By Bruce Gamble
In early 1942, while most of the American military was still in disarray from the devastating attacks on Pearl Harbor and the Philippines, a single squadron advanced to the far side of the world to face America's new enemy.Based in Australia with poor supplies and no ground support, the pilots and crew faced tropical diseases while confronting numerically superior Japanese forces. Yet the outfit, dubbed the Kangaroo Squadron, proved remarkably resilient and successful, conducting long-range bombing raids, armed reconnaissance missions, and rescuing General MacArthur and his staff from the Philippines.Before now, the story of their courage and determination in the face of overwhelming odds has largely been untold. Using eyewitness accounts based on personal diaries, letters, new interviews, and memoirs as well as Japanese sources, historian Bruce Gamble brings to vivid life this dramatic true story.But the Kangaroo Squadron's story doesn't end in World War II. One of the B-17s, crash landed on its first mission, has recently been recovered from jungle swamps. The intertwined stories of the Kangaroo Squadron and the "Swamp Ghost" are filled with thrilling accounts of aerial combat, an epic jungle survival story, and the powerful mystique of an abandoned bomber that compelled men to possess it at any cost.
The King's City
By Don Jordan
'The cruelty and magnificence of Restoration London provides endless fascination . . . there's much to delight in this volume' The Times'Don Jordan's history captures the shifts [Charles II] engineered in trade and culture' NatureDuring the reign of Charles II, London was a city in flux. After years of civil war and political turmoil, England's capital became the centre for major advances in the sciences, the theatre, architecture, trade and ship-building that paved the way for the creation of the British Empire.At the heart of this activity was the King, whose return to power from exile in 1660 lit the fuse for an explosion in activity in all spheres of city life. London flourished, its wealth, vibrancy and success due to many figures famous today including Christopher Wren, Samuel Pepys and John Dryden - and others whom history has overlooked until now.Throughout the quarter-century Charles was on the throne, London suffered several serious reverses: the plague in 1665 and the Great Fire in 1666, and severe defeat in the Second Anglo-Dutch War, which brought about notable economic decline. But thanks to the genius and resilience of the people of London, and the occasionally wavering stewardship of the King, the city rose from the ashes to become the economic capital of Europe.The King's City tells the gripping story of a city that defined a nation and birthed modern Britain - and how the vision of great individuals helped to build the richly diverse place we know today.
By Jeffrey Watson
Clive 'Killer' Caldwell was a natural and brilliant pilot, a superb shot, and a born leader. He saw action against the Germans, Italians and Japanese, and remains Australia's greatest ever fighter pilot - this is his definitive biography.Born and brought up in Sydney, it was obvious from an early age that nothing would stand in Caldwell's way. He bluffed his way into the RAAF, then made sure that he was posted exactly where he thought he should be.His ability was unquestioned by all those around him, and he devised the vital 'shadow shooting' technique which contributed so much to Allied success in the air in the North African campaign, and in northern Australia. But he was never afraid of voicing his opinions to all those above and below him, be it about the training of pilots, or the equipping of Spitfires for use against the Japanese - or trying to run the show his way.Caldwell ended his military career in the Morotai Mutiny in 1945, where he and a number of other Australian pilots tried to resign their commissions in protest at not being allowed by General MacArthur - and the RAAF - to take part in the main action. And then he was embroiled in the Barry inquiry into booze smuggling by him and other pilots. KILLER CALDWELL is a colourful portrait of this colourful Australian. Now part of the HACHETTE MILITARY COLLECTION.'an outstanding airman and a popular national hero.' Australian War Memorial
By Nikolaus Wachsmann
Winner of the Jewish Quarterly Wingate Literary Prize and the Wolfson History PrizeIn March of 1933, a disused factory surrounded by barbed wire held 223 prisoners in the town of Dachau. By the end of 1945, the SS concentration camp system had become an overwhelming landscape of terror. Twenty-two large camps and over one thousand satellite camps throughout Germany and Europe were at the heart of the Nazi campaign of repression and intimidation. The importance of the camps in terms of Nazi history and our modern world cannot be questioned.Dr Nikolaus Wachsmann is the first historian to write a complete history of the camps. Combining the political and the personal, Wachsmann will examine the organisation of such an immense genocidal machine, whilst drawing a vivid picture of life inside the camps for the individual prisoner. The book gives voice to those typically forgotten in Nazi history: the 'social deviants', criminals and unwanted ethnicities that all faced the terror of the camps. Wachsmann explores the practice of institutionalised murder and inmate collaboration with the SS selectively ignored by many historians. Pulling together a wealth of in-depth research, official documents, contemporary studies and the evidence of survivors themselves, KL is a complete but accessible narrative.
The King's Bed
By Don Jordan, Michael Walsh
To refer to the private life of Charles II is to abuse the adjective. His personal life was anything but private. His amorous liaisons were largely conducted in royal palaces surrounded by friends, courtiers and literally hundreds of servants and soldiers. Gossip radiated throughout the kingdom. Charles spent most of his wealth and his intellect on gaining and keeping the company of women, from the lowest sections of society such as the actress Nell Gwyn to the aristocratic Louise de Kérouaille. Some of Charles' women played their part in the affairs of state, colouring the way the nation was run. Don Jordan and Michael Walsh take us inside Charles' palace, where we will meet court favourites, amusing confidants, advisors jockeying for political power, mistresses past and present as well as key figures in his inner circle such as his 'pimpmasters' and his personal pox doctor.The astonishing private life of Charles II reveals much about the man he was and why he lived and ruled as he did. The King's Bed tells the compelling story of a king ruled by his passion.
The King's Revenge
By Michael Walsh, Don Jordan
When Charles I was executed, his son Charles II made it his role to search out retribution, producing the biggest manhunt Britain had ever seen, one that would span Europe and America and would last for thirty years.Men who had once been among the most powerful figures in England ended up on the scaffold, on the run, or in fear of the assassin's bullet. History has painted the regicides and their supporters as fanatical Puritans, but among them were remarkable men, including John Milton and Oliver Cromwell. Don Jordan and Michael Walsh bring these remarkable figures and this astonishing story vividly to life an engrossing, bloody tale of plots, spies, betrayal, fear and ambition.
The Kings' Mistresses
By Elizabeth C. Goldsmith
The Mancini Sisters, Marie and Hortense, were born in Rome, brought to the court of Louis XIV of France, and strategically married off by their uncle, Cardinal Mazarin, to secure his political power base. Such was the life of many young women of the age: they had no independent status under the law and were entirely a part of their husband's property once married. Marie and Hortense, however, had other ambitions in mind altogether. Miserable in their marriages and determined to live independently, they abandoned their husbands in secret and began lives of extraordinary daring on the run and in the public eye. The beguiling sisters quickly won the affections of noblemen and kings alike. Their flight became popular fodder for salon conversation and tabloids, and was closely followed by seventeenth-century European society. The Countess of Grignan remarked that they were traveling"like two heroines out of a novel.&rdquo Others gossiped that they"were roaming the countryside in pursuit of wandering lovers.&rdquo Their scandalous behaviour- disguising themselves as men, gambling, and publicly disputing with their husbands- served as more than just entertainment. It sparked discussions across Europe concerning the legal rights of husbands over their wives.Elizabeth Goldsmith's vibrant biography of the Mancini sisters- drawn from personal papers of the players involved and the tabloids of the time- illuminates the lives of two pioneering free spirits who were feminists long before the word existed.
A Kingdom Strange
By James Horn
In 1587, John White led 117 English men, women, and children to Roanoke Island, off the coast of North Carolina. They hoped to establish a British foothold in North America, but soon found themselves struggling to survive. White returned to England for help, but when he returned to Roanoke in 1590, the colonists were nowhere to be found: White never saw his friends or family again. But as James Horn reveals in A Kingdom Strange , some from the party survived their descendants were discovered a century later, a living testament to America's remarkable origins.
The Kennedy Assassination--24 Hours After
By Steven M. Gillon
Riding in an open-topped convertible through Dallas on November 22, 1963, Lyndon B. Johnson heard a sudden explosive sound at 12:30 PM. The Secret Service sped him away to safety, but not until 1:20 PM did he learn that John F. Kennedy had been assassinated. Sworn in next to a bloodstained Jackie Kennedy at 2:40 PM, Johnson worked feverishly until 3:00 in the morning, agonizing about the future of both his nation and his party. Unbeknownst to him, his actions had already determined the tragic outcome of his presidency. In November 22, 1963 , historian Steven Gillon tells the story of how Johnson consolidated power in the twenty-four hours following the assassination. Based on scrupulous research and new archival sources, this gripping narrative sheds new and surprising light on one of the most written-about events of the twentieth century.
K Blows Top
By Peter Carlson
Khrushchev's 1959 trip across America was one of the strangest exercises in international diplomacy ever conducted. Khrushchev told jokes, threw tantrums, sparked a riot in a San Francisco supermarket, wowed the coeds in a home economics class in Iowa, and ogled Shirley MacLaine as she filmed a dance scene in Can-Can . He befriended and offended a cast of characters including Nelson Rockefeller, Richard Nixon, Eleanor Roosevelt, Elizabeth Taylor, and Marilyn Monroe. K Blows Top is a work of history that reads like a Vonnegut novel. This cantankerous communist's road trip took place against the backdrop of the fifties in America, with the shadow of the hydrogen bomb hanging over his visit like the Sword of Damocles. As Khrushchev kept reminding people, he was a hot-tempered man who possessed the power to incinerate America.
By Lawrence Malkin
Only a fortnight after the start of WWII, at a meeting that has remained a secret for more than half a century, Nazi leaders and officials of the German Reichsbank approved an audacious plot to counterfeit millions of British pounds. Drawing upon top-secret bank records, German and British correspondence, and interrogation transcripts, award-winning journalist and author Lawrence Malkin reveals how an unremarkable SS officer named Bernhard Krueger attempted to bring down the world financial system. But when Krueger discovered that forging pounds, and later dollars, was no easy task, he made a crucial decision: he would seek out the greatest counterfeiters of pre-war Europe and enlist them in the effort. He found them in an unexpected place: a Nazi concentration camp.
Knight Of Darkness
By Kinley MacGregor
While Morgen Le Fey controls Camelot, the remnants of the Round Table seek sanctuary in Avalon. For countless centuries Varian du Fey has been the assassin for the infamous Merlin. However, because of his heritage, Varian has never been truly accepted as a one of the Knights of Avalon. Lancelot may have been his father, but his mother is one of Morgen le Fey's closest allies, and both she and Morgen are keen for Varian to take his rightful place in the conflict between good and evil...Merewyn's beauty brought her heartache so she traded her loveliness and ended up an old hag doomed to be a servant at Camelot for eternity. Varian's devious mother promises Merewyn her beauty and her freedom back if she seduces Varian to the dark side and forces him to join her Circle of the Damned...
By Anna Porter
The true, heart-wrenching story of Rezsö Kasztner, a Hungarian lawyer and journalist, who rescued thousands of Jews during the last days of the Second World War - and the ultimate price he paid.Summer 1944 - Rezsö Kasztner meets with Adolf Eichmann, architect of the Holocaust, in Budapest. With the Final Solution at its terrible apex and tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews being sent to Auschwitz every month, the two men agree to allow 1,684 Jews to leave for Switzerland by train. The wealthy Jews of Budapest will pay an average of $1,500 for each family member to be included; the poor will pay nothing.In addition to those on the train, Kasztner negotiates with Eichmann to keep 20,000 Hungarian Jews alive - Eichmann called them 'Kasztner's Jews' or the 'Jews on ice' - for a deposit of approximately $100 per head. These deals would haunt Kasztner to the end of his life.After the war, Kasztner was vilified in an infamous Israeli libel trial for having 'sold his soul to the devil' in collaborating with the Nazis. In 1957, he was murdered while he awaited the Supreme Court verdict that eventually vindicated him.Kasztner's Train explores the nature of Kasztner: the cool hero, the proud Zionist, the man who believed that promises, even to the Nazis, had to be kept. The deals he made raise questions about moral choices that continue to haunt the world today.
The King Of California
By Mark Arax, Rick Wartzman
J.G. Boswell was the biggest farmer in America. He built a secret empire while thumbing his nose at nature, politicians, labour unions and every journalist who ever tried to lift the veil on the ultimate "factory in the fields." The King of California is the previously untold account of how a Georgia slave-owning family migrated to California in the early 1920s,drained one of America's biggest lakes in an act of incredible hubris and carved out the richest cotton empire in the world. Indeed, the sophistication of Boswell's agricultural operation -from lab to field to gin - is unrivaled anywhere.Much more than a business story, this is a sweeping social history that details the saga of cotton growers who were chased from the South by the boll weevil and brought their black farmhands to California. It is a gripping read with cameos by a cast of famous characters, from Cecil B. DeMille to Cesar Chavez.
The Knights Templar
By Sean Martin
This book is an essential exploration into the history of a legendary group of Crusaders, which are prominently featured in Dan Brown's recent best seller, The Da Vinci Code. The Knights Templar rose from humble beginnings to become the most powerful military religious order of the Middle Ages. Formed to protect pilgrims in the Holy Land, they participated in the Crusades and rapidly gained wealth, lands, and influence. Seemingly untouchable for nearly two centuries, they fell from grace spectacularly after the loss of the Holy Land. In the ensuing centuries the Templars have exerted a unique influence over European history orthodox historians see them as nothing more than soldier-monks whose arrogance was their ultimate undoing, while others see them as occultists of the first order. With clarity and ease, Martin navigates between the orthodox and the speculative, the historical and the myth, to bring alive the story of the Templars. Like those other legends of the Middle Ages,the characters of the Arthurian tales,The Knights Templar holds captive the imagination of all those intrigued by conspiracy and how history and myth intertwine to become the stuff of legend.
The Kennedys: America's Emerald Kings
By Thomas Maier
For 150 years, the story of the Kennedy family has been inextricably linked to their heritage as Irish-Catholic immigrants- from Patrick Kennedy's 1848 arrival in Brahmin Boston from Country Wexford Ireland, to Joseph Kennedy's Vatican ties and Jackie's thoughts on faith and sorrow, to Kennedy-confidante Father McSorley's religious counsel following the assassination of JFK. Through ground-breaking interviews with Senator Edward Kennedy and other Kennedy family and friends, acclaimed journalist Thomas Maier casts the Kennedy saga in an entirely new light, showing how their Irish catholic heritage influenced their public and private decisions. Released to coincide with a documentary adapted from the book, this edition features a new preface, in which Maier explores the dynamics of the three brothers, Ted Kennedy's legacy, and the 2008 presidential elections that have been touched in so many ways by the Kennedy family.
By Frank Schaeffer, John Schaeffer
In 1998, Frank Schaeffer was a bohemian novelist living in "Volvo driving, higher-education worshipping" Massachusetts with two children graduated from top universities. Then his youngest child, straight out of high school, joined the United States Marine Corps. Written in alternating voices by eighteen-year-old John and his father, Frank, Keeping Faith takes readers in riveting fashion through a family's experience of the Marine Corps: from being broken down and built back up on Parris Island (and being the parent of a child undergoing that experience), to the growth of both father and son and their separate reevaluations of what it means to serve. From Frank's realization that among his fellow soccer dads "the very words'boot camp' were pejorative, conjuring up'troubled youths at risk'" ("'But aren't they all terribly southern?' asked one parent") to John's learning that "the Marine next to you is more important than you are," Keeping Faith , a New York Times bestseller , is a fascinating and personal examination of issues of class, duty, and patriotism. The fact that John is currently serving in the Middle East only adds to the impact of this wonderfully written, timely, and moving human interest story.
By Steven H. Newton
The battle of Kursk, fought in the summer of 1943, involved six thousand German and Soviet armored vehicles, making it the biggest tank battle of all time and possibly the largest battle of any kind. Students of military history have long recognized the importance of Kursk, also known as "Operation Citadel," and there have been several serious studies of the battle. Yet, the German view of the battle has been largely ignored.After the war, U.S. Army Intelligence officers gathered German commanders' post-war reports of the battle. Due, in part, to poor translations done after the war, these important documents have been overlooked by World War II historians. Steven H. Newton has collected, translated, and edited these accounts, including reports made by the Chiefs of Staff of Army Group South and the Fourth Panzer Army, and by the Army Group centre Operations Officer. As a result, a new and unprecedented picture of German strategy and operations is made available. The translated staff reports are supplemented by Newton's commentary and original research, which challenges a number of widely accepted ideas about this pivotal battle.
The Korean War
By Brian Catchpole
Truman was reluctant to intervene, but two weeks later a UN resolution was passed setting up a unified command under the blue flag under General MacArthur. Thus began the struggle which did not end until the armistice in 1953. In this book Brian Catchpole recounts the military operations - the slogging war on the ground as well as the UN naval superiority and the importance of air power. He also explains the diplomatic background of international relations between China and the West, the communist propaganda in the north, the issue of prisoners-of-war, the talks leading to the armistice and the creation of the demilitarized zone. The war enabled the UN to act in an official capacity to defend a state under military attack - the only time during the Cold War it did so. But it did not enhance the reputation of the UN for resolving international disputes.
The Killing of Reinhard Heydrich
By Callum Macdonald
The extraordinary account of one of the most daring World War II missions, as told in the movie Anthropoid If anyone warranted assassination during World War II, the man to know was Reinhard Heydrich (1904-1942),chief of the security police, rabid anti-Semite, architect of the Final Solution, ruthless overlord of Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia, and Hitler's most likely successor. In 1941, at the height of the Nazis'seeming invincibility, the Czech government-in-exile launched a desperate operation to kill Heydrich. From the assassins' training in England to their Thermopylae-like last stand in the flooded crypt of a Prague church, and the Nazis'savage reprisals (including the obliteration of two villages), The Killing of Reinhard Heydrich brilliantly recounts one of World War II's most daring and tragic missions.