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📒The Forgotten 500 ✍ Gregory A. Freeman
📝The Forgotten 500 Book Synopsis : The astonishing, never before told story of the greatest rescue mission of World War II—when the OSS set out to recover more than 500 airmen trapped behind enemy lines in Yugoslavia... During a bombing campaign over Romanian oil fields, hundreds of American airmen were shot down in Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia. Local Serbian farmers and peasants risked their own lives to give refuge to the soldiers while they waited for rescue, and in 1944, Operation Halyard was born. The risks were incredible. The starving Americans in Yugoslavia had to construct a landing strip large enough for C-47 cargo planes—without tools, without alerting the Germans, and without endangering the villagers. And the cargo planes had to make it through enemy airspace and back—without getting shot down themselves. Classified for over half a century for political reasons, the full account of this unforgettable story of loyalty, self-sacrifice, and bravery is now being told for the first time ever. The Forgotten 500 is the gripping, behind-the-scenes look at the greatest escape of World War II. “Amazing [and] riveting.”—James Bradley, New York Times bestselling author of Flags of Our Fathers
📒Red Tails ✍ Gregory A. Freeman
📝Red Tails Book Synopsis : A brand-new story about World War II’s daring African-American heroes from the author of The Forgotten 500. The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African-American pilots in the US military, and Operation Halyard was one of the most extraordinary rescue missions of World War II, described in Gregory Freeman’s The Forgotten 500. Now a newly discovered connection between them has come to light—the “Red Tails” flew fighter cover for the mission. The remarkable story is revealed here by the author whose work James Bradley calls “amazing [and] riveting.”
📒Agent Garbo ✍ Stephan Talty
📝Agent Garbo Book Synopsis : “The book presses ever forward down a path of historical marvels and astonishing facts. The effect is like a master class that’s accessible to anyone, and Agent Garbo often reads as though it were written in a single, perfect draft.”—The Atlantic Before he remade himself as the master spy known as Garbo, Juan Pujol was nothing more than a Barcelona poultry farmer. But as Garbo, he turned in a masterpiece of deception that changed the course of World War II. Posing as the Nazis’ only reliable spy inside England, he created an imaginary million-man army, invented armadas out of thin air, and brought a vast network of fictional subagents to life. The scheme culminated on June 6, 1944, when Garbo convinced the Germans that the Allied forces approaching Normandy were just a feint—the real invasion would come at Calais. Because of his brilliant trickery, the Allies were able to land with much less opposition and eventually push on to Berlin. As incredible as it sounds, everything in Agent Garbo is true, based on years of archival research and interviews with Pujol’s family. This pulse-pounding thriller set in the shadow world of espionage and deception reveals the shocking reality of spycraft that occurs just below the surface of history. “Stephan Talty’s unsurpassed research brings forth one of the war’s greatest agents in a must-read book for those who think they know all the great World War II stories.” —Gregory Freeman, author of The Forgotten 500
📒Escape From Davao ✍ John D. Lukacs
📝Escape From Davao Book Synopsis : On April 4, 1943, ten American prisoners of war and two Filipino convicts executed a daring escape from one of Japan’s most notorious prison camps. The prisoners were survivors of the infamous Bataan Death March and the Fall of Corregidor, and the prison from which they escaped was surrounded by an impenetrable swamp and reputedly escape-proof. Theirs was the only successful group escape from a Japanese POW camp during the Pacific war. Escape from Davao is the story of one of the most remarkable incidents in the Second World War and of what happened when the Americans returned home to tell the world what they had witnessed. Davao Penal Colony, on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, was a prison plantation where thousands of American POWs toiled alongside Filipino criminals and suffered from tropical diseases and malnutrition, as well as the cruelty of their captors. The American servicemen were rotting in a hellhole from which escape was considered impossible, but ten of them, realizing that inaction meant certain death, planned to escape. Their bold plan succeeded with the help of Filipino allies, both patriots and the guerrillas who fought the Japanese sent to recapture them. Their trek to freedom repeatedly put the Americans in jeopardy, yet they eventually succeeded in returning home to the United States to fulfill their self-appointed mission: to tell Americans about Japanese atrocities and to rally the country to the plight of their comrades still in captivity. But the government and the military had a different timetable for the liberation of the Philippines and ordered the men to remain silent. Their testimony, when it finally emerged, galvanized the nation behind the Pacific war effort and made the men celebrities. Over the decades this remarkable story, called the “greatest story of the war in the Pacific” by the War Department in 1944, has faded away. Because of wartime censorship, the full story has never been told until now. John D. Lukacs spent years researching this heroic event, interviewing survivors, reading their letters, searching archival documents, and traveling to the decaying prison camp and its surroundings. His dramatic, gripping account of the escape brings this remarkable tale back to life, where a new generation can admire the resourcefulness and patriotism of the men who fought the Pacific war.
📒Troubled Water ✍ Gregory A. Freeman
📝Troubled Water Book Synopsis : In the vein of Crimson Tide, with action pulled straight from a high seas thriller, this is the exciting story of a mutiny that the U.S. Navy denies to this day. In 1972, the U.S.S. Kitty Hawk was headed to her station in the Gulf of Tonkin when many of the five thousand men cooped up for the longest at-sea tour of the unpopular war rioted -- or, as Freeman claims, mutinied. Most disturbingly, the lines were drawn racially, black against white. By the time order was restored, careers were forever ruined, but the incident became a turning point for race relations in the Navy.Through careful and unprecedented examination of the official record and eyewitness accounts, Freeman refutes the official story of the incident, and makes a convincing case for the first mutiny in U.S. Navy history.
📒The Gathering Wind ✍ Gregory A. Freeman
📝The Gathering Wind Book Synopsis : October 2012. A replica of the famous HMS Bounty, an eighteenth-century tall sailing ship, set a collision course with a storm that became the largest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic—a clash that proved to be one of the most unforgettable stories of Superstorm Sandy. The Bounty, crewed by an eclectic team of seafarers and led by highly respected captain Robin Walbridge, departed from Connecticut as Sandy raced north. Walbridge, whose decisions decided the fate of his ship and crew, attempted to outmaneuver the storm by heading southeast. As violent gusts tossed the wooden vessel, the crew fought to save their ship—and themselves. When the storm finally overtook the ship, the crew was tossed into the churning sea. The men and women of a Coast Guard station in North Carolina courageously flew into hundred-mile-per-hour winds to rescue the survivors of the Bounty. After hours of white-knuckle flying, they accomplished one of their most memorable rescues ever. Based on interviews with Bounty survivors and unfettered access to Coast Guard rescue team members, The Gathering Wind is the most complete account of this heartbreaking, thrilling, and inspirational story. INCLUDES PHOTOS
📒The Last Mission Of The Wham Bam Boys ✍ Gregory A. Freeman
📝The Last Mission of the Wham Bam Boys Book Synopsis : Before the famed Nuremberg Tribunal, there was Rüsselsheim, a small German town, where ordinary civilians were tried in the first War Crimes Trial of World War II. As the tide of World War II turned, a hitherto unknown incident set a precedent for how we would bring wartime crimes to justice: In August 1944, the 9- man crew of an American bomber was forced to bail out over Germany. As their captors marched them into Rüsselsheim, a small town recently bombed to smithereens by Allies, they were attacked by an angry mob of civilians -- farmers, shopkeepers, railroad workers, women, and children. With a local Nazi chief at the helm, they assaulted the young Americans with stones, bricks, and wooden clubs. They beat them viciously and left them for dead at the nearby cemetery. It could have been another forgotten tragedy of the war. But when the lynching was briefly mentioned in a London paper a few months later, it caught the eye of two Army majors, Luke Rogers and Leon Jaworski. Their investigation uncovered the real human cost of the war: the parents and a newlywed wife who agonized over the fate of the men, and the devastating effect of modern warfare on civilian populations. Rogers and Jaworski put the city of Rüsselsheim on trial, insisting on the rule of law even amidst the horrors of war. Drawing from trial records, government archives, interviews with family members, and personal letters, highly-acclaimed military historian Gregory A. Freeman brings to life for the first time the dramatic story. Taking the reader to the scene of the crime and into the homes of the crew, he exposes the stark realities of war to show how ordinary citizens could be drawn to commit horrific acts of wartime atrocities, and the far-reaching effects on generations.
📒The Assassins Gate ✍ George Packer
📝The Assassins Gate Book Synopsis : THE ASSASSINS' GATE: AMERICA IN IRAQ recounts how the United States set about changing the history of the Middle East and became ensnared in a guerilla war in Iraq. It brings to life the people and ideas that created the Bush administration's war policy and led America to the Assassins' Gate—the main point of entry into the American zone in Baghdad. The consequences of that policy are shown in the author's brilliant reporting on the ground in Iraq, where he made four tours on assignment for The New Yorker. We see up close the struggles of American soldiers and civilians and Iraqis from all backgrounds, thrown together by a war that followed none of the preconceived scripts. The Assassins' Gate also describes the place of the war in American life: the ideological battles in Washington that led to chaos in Iraq, the ordeal of a fallen soldier's family, and the political culture of a country too bitterly polarized to realize such a vast and morally complex undertaking. George Packer's first-person narrative combines the scope of an epic history with the depth and intimacy of a novel, creating a masterful account of America's most controversial foreign venture since Vietnam.
📒Finish Forty And Home ✍ Phil Scearce
📝Finish Forty and Home Book Synopsis : The true story of the men and missions of the 11th Bombardment Group as it fought alone and unheralded in the South Central Pacific, while America had its eyes on the war in Europe.
📒Vanished ✍ Wil S. Hylton
📝Vanished Book Synopsis : From a mesmerizing storyteller, the gripping search for a missing World War II crew, their bomber plane, and their legacy. In the fall of 1944, a massive American bomber carrying eleven men vanished over the Pacific islands of Palau, leaving a trail of mysteries. According to mission reports from the Army Air Forces, the plane crashed in shallow water—but when investigators went to find it, the wreckage wasn’t there. Witnesses saw the crew parachute to safety, yet the airmen were never seen again. Some of their relatives whispered that they had returned to the United States in secret and lived in hiding. But they never explained why. For sixty years, the U.S. government, the children of the missing airmen, and a maverick team of scientists and scuba divers searched the islands for clues. With every clue they found, the mystery only deepened. Now, in a spellbinding narrative, Wil S. Hylton weaves together the true story of the missing men, their final mission, the families they left behind, and the real reason their disappearance remained shrouded in secrecy for so long. This is a story of love, loss, sacrifice, and faith—of the undying hope among the families of the missing, and the relentless determination of scientists, explorers, archaeologists, and deep-sea divers to solve one of the enduring mysteries of World War II.
📒The Forgotten Garden ✍ Kate Morton
📝The Forgotten Garden Book Synopsis : From the internationally bestselling author of The House at Riverton, The Secret Keeper, The Distant Hours, and The Lake House, an unforgettable novel that transports us from the back alleys of poverty of pre-World War I London to the shores of colonial Australia where so many made a fresh start, and back to the windswept coast of Cornwall, England, past and present. A tiny girl is abandoned on a ship headed for Australia in 1913. She arrives completely alone with nothing but a small suitcase containing a few clothes and a single book—a beautiful volume of fairy tales. She is taken in by the dockmaster and his wife and raised as their own. On her twenty-first birthday, they tell her the truth, and with her sense of self shattered and very little to go on, "Nell" sets out to trace her real identity. Her quest leads her to Blackhurst Manor on the Cornish coast and the secrets of the doomed Mountrachet family. But it is not until her granddaughter, Cassandra, takes up the search after Nell’s death that all the pieces of the puzzle are assembled. A spellbinding tale of mystery and self-discovery, The Forgotten Garden will take hold of your imagination and never let go.
📒Lay This Body Down ✍ Gregory A. Freeman
📝Lay This Body Down Book Synopsis : The John S. Williams plantation in Georgia was operated largely with the labor of slaves--and this was in 1921, 56 years after the Civil War. Williams was not alone in using "peons," but his reaction to a federal investigation was almost unbelievable: he decided to destroy the evidence. Enlisting the aid of his trusted black farm boss, Clyde Manning, he began methodically killing his slaves. As this true story unfolds, each detail seems more shocking, and surprises continue in the aftermath, with a sensational trial galvanizing the nation and marking a turning point in the treatment of black Americans.
📒Indestructible ✍ John R Bruning
📝Indestructible Book Synopsis : In this remarkable WWII story by New York Times bestselling author John R. Bruning, a renegade American pilot fights against all odds to rescue his family--imprisoned by the Japanese--and revolutionizes modern warfare along the way. From the knife fights and smuggling runs of his youth to his fiery days as a pioneering naval aviator, Paul Irving "Pappy" Gunn played by his own set of rules and always survived on his wits and fists. But when he fell for a conservative Southern belle, her love transformed him from a wild and reckless airman to a cunning entrepreneur whose homespun engineering brilliance helped launch one of the first airlines in Asia. Pappy was drafted into MacArthur's air force when war came to the Philippines; and while he carried out a top-secret mission to Australia, the Japanese seized his family. Separated from his beloved wife, Polly, and their four children, Pappy reverted to his lawless ways. He carried out rescue missions with an almost suicidal desperation. Even after he was shot down twice and forced to withdraw to Australia, he waged a one-man war against his many enemies--including the American high command and the Japanese--and fought to return to the Philippines to find his family. Without adequate planes, supplies, or tactics, the U.S. Army Air Force suffered crushing defeats by the Japanese in the Pacific. Over the course of his three-year quest to find his family, Pappy became the renegade who changed all that. With a brace of pistols and small band of loyal fol,lowers, he robbed supply dumps, stole aircraft, invented new weapons, and modified bombers to hit harder, fly farther, and deliver more destruction than anything yet seen in the air. When Pappy's modified planes were finally unleashed during the Battle of the Bismarck Sea, the United States scored one of the most decisive victories of World War II. Taking readers from the blistering skies of the Pacific to the jungles of New Guinea and the Philippines to one of the the war's most notorious prison camps, Indestructible traces one man's bare-knuckle journey to free the people he loved and the aerial revolution he sparked that continues to resonate across America's modern battlefields.
📒The Long Walk ✍ Slavomir Rawicz
📝The Long Walk Book Synopsis : MORE THAN HALF A MILLION COPIES SOLD! The classic adventure story that inspired the new major motion picture The Way Back, directed by Peter Weir In 1941, the author and six fellow prisoners of war escaped a Soviet labor camp in Yakutsk—a camp where enduring hunger, cold, untended wounds, and untreated illnesses, and avoiding daily executions were everyday feats. Their march—over thousands of miles by foot—out of Siberia, through China, the Gobi Desert, Tibet, and over the Himalayas to British India is a remarkable statement about man’s desire to be free. Written in a hauntingly detailed, no-holds-barred way, the book inspired the Peter Wier film The Way Back. Previous editions have sold hundreds of thousands of copies; this edition includes an afterword written by the author shortly before his death, as well as the author's introduction to the book's Polish edition. Guaranteed to forever stay in the reader's mind, The Long Walk will remain a testament to the strength of the human spirit, and the universal desire for freedom and dignity. Six-time Academy Award–nominee Peter Weir (Master and Commander, The Truman Show, and The Dead Poets Society) directed The Way Back, a much-anticipated film based on The Long Walk. Starring Colin Farrell, Jim Sturgess, and Ed Harris.
📒Sounds And Sweet Airs ✍ Anna Beer
📝Sounds and Sweet Airs Book Synopsis : Francesca Caccini. Barbara Strozzi. Élisabeth Jacquet de la Guerre. Marianna Martines. Fanny Hensel. Clara Schumann. Lili Boulanger. Elizabeth Maconchy. Great composers all, but their musical legacy is still rarely acknowledged. Since the birth of classical music, those women who dared to compose have been patronised, had their sex lives scrutinised and the veracity of their authorship questioned. They worked within a musical culture where beliefs about what women could and could not do determined their every move. Yet, time and again there emerged individuals who would evade, confront and ignore the rules that sought to exclude them from the world of composition. Taking the reader on a journey from seventeenth-century Medici Florence to London in the Blitz, and beyond, Anna Beer reveals the hidden histories of eight remarkable women, explores the special communities that enabled them to compose their music, and asks tough questions about why we still don’t hear their masterpieces performed. A long-overdue celebration of neglected virtuosos, Sounds and Sweet Airs presents a complex and inspirational picture of artistic endeavour and achievement that deserves to be part of our cultural heritage.
📒The Liberator ✍ Alex Kershaw
📝The Liberator Book Synopsis : The untold story of the bloodiest and most dramatic march to victory of the Second World War Written with Alex Kershaw's trademark narrative drive and vivid immediacy, The Liberator traces the remarkable battlefield journey of maverick U.S. Army officer Felix Sparks through the Allied liberation of Europe—from the first landing in Italy to the final death throes of the Third Reich. Over five hundred bloody days, Sparks and his infantry unit battled from the beaches of Sicily through the mountains of Italy and France, ultimately enduring bitter and desperate winter combat against the die-hard SS on the Fatherland's borders. Having miraculously survived the long, bloody march across Europe, Sparks was selected to lead a final charge to Bavaria, where he and his men experienced some of the most intense street fighting suffered by Americans in World War II. And when he finally arrived at the gates of Dachau, Sparks confronted scenes that robbed the mind of reason—and put his humanity to the ultimate test. From the Trade Paperback edition.
📒The Black Hand ✍ Stephan Talty
📝The Black Hand Book Synopsis : The gripping true story of the origins of the mafia in America—and the brilliant Italian-born detective who gave his life to stop it *Soon to be a major motion picture starring Leonardo DiCaprio* Beginning in the summer of 1903, an insidious crime wave filled New York City, and then the entire country, with fear. The children of Italian immigrants were kidnapped, and dozens of innocent victims were gunned down. Bombs tore apart tenement buildings. Judges, senators, Rockefellers, and society matrons were threatened with gruesome deaths. The perpetrators seemed both omnipresent and invisible. Their only calling card: the symbol of a black hand. The crimes whipped up the slavering tabloid press and heated ethnic tensions to the boiling point. Standing between the American public and the Black Hand’s lawlessness was Joseph Petrosino. Dubbed the “Italian Sherlock Holmes,” he was a famously dogged and ingenious detective, and a master of disguise. As the crimes grew ever more bizarre and the Black Hand’s activities spread far beyond New York’s borders, Petrosino and the all-Italian police squad he assembled raced to capture members of the secret criminal society before the country’s anti-immigrant tremors exploded into catastrophe. Petrosino’s quest to root out the source of the Black Hand’s power would take him all the way to Sicily—but at a terrible cost. Unfolding a story rich with resonance in our own era, The Black Hand is fast-paced narrative history at its very best.
📒Thomas Jefferson And The Tripoli Pirates ✍ Brian Kilmeade
📝Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates Book Synopsis : “Another blockbuster! Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates reads like an edge-of-your-seat, page-turning thriller. You will love this book and also wonder why so few people know this story. No one captures the danger, intrigue, and drama of the American Revolution and its aftermath like Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger.” —Brad Thor This is the little-known story of how a newly independent nation was challenged by four Muslim powers and what happened when America’s third president decided to stand up to intimidation. When Thomas Jefferson became president in 1801, America faced a crisis. The new nation was deeply in debt and needed its economy to grow quickly, but its merchant ships were under attack. Pirates from North Africa’s Barbary coast routinely captured American sailors and held them as slaves, demanding ransom and tribute payments far beyond what the new country could afford. Over the previous fifteen years, as a diplomat and then as secretary of state, Jefferson had tried to work with the Barbary states (Tripoli, Tunis, Algiers, and Morocco). Unfortunately, he found it impossible to negotiate with people who believed their religion justified the plunder and enslavement of non-Muslims. These rogue states would show no mercy—at least not while easy money could be made by extorting the Western powers. So President Jefferson decided to move beyond diplomacy. He sent the U.S. Navy’s new warships and a detachment of Marines to blockade Tripoli—launching the Barbary Wars and beginning America’s journey toward future superpower status. As they did in their previous bestseller, George Washington’s Secret Six, Kilmeade and Yaeger have transformed a nearly forgotten slice of history into a dramatic story that will keep you turning the pages to find out what happens next. Among the many suspenseful episodes: ·Lieutenant Andrew Sterett’s ferocious cannon battle on the high seas against the treacherous pirate ship Tripoli. ·Lieutenant Stephen Decatur’s daring night raid of an enemy harbor, with the aim of destroying an American ship that had fallen into the pirates’ hands. ·General William Eaton’s unprecedented five-hundred-mile land march from Egypt to the port of Derne, where the Marines launched a surprise attack and an American flag was raised in victory on foreign soil for the first time. Few today remember these men and other heroes who inspired the Marine Corps hymn: “From the Halls of Montezuma to the Shores of Tripoli, we fight our country’s battles in the air, on land and sea.” Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates recaptures this forgotten war that changed American history with a real-life drama of intrigue, bravery, and battle on the high seas.
📒Burn After Reading ✍ Ladislas Farago
📝Burn After Reading Book Synopsis : Fought under the cover of elaborate deceptions and ruthless lies, the deadly intelligence operations of World War II produced victories and defeats that were often as important as any reached on the battlefield. A behind-the-scenes history of the war, this book offers an exciting picture of the whole range of clandestine activities, the various forms of intelligence, espionage and sabotage, subversion and counter-espionage--the entire secret war conducted apart from conventional warfare. The major exploits of the O.S.S., M.I.5, Abwehr, and the Deuxieme Bureau are described in colorful detail by an author considered one of the foremost civilian experts on intelligence during the war. Ladislas Farago's account of Allied and Axis spymasters at work offers compelling reading about real traitors and heroes in cloak-and-dagger-dom.
📒As Good As Dead ✍ Stephen L. Moore
📝As Good As Dead Book Synopsis : In late 1944, the Allies invaded the Japanese-held Philippines, and soon the end of the Pacific War was within reach. But for the last 150 American prisoners of war still held on the island of Palawan, there would be no salvation. As they were herded into air raid shelters, Japanese soldiers set them on fire. By the next morning, only eleven were left alive. As Good As Dead is one of the greatest escape stories of World War II, and one that few people know. Endurance, determination and courage in the face of death make this a gripping and inspiring saga of survival.
📒Beyond The Call ✍ Lee Trimble
📝Beyond The Call Book Synopsis : This inspiring true story of veteran Air Force bomber pilot Robert Trimble, who laid his life on the line to rescue World War II POWs on the Eastern Front. Near the end of World War II, thousands of Allied ex-prisoners of war were abandoned to wander the war-torn Eastern Front. With no food, shelter, or supplies, the POWs were an army of dying men. As the Red Army advanced across Poland, the Nazi prison camps were liberated. In defiance of humanity, the freed Allied prisoners were discarded without aid. The Soviets viewed POWs as cowards, and regarded all refugees as potential spies or partisans. The United States repeatedly offered to help, but were refused. With relations between the Allies strained, a plan was conceived for an undercover rescue mission. In total secrecy, the OSS chose an obscure American air force detachment stationed at a Ukrainian airfield. The man they picked to undertake it was veteran 8th Air Force bomber pilot Captain Robert Trimble. With little covert training, Trimble took the mission. He would survive by wit, courage, and determination. This is the compelling, true story of an American hero who risked everything to bring his fellow soldiers home to safety and freedom. INCLUDES PHOTOS