Brian Lamb and Susan Swain - The Presidents - Little, Brown Book Group

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The Presidents

Noted Historians Rank America's Best--and Worst--Chief Executives

By Brian Lamb and Susan Swain

  • Hardback
  • £P.O.R.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781541774339
  • Publication date: 11 Apr 2019
  • Page count: 560
  • Imprint: PublicAffairs
Little, Brown US

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When the Clouds Fell from the Sky

Robert Carmichael
Authors:
Robert Carmichael

'To keep you is no benefit, to destroy you is no loss.'During the Khmer Rouge's four-year rule of terror, two million people, or one in every four, Cambodians, died. In describing one family's decades-long quest to learn their husband's and father's fate and the war crimes trial of Comrade Duch (pronounced 'Doyk'), who ran the notorious S-21 prison in Phnom Penh, where thousands were tortured prior to their execution, When the Clouds Fell from the Sky illuminates not only the tragedy of a nation, but also the fundamental limitations of international justice. In February 2012, the international war crimes court in Cambodia handed down a life sentence to the man known by his revolutionary moniker Comrade Duch. The court found the Khmer Rouge's former security chief responsible for the deaths of more than 12,000 people at S-21 prison.Duch's conviction was historic. He was the first Khmer Rouge member to be jailed for crimes committed during Pol Pot's catastrophic 1975-9 rule when two million people died from execution, starvation, illness and overwork as Cambodia underwent the most radical social transformation ever attempted. When the Khmer Rouge took power in 1975, the entire population was driven from the towns and cities into rural gulags, where they were put to work planting rice and constructing vast irrigation schemes Designed to outdo even Mao's Great Leap Forward, it was an unparalleled disaster.At the same time as the Khmer Rouge sought to refashion the country, they closed its borders, barred all communication with the outside world and turned back the clock to Year Zero. They outlawed religion, markets, money, education and even the concept of family as they pursued a revolution that would outstrip all others. In Orwellian fashion, everything and everyone belonged to Angkar, the anonymous leaders, and all loyalty was owed to them. The individual had no value beyond their utility as a working unit that could easily be replaced.It was not long before the revolution began to implode, driven to destruction by the incompetence and paranoia of Angkar. Yet instead of recognising their own failings, the leaders believed unseen enemies were undermining the revolution. They sought them everywhere, both inside and outside the movement. In their pursuit of purity they destroyed a nation. This was the closed nation to which Ouk Ket returned in 1977. Like hundreds of other returnees, he was utterly unaware of the terrors being wrought in the revolution's name. Hundreds of thousands of other Cambodians perished in nearly 200 institutions like S-21 that formed an inescapable web across the country. Most of the rest died of starvation, overwork and illness in the rural gulags. Cambodia remains defined by this cataclysmic period, and its effects are apparent today. To illustrate this era and its consequences, Robert Carmichael has woven together the stories of five people whose lives intersected to traumatic effect. Duch is one of those five, and the book tackles this complex man and his life through the prism of his trial.The second person is a Frenchwoman called Neary. Her father - the returning diplomat Ouk Ket - was one of Duch's 12,000 proven victims. She was just two when he disappeared. When the Clouds Fell from the Sky is as much about Neary as it is about Duch: her efforts to find out more about the fate of her father, and her subsequent battle to accept it. Towards the end of the book, in one of its key scenes, Neary testifies against Duch at the international war crimes court in Phnom Penh.Intertwined is Duch's quest for redemption: his efforts during his nine-month trial to make those in the courtroom understand the twists and turns of his life and the decisions he took - some logical, others seemingly banal - that culminated in him running one of the twentieth century's most brutal institutions. The truths that emerge during Duch's trial help to illuminate this enigmatic man and how, in many ways, he is little different from most of us.The third and fourth characters are Ket and his wife Martine, who met in 1970 when they were studying at university in Paris. The fifth is Ket's cousin Sady, who never left Cambodia and is today a sixty-something teacher in Phnom Penh. Sady and Ket grew up together in 1960s' Phnom Penh, so Sady is able to tell us about Ket's early years, She also describes the reality of life under the Khmer Rouge: the forced eviction from Phnom Penh in 1975, the murder of her younger brother in 1977, the deaths of Ket's father and siblings, and her suffering in the rural labour camps. Sady's story is the experience of countless Cambodians.Through these five stories, through the author's own research, through interviews with leading academics, former Khmer Rouge and ordinary Cambodians, and by following Duch's trial, which Robert did for months, the book takes the experience of one forgotten man to tell the story of a nation. Since we cannot grasp the concept of millions of dead, he has used the murder of one to speak for the deaths of many. In so doing the book reaffirms the value of the individual, countering the Khmer Rouge's nihilistic maxim that: 'To keep you is no benefit, to destroy you is no loss.'

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Charles Hurt
Authors:
Charles Hurt

Trump Saves America is the story of the unlikeliest of heroes who emerged from the unlikeliest of places to take up the impossible cause of a truly forgotten people. They are people who love their country, trust their higher God, obey laws and will do anything for their family and neighbors. They are the very people the Founders envisioned when they hatched the radical idea of self-governance. This is the story of a Leviathan government - the most powerful political force in the history of mankind - that has become dangerously unmoored from the people it represents. It is the story of how elites and the politically comfortable controlling both parties in Washington have utterly lost touch. They don't even realize how much the people they represent despise the uncontrollable Leviathan.The establishment has tried their best to ignore Donald Trump-except to brand him as a racist, a xenophobe, an isolationist, and a dangerous, violence-inciting war monger. All standards of reporting vanished. In the era of Trump, no sort of criticism was off-limits. They openly mocked his looks, ridiculed his private business accomplishments, pilloried his family and children and made fun of his foreign-born wife for her accent!The Leviathan has grown untamable. Democrats and Republicans run for office year after year on promises they have no intention of keeping. Neither side wants to fix a single problem. The whole thing has become one giant ungovernable, corrupt Ponzi scheme that - one day - will come crashing down.Charles Hurt advocates for the "Nuclear Option" for dealing with this mess: just blow the whole damned thing up. Whatever is presidential or diplomatic, let's try the opposite. Whatever these people in Washington find most horrifying, let's try that. Finally, the multi-headed Leviathan swamp monster has met the perfect dragon slayer in Donald Trump. Trump Saves America examines each corrupt head of this Leviathan, and why Donald Trump is the only good answer to fixing it.

Robinson

Rebel Englishwoman

Elsabé Brits
Authors:
Elsabé Brits

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PublicAffairs

The Levelling

Michael O'Sullivan
Authors:
Michael O'Sullivan

The world is at a turning point. While globalization benefited many, it produced extremes with drastic wealth inequality, indebtedness, and political volatility among the most important. As the ground underneath globalization undergoes tectonic shifts, noisy, chaotic, and disorderly events--such as Brexit and the election of Donald Trump--are the first harbingers of a world being turned upside down.In this book, Michael O'Sullivan shows the many ways the levelling of the twenty-first century will unfold: The levelling-out of wealth between rich and poor countries; of power between nations and regions; of political accountability and responsibility between political leaders and "the people"; and of institutional power--away from central banks and defunct twentieth-century institutions such as the WTO and IMF.The Levelling comes at a crucial time in the rise and fall of nations and has special importance for Americans as our place in the world undergoes radical change--the ebbing of our influence, profound questions over our economic model, the apparent decay in our society, and turmoil in our public life-- before our very eyes.

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PublicAffairs

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Basic Books

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Rucker C. Johnson
Authors:
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The Supreme Court's decision in Broad v. Board of Education in 1954, which declared the racial segregation of American schools unconstitutional, is universally understood as a landmark moment in our nation's history. Yet looking back from the present day, we judge the integrationist dream post-Brown as an utter failure, in the belief that it harmed students and deepened racial divisions in our society. Though integration efforts continued into the 1980s, reaching a highpoint in 1988, since then we've reverted to a situation in which segregation-no longer de jure, but de facto-prevails. Was integration a social experiment doomed from the start? In Children of the Dream, economist Rucker Johnson unearths the astonishing true story of integration in America. Drawing on immense longitudinal studies tracking the fates of thousands of individuals over the course of many decades, Johnson reveals that integration not only worked, but worked spectacularly well. Children who attended integrated schools were far more successful in life than those who didn't-and this held true for children of all races and backgrounds. Indeed, Johnson's research shows that well-funded, integrated schools were nothing less than the primary engine of social mobility in America across the 1970s and 1980s. Yet the experiment was all-too-brief, owing to a racial backlash and the unwillingness of even self-professed liberals to send their kids to integrated schools. As Johnson argues, by allowing educational segregation and inequality to fester, we are doing damage to society as a whole. Explaining why integration worked, why it came up short, and how it can be revived, Children of the Dream offers a prescription for ending inequality and reviving the American Dream in our time.

Hachette Audio

D-Day Girls

Sarah Rose
Authors:
Sarah Rose

'Gripping: Spies, romance, Gestapo thugs, blown-up trains, courage, and treachery (lots of treachery) - and all of it true, all precisely documented' ERIK LARSON, AUTHOR OF THE DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY'The mission is this: Read D-Day Girls today. Not just for the spy flair but also because this history feels more relevant than ever, as an army of women and girls again find themselves in a fight for the common good'LILY KOPPEL, AUTHOR OF THE ASTRONAUT WIVES CLUB 'Thoroughly researched and written as smoothly as a good thriller, this is a mesmerizing story of creativity, perseverance, and astonishing heroism' PUBLISHERS WEEKLY***The dramatic, untold story of the extraordinary women recruited by Britain's elite spy agency to help pave the way for Allied victoryIn 1942, the Allies were losing, Germany seemed unstoppable, and every able man in England was fighting. Believing that Britain was locked in an existential battle, Winston Churchill had already created a secret agency, the Special Operations Executive (SOE), whose spies were trained in everything from demolition to sharpshoot­ing. Their job, he declared, was to 'set Europe ablaze'. But with most men on the front lines, the SOE was forced to do something unprecedented: recruit women. Thirty-nine answered the call, leaving their lives and families to become saboteurs in France. In D-Day Girls, Sarah Rose draws on recently de­classified files, diaries, and oral histories to tell the thrilling story of three of these remarkable women. There's Andrée Borrel, a scrappy and streetwise Parisian who blew up power lines with the Gestapo hot on her heels; Odette Sansom, an unhappily married suburban mother who saw the SOE as her ticket out of domestic life and into a meaningful adventure; and Lise de Baissac, a fiercely independent member of French colonial high society and the SOE's unflap­pable 'queen'. Together, they destroyed train lines, ambushed Nazis, plotted prison breaks, and gathered crucial intelligence-laying the groundwork for the D-Day invasion that proved to be the turning point in the war. Rigorously researched and written with razor-sharp wit, D-Day Girls is an inspiring story for our own moment of resistance: a reminder of what courage-and the energy of politically animated women-can accomplish when the stakes seem incalculably high.*More great reviews for D-Day Girls: 'With skill and heart, Sarah Rose captures the adventures of an extraordinary group of women who kept the resistance alive during the darkest days of World War II, risking everything to liberate their loved ones, their nations, and democracy itself. I couldn't stop reading' JASON FAGONE, AUTHOR OF THE WOMAN WHO SMASHED CODES 'Rose delivers a swift moving . . . expert blow-by-blow account . . . A spy thriller that fights against the idea of "the original sin of women at war"'KIRKUS REVIEWS 'Daring, modern, and gorgeously written . . . This is the D-Day book the world has been waiting for'KAREN ABBOTT, AUTHOR OF SIN IN THE SECOND CITY AND LIAR, TEMPTRESS, SOLDIER, SPY'Sarah Rose's D-Day Girls is . . . a page-turning spy story that will, at long last, inscribe the names of three remarkable female spies-Andrée Borrel, Odette Sansom, Lise de Baissac-into our history books' SUSANNAH CAHALAN, AUTHOR OF BRAIN ON FIRE 'A fresh, thrilling account of the female spies whose courage and audacity helped win the day on June 6, 1944' ALEX KERSHAW, AUTHOR OF THE BEDFORD BOYS AND AVENUE OF SPIES

Virago

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Hachette Books

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Peggy Grande
Authors:
Peggy Grande

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PublicAffairs

The Empty Throne

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Ivo H. Daalder, James M. Lindsay
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Secrets of the Secret Service

Gary J. Byrne, Grant M. Schmidt
Authors:
Gary J. Byrne, Grant M. Schmidt

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Robinson

Churchill's Confidant

Richard Steyn
Authors:
Richard Steyn
Abacus

If This Is A Man/The Truce

Primo Levi
Authors:
Primo Levi