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YA Book Club POSTPONED! Due to unforeseen circumstances, we have had to cancel this Saturday's YA book club meeting. We will reschedule and post it here and on our social media as soon as we can. 

Military History

Forever War

Forever War

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National Bestseller

One of the Best Books of the Year:

New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Boston Globe, and Time

An instant classic of war reporting, The Forever War is the definitive account of America's conflict with Islamic fundamentalism and a searing exploration of its human costs. Through the eyes of Filkins, a foreign correspondent for the New York Times, we witness the rise of the Taliban in the 1990s, the aftermath of the attack on New York on September 11th, and the American wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Filkins is the only American journalist to have reported on all these events, and his experiences are conveyed in a riveting narrative filled with unforgettable characters and astonishing scenes.

Brilliant and fearless, The Forever War is not just about America's wars after 9/11, but about the nature of war itself.

GUNS OF AUGUST

GUNS OF AUGUST

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Selected by the Modern Library as one of the 100 best nonfiction books of all time

The Proud Tower, the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Guns of August, and The Zimmerman Telegram comprise Barbara W. Tuchman's classic histories of the First World War era

In this landmark, Pulitzer Prize-winning account, renowned historian Barbara W. Tuchman re-creates the first month of World War I: thirty days in the summer of 1914 that determined the course of the conflict, the century, and ultimately our present world. Beginning with the funeral of Edward VII, Tuchman traces each step that led to the inevitable clash. And inevitable it was, with all sides plotting their war for a generation. Dizzyingly comprehensive and spectacularly portrayed with her famous talent for evoking the characters of the war's key players, Tuchman's magnum opus is a classic for the ages.

Praise for The Guns of August

"A brilliant piece of military history which proves up to the hilt the force of Winston Churchill's statement that the first month of World War I was 'a drama never surpassed.'"--Newsweek

"More dramatic than fiction . . . a magnificent narrative--beautifully organized, elegantly phrased, skillfully paced and sustained."--Chicago Tribune

"A fine demonstration that with sufficient art rather specialized history can be raised to the level of literature."--The New York Times

"[The Guns of August] has a vitality that transcends its narrative virtues, which are considerable, and its feel for characterizations, which is excellent."--The Wall Street Journal

HIROSHIMA

HIROSHIMA

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On August 6, 1945, Hiroshima was destroyed by the first atomic bomb ever dropped on a city. This book tells what happened on that day, told through the memoirs of survivors.
HIST OF WARFARE

HISTORY OF WARFARE

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The acclaimed author and preeminent military historian John Keegan examines centuries of human conflict. From primitive man in the bronze age to the end of the cold war in the twentieth century, Keegan shows how armed conflict has been a primary preoccupation throughout the history of civilization and how deeply rooted its practice has become in our cultures.

Keegan is at once the most readable and the most original of living military historians . . . A History of Warfare is perhaps the most remarkable study of warfare that has yet been written.--The New York Times Book Review.

HOMAGE TO CATALONIA (REVISED)

HOMAGE TO CATALONIA (REVISED)

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A National Review Top Ten Best Nonfiction Books of the Century

"One of Orwell's very best books and perhaps the best book that exists on the Spanish Civil War."--The New Yorker

In 1936, originally intending merely to report on the Spanish Civil War as a journalist, George Orwell found himself embroiled as a participant--as a member of the Workers' Party of Marxist Unity. Fighting against the Fascists, he described in painfully vivid and occasionally comic detail life in the trenches--with a "democratic army" composed of men with no ranks, no titles, and often no weapons--and his near fatal wounding. As the politics became tangled, Orwell was pulled into a heartbreaking conflict between his own personal ideals and the complicated realities of political power struggles.

Considered one of the finest works by a man V. S. Pritchett called "the wintry conscience of a generation," Homage to Catalonia is both Orwell's memoir of his experiences at the front and his tribute to those who died in what he called a fight for common decency. This edition features a new foreword by Adam Hochschild placing the war in greater context and discussing the evolution of Orwell's views on the Spanish Civil War.

"No one except George Orwell . . . made the violence and self-dramatization of Spain so burning and terrible."-- Alfred Kazin, New York Times

"A wise book, one that once read will never be forgotten."--Chicago Sunday Tribune

HT THINK ABT WAR

HOW TO THINK ABOUT WAR

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An accessible modern translation of essential speeches from Thucydides's History that takes readers to the heart of his profound insights on diplomacy, foreign policy, and war

Why do nations go to war? What are citizens willing to die for? What justifies foreign invasion? And does might always make right? For nearly 2,500 years, students, politicians, political thinkers, and military leaders have read the eloquent and shrewd speeches in Thucydides's History of the Peloponnesian War for profound insights into military conflict, diplomacy, and the behavior of people and countries in times of crisis. How to Think about War presents the most influential and compelling of these speeches in an elegant new translation by classicist Johanna Hanink, accompanied by an enlightening introduction, informative headnotes, and the original Greek on facing pages. The result is an ideally accessible introduction to Thucydides's long and challenging History.

Thucydides intended his account of the clash between classical Greece's mightiest powers--Athens and Sparta--to be a "possession for all time." Today, it remains a foundational work for the study not only of ancient history but also contemporary politics and international relations. How to Think about War features speeches that have earned the History its celebrated status--all of those delivered before the Athenian Assembly, as well as Pericles's funeral oration and the notoriously ruthless "Melian Dialogue." Organized by key debates, these complex speeches reveal the recklessness, cruelty, and realpolitik of Athenian warfighting and imperialism.

The first English-language collection of speeches from Thucydides in nearly half a century, How to Think about War takes readers straight to the heart of this timeless thinker.

Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam

Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam

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A Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist in History

Winner of the 2018 Marine Corps Heritage Foundation Greene Award for a distinguished work of nonfiction.

The first battle book from Mark Bowden since his #1 New York Times bestseller Black Hawk Down, Hue 1968, "an instantly recognizable classic of military history" (Christian Science Monitor), was published to massive critical acclaim and became a New York Times bestseller.

In the early hours of January 31, 1968, the North Vietnamese launched over one hundred attacks across South Vietnam in what would become known as the Tet Offensive. The lynchpin of Tet was the capture of Hue, Vietnam's intellectual and cultural capital, by 10,000 National Liberation Front troops who descended from hidden camps and surged across the city of 140,000. Within hours the entire city was in their hands save for two small military outposts. American commanders refused to believe the size and scope of the Front's presence, ordering small companies of marines against thousands of entrenched enemy troops. After several futile and deadly days, Lieutenant Colonel Ernie Cheatham would finally come up with a strategy to retake the city in some of the most intense urban combat since World War II.

With unprecedented access to war archives in the U.S. and Vietnam and inter-views with participants from both sides, Bowden narrates each stage of this crucial battle through multiple viewpoints. Played out over twenty-four days and ultimately costing 10,000 lives, the Battle of Hue was the bloodiest of the entire war. When it ended, the American debate was never again about winning, only about how to leave. Hue 1968 is a gripping and moving account of this pivotal moment.

IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS

IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS

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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.

No Good Men Among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War Through Afghan Eyes

No Good Men Among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War Through Afghan Eyes

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PULITZER PRIZE FINALIST
NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FINALIST
WINNER OF THE RIDENHOUR PRIZE

Essential reading for anyone concerned about how America got Afghanistan so wrong. A devastating, well-honed prosecution detailing how our government bungled the initial salvo in the so-called war on terror, ignored attempts by top Taliban leaders to surrender, trusted the wrong people, and backed a feckless and corrupt Afghan regime . . . It is ultimately the most compelling account I've read of how Afghans themselves see the war. --The New York Times Book Review

In a breathtaking chronicle, acclaimed journalist Anand Gopal traces the lives of three Afghans caught in America's war on terror. He follows a Taliban commander, who rises from scrawny teenager to leading insurgent; a U.S.-backed warlord, who uses the American military to gain wealth and power; and a village housewife trapped between the two sides, who discovers the devastating cost of neutrality. Through their dramatic stories, No Good Men Among the Living stunningly lays bare the workings of America's longest war and the truth behind its prolonged agony.

On the Origins of War: And the Preservation of Peace

On the Origins of War: And the Preservation of Peace

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A brilliant and vitally important history of why states go to war, by the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Peloponnesian War.

War has been a fact of life for centuries. By lucidly revealing the common threads that connect the ancient confrontations between Athens and Sparta and between Rome and Carthage with the two calamitous World Wars of the twentieth century, renowned historian Donald Kagan reveals new and surprising insights into the nature of war and peace. Vivid, incisive, and accessible, Kagan's powerful narrative warns against complacency and urgently reminds us of the importance of preparedness in times of peace.