suburb of 1920s Paris, Noor Inayat Khan was an introspective musician and writer, dedicated to her family and to her father's spiritual values of harmony, beauty, and tolerance. She did not seem destined for wartime heroism. Yet, faced with the evils of Nazi violence and the German occupation of France, Noor joined the British Special Operations Executive and trained in espionage, sabotage, and reconnaissance. She returned to Paris under an assumed identity immediately before the Germans mopped up the Allies' largest communications network in France. For crucial months of the war, Noor was the only wireless operator there sending critical information to London, significantly aiding the success of the Allied landing on D-Day. Code-named Madeleine, she became a high-value target for the Gestapo. When she was eventually captured, Noor attempted two daring escapes before she was sent to Dachau and killed just months before the end of the war.

    Carefully distilled from dozens of interviews, newly discovered manuscripts, official documents, and personal letters, Code Name Madeleine is both a compelling, deeply researched history and a thrilling tribute to Noor Inayat Khan, whose courage and faith guided her through the most brutal regime in history.

    Pioneers

    Pioneers

    McCullough, David
    $18.00
    The #1 New York Times bestseller by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough rediscovers an important chapter in the American story that's "as resonant today as ever" (The Wall Street Journal)--the settling of the Northwest Territory by courageous pioneers who overcame incredible hardships to build a community based on ideals that would define our country.

    As part of the Treaty of Paris, in which Great Britain recognized the new United States of America, Britain ceded the land that comprised the immense Northwest Territory, a wilderness empire northwest of the Ohio River containing the future states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin. A Massachusetts minister named Manasseh Cutler was instrumental in opening this vast territory to veterans of the Revolutionary War and their families for settlement. Included in the Northwest Ordinance were three remarkable conditions: freedom of religion, free universal education, and most importantly, the prohibition of slavery. In 1788 the first band of pioneers set out from New England for the Northwest Territory under the leadership of Revolutionary War veteran General Rufus Putnam. They settled in what is now Marietta on the banks of the Ohio River.

    McCullough tells the story through five major characters: Cutler and Putnam; Cutler's son Ephraim; and two other men, one a carpenter turned architect, and the other a physician who became a prominent pioneer in American science. "With clarity and incisiveness, [McCullough] details the experience of a brave and broad-minded band of people who crossed raging rivers, chopped down forests, plowed miles of land, suffered incalculable hardships, and braved a lonely frontier to forge a new American ideal" (The Providence Journal).

    Drawn in great part from a rare and all-but-unknown collection of diaries and letters by the key figures, The Pioneers is a uniquely American story of people whose ambition and courage led them to remarkable accomplishments. "A tale of uplift" (The New York Times Book Review), this is a quintessentially American story, written with David McCullough's signature narrative energy.

    Ornament of the World : How Muslims, Jews, and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain

    Ornament of the World : How Muslims, Jews, and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain

    Menocal, Maria Rosa
    $16.00
    A brilliant and fascinating portrait of medieval Spain explores the golden age when Muslims, Jews, and Christians lived together in an atmosphere of tolerance. of photos. 3 maps.
    Race Against Time

    Race Against Time

    Mitchell, Jerry
    $28.00
    "For almost two decades, investigative journalist Jerry Mitchell doggedly pursued the Klansmen responsible for some of the most notorious murders of the civil rights movement. This book is his amazing story. Thanks to him, and to courageous prosecutors, witnesses, and FBI agents, justice finally prevailed." --John Grisham, author of The Guardians

    On June 21, 1964, more than twenty Klansmen murdered three civil rights workers. The killings, in what would become known as the "Mississippi Burning" case, were among the most brazen acts of violence during the civil rights movement. And even though the killers' identities, including the sheriff's deputy, were an open secret, no one was charged with murder in the months and years that followed.

    It took forty-one years before the mastermind was brought to trial and finally convicted for the three innocent lives he took. If there is one man who helped pave the way for justice, it is investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell.

    In Race Against Time, Mitchell takes readers on the twisting, pulse-racing road that led to the reopening of four of the most infamous killings from the days of the civil rights movement, decades after the fact. His work played a central role in bringing killers to justice for the assassination of Medgar Evers, the firebombing of Vernon Dahmer, the 16th Street Church bombing in Birmingham and the Mississippi Burning case. Mitchell reveals how he unearthed secret documents, found long-lost suspects and witnesses, building up evidence strong enough to take on the Klan. He takes us into every harrowing scene along the way, as when Mitchell goes into the lion's den, meeting one-on-one with the very murderers he is seeking to catch. His efforts have put four leading Klansmen behind bars, years after they thought they had gotten away with murder.

    Race Against Time is an astonishing, courageous story capturing a historic race for justice, as the past is uncovered, clue by clue, and long-ignored evils are brought into the light. This is a landmark book and essential reading for all Americans.

    Get Trump No matter who you are in America - You either Get Trump or you want to Get Trump

    Get Trump No matter who you are in America - You either Get Trump or you want to Get Trump

    Mollasis, Gus
    $48.99
    Gus Mollasis puts it perfectly in his introduction to Get Trump: "This is a book for everybody. For Red Americans. For Blue Americans.For White Americans. For Black Americans. For Gay Americans. For straight Americans. For Americans who are in the media and those who either love or hate the media. For Americans who believe in God and those who don't.For Americans living in Red or Blue states." I will only add that he is right. Those who support the president - reluctantly or enthusiastically - and those who loathe the president will find this book relentlessly interesting, and insightful. In sum, Gus Mollasis has something important to say. And says it well. That's an achievement. - Dennis PragerDennis Prager Dennis Prager: President of PragerU; nationally syndicated radio talk show host; New York Times bestselling author, most recently volume two of his five-volume commentary on the Bible, The Rational Bible. GET TRUMP follows President Trump's triumphant and transformative ascent to power battling persecutors to preserve everyone's chance at the American dream. Comprehensive, engaging and entertaining. A look at countless attempts from "The Swamp" to swallow up the President and all the deplorables who support him. A story of heroes and villains. Of prose, poetry and patriots.An odyssey of a man born on Flag Day fighting for Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness for all Americans -whether they voted for him or not. Dr. Harvey Kaltsas says, "...Trump, his modern day Leonidas who fights valiantly to save our Republic from an invasion of leftists who seek to indoctrinate and enslave us with anti-American values... Mollasis first and foremost expresses his love for America... poignantly reminds us why we readers also do so deeply love the USA, as we should." While some may see Trump as a founding Father figure protecting average Joes - whether you like, love or loathe the kid from Queens -one thing is certain- after reading Get Trump- you will either Get Trump or want to Get Trump.

    Roxanne's pick is Local Movie Critic and Celebrity Gus Mollasis's love letter to America.  Part memoir, part look back at the last four years, and a plea for unity and peace for our future.

    Radium Girls

    Radium Girls

    Moore, Kate
    $17.99

    A New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon Charts Bestseller!

    For fans of Hidden Figures, comes the incredible true story of the women heroes who were exposed to radium in factories across the U.S. in the early 20th century, and their brave and groundbreaking battle to strengthen workers' rights, even as the fatal poison claimed their own lives...

    In the dark years of the First World War, radium makes gleaming headlines across the nation as the fresh face of beauty, and wonder drug of the medical community. From body lotion to tonic water, the popular new element shines bright. Meanwhile, hundreds of girls toil amidst the glowing dust of the radium-dial factories. The glittering chemical covers their bodies from head to toe; they light up the night like industrious fireflies. With such a coveted job, these "shining girls" are the luckiest alive -- until they begin to fall mysteriously ill. And, until they begin to come forward.

    As the women start to speak out on the corruption, the factories that once offered golden opportunities ignore all claims of the gruesome side effects. And as the fatal poison of the radium takes hold, the brave shining girls find themselves embroiled in one of the biggest scandals of America's early 20th century, and in a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights that will echo for centuries to come. A timely story of corporate greed and the brave figures that stood up to fight for their lives, these women and their voices will shine for years to come.

    Written with a sparkling voice and breakneck pace, The Radium Girls fully illuminates the inspiring young women exposed to the "wonder" substance of radium, and their awe-inspiring strength in the face of almost impossible circumstances. Their courage and tenacity led to life-changing regulations, research into nuclear bombing, and ultimately saved hundreds of thousands of lives...

    Immortality Key

    Immortality Key

    Muraresku, Brian C.
    $29.99

    THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    As seen on The Joe Rogan Experience!

    A groundbreaking dive into the role psychedelics have played in the origins of Western civilization, and the real-life quest for the Holy Grail that could shake the Church to its foundations.

    The most influential religious historian of the 20th century, Huston Smith, once referred to it as the best-kept secret in history. Did the Ancient Greeks use drugs to find God? And did the earliest Christians inherit the same, secret tradition? A profound knowledge of visionary plants, herbs and fungi passed from one generation to the next, ever since the Stone Age?

    There is zero archaeological evidence for the original Eucharist - the sacred wine said to guarantee life after death for those who drink the blood of Jesus. The Holy Grail and its miraculous contents have never been found. In the absence of any hard data, whatever happened at the Last Supper remains an article of faith for today's 2.5 billion Christians. In an unprecedented search for real answers, The Immortality Key examines the archaic roots of the ritual that is performed every Sunday for nearly one third of the planet. Religion and science converge to paint a radical picture of Christianity's founding event. And after centuries of debate, to solve history's greatest puzzle once and for all.

    Before the birth of Jesus, the Ancient Greeks found salvation in their own sacraments. Sacred beverages were routinely consumed as part of the so-called Ancient Mysteries - elaborate rites that led initiates to the brink of death. The best and brightest from Athens and Rome flocked to the spiritual capital of Eleusis, where a holy beer unleashed heavenly visions for two thousand years. Others drank the holy wine of Dionysus to become one with the god. In the 1970s, renegade scholars claimed this beer and wine - the original sacraments of Western civilization - were spiked with mind-altering drugs. In recent years, vindication for the disgraced theory has been quietly mounting in the laboratory. The constantly advancing fields of archaeobotany and archaeochemistry have hinted at the enduring use of hallucinogenic drinks in antiquity. And with a single dose of psilocybin, the psychopharmacologists at Johns Hopkins and NYU are now turning self-proclaimed atheists into instant believers. But the smoking gun remains elusive.

    If these sacraments survived for thousands of years in our remote prehistory, from the Stone Age to the Ancient Greeks, did they also survive into the age of Jesus? Was the Eucharist of the earliest Christians, in fact, a psychedelic Eucharist?

    With an unquenchable thirst for evidence, Muraresku takes the reader on his twelve-year global hunt for proof. He tours the ruins of Greece with its government archaeologists. He gains access to the hidden collections of the Louvre Museum to show the continuity from pagan to Christian wine. He unravels the Ancient Greek of the New Testament with the world's most controversial priest. He spelunks into the catacombs under the streets of Rome to decipher the lost symbols of Christianity's oldest monuments. He breaches the secret archives of the Vatican to unearth manuscripts never before translated into English. And with leads from the archaeological chemists at the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he unveils the first scientific data for the ritual use of psychedelic drugs in classical antiquity.

    The Immortality Key reconstructs the suppressed history of women consecrating a forbidden, drugged Eucharist that was later banned by the Church Fathers. Women who were then targeted as witches during the Inquisition, when Europe's sacred pharmacology largely disappeared. If the scientists of today have resurrected this technology, then Christianity is in crisis. Unless it returns to its roots.

    Featuring a Foreword by Graham Hancock, the New York Times bestselling author of America Before: The Key to Earth's Lost Civilization.

    1941: The Year Germany Lost the War

    1941: The Year Germany Lost the War

    Nagorski, Andrew
    $18.00
    Bestselling historian Andrew Nagorski "brings keen psychological insights into the world leaders involved" (Booklist) during 1941, the critical year in World War II when Hitler's miscalculations and policy of terror propelled Churchill, FDR, and Stalin into a powerful new alliance that defeated Nazi Germany.

    In early 1941, Hitler's armies ruled most of Europe. Churchill's Britain was an isolated holdout against the Nazi tide, but German bombers were attacking its cities and German U-boats were attacking its ships. Stalin was observing the terms of the Nazi-Soviet Pact, and Roosevelt was vowing to keep the United States out of the war. Hitler was confident that his aim of total victory was within reach.

    But by the end of 1941, all that changed. Hitler had repeatedly gambled on escalation and lost: by invading the Soviet Union and committing a series of disastrous military blunders; by making mass murder and terror his weapons of choice, and by rushing to declare war on the United States after Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor. Britain emerged with two powerful new allies--Russia and the United States. By then, Germany was doomed to defeat.

    Nagorski illuminates the actions of the major characters of this pivotal year as never before. 1941: The Year Germany Lost the War is a stunning and "entertaining" (The Wall Street Journal) examination of unbridled megalomania versus determined leadership. It also reveals how 1941 set the Holocaust in motion, and presaged the postwar division of Europe, triggering the Cold War. 1941 was "the year that shaped not only the conflict of the hour but the course of our lives--even now" (New York Times bestselling author Jon Meacham).

    Down Along with That Devil's Bones

    Down Along with That Devil's Bones

    O'Neill, Connor Towne
    $26.95

    ESSENTIAL ANTIRACIST READING

    "We can no longer see ourselves as minor spectators or weary watchers of history a­fter finishing this astonishing work of nonfiction." --Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy

    In Down Along with That Devil's Bones, journalist Connor Towne O'Neill takes a deep dive into American history, exposing the still-raging battles over monuments dedicated to one of the most notorious Confederate generals, Nathan Bedford Forrest. Through the lens of these conflicts, O'Neill examines the legacy of white supremacy in America, in a sobering and fascinating work sure to resonate with readers of Tony Horwitz, Timothy B. Tyson, and Robin DiAngelo.

    When O'Neill first moved to Alabama, as a white Northerner, he felt somewhat removed from the racism Confederate monuments represented. Then one day in Selma, he stumbled across a group of citizens protecting a monument to Forrest, the officer who became the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan and whom William Tecumseh Sherman referred to as "that devil." O'Neill sets off to visit other disputed memorials to Forrest across the South, talking with men and women who believe they are protecting their heritage, and those who have a different view of the man's poisonous history.

    O'Neill's reporting and thoughtful, deeply personal analysis make it clear that white supremacy is not a regional affliction but is in fact coded into the DNA of the entire country. Down Along with That Devil's Bones presents an important and eye-opening account of how we got from Appomattox to Charlottesville, and where, if we can truly understand and transcend our past, we could be headed next.

    Killing Crazy Horse

    Killing Crazy Horse

    O'Reilly, Bill
    $30.00

    The latest installment of the multimillion-selling Killing series is a gripping journey through the American West and the historic clashes between Native Americans and settlers.

    The bloody Battle of Tippecanoe was only the beginning. It's 1811 and President James Madison has ordered the destruction of Shawnee warrior chief Tecumseh's alliance of tribes in the Great Lakes region. But while General William Henry Harrison would win this fight, the armed conflict between Native Americans and the newly formed United States would rage on for decades.

    Bestselling authors Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard venture through the fraught history of our country's founding on already occupied lands, from General Andrew Jackson's brutal battles with the Creek Nation to President James Monroe's epic "sea to shining sea" policy, to President Martin Van Buren's cruel enforcement of a "treaty" that forced the Cherokee Nation out of their homelands along what would be called the Trail of Tears. O'Reilly and Dugard take readers behind the legends to reveal never-before-told historical moments in the fascinating creation story of America.

    This fast-paced, wild ride through the American frontier will shock readers and impart unexpected lessons that reverberate to this day.

    Citizens of London : The Americans Who Stood With Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour BC

    Citizens of London : The Americans Who Stood With Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour BC

    Olson, Lynne
    $18.00
    The acclaimed author of Troublesome Young Men reveals the behind-the-scenes story of how the United States forged its wartime alliance with Britain, told from the perspective of three key American players in London: Edward R. Murrow, the handsome, chain-smoking head of CBS News in Europe; Averell Harriman, the hard-driving millionaire who ran FDR's Lend-Lease program in London; and John Gilbert Winant, the shy, idealistic U.S. ambassador to Britain. Each man formed close ties with Winston Churchill--so much so that all became romantically involved with members of the prime minister's family. Drawing from a variety of primary sources, Lynne Olson skillfully depicts the dramatic personal journeys of these men who, determined to save Britain from Hitler, helped convince a cautious Franklin Roosevelt and reluctant American public to back the British at a critical time. Deeply human, brilliantly researched, and beautifully written, Citizens of London is a new triumph from an author swiftly becoming one of the finest in her field.
    Madame Fourcade's Secret War

    Madame Fourcade's Secret War

    Olson, Lynne
    $20.00
    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The little-known true story of Marie-Madeleine Fourcade, the woman who headed the largest spy network in occupied France during World War II, from the bestselling author of Citizens of London and Last Hope Island

    "Brava to Lynne Olson for a biography that should challenge any outdated assumptions about who deserves to be called a hero."--The Washington Post

    NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR AND THE WASHINGTON POST

    In 1941 a thirty-one-year-old Frenchwoman, a young mother born to privilege and known for her beauty and glamour, became the leader of a vast intelligence organization--the only woman to serve as a chef de résistance during the war. Strong-willed, independent, and a lifelong rebel against her country's conservative, patriarchal society, Marie-Madeleine Fourcade was temperamentally made for the job. Her group's name was Alliance, but the Gestapo dubbed it Noah's Ark because its agents used the names of animals as their aliases. The name Marie-Madeleine chose for herself was Hedgehog: a tough little animal, unthreatening in appearance, that, as a colleague of hers put it, "even a lion would hesitate to bite."

    No other French spy network lasted as long or supplied as much crucial intelligence--including providing American and British military commanders with a 55-foot-long map of the beaches and roads on which the Allies would land on D-Day--as Alliance. The Gestapo pursued them relentlessly, capturing, torturing, and executing hundreds of its three thousand agents, including Fourcade's own lover and many of her key spies. Although Fourcade, the mother of two young children, moved her headquarters every few weeks, constantly changing her hair color, clothing, and identity, she was captured twice by the Nazis. Both times she managed to escape--once by slipping naked through the bars of her jail cell--and continued to hold her network together even as it repeatedly threatened to crumble around her.

    Now, in this dramatic account of the war that split France in two and forced its people to live side by side with their hated German occupiers, Lynne Olson tells the fascinating story of a woman who stood up for her nation, her fellow citizens, and herself.

    "Fast-paced and impressively researched . . . Olson writes with verve and a historian's authority. . . . With this gripping tale, Lynne Olson pays [Marie-Madeleine Fourcade] what history has so far denied her. France, slow to confront the stain of Vichy, would do well to finally honor a fighter most of us would want in our foxhole."--The New York Times Book Review

    Apocalypse Factory

    Apocalypse Factory

    Olson, Steve
    $27.95

    It began with plutonium, the first element ever manufactured in quantity by humans. Fearing that the Germans would be the first to weaponize the atom, the United States marshaled brilliant minds and seemingly inexhaustible bodies to find a way to create a nuclear chain reaction of inconceivable explosive power. In a matter of months, the Hanford nuclear facility was built to produce and weaponize the enigmatic and deadly new material that would fuel atomic bombs. In the desert of eastern Washington State, far from prying eyes, scientists Glenn Seaborg, Enrico Fermi, and many thousands of others--the physicists, engineers, laborers, and support staff at the facility--manufactured plutonium for the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, and for the bombs in the current American nuclear arsenal, enabling the construction of weapons with the potential to end human civilization.

    With his characteristic blend of scientific clarity and storytelling, Steve Olson asks why Hanford has been largely overlooked in histories of the Manhattan Project and the Cold War. Olson, who grew up just twenty miles from Hanford's B Reactor, recounts how a small Washington town played host to some of the most influential scientists and engineers in American history as they sought to create the substance at the core of the most destructive weapons ever created. The Apocalypse Factory offers a new generation this dramatic story of human achievement and, ultimately, of lethal hubris.

    Library Book

    Library Book

    Orlean, Susan
    $16.99
    Susan Orlean's bestseller and New York Times Notable Book is "a sheer delight...as rich in insight and as varied as the treasures contained on the shelves in any local library" (USA TODAY)--a dazzling love letter to a beloved institution and an investigation into one of its greatest mysteries. "Everybody who loves books should check out The Library Book" (The Washington Post).

    On the morning of April 28, 1986, a fire alarm sounded in the Los Angeles Public Library. The fire was disastrous: it reached two thousand degrees and burned for more than seven hours. By the time it was extinguished, it had consumed four hundred thousand books and damaged seven hundred thousand more. Investigators descended on the scene, but more than thirty years later, the mystery remains: Did someone purposefully set fire to the library--and if so, who?

    Weaving her lifelong love of books and reading into an investigation of the fire, award-winning New Yorker reporter and New York Times bestselling author Susan Orlean delivers a "delightful...reflection on the past, present, and future of libraries in America" (New York magazine) that manages to tell the broader story of libraries and librarians in a way that has never been done before.

    In the "exquisitely written, consistently entertaining" (The New York Times) The Library Book, Orlean chronicles the LAPL fire and its aftermath to showcase the larger, crucial role that libraries play in our lives; delves into the evolution of libraries; brings each department of the library to vivid life; studies arson and attempts to burn a copy of a book herself; and reexamines the case of Harry Peak, the blond-haired actor long suspected of setting fire to the LAPL more than thirty years ago.

    "A book lover's dream...an ambitiously researched, elegantly written book that serves as a portal into a place of history, drama, culture, and stories" (Star Tribune, Minneapolis), Susan Orlean's thrilling journey through the stacks reveals how these beloved institutions provide much more than just books--and why they remain an essential part of the heart, mind, and soul of our country.

    Our Man

    Our Man

    Packer, George
    $17.95
    *Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Biography*
    *Winner of the Los Angeles Times Prize for Biography*
    *Winner of the 2019 Hitchens Prize*

    Portrays Holbrooke in all of his endearing and exasperating self-willed glory...Both a sweeping diplomatic history and a Shakespearean tragicomedy... If you could read one book to comprehend American's foreign policy and its quixotic forays into quicksands over the past 50 years, this would be it.--Walter Isaacson, The New York Times Book Review

    By the end of the second page, maybe the third, you will be hooked...There never was a diplomat-activist quite like [Holbrooke], and there seldom has been a book quite like this -- sweeping and sentimental, beguiling and brutal, catty and critical, much like the man himself.--David M. Shribman, The Boston Globe

    Richard Holbrooke was brilliant, utterly self-absorbed, and possessed of almost inhuman energy and appetites. Admired and detested, he was the force behind the Dayton Accords that ended the Balkan wars, America's greatest diplomatic achievement in the post-Cold War era. His power lay in an utter belief in himself and his idea of a muscular, generous foreign policy. From his days as a young adviser in Vietnam to his last efforts to end the war in Afghanistan, Holbrooke embodied the postwar American impulse to take the lead on the global stage. But his sharp elbows and tireless self-promotion ensured that he never rose to the highest levels in government that he so desperately coveted. His story is thus the story of America during its era of supremacy: its strength, drive, and sense of possibility, as well as its penchant for overreach and heedless self-confidence. In Our Man, drawn from Holbrooke's diaries and papers, we are given a nonfiction narrative that is both intimate and epic in its revelatory portrait of this extraordinary and deeply flawed man and the elite spheres of society and government he inhabited.

    Erebus

    Erebus

    Palin, Michael
    $16.95

    "Beyond terrific. I didn't want it to end." --Bill Bryson

    Driven by a passion for travel and history and a love of ships and the sea, former Monty Python stalwart and beloved television globe-trotter Michael Palin explores the world of HMS Erebus, last seen on an ill-fated voyage to chart the Northwest Passage.

    Michael Palin brings the fascinating story of the Erebus and its occupants to life, from its construction as a bomb vessel in 1826 through the flagship years of James Clark Ross's Antarctic expedition and finally to Sir John Franklin's quest for the holy grail of navigation--a route through the Northwest Passage, where the ship disappeared into the depths of the sea for more than 150 years. It was rediscovered under the arctic waters in 2014.

    Palin travels across the world--from Tasmania to the Falkland Islands and the Canadian Arctic--to offer a firsthand account of the terrain and conditions that would have confronted the Erebus and her doomed final crew. Delving into the research, he describes the intertwined careers of the two men who shared the ship's journeys: Ross, the organizational genius who mapped much of the Antarctic coastline and oversaw some of the earliest scientific experiments to be conducted there; and Franklin, who, at the age of sixty and after a checkered career, commanded the ship on its last disastrous venture. Expertly researched and illustrated with maps, photographs, paintings, and engravings, Erebus is an evocative account of two journeys: one successful and forgotten, the other tragic yet unforgettable.

    History of the World in Seven Cheap Things: A Guide to Capitalism, Nature, and the Future of the Planet

    History of the World in Seven Cheap Things: A Guide to Capitalism, Nature, and the Future of the Planet

    Patel, Rajeev Charles
    $24.95
    Nature, money, work, care, food, energy, and lives: these are the seven things that have made our world and will shape its future. In making these things cheap, modern commerce has transformed, governed, and devastated Earth. In A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things, Raj Patel and Jason W. Moore present a new approach to analyzing today's planetary emergencies. Bringing the latest ecological research together with histories of colonialism, indigenous struggles, slave revolts, and other rebellions and uprisings, Patel and Moore demonstrate that throughout history, crises have always prompted fresh strategies to make the world cheap and safe for capitalism. At a time of crisis in all seven cheap things, innovative and systemic thinking is urgently required. This book proposes a radical new way of understanding--and reclaiming--the planet in the turbulent twenty-first century.

    Reaganland: America's Right Turn 1976-1980

    Perlstein, Rick
    $40.00

    Lost City of the Monkey God

    Preston, Douglas
    $17.99
    First Principles

    First Principles

    Ricks, Thomas E.
    $29.99

    The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and #1 New York Times bestselling author offers a revelatory new book about the founding fathers, examining their educations and, in particular, their devotion to the ancient Greek and Roman classics--and how that influence would shape their ideals and the new American nation.

    On the morning after the 2016 presidential election, Thomas Ricks awoke with a few questions on his mind: What kind of nation did we now have? Is it what was designed or intended by the nation's founders? Trying to get as close to the source as he could, Ricks decided to go back and read the philosophy and literature that shaped the founders' thinking, and the letters they wrote to each other debating these crucial works--among them the Iliad, Plutarch's Lives, and the works of Xenophon, Epicurus, Aristotle, Cato, and Cicero. For though much attention has been paid the influence of English political philosophers, like John Locke, closer to their own era, the founders were far more immersed in the literature of the ancient world.

    The first four American presidents came to their classical knowledge differently. Washington absorbed it mainly from the elite culture of his day; Adams from the laws and rhetoric of Rome; Jefferson immersed himself in classical philosophy, especially Epicureanism; and Madison, both a groundbreaking researcher and a deft politician, spent years studying the ancient world like a political scientist. Each of their experiences, and distinctive learning, played an essential role in the formation of the United States. In examining how and what they studied, looking at them in the unusual light of the classical world, Ricks is able to draw arresting and fresh portraits of men we thought we knew.

    First Principles follows these four members of the Revolutionary generation from their youths to their adult lives, as they grappled with questions of independence, and forming and keeping a new nation. In doing so, Ricks interprets not only the effect of the ancient world on each man, and how that shaped our constitution and government, but offers startling new insights into these legendary leaders.

    Leadership in War

    Leadership in War

    Roberts, Andrew
    $27.00
    A comparison of nine leaders who led their nations through the greatest wars the world has ever seen and whose unique strengths--and weaknesses--shaped the course of human history, from the bestselling, award-winning author of Churchill and Napoleon

    "Has the enjoyable feel of a lively dinner table conversation with an opinionated guest." --The New York Times Book Review

    Taking us from the French Revolution to the Cold War, Andrew Roberts presents a bracingly honest and deeply insightful look at nine major figures in modern history: Napoleon Bonaparte, Horatio Nelson, Winston Churchill, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, George C. Marshall, Charles de Gaulle, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and Margaret Thatcher.

    Each of these leaders fundamentally shaped the outcome of the war in which their nation was embroiled. Is war leadership unique, or did these leaders have something in common, traits and techniques that transcend time and place and can be applied to the essential nature of conflict?

    Meticulously researched and compellingly written, Leadership in War presents readers with fresh, complex portraits of leaders who approached war with different tactics and weapons, but with the common goal of success in the face of battle. Both inspiring and cautionary, these portraits offer important lessons on leadership in times of struggle, unease, and discord. With his trademark verve and incisive observation, Roberts reveals the qualities that doom even the most promising leaders to failure, as well as the traits that lead to victory.

    Women's Suffrage Movement

    Women's Suffrage Movement

    Roesch Wagner, Sally
    $18.00
    An intersectional anthology of works by the known and unknown women that shaped and established the suffrage movement, in time for the 2020 centennial of women's right to vote, with a foreword by Gloria Steinem

    Comprised of historical texts spanning two centuries, The Women's Suffrage Movement is a comprehensive and singular volume with a distinctive focus on incorporating race, class, and gender, and illuminating minority voices. This one-of-a-kind intersectional anthology features the writings of the most well-known suffragists, such as Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, alongside accounts of those often overlooked because of their race, from Native American women to African American suffragists like Ida B. Wells and the three Forten sisters. At a time of enormous political and social upheaval, there could be no more important book than one that recognizes a group of exemplary women--in their own words--as they paved the way for future generations. The editor and introducer, Sally Roesch Wagner, is a pre-eminent scholar of the diverse backbone of the women's suffrage movement, the founding director of the Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation, and serves on the New York State Women's Suffrage Commission.

    Longest Line on the Map

    Longest Line on the Map

    Rutkow, Eric
    $18.99
    From the award-winning author of American Canopy, a dazzling account of the world's longest road, the Pan-American Highway, and the epic quest to link North and South America, a dramatic story of commerce, technology, politics, and the divergent fates of the Americas in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

    The Pan-American Highway, monument to a century's worth of diplomacy and investment, education and engineering, scandal and sweat, is the longest road in the world, passable everywhere save the mythic Darien Gap that straddles Panama and Colombia. The highway's history, however, has long remained a mystery, a story scattered among government archives, private papers, and fading memories. In contrast to the Panama Canal and its vast literature, the Pan-American Highway--the United States' other great twentieth-century hemispheric infrastructure project--has become an orphan of the past, effectively erased from the story of the "American Century."

    The Longest Line on the Map uncovers this incredible tale for the first time and weaves it into a tapestry that fascinates, informs, and delights. Rutkow's narrative forces the reader to take seriously the question: Why couldn't the Americas have become a single region that "is" and not two near irreconcilable halves that "are"? Whether you're fascinated by the history of the Americas, or you've dreamed of driving around the globe, or you simply love world records and the stories behind them, The Longest Line on the Map is a riveting narrative, a lost epic of hemispheric scale.

    Wicked River : The Mississippi When It Last Ran Wild

    Wicked River : The Mississippi When It Last Ran Wild

    Sandlin, Lee
    $15.95

    A riveting narrative look at one of the most colorful, dangerous, and peculiar places in America's historical landscape: the strange, wonderful, and mysterious Mississippi River of the 19th century.

    Beginning in the early 1800s and climaxing with the siege of Vicksburg in 1863, Wicked River brings to life a place where river pirates brushed elbows with future presidents and religious visionaries shared passage with thieves. Here is a minute-by-minute account of Natchez being flattened by a tornado; the St. Louis harbor being crushed by a massive ice floe; hidden, nefarious celebrations of Mardi Gras; and the sinking of the Sultana, the worst naval disaster in American history. Here, too, is the Mississippi itself: gorgeous, perilous, and unpredictable. Masterfully told, Wicked River is an exuberant work of Americana that portrays a forgotten society on the edge of revolutionary change.

    Saving Freedom

    Saving Freedom

    Scarborough, Joe
    $29.99

    History called on Harry Truman to unite the Western world against Soviet communism, but first he had to rally Republicans and Democrats behind America's most dramatic foreign policy shift since George Washington delivered his farewell address. How did one of the least prepared presidents to walk into the Oval Office become one of its most successful?

    The year was 1947. The Soviet Union had moved from being America's uneasy ally in the Second World War to its most feared enemy. With Joseph Stalin's ambitions pushing westward, Turkey was pressured from the east while communist revolutionaries overran Greece. The British Empire was battered from its war with Hitler and suddenly teetering on the brink of financial ruin. Only America could afford to defend freedom in the West, and the effort was spearheaded by a president who hadn't even been elected to that office. But Truman would wage a domestic political battle that carried with it the highest of stakes, inspiring friends and foes alike to join in his crusade to defend democracy across the globe.

    In Saving Freedom, Joe Scarborough recounts the historic forces that moved Truman toward his country's long twilight struggle against Soviet communism, and how this untested president acted decisively to build a lasting coalition that would influence America's foreign policy for generations to come. On March 12, 1947, Truman delivered an address before a joint session of Congress announcing a policy of containment that would soon become known as the Truman Doctrine. That doctrine pledged that the United States would "support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures." The untested president's policy was a radical shift from 150 years of isolationism, but it would prove to be the pivotal moment that guaranteed Western Europe's freedom, the American Century's rise, and the eventual collapse of the Soviet Union.

    Truman's triumph over the personal and political struggles that confronted him following his ascension to the presidency is an inspiring tale of American leadership, fierce determination, bipartisan unity, and courage in the face of the rising Soviet threat. Saving Freedom explores one of the most pivotal moments of the twentieth century, a turning point when patriotic Americans of both political parties worked together to defeat tyranny.

    Story of the Jews Volume Two

    Story of the Jews Volume Two

    Schama, Simon
    $24.99

    In the second of two volumes of this magnificently illustrated cultural history--the tie-in to the PBS and BBC series The Story of the Jews--Simon Schama details the story of the Jewish people, spanning from their expulsion from Spain in the Inquisition across six hundred years to the present day.

    It is a story like no other: an epic of endurance against destruction, of creativity in the face of oppression, joy amidst grief, the affirmation of life against the steepest of odds.

    It spans the centuries and the continents--from the Iberian Peninsula and the collapse of "the golden age" to the shtetls of Russia to the dusty streets of infant Hollywood. Its voices ring loud and clear, from the philosophical musings of Spinoza to the poetry written on slips of paper in concentraion camps. Within these pages, the Enlightenment unfolds, a great diaspora transforms a country, a Viennese psychaiatrist forever changes the conception of the human mind.

    And a great story unfolds. Not--as often imagined--of a culture apart, but of a Jewish world immersed in and imprinted by the peoples among whom they have dwelled, from the Egyptians to the Greeks, from the Arabs to the Christians, from the Soviets to America.

    Which makes the story of the Jews everyone's story, too.

    Coffeeland

    Coffeeland

    Sedgewick, Augustine
    $30.00
    The epic story of how coffee connected and divided the modern world

    Coffee is an indispensable part of daily life for billions of people around the world--one of the most valuable commodities in the history of global capitalism, the leading source of the world's most popular drug, and perhaps the most widespread word on the planet. Augustine Sedgewick's Coffeeland tells the hidden and surprising story of how this came to be, tracing coffee's five-hundred-year transformation from a mysterious Muslim ritual into an everyday necessity.

    This story is one that few coffee drinkers know. It centers on the volcanic highlands of El Salvador, where James Hill, born in the slums of Manchester, England, founded one of the world's great coffee dynasties at the turn of the twentieth century. Adapting the innovations of the Industrial Revolution to plantation agriculture, Hill helped to turn El Salvador into perhaps the most intensive monoculture in modern history, a place of extraordinary productivity, inequality, and violence.

    Following coffee from Hill family plantations into supermarkets, kitchens, and workplaces across the United States, and finally into today's ubiquitous cafés, Sedgewick reveals how coffee bred vast wealth and hard poverty, at once connecting and dividing the modern world. In the process, both El Salvador and the United States earned the nickname Coffeeland, but for starkly different reasons, and with consequences that reach into the present. This extraordinary history of coffee opens up a new perspective on how the globalized world works, ultimately provoking a reconsideration of what it means to be connected to faraway people and places through the familiar things that make up our day-to-day lives.