Category Archives: history

COVID Reviews #3: Romans, Dogs, and Saudis

I don’t know if anyone misses my usual chatty, sometimes florid reviews, but they’re impossible to do on a phone. More mini-reviews it is! Continuing my onslaught of the TBR pile, I finished Lives of Famous Romans, by Olivia Coolridge. … Continue reading

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COVID Reviews #2: Afghans and Turks and Austrians, oh my!

Khaled Hosseini’s third book is also his most unusual. His previous two books followed friendships which which were forged, broken, and tested over the years as Afghanistan reeled from one chaotic event to another. And the Mountains Echoed is more … Continue reading

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Of WW2 and alternate schools

Early last week I accidentally bought a ‘book’ called One Man Air Force, by Don S. Gentle. I say “book” because it’s only 50 pages, and I would have returned it (I was browsing WW2 books and hit the ‘buy … Continue reading

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Wisdom Wednesday: The Great Tradition

This week features a quote from Will Durant, whose epic Story of Civilization, partially co-written with his wife, was a masterful review of western history — surveying literature, politics, philosophy, etc — from Mesopotamia to Napoleon. This particular quote comes … Continue reading

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This Republic of Suffering

This Republic of Suffering:  Death and the American Civil War © 2008 Drew Gilpin Faust 401 pages     Oft in dreams I see thee lying On some battle-plain Lonely, wounded, even dying — Calling, but in vain Weeping sad … Continue reading

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Shiloh 1862

Shiloh 1862 © 2012 Winston Groom 448 pages Although I’ve been aware of the small Winston Groom collection of Civil War books in my home library for years, I’ve never thought to read them because I invariably associate Groom with … Continue reading

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American Illiad | Reluctant Voices

As part of my attempts to scale Mount TBR,  I read two smaller works on the Civil War this week. They may be later joined by This Republic of Suffering,  a survey of the war’s unprecedented death toll and its … Continue reading

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In the Garden of Beasts

In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin © 2011 Erik Larson 432 pages In 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt needed a man for a post no one wanted to fill: US Ambassador to Germany.  … Continue reading

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The Splendid and the Vile

The Splendid and the Vile: A Sage of Churchill, Family, and Defiance during the Blitz © 2020 Erik Larson 464 pages “Nothing could have been more beautiful and the searchlights interlaced at certain points on the horizon, the star-like flashes … Continue reading

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Scams, beer, and the Constitution

This past week I’ve read a few books which haven’t gotten full reviews, but I wanted to mention them anyway:. Scam Me if You Can, Frank Abanagle Jr. If that name sounds familiar to you, Abnagle’s youthful feats in fraud … Continue reading

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