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1491
Charles C. Mann
140004006X
Aug 2005
Hardcover
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Book Review
1491 is not so much the story of a year, as of what that year stands for: the long-debated (and often-dismissed) question of what human civilization in the Americas was like before the Europeans crashed the party. The history books most Americans were (and still are) raised on describe the continents before Columbus as a vast, underused territory, sparsely populated by primitives whose cultures would inevitably bow before the advanced technologies of the Europeans. For decades, though, among the archaeologists, anthropologists, paleolinguists, and others whose discoveries Charles C. Mann brings together in 1491, different stories have been emerging. Among the revelations: the first Americans may not have come over the Bering land bridge around 12,000 B.C. but by boat along the Pacific coast 10 or even 20 thousand years earlier; the Americas...


South America
Allan Fowler
0516273000
September 2001
Paperback
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The Catholic Church: A Short History
Hans Kung
0812967623
January 2003
Paperback
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Book Review's Best of 2001
Hans Kung's The Catholic Church: A Short History is a small masterpiece of historical and theological writing. Kung fairly and comprehensively presents almost 2,000 years of Church history in a mere 207 pages. He begins with Jesus, who "radiated a democratic spirit in the best sense of the word" and "did not proclaim a church, nor did he proclaim himself, but the kingdom of God." Throughout, in his analysis of every phase of Church history, Kung builds a case for a populist church, challenging the idea of a hierarchical Roman Catholic Church led by an infallible pope. The book concludes with a harsh analysis of the Church's betrayal of Vatican II. Kung, the primary writer of Vatican II, was censured by the Vatican in 1979 for questioning Church doctrine and banned from teaching as a Catholic theologian....


To Hell and Back
Audie Murphy
0805070869
May 2002
Paperback
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From Library Journal
Texan Audie Murphy was the most highly decorated G.I. of World War II, being awarded almost every medal the Army could offer as well as the Congressional Medal of Honor. His memoir of the war is a classic, still retaining some popularity. Tom Parker brings this terse yet vivid and articulate memoir to life. Able to give each of Murphy's comrades credible accents and characterizations, Parker's clear and well-paced reading is a joy. For popular and military collections.AMichael T. Fein, Catawba Valley Community Coll., Hickory, NCCopyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

From AudioFile
Audie Murphy hit the big time with this simple, compelling narrative of his time as an infantryman in WW II Europe. It is a...


History of Argentina in the Twentieth Century
Luis Alberto Romero
0271021926
January 2002
Paperback
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Book Description
"Luis Alberto Romero has written a book that is comprehensive, balanced, and full of insights into the development—and turmoil—of modern Argentine history. This book can serve as a starter for anyone interested in the topic. Specialists too will rely on it for its analysis and detail. James Brennan’s translation is outstanding."— Jeremy Adelman, Princeton University "The purpose of this book is to provide a straightforward synthesis of twentieth-century Argentine history in all its complexity and paradox. . . . Romero focuses on Argentina’s place in the larger world, the role of the state, and the influence of culture and intellectuals on the nation’s development."—Richard J. Walter, reviewing the Spanish-language edition in The American Historical Review A History of Argentina in...


The Mapmaker's Wife
Robert Whitaker
0385337205
Dec 2004
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
As was customary for girls from elite families in 18th-century colonial Peru, Isabel Gramesón was barely a teenager when she married Jean Godin, a Frenchman visiting the territory as an assistant on a scientific expedition. Planning to bring his wife back to France, Godin trekked across South America to check in with the French colonial authorities, but was refused permission to return up the Amazon back into Spanish territory to retrieve Isabel. So they remained a continent apart for 20 years until 1769, when Isabel started making her way east. Her party ran aground on the Bobonaza River (which feeds into the Amazon), and though almost everyone perished, she managed to survive alone in the rainforest for weeks. Although science journalist Whitaker doesn't directly refer to his own modern trek following...


A Walk in the Woods : Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail (Official Guides to the Appalachian Trail)
Bill Bryson
0767902521
May 4, 1999
Paperback
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Book Review
Bill Bryson has made a living out of traveling and then writing about it. In The Lost Continent he re-created the road trips of his childhood; in Neither Here nor There he retraced the route he followed as a young backpacker traversing Europe. When this American transplant to Britain decided to return home, he made a farewell walking tour of the British countryside and produced Notes from a Small Island. Once back on American soil and safely settled in New Hampshire, Bryson once again hears the siren call of the open road--only this time it's a trail. The Appalachian Trail, to be exact. In A Walk in the Woods Bill Bryson tackles what is, for him, an entirely new subject: the American wilderness. Accompanied only by his old college buddy Stephen Katz, Bryson starts out one March morning in north Georgia, intending to walk the...


Relic
Douglas Preston
0812543262
November 1995
Mass Market Paperback
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Book Review
A series of bizarre and brutal murders is taking place in the halls of the New York Museum of Natural History, only days before a massive exhibition is set to open. Margo Green knows that the killer is something not human, something that's not even supposed to exist. Where did it come from, how did it get into the museum, and how can it be stopped?

From Publishers Weekly
A monster on the loose in New York City's American Museum of Natural History provides the hook for this high-concept, high-energy thriller. A statue of the mad god Mbwun, a monstrous mix of man and reptile, was discovered by a Museum expedition to South America in 1987. Now, it is about to become part of the new Superstition Exhibition at the museum (here renamed the "New York Museum of Natural History"). But as...


The American Practical Navigator: "Bowditch"
Nathaniel Bowditch, National Imagery and Mapping Agency
0939837544
September 25, 2002
Hardcover
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Book Description
This is a new edition of The American Practical Navigator, "Bowditch," offered by Celestaire and Paradise Cay Publications. This new edition is the most recent update of Bowditch, the definitive work on navigation. Nathanial Bowditch first published this encyclopedic work in 1802. During the last two centuries over 75 editions, almost 1,000,000 copies, of Bowditch have been published by the US Government. It has lived because it has combined the best technologies of each generation of navigator. This new Bicentennial Edition includes the latest advances in electronic navigation and digital charting technology. It also covers nonelectronic navigation such as celestial, plotting and dead reckoning. Bowditch contains numerous tables which have been valued for years by practicing navigators. Bowditch is carried on the...


1491
Charles C. Mann
1565119789
Sept 2005
Audio Compact Disc - Abridged
·
 
Book Review
1491 is not so much the story of a year, as of what that year stands for: the long-debated (and often-dismissed) question of what human civilization in the Americas was like before the Europeans crashed the party. The history books most Americans were (and still are) raised on describe the continents before Columbus as a vast, underused territory, sparsely populated by primitives whose cultures would inevitably bow before the advanced technologies of the Europeans. For decades, though, among the archaeologists, anthropologists, paleolinguists, and others whose discoveries Charles C. Mann brings together in 1491, different stories have been emerging. Among the revelations: the first Americans may not have come over the Bering land bridge around 12,000 B.C. but by boat along the Pacific coast 10 or even 20 thousand years...


Darwin and the Barnacle: The Story of the One Tiny Creature and History's Most Spectacular Scientific Breakthrough
Rebecca Stott
0641665261

Hardcover
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The Accidental President of Brazil: A Memoir
Fernando Cardoso
1586483242
February 2006
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Cardoso, who served as Brazil's Finance Minister in the early 1990's and then president from 1995 to 2002, shows in his first-rate memoir how far his country has traveled in the 125 years since Emperor Dom Pedro. Cardoso appears, by virtue of being a third-generation politician raised in an upper-middle-class household, to have been minted for the presidency. Yet, as he describes with the panache of a seasoned history writer, privilege did not obscure his vision of Brazil's injustice and poverty: he was born into a time of upheaval and worker revolts and lived through his first coup at age six, a foreshadowing of the tumult he would witness throughout his adult life. This philosopher-turned-politician gives a thorough history of 20th century Brazil, a country blessed with resources but racked by instability and...


Aztec, Inca, & Maya
Elizabeth Baquedano
0756613833
Sept 2005
(Hardcover) - Revised Ed.
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From School Library Journal
Grade 3-5-The three major civilizations of the Americas are introduced here in a compare-and-contrast, scattershot approach. Small, sparkling, full-color captioned photographs of cities, pottery, jewelry, and clothing accompany one-paragraph texts on such general topics (treated on two pages each) as farming, hunting and fishing, family life, and more. Photos of the Mexican National Archeological Museum's re-creations of scenes of daily life are used to depict such ancient activities as trade, tribute, and medicine. Illustrations from the pages of the Mayan codices are reproduced throughout, but there is no explanation of their significance until page 40, or of what the conquering Spaniards did with them. Although the pictures are bright, clear, and attention grabbing, the text is just random facts scattered...


The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey
Candice Millard
0385507968
October 2005
Hardcover
·
 

From Publishers Weekly
In a gripping account, Millard focuses on an episode in Teddy Roosevelt's search for adventure that nearly came to a disastrous end. A year after Roosevelt lost a third-party bid for the White House in 1912, he decided to chase away his blues by accepting an invitation for a South American trip that quickly evolved into an ill-prepared journey down an unexplored tributary of the Amazon known as the River of Doubt. The small group, including T.R.'s son Kermit, was hampered by the failure to pack enough supplies and the absence of canoes sturdy enough for the river's rapids. An injury Roosevelt sustained became infected with flesh-eating bacteria and left the ex-president so weak that, at his lowest moment, he told Kermit to leave him to die in the rainforest. Millard, a former staff writer for National Geographic, nails the...



Inhuman Bondage : The Rise and Fall of Slavery in the New World
David Brion Davis
0195140737
April 1, 2006
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Pulitzer Prize-winner Davis follows Challenging the Boundaries of Slavery with this impressive and sprawling history of "human attempts to dehumanize other people" that focuses extensively on slave rebellions. These counter-attempts, Davis argues, are what form the base of the identities and communities of the descendants of New World slaves. In charting the evolution of slavery and societies' responses to it from 71 BCE to 1948, Davis author shows how ancient slavery practices mirrored the process of animal domestication, explores the moral conflicts the United States faced during the American Revolution and how the Haitian revolutions disrupted the class system. A lengthy and especially informative study of British and American abolitionist movements paves the way for a concise breakdown of American slavery...


My Invented Country
Isabelle Allende
0060545674
May 2004
Paperback
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Book Description

Isabel Allende evokes the magnificent landscapes of her country; a charming, idiosyncratic Chilean people with a violent history and an indomitable spirit, and the politics, religion, myth, and magic of her homeland that she carries with her even today.

The book circles around two life-changing moments. The assassination of her uncle Salvador Allende Gossens on September 11, 1973, sent her into exile and transformed her into a literary writer. And the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, on her adopted homeland, the United States, brought forth an overdue acknowledgment that Allende had indeed left home. My Invented Country, mimicking the workings of memory itself, ranges back and forth across that distance between past and present lives. It speaks compellingly to immigrants and to all of us who try to...



Hugo Chavez
Richard Gott
1844675335
Aug 2005
Paperback
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Foreign Affairs
Gott is always an interesting, well-informed, and engaging writer.

Financial Times
A colorful and readable account of Chávez's background and beliefs.

See all Editorial Reviews


Empires of the Atlantic World : Britain and Spain in America 1492-1830
John H. Elliott
0300114311
May 8, 2006
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. In a masterful account, Oxford don Elliott explores the simultaneous development of Spanish and English colonies in the so-called New World. Though colonists tried to recreate traditional institutions on American soil, there were inevitable differences between colonial life and life in the mother countries: familial roles, for example, were reconfigured across the ocean. In addition to differing from Europe, Spanish and British settlements differed from one another, says Elliott. Whereas Spain determined to prevent Jews and Moors from entering its territories, Britain's grudging acceptance of religious diversity was evidenced in the Crown's allowing, and in some cases encouraging, persecuted minorities to join colonial ventures. The English colonies' fractious Protestantism made Spain's...


Mexifornia: A State of Becoming
Victor Davis Hanson
1893554732
June 2003
Hardcover
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From Booklist
*Starred Review* Classics professor Hanson is also, like generations of his family before him, a fruit farmer in California's central valley. He has employed immigrants, seen them flood his community during the last 30 years of mass flight from Mexico, and endured the crime associated with illegal immigrants. Hanson is immensely sympathetic to poor Mexicans, however, and the most powerful chapter here outlines the harried life of the illegal alien. But he hates to see the ordered culture in which he grew up drowned by an alien inundation whose undeserving beneficiaries are Mexico's kleptocratic rulers, for whom an open border is a safety valve expelling the potential for democratic change. The four solutions to the mess that Hanson enumerates include continuing de facto open borders but insisting on rapid acculturation;...


Argentina Reader: History, Culture, Politics
Gabriela Nouzeilles (Editor)
082232914X
November 2002
Textbook Paperback
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From Library Journal
Considering the continuing economic crisis in Argentina, this volume is a timely addition to Duke's "Latin America Readers" series (see also Peru, 1995, and Brazil, 1999). An extensive collection of documents, the book is divided into ten major sections, representing topics and issues such as the independence movement, populism under Per"n, and state violence following Per"n's death in 1974. A brief but useful introduction sets the stage for the documents in each section, and each one is preceded by an explanatory note. There are 77 documents included, 40 of which have not been previously published in English. The editors (Nouzeilles, romance studies, Duke; Montaldo, languages and literature, Universidad Sim"n Bol!var) have carefully selected pieces that represent voices outside mainstream Argentina,...


Lost City
Ted Lewin
0399233024
June 2003
Hardcover
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From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7-In 1911, Hiram Bingham and a team of archaeologists went in search of Vilcapampa, the legendary lost city of the Inca. In this picture-book account of that expedition, Lewin relates Bingham's journey from Cusco to the jungles of Peru and from there, led by a local child, to mountaintop ruins. The site wasn't Vilcapampa, but rather an isolated, impenetrable ancient city of temples, dwellings, plazas, and terraces connected by steep staircases. Distinguished double-page watercolor paintings capture the grandeur of the location, the monumental solidity of the Inca stonework, and the surrounding jungle. The final pages continue the story with information on the work involved in preparing the ruins for excavation and some initial findings and include a useful pronunciation guide to Spanish and Quechua...


Time: Hurricane Katrina : The Storm That Changed America
Editors of Time Magazine
1933405139
November 15, 2005
Hardcover
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Book Description
DESCRIPTION: On Sept. 2, 2005, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin issued a "desperate S.O.S." His city, one of America’s most historic and gracious urban centers, had been devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Now 80% of it lay underwater, while some citizens huddled on rooftops waiting for rescue, and others turned the flooded streets into canals of anarchy. In the first decade of the 21st century, despair, disease and death had transformed a great American city into a scene of third-world privation, even as heroic rescue workers battled to save lives, restore order and aid the suffering. Now Time chronicles the story of the greatest natural disaster in U.S. history in Hurricane Katrina, An American Tragedy. Here, in stunning pictures and gripping first-hand accounts, is the terrible tale of Katrina’s deadly wrath...


Historic Silver Spring (Images of America)
Jerry A. McCoy, The Silver Spring Historical Society
0738541885
November 23, 2005
Paperback
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Book Description
Images of America: Historic Silver Spring celebrates the community’s past, beginning with founder Francis Preston Blair’s 1840 discovery of the mica-flecked spring and the 1873 arrival of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. Vintage photographs document the progressive growth of the “Main Streets,” Georgia Avenue and Colesville Road, and the construction of the Silver Spring Armory and National Dry Cleaning Institute in 1927 and the Silver Theatre and Silver Spring Shopping Center in 1938. The volume culminates with modern pictures of downtown Silver Spring’s 21st-century revitalization, which continues to preserve the past and secure the future of the area. In a pictorial journey through the community’s Central Business District and bordering residential neighborhood, East Silver Spring,...


Lost City of the Incas
Hiram Bingham
1842125850
Oct 2003
Paperback
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Book Description
A special illustrated edition of Hiram Bingham's classic work captures all the magnificence and mystery of the amazing archeological sites he uncovered. Early in the 20th century, Bingham ventured into the wild and then unknown country of the Eastern Peruvian Andes--and in 1911 came upon the fabulous Inca city that made him famous: Machu Picchu. In the space of one short season he went on to discover two more lost cities, including Vitcos, where the last Incan Emperor was assassinated.


The Darkest Jungle: The True Story of the Darien Expedition and America's Ill-Fated Race to Connect the Seas
Todd Balf
064168620X

Hardcover
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Galapagos: A Natural History
Michael H. Jackson
1895176409
May 1994
Paperback
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