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Our 20th century history books reveal all about what has happened in the world in the modern era.

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20th Century History Books

  • 1916: A Global History

    Keith Jeffery

    Product Code: NAGH
    Paperback
    Hand-picked favourites
    In this eye-opening book, Keith Jeffery looks at how the events of the First World War affected the rest of the world.

    Covering the 12 months of 1916, he picks out 12 key moments and reveals the impact they had on the rest of the world. As well as famous battles including Gallipoli and the Somme, the author also examines the Easter Rising, the Italian Front and the killing of Rasputin and explains how all of these related to the War.

    Thoroughly researched using a host of military, social and cultural sources, this book looks at just how much the war dramatically altered the state of so many nations.
    • £1.00
    • RRP £9.99
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  • The Library Book

    Susan Orlean

    Product Code: CBQOE
    Paperback
    A New York Times Book of the Year, 2018 A REESE WITHERSPOON x HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB PICK A dazzling love letter to a beloved institution - our libraries. After moving to Los Angeles, Susan Orlean became fascinated by a mysterious local crime that has gone unsolved since it was carried out on the morning of 29 April 1986: who set fire to the Los Angeles Public Library, ultimately destroying more than 400,000 books, and perhaps even more perplexing, why? With her characteristic humour, insight and compassion, Orlean uses this terrible event as a lens through which to tell the story of all libraries - their history, their meaning and their uncertain future as they adapt and redefine themselves in a digital world. Filled with heart, passion and extraordinary characters, The Library Book discusses the larger, crucial role that libraries play in our lives.
    • £7.99
    • RRP £9.99
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  • All Hell Let Loose

    Sir Max Hastings

    Product Code: AEEHE
    Paperback
    A magisterial history of the greatest and most terrible event in history, from one of the finest historians of the Second World War. A book which shows the impact of war upon hundreds of millions of people around the world- soldiers, sailors and airmen; housewives, farm workers and children. Reflecting Max Hastings's thirty-five years of research on World War II, All Hell Let Loose describes the course of events, but focuses chiefly upon human experience, which varied immensely from campaign to campaign, continent to continent. The author emphasises the Russian front, where more than 90% of all German soldiers who perished met their fate. He argues that, while Hitler's army often fought its battles brilliantly well, the Nazis conducted their war effort with 'stunning incompetence'. He suggests that the Royal Navy and US Navy were their countries' outstanding fighting services, while the industrial contribution of the United States was much more important to allied victory than that of the US Army. The book ranges across a vast canvas, from the agony of Poland amid the September 1939 Nazi invasion, to the 1943 Bengal famine, in which at least a million people died under British rule- and British neglect. Among many vignettes, there are the RAF's legendary raid on the Ruhr dams, the horrors of Arctic convoys, desert tank combat, jungle clashes. Some of Hastings's insights and judgements will surprise students of the conflict, while there are vivid descriptions of the tragedies and triumphs of a host of ordinary people, in uniform and out of it. 'The cliche is profoundly true', he says. 'The world between 1939 and 1945 saw some human beings plumb the depths of baseness, while others scaled the heights of courage and nobility'. This is 'everyman's story', an attempt to answer the question: 'What was the Second World War like ?', and also an overview of the big picture. Max Hastings employs the technique which has made many of his previous books best-sellers, combining top-down analysis and bottom-up testimony to explore the meaning of this vast conflict both for its participants and for posterity.
    • £11.29
    • RRP £12.99
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  • Station Jim

    Louis de Bernieres

    Product Code: CBRCD
    Hardback
    A heartwarming tale about a mischievous dog who works on the steam trains. Beautifully illustrated, it is the perfect gift. One day in autumn, in the days when all the trains were driven by steam, a railway guard found something abandoned on a train... Mr Ginger Leghorn is used to collecting up umbrellas and other lost property but he's never found an abandoned puppy on his train before. He has no intention of keeping it but his five children - Alfie, Arthur, Beryl, Sissy and Albert - have other ideas and Jim is soon a much-loved, but often disruptive, member of the family. Whether it's his feud with the cat, getting stuck in rabbit-holes, accidentally going to sea, accompanying the children to school or carol singing at Christmas, Jim has a knack of making himself the centre of attention. This little black and tan puppy with its small bright eyes and very waggy rump becomes something of a hero in his town, and even catches the eye of the King himself. Station Jim is a story for both children and adults and includes delightful pictures by celebrated illustrator Emma Chichester Clark.
    • £8.79
    • RRP £10.99
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  • The Reinvention of Humanity

    Charles King

    Product Code: CBRBY
    Hardback
    The Reinvention of Humanity tells the story of a small circle of renegade scientist-explorers who changed something profound: what it means to be normal. In the early twentieth century, these pioneering anthropologists, most of them women, made intrepid journeys that overturned our assumptions about race, sexuality, gender and the nature of human diversity. From the Arctic to the South Pacific, from Haiti to Japan, they immersed themselves in distant or isolated communities, where they observed and documented radically different approaches to love and child-rearing, family structure and the relationship between women and men. With this evidence they were able to challenge the era's scientific consensus - and deep-rooted Western belief - that intelligence, ability and character are determined by a person's race or sex, and show that the roles people play in society are shaped in fact according to the immense variety of human cultures. Theirs were boundary-breaking lives, filled with scandal, romance, rivalry and tragedy. Those of Margaret Mead and her essential partner Ruth Benedict resulted in fame and notoriety. Those of Native American activist Ella Deloria and the African-American writer and ethnographer Zora Neale Hurston ended in poverty and obscurity; here their achievements are brought fully into the light for the first time. All were outsiders, including the controversial founder of their field, the wild-haired professor, German immigrant and revolutionary thinker, Franz Boas. The Reinvention of Humanity takes us on their globe-spanning adventures and shows how, together, these courageous and unconventional people created the moral universe we inhabit today.
    • £20.00
    • RRP £25.00
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  • As Others See Us

    Neil MacGregor

    Product Code: CBPIN
    Audio
    All ten episodes of BBC Radio 4's ambitious global series, presented by Neil MacGregor `Insightful, provocative, satisfying' Telegraph With the United Kingdom on the brink of potentially momentous change, historian and broadcaster Neil MacGregor embarks on a worldwide voyage to discover how Britain is perceived from abroad. Visiting Germany, Egypt, Nigeria, Canada, India, Singapore, the United States, Spain, Australia and Poland - all countries with significant historical links to the UK - he talks to leading opinion formers to find out how they, as individuals and members of their wider communities, see Britain. His interviewees reveal what they learnt about Britain at school, and how key events and cultural influences, as well as their own personal experiences, have shaped their impressions of the country now. Each has a defining image that symbolises the UK to them: from Shakespeare to Monty Python, the 1966 World Cup, the Suez Crisis, the Financial Times, `99' ice cream and The Crown. Throughout his travels, MacGregor uncovers tensions and frustrations, admiration and affection - along with an underlying sense of hope and a desire to retain close links with Britain as it prepares to reevaluate its relationship with Europe and the world.
    • £24.00
    • RRP £30.00
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  • The Templemore Miracles

    John Reynolds

    Product Code: CBPAJ
    Paperback
    In the aftermath of the 1916 Rising, the guerrilla war that followed reached its peak in August 1920, in the garrison town of Templemore, when a series of extraordinary events occurred. Sixteen-year-old farm labourer Jimmy Walsh claimed that he was experiencing Marian apparitions, and that religious statues owned by him were moving and bleeding. Miraculous cures were claimed and the religious fervour which gripped Ireland led to an influx of thousands of pilgrims. The phenomenon of the `Templemore miracles' or `bleeding statues' lasted for several weeks and an informal ceasefire arose while the rebels, the police, military and civilian population struggled to comprehend the surreal situation. The IRA interrogated Walsh, concluding that the miracles and apparitions were not genuine and also decided that the flood of pilgrims must cease as it was having a detrimental effect on the conduct of the war. The IRA, with the direct involvement of Michael Collins, took action to deal with Walsh and to deter pilgrims from coming to Templemore. When the last pilgrims left, the conflict resumed in earnest with a greater level of ferocity and brutality than previously. Walsh left Ireland, never to return.
    • £10.39
    • RRP £12.99
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  • North West Railways in the 1970s and 1980s

    John Carlson

    Product Code: BYZTD
    Paperback
    John Carlson takes a new look at the north-western rail scene. Focusing mainly on the years 1975 to 1985, this collection of around 180 colour and black-and white-images, almost all previously unpublished, takes a look the regions railways in the 1970s and 1980s. Captured here are images that encapsulate intercity expresses at speed and rest, show freight being shunted and hauled in yards and on main lines, and portray the enthusiasts and passengers that photograph and ride them. Although focusing on the region's major railway centres, such as Carlisle, Preston and Manchester, branch lines and out of the way vantage points have not been neglected.
    • £11.99
    • RRP £14.99
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  • A Guide to the Beaches and Battlefields of Normandy

    David Evans

    Product Code: BWTYF
    Paperback
    A Guide to the Beaches and Battlefields of Normandy provides an accessible background to the momentous events of 6 June 1944 as well as a complete guide to each and every town, village, beach, battery and cemetery that figured in the battle. This comprehensive book contains a wealth of detail that charts the heroism, poignancy and tragedy of events that were to alter the course of history. With stories, poems and illustrations, David Evans pays a fitting tribute to those who gave their lives as the price of victory. Accompanied by photographs, maps and drawings, this guide is aimed primarily at the thousands of veterans, relatives and tourists who visit Normandy each year, but it will also be an endless source of enjoyment to those who wish to recall the details and monuments of the battle in the comfort of their own homes. David Evans is a lecturer in modern history and is a frequent visitor to the sites of Normandy battlefields.
    • £11.99
    • RRP £14.99
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  • Exploitation, Resettlement, Mass Murder

    Alex J. Kay

    Product Code: BWRVJ
    Paperback
    Convinced before the onset of Operation "Barbarossa" in June 1941 of both the ease, with which the Red Army would be defeated and the likelihood that the Soviet Union would collapse, the Nazi regime envisaged a radical and far-reaching occupation policy which would result in the political, economic and racial reorganization of the occupied Soviet territories and bring about the deaths of 'x million people' through a conscious policy of starvation. This study traces the step-by-step development of high-level planning for the occupation policy in the Soviet territories over a twelve-month period and establishes the extent to which the various political and economic plans were compatible.
  • Space and Spatiality in Modern German-Jewish History

    Simone Lassig

    Product Code: BVIGS
    Hardback
    What makes a space Jewish? This wide-ranging volume revisits literal as well as metaphorical spaces in modern German history to examine the ways in which Jewishness has been attributed to them both within and outside of Jewish communities, and what the implications have been across different eras and social contexts. Working from an expansive concept of "the spatial," these contributions look not only at physical sites but at professional, political, institutional, and imaginative realms, as well as historical Jewish experiences of spacelessness. Together, they encompass spaces as varied as early modern print shops and Weimar cinema, always pointing to the complex intertwining of German and Jewish identity.
  • Blood at the Root

    Patrick Phillips (Drew Univers

    Product Code: BJMFF
    Paperback
    In 1912, a young girl's murder rocked the rural community of Forsyth County, Georgia and led a mob of whites to lynch a black man on the town square. Later, bands of night-riders declared Forsyth "whites-only" and sent 1,100 citizens running for their lives, slowly erasing all evidence of their crime. Blood at the Root is a sweeping American tale, spanning the Cherokee removals of the 1830s, the promise of Reconstruction and the crushing injustice of Forsyth's racial cleansing. The story continues, including a violent attack on civil rights activists in 1987 as residents fought to "Keep Forsyth White", well into the 1990s. Patrick Phillips breaks the century-long silence of his hometown and uncovers a history of racial terrorism that shapes America in the twenty-first century.
  • The Grand Fleet

    DK Brown

    Product Code: BGOBB
    Paperback
    The launch of HMS Dreadnought in 1906 ushered in one of the most rapid periods of warship development in history; and only ten years after this all-big-gun, turbine-powered battleship was completed, two entire fleets of Dreadnoughts would meet at Jutland and put the work of the prewar designers to the ultimate test.The renowned warship author, D K Brown, examines the development of these vessels and looks at how wartime experience affected warship design. As well as battleships and battlecruisers, for the first time the developmental history of smaller vessels such as minesweepers, monitors and escort vessels, built in direct response to wartime needs, is described, as is that of the submarine and aircraft carrier. A detailed study is made of battle damage, including the role played by ammunition explosions in the loss of three British battlecruisers at Jutland. Also described are the postwar capital ship designs, killed off by the Washington Treaty, which are among the most fascinating 'might-have-beens' of naval history.A classic work again available for historians and enthusiasts, detailing the development of all those ships that enabled the Royal Navy to rule the waves supreme and defend country and empire.
    • £32.89
    • RRP £40.95
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