Wars & Military Hist

Churchill's Shadow Raiders

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Franci's War

Franci's War

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The engrossing memoir of a spirited and glamorous young fashion designer who survived World War ll, with an afterword by her daughter, Helen Epstein.

In the summer of 1942, twenty-two year-old Franci Rabinek--designated a Jew by the Nazi racial laws--arrived at Terezin, a concentration camp and ghetto forty miles north of her home in Prague. It would be the beginning of her three-year journey from Terezin to the Czech family camp in Auschwitz-Birkenau, to the slave labor camps in Hamburg, and Bergen Belsen. After liberation by the British in April 1945, she finally returned to Prague.

Franci was known in her group as the Prague dress designer who lied to Dr. Mengele at an Auschwitz selection, saying she was an electrician, an occupation that both endangered and saved her life. In this memoir, she offers her intense, candid, and sometimes funny account of those dark years, with the women prisoners in her tight-knit circle of friends.

Franci's War is the powerful testimony of one incredibly strong young woman who endured the horrors of the Holocaust and survived.

Franci’s War: A Woman’s Story of Survival by Franci Rabinek Epstein

I love non-fiction about strong people who struggle through frightening events and somehow survive. These stories grab me because I want to believe we can persevere throughw ars, famine and pandemics, knowing that survival will take determination and hard work in order to defend our lives and beliefs. Franci’s War: A Woman’s Story of Survival by Franci Rabinek Epstein, is that kind of story. Franci was a survivor of the Auschwitz-Birrkenau camps. Her daughter, Helen Epstein, has edited her mother’s journal and divided it into chapters to help the reader follow the story. 

              Franci was born in Prague, in 1920.  At the age of nineteen she became the owner of her mother’s couture shop, but the Nazi’s had invaded Czechoslovakia and her world was rapidly changing.  Franci and her parents were arrested by the Gestapo, released, she got married, got pregnant—and decided on an abortion--and in the next year, Nazi’s took everything away and sent her to a concentration camp. She survived, in part, because she told them a lie, that she was an electrician. Her story is amazing, honest, heartbreaking and inspiring, and, in my opinion, a must read to understand our past--so we never repeat it.    

Sarah Willis, Loganberry Books

Great Battles of the World (USED)
Great Battles of the World (USED)

Great Battles of the World (USED)

$75.00
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American author Stephen Crane began writing early in life, and was already a published author by the age of sixteen. Among Crane's best known works is The Red Badge of Courage, which was influenced by his own experiences in military school and personal contact with Civil-War veterans. Crane died in 1900 at the age twenty-eight of tuberculosis, but had a significant and lasting impact on twentieth-century literature, influencing early modernist writers such as Ernest Hemingway.

Great Battles of the World, published in 1900, is a book in which Crane discusses some of the most famous battles that he researched.

Illustrated by John Sloan. Red cloth, embossed decoration and lettering in gilt and silver on cover; gilt lettering on spine; t.e.g.; small spot on top of fore-edge; hinges weak. G

On Thermonuclear War

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On Thermonuclear War was controversial when originally published and remains so today. It is iconoclastic, crosses disciplinary boundaries, and finally it is calm and compellingly reasonable. The book was widely read on both sides of the Iron Curtain and the result was serious revision in both Western and Soviet strategy and doctrine. As a result, both sides were better able to avoid disaster during the Cold War.

The strategic concepts still apply: defense, local animosities, and the usual balance-of-power issues are still very much with us. Kahn's stated purpose in writing this book was simply: "avoiding disaster and buying time, without specifying the use of this time." By the late 1950s, with both sides H-bomb-armed, reason and time were in short supply.

Kahn, a military analyst at Rand since 1948, understood that a defense based only on thermonuclear arnaments was inconceivable, morally questionable, and not credible.The book was the first to make sense of nuclear weapons. Originally created from a series of lectures, it provides insight into how policymakers consider such issues. One may agree with Kahn or disagree with him on specific issues, but he clearly defined the terrain of the argument. He also looks at other weapons of mass destruction such as biological and chemical, and the history of their use.

Princeton University Press, 1961; 2nd edition with index; dust jacket in protective cover; head of spine chipped; edges shelf worn; rust cloth with black and gilt lettering on spine; binding tight; text clean and bright. G+/G

PACIFIC CRUCIBLE: WAR AT SEA I

PACIFIC CRUCIBLE: WAR AT SEA I

$19.95
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On the first Sunday in December 1941, an armada of Japanese warplanes appeared suddenly over Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and devastated the U.S. Pacific Fleet. Six months later, in a sea fight north of the tiny atoll of Midway, four Japanese aircraft carriers were sent into the abyss, a blow that destroyed the offensive power of their fleet. Pacific Crucible--through a dramatic narrative relying predominantly on primary sources and eyewitness accounts of heroism and sacrifice from both navies--tells the epic tale of these first searing months of the Pacific war, when the U.S. Navy shook off the worst defeat in American military history to seize the strategic initiative.

The Mint: A Day-Book of the R.A.F. Depot between August and December 1922 with Later Notes by 352087 A/c Ross (USED)
The Mint: A Day-Book of the R.A.F. Depot between August and December 1922 with Later Notes by 352087 A/c Ross (USED)

The Mint: A Day-Book of the R.A.F. Depot between August and December 1922 with Later Notes by 352087 A/c Ross (USED)

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“When in 1922 T.E. Lawrence enlisted in the ranks of the R.A.F. under the name of John Hulme Ross, he was in a strange physical and mental state as the result of his war experiences. Upon the discovery of his identity he was discharged, but was allowed to re-enlist two and a half years later, this time using the name of Shaw, under which he had meanwhile served in the Tank Corps.

From his notes, many times re-written and revised, he constructed The Mint – ‘an iron, rectangular, abhorrent book,’ he called it, ‘one which no man would willingly read.’ It does not correspond to that description. In the main it is a highly subjective account of Lawrence’s life in the R.A.F. Though resentfully critical of the treatment to which he and other recruits were subjected, it is not self-pitying. It is often robustly entertaining, and the character sketches are brilliant examples of Lawrence’s literary skill. He had an acute ear for conversation: in fact, some of the dialogue so faithfully records habitual barrack-room words that it has been deemed inadvisable to reproduce them in the ordinary edition of the book.” (From book flap)

London: Jonathan Cape, 1955. 1st edition; dust jacket in protective cover; edges tanned; flaps clipped; blue cloth; spine head frayed; corners bumped; binding good; text clean and bright. G/G

Unbroken : A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

Unbroken : A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption (USED)

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$12.50
$11.99 - $12.50
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The incredible true story of survival and salvation that is the basis for two major motion pictures: 2014's Unbroken and the upcoming Unbroken: Path to Redemption.

On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood. Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared. It was that of a young lieutenant, the plane's bombardier, who was struggling to a life raft and pulling himself aboard. So began one of the most extraordinary odysseys of the Second World War.

The lieutenant's name was Louis Zamperini. In boyhood, he'd been a cunning and incorrigible delinquent, breaking into houses, brawling, and fleeing his home to ride the rails. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics and within sight of the four-minute mile. But when war had come, the athlete had become an airman, embarking on a journey that led to his doomed flight, a tiny raft, and a drift into the unknown.

Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.

In her long-awaited new book, Laura Hillenbrand writes with the same rich and vivid narrative voice she displayed in Seabiscuit. Telling an unforgettable story of a man's journey into extremity, Unbroken is a testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit.

Praise for Unbroken

"Extraordinarily moving . . . a powerfully drawn survival epic."--The Wall Street Journal

"[A] one-in-a-billion story . . . designed to wrench from self-respecting critics all the blurby adjectives we normally try to avoid: It is amazing, unforgettable, gripping, harrowing, chilling, and inspiring."--New York

"Staggering . . . mesmerizing . . . Hillenbrand's writing is so ferociously cinematic, the events she describes so incredible, you don't dare take your eyes off the page."--People

"A meticulous, soaring and beautifully written account of an extraordinary life."--The Washington Post

"Ambitious and powerful . . . a startling narrative and an inspirational book."--The New York Times Book Review

"Marvelous . . . Unbroken is wonderful twice over, for the tale it tells and for the way it's told. . . . It manages maximum velocity with no loss of subtlety."--Newsweek

"Moving and, yes, inspirational . . . [Laura] Hillenbrand's unforgettable book . . . deserve[s] pride of place alongside the best works of literature that chart the complications and the hard-won triumphs of so-called ordinary Americans and their extraordinary time."--Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air

"Hillenbrand . . . tells [this] story with cool elegance but at a thrilling sprinter's pace."--Time

"Unbroken is too much book to hope for: a hellride of a story in the grip of the one writer who can handle it."--Christopher McDougall, author of Born to Run