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Our books about revolutions and rebellions will help you learn about history's darker past.

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Revolutions & Rebellions Books

Our books about revolutions and rebellions will help you learn about history's darker past.

  • Revolution

    Peter Ackroyd

    Product Code: BHAKG
    Paperback
    Revolution, the fourth volume of Peter Ackroyd's enthralling History of England begins in 1688 with a revolution and ends in 1815 with a famous victory. In it, Ackroyd takes readers from William of Orange's accession following the Glorious Revolution to the Regency, when the flamboyant Prince of Wales ruled in the stead of his mad father, George III, and England was - again - at war with France, a war that would end with the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo. Late Stuart and Georgian England marked the creation of the great pillars of the English state. The Bank of England was founded, as was the stock exchange, the Church of England was fully established as the guardian of the spiritual life of the nation and parliament became the sovereign body of the nation with responsibilities and duties far beyond those of the monarch. It was a revolutionary era in English letters, too, a time in which newspapers first flourished and the English novel was born. It was an era in which coffee houses and playhouses boomed, gin flowed freely and in which shops, as we know them today, began to proliferate in our towns and villages. But it was also a time of extraordinary and unprecedented technological innovation, which saw England utterly and irrevocably transformed from a country of blue skies and farmland to one of soot and steel and coal.
    • £11.29
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  • Liberty or Death

    Philip Jowett (Author)

    Product Code: BZBQZ
    Hardback
    From the Banana Wars of the early 20th century through to the Football War of 1969, South and Central America has been a hotbed of revolutions, rebellions and conflicts as diverse as they are numerous. Some were small-scale affairs involving the poorly armed forces of Central American armies with rifles, machetes and a few aged machine guns. Others were full-scale conflicts involving sophisticated armies equipped with tanks, artillery and aircraft, and hundreds of thousands of troops. These wars often went largely unreported in the West, which was preoccupied with its own problems in fighting two world wars and dealing with Cold War tensions. Fully illustrated with a wealth of rare photographs, this fascinating story sheds light on seven decades of a continent in conflict that is rarely covered in English.
    • £24.00
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  • The King and the Catholics

    Lady Antonia Fraser

    Product Code: BXLPU
    Paperback
    The story of Catholic Emancipation begins with the violent Anti-Catholic Gordon Riots in 1780, fuelled by the reduction in Penal Laws against the Roman Catholics harking back to the sixteenth century. Some fifty years later, the passing of the Emancipation Bill was hailed as a 'bloodless revolution'. Had the Irish Catholics been a 'millstone', as described by an English aristocrat, or were they the prime movers? While the English Catholic aristocracy and the Irish peasants and merchants approached the Catholic Question in very different ways, they manifestly shared the same objective. Antonia Fraser brings colour and humour to the vivid drama with its huge cast of characters: George III, who opposed Emancipation on the basis of the Coronation Oath; his son, the indulgent Prince of Wales, who was enamoured with the Catholic Maria Fitzherbert before the voluptuous Lady Conyngham; Wellington and the 'born Tory' Peel vying for leadership; 'roaring' Lord Winchilsea; the heroic Daniel O'Connell. Expertly written and deftly argued, THE KING AND THE CATHOLICS is also a distant mirror of our times, reflecting the political issues arising from religious intolerance.
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  • The Russian Revolution

    Sheila Fitzpatrick (Bernadotte

    Product Code: BJMOT
    Paperback
    The Russian Revolution had a decisive impact on the history of the twentieth century. In the years following the collapse of the Soviet regime and the opening of its archives, it has become possible to step back and see the full picture. Starting with an overview of the roots of the revolution, Fitzpatrick takes the story from 1917, through Stalin's 'revolution from above', to the great purges of the 1930s. She tells a gripping story of a Marxist revolution that was intended to transform the world, visited enormous suffering on the Russian people, and, like the French Revolution before it, ended up by devouring its own children. This updated edition contains a fully revised bibliography and updated introduction to address the centenary, what does it all mean in retrospect.
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  • Four Sisters:the Lost Lives of the Romanov Grand Duchesses

    Helen Rappaport

    Product Code: AMDPU
    Paperback
    On 17 July 1918, four young women walked down twenty-three steps into the cellar of a house in Ekaterinburg. The eldest was twenty-two, the youngest only seventeen. Together with their parents and their thirteen-year-old brother, they were all brutally murdered. Their crime: to be the daughters of the last Tsar and Tsaritsa of All the Russias. In Four Sisters acclaimed biographer Helen Rappaport offers readers the most authoritative account yet of the Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia. Drawing on their own letters and diaries, she paints a vivid picture of their lives in the dying days of the Romanov dynasty. We see, almost for the first time, their journey from a childhood of enormous privilege, throughout which they led a very sheltered and largely simple life, to young womanhood - their first romantic crushes, their hopes and dreams, the difficulty of coping with a mother who was a chronic invalid and a haeomophiliac brother, and, latterly, the trauma of the revolution and its terrible consequences. Compellingly readable, meticulously researched and deeply moving, Four Sisters gives these young women a voice, and allows their story to resonate for readers almost a century after their death.
    • £8.49
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  • The Russian Revolution

    Abraham Ascher

    Product Code: AIWTW
    Paperback
    When the Bolsheviks seized power in 1917, the world held its breath. Here suddenly was the first modern socialist state, "a kingdom more bright that any heaven had to offer." But the dream was short-lived and the following decades of internal struggle, hardship, war, state terror, and eventual collapse would change the shape of world politics in a way that its leaders could never have imagined. How could such a revolution take place and what caused it to go so very wrong? Taking a uniquely long view of events, right up to the 1990s, acclaimed historian Abraham Ascher brings the period to life -- from the utopian ideologies of Lenin and Trotsky to Russia's heroic fight against Nazi Germany, Stalin's state terror, the Cold War, and Gorbachev's abortive attempts to rescue the socialist experiment. This incisive introduction offers new insight into the incredible transformation of politics, economics, and society that turned Russia into the Soviet Union -- and back again.
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  • Constance Markievicz

    John Burke

    Product Code: BZOFZ
    Hardback
    The third book in the Little Library series. When your collection is complete, you'll have a little library - and big knowledge! Discover the REVOLUTIONARY that was CONSTANCE MARKIEVICZ! Constance Markievicz grew up in Co. Sligo in the late 1800s with a dream: she wanted Ireland to become free and the people to be treated fairly. She spent her life working to make these things happen. With rebellion in the air, she was asked for advice on how a lady should dress. Her answer? `Dress suitably in short skirts and strong boots, leave your jewels in the bank and buy a revolver.' And the Easter Rising began ...
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  • Russia in Flames

    Laura Engelstein (Henry S. McN

    Product Code: BZNVO
    Paperback
    October 1917, heralded as the culmination of the Russian Revolution, remains a defining moment in world history. Even a hundred years after the events that led to the emergence of the world's first self-proclaimed socialist state, debate continues over whether, as historian E. H. Carr put it decades ago, these earth-shaking days were a "landmark in the emancipation of mankind from past oppression" or "a crime and a disaster." Some things are clear. After the implosion of the three-hundred-year-old Romanov dynasty as a result of the First World War, Russia was in crisis-one interim government replaced another in the vacuum left by imperial collapse. In this monumental and sweeping new account, Laura Engelstein delves into the seven years of chaos surrounding 1917-the war, the revolutionary upheaval, and the civil strife it provoked. These were years of breakdown and brutal violence on all sides, punctuated by the decisive turning points of February and October. As Engelstein proves definitively, the struggle for power engaged not only civil society and party leaders, but the broad masses of the population and every corner of the far-reaching empire, well beyond Moscow and Petrograd. Yet in addition to the bloodshed they unleashed, the revolution and civil war revealed democratic yearnings, even if ideas of what constituted "democracy" differed dramatically. Into that vacuum left by the Romanov collapse rushed long-suppressed hopes and dreams about social justice and equality. But any possible experiment in self-rule was cut short by the October Revolution. Under the banner of true democracy, and against all odds, the Bolshevik triumph resulted in the ruthless repression of all opposition. The Bolsheviks managed to harness the social breakdown caused by the war and institutionalize violence as a method of state-building, creating a new society and a new form of power. Russia in Flames offers a compelling narrative of heroic effort and brutal disappointment, revealing that what happened during these seven years was both a landmark in the emancipation of Russia from past oppression and a world-shattering disaster. As regimes fall and rise, as civil wars erupt, as state violence targets civilian populations, it is a story that remains profoundly and enduringly relevant.
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  • How to Be an Anticapitalist in the Twenty-First Century

    Erik Olin Wright

    Product Code: BZLMX
    Hardback
    Capitalism has transformed the world and increased our productivity, but at the cost of enormous human suffering. Our shared values-equality and fairness, democracy and freedom, community and solidarity-can both provide the basis for a critique of capitalism, and help to guide us towards a socialist and democratic society. In this elegant book, Erik Olin Wright has distilled decades of work into a concise and tightly argued manifesto analyzing the varieties of anti-capitalism, assessing different strategic approaches, and laying the foundations for a society dedicated to human flourishing. How to Be an Anticapitalist is an urgent and powerful argument for socialism, and a unparalleled guide to help us get there. Another world is possible.
    • £11.69
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  • Scotland in Revolution, 1685 1690

    Alasdair Raffe

    Product Code: BZIKX
    Paperback
    This illuminating book looks beyond the capital and political elites to examine religious and political change in communities across Scotland during a transformative period of the nation's history. Providing a clear narrative of the period, the book draws on a wide range of sources to examine the relationship between central power and the Scottish localities, and to provide a thematic analysis of political and religious developments. James VII was a radically experimental ruler, who granted unprecedented religious toleration and intervened systematically in urban government. Here the sovereign's reign is examined in the context of British and European developments, and in the light of current historical debates.
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  • The French Revolution

    David Andress

    Product Code: BZHTZ
    Hardback
    In this miraculously compressed, incisive book David Andress argues that it was the peasantry of France who made and defended the Revolution of 1789. That the peasant revolution benefitted far more people, in more far reaching ways, than the revolution of lawyerly elites and urban radicals that has dominated our view of the revolutionary period. History has paid more attention to Robespierre, Danton and Bonaparte than it has to the millions of French peasants who were the first to rise up in 1789, and the most ardent in defending changes in land ownership and political rights. 'Those furthest from the centre rarely get their fair share of the light', Andress writes, and the peasants were patronised, reviled and often persecuted by urban elites for not following their lead. Andress's book reveals a rural world of conscious, hard-working people and their struggles to defend their ways of life and improve the lives of their children and communities.
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  • Making the Arab World

    Fawaz A. Gerges

    Product Code: BZGJN
    Paperback
    How the conflict between political Islamists and secular-leaning nationalists has shaped the modern Middle East In Making the Arab World, Fawaz Gerges, one of the world's leading authorities on the Middle East, describes how the clash between pan-Arab nationalism and pan-Islamism has shaped the history of the region from the 1920s to the present. He tells this story through an unprecedented dual biography of Egyptian president and Arab nationalist leader Gamal Abdel Nasser (1918-1970) and another of the twentieth-century Arab world's most influential figures-Sayyid Qutb (1906-1966), a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood and the father of many branches of radical political Islam. Based on a decade of research, including in-depth interviews with many leading figures in the story, Making the Arab World is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the roots of the turmoil engulfing the Middle East, from civil wars to Al-Qaeda and ISIS.
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  • Martyrs and Tricksters

    Walter Armbrust

    Product Code: BYYFO
    Paperback
    An important look at the hopeful rise and tragic defeat of the Egyptian Revolution of 2011 The Egyptian Revolution of 2011 began with immense hope, but was defeated in two and a half years, ushering in the most brutal and corrupt regime in modern Egyptian history. How was the passage from utmost euphoria into abject despair experienced, not only by those committed to revolutionary change, but also by people indifferent or even hostile to the revolution? In Martyrs and Tricksters, anthropologist and Cairo resident Walter Armbrust explores the revolution through the lens of liminality-initially a communal fellowship, where everything seemed possible, transformed into a devastating limbo with no exit. To make sense of events, Armbrust looks at the martyrs, trickster media personalities, public spaces, contested narratives, historical allusions, and factional struggles during this chaotic time. Armbrust shows that while martyrs became the primary symbols of mobilization, no one took seriously enough the emergence of political tricksters. Tricksters appeared in media-not the vaunted social media of a "Facebook revolution" but television-and they paved the way for the rise of Abd al-Fattah al-Sisi. In the end Egypt became a global political vanguard, but not in the way the revolutionaries intended. What initially appeared as the gateway to an age of revolution has transformed the world over into the age of the trickster. Delving into how Egyptians moved from unprecedented exhilaration to confusion and massacre, Martyrs and Tricksters is a powerful cultural biography of a tragic revolution.
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  • John Jenkins - The Reluctant Revolutionary? - Authorised Biography of the Mastermind Behind the Sixties Welsh Bombing Campaign

    Wyn Thomas

    Product Code: BYODL
    Hardback
    Authorised biography of Welsh nationalist and activist John Barnard Jenkins, one of the most iconic figures in recent Welsh history. The leader of Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru (MAC), he masterminded their 1960s bombing campaign protesting British state oppression and exploitation of Wales' natural resources. -- Welsh Books Council
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  • The Russia Anxiety

    Mark B. Smith

    Product Code: BYIAE
    Hardback
    Russia is an exceptional country, the biggest in the world. It is both European and exotic, powerful and weak, brilliant and flawed. Why are we so afraid of it? Time and again, we judge Russia by unique standards. We have usually assumed that it possesses higher levels of cunning, malevolence and brutality. Yet the country has more often than not been a crucial ally, not least against Napoleon and in the two world wars. We admire its music and its writers. We lavish praise on the Russian soul. And still we think of Russia as a unique menace. What is it about this extraordinary country that consistently provokes such excessive responses? And why is this so dangerous? Ranging from the earliest times to the present, Mark B. Smith's remarkable new book is a history of this 'Russia Anxiety'. Whether ally or enemy, superpower or failing state, Russia grips our imagination and fuels our fears unlike any other country. This book shows how history itself offers a clearer view and a better future.
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  • Young Castro

    Jonathan M. Hansen

    Product Code: BYHKG
    Hardback
    An intimate, revisionist portrait of the early years of Fidel Castro, showing how an unlikely young Cuban led his country in revolution and transfixed the world. This book will change how you think about Fidel Castro. Until now, biographers have treated Castro's life like prosecutors, scouring his past for evidence to convict a person they don't like or don't understand. This can make for bad history and unsatisfying biography. Young Castro challenges readers to put aside the caricature of a bearded, cigar-munching, anti-American hot head to discover how Castro became the dictator who acted as a thorn in the side of US presidents for nearly half a century. These pages show Fidel Castro getting his toughness from a father who survived Spain's nasty class system and colonial wars to become one of the most successful independent plantation owners in Cuba. They show a boy running around that plantation more comfortable playing with the children of his father's laborers than his tony classmates at elite boarding schools in Santiago de Cuba and Havana. They show a young man who writes flowery love letters from prison and contemplates the meaning of life, a gregarious soul attentive to the needs of strangers but often indifferent to the needs of his own family. These pages show a liberal democrat who admires FDR's New Deal policies and is skeptical of communism, but is also hostile to American imperialism. They show an audacious militant who stages a reckless attack on a military barracks but is canny about building an army of resisters. In short, Young Castro reveals a complex man. The first American historian in a generation to gain access to the Castro archives in Havana, Jonathan Hansen was able to secure cooperation from Castro's family and closest confidants, gaining access to hundreds of never-before-seen letters and to interviews with people he was the first to ask for their impressions of the man. The result is a nuanced and penetrating portrait of a figure who was determined to be a leader-a man at once brilliant, arrogant, bold, vulnerable and all too human. A man who, having grown up on an island that felt like a colonial cage, was compelled to lead his country to independence.
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  • 1917

    David Stevenson (Professor of

    Product Code: BYHHV
    Paperback
    1917 was a year of calamitous events, and one of pivotal importance in the development of the First World War. In 1917: War, Peace, and Revolution, leading historian of World War One, David Stevenson, examines this crucial year in context and illuminates the century that followed. He shows how in this one year the war was transformed, but also what drove the conflict onwards and how it continued to escalate. Two developments in particular-the Russian Revolution and American intervention-had worldwide repercussions. Offering a close examination of the key decisions, Stevenson considers Germany's campaign of 'unrestricted' submarine warfare, America's declaration of war in response, and Britain's frustration of German strategy by adopting the convoy system, as well as why (paradoxically) the military and political stalemate in Europe persisted. Focusing on the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II, on the disastrous spring offensive that plunged the French army into mutiny, on the summer attacks that undermined the moderate Provisional Government in Russia and exposed Italy to national humiliation at Caporetto, and on the British decision for the ill-fated Third Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele), 1917 offers a truly international understanding of events. The failed attempts to end the war by negotiation further clarify the underlying forces that kept it going. David Stevenson also analyses the global consequences of the year's developments, showing how countries such as Brazil and China joined the belligerents, Britain offered 'responsible government' to India, and the Allies promised a Jewish national home in Palestine. Blending political and military history, and moving from capital to capital and between the cabinet chamber and the battle front, the book highlights the often tumultuous debates through which leaders entered and escalated the war, and the paradox that continued fighting could be justified as the shortest road towards regaining peace.
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  • My Country

    Kassem Eid

    Product Code: BYGRQ
    Paperback
    `A memoir of resistance and survival unique in the annals of modern war ... If the shedding of blood can be beautiful in words, he makes it so' Wall Street Journal Born to Palestinian refugees, Kassem Eid grew up in the small town of Moadamiya on the outskirts of the ancient city of Damascus, playing in streets perfumed with jasmine. But it didn't take long for Kassem to realise that he was treated differently at school because of his family's resistance to the brutal government regime. When Bashar al-Assad succeeded his father in 2000, hopes that things might change for the better were swiftly crushed. When the 2011 Arab Spring protests in Syria were met with extreme violence, it was yet another blow - and as Kassem reached young adulthood, the country spiralled into civil war. Then, on 21 August 2013, Kassem nearly died in a sarin gas attack that killed hundreds of civilians. Later that day, he would pick up a gun for the first time, to join the Free Syrian Army as they fought government forces. For Kassem, this marked the moment that he and his country changed forever - even as the rest of the world turned its face away.
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  • Decolonization

    Jan C. Jansen

    Product Code: BYALN
    Paperback
    A concise and accessible history of decolonization in the twentieth century The end of colonial rule in Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean was one of the most important and dramatic developments of the twentieth century. In the decades after World War II, dozens of new states emerged as actors in global politics. Imperial regimes collapsed, some more or less peacefully, others amid mass violence. This book takes an incisive look at decolonization and its long-term consequences, revealing it to be a coherent yet multidimensional process at the heart of modern history. Jan Jansen and J rgen Osterhammel provide a comparative perspective on the decolonization process, shedding light on its key aspects while taking into account the unique regional and imperial contexts in which it unfolded. They examine the economic repercussions of decolonization and its impact on international power structures, its consequences for envisioning world order, and the long shadow it continues to cast over new states and former colonial powers alike.
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  • Revolutionary Iran

    Michael Axworthy

    Product Code: BXZQB
    Paperback
    For some 40 years the Islamic Republic has resisted widespread condemnation, sanctions, and sustained attacks by Iraq in an eight-year war. Many policy-makers today share a weary wish that Iran would somehow just disappear as a problem. But with Iran's continuing commitment to a nuclear programme and its reputation as a trouble-maker in Syria, Afghanistan, Lebanon and elsewhere, this is unlikely any time soon. An unending stream of assertions about the revolution's finally running down continue to be defied by events, and Iran's institutions are still formidable. This is the definitive history of this subject, from one of the world's principal experts.
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  • Prison Letters

    John Jenkins

    Product Code: BXZHG
    Paperback
    A collection of letters written by John Barnard Jenkins while in prison for masterminding MAC's Welsh bombing campaign - reprint of the original Y Lolfa edition from 1981. -- Welsh Books Council
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  • Places and Names

    Elliot Ackerman

    Product Code: BXYZU
    Hardback
    'A superb, unique, and unforgettable story of war and death, fear and cruelty, above all the horrors and allure of combat' Simon Sebag Montefiore 'One of the most profound books I have ever read about the real nature of war and the abstract allure of the ideas and the bloodshed that fuels it' Jon Lee Anderson, author of The Fall of Baghdad An astonishing account of the nature of war from acclaimed novelist and decorated former US marine Elliot Ackerman In a refugee camp in southern Turkey, Elliot Ackerman sits across the table from Abu Hassar, who fought for Al Qaeda in Iraq and has murky connections to the Islamic State. At first, Ackerman pretends to have been a journalist during the Iraq War, but after he establishes a rapport with Abu Hassar, he reveals that in fact he was a Marine. The two men then compare their fighting experiences in the Middle East, discovering they had shadowed each other for some time: a realisation that brings them to a strange kind of intimacy. Elliot Ackerman's extraordinary memoir explores the events that led him to come to this refugee camp and what, unable to forget his time in battle, he hoped to find there. Moving between his recent time on the ground as a journalist in Syria and his Marine deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, he creates a work of astonishing atmospheric pressure, one which blends the American experience with the perspectives and stories of the Arab world, and draws a line between them. At once an intensely personal book about the terrible lure of combat and a brilliant meditation on the meaning of the past two decades of strife for the region and the world, Places and Names bids to take its place among our greatest books about modern war.
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  • The Song of Simon de Montfort

    Sophie Therese Ambler

    Product Code: BXJZE
    Hardback
    'Alive with human detail and acute political judgement, this book marks the arrival of a formidably gifted historian.' Dan Jones, author of The Plantagenets and The Templars It was around half-past eight in the morning, with summer rainclouds weighing heavy in the sky, that Simon de Montfort decided to die. It was 4 August 1265 and he was about to face the royal army in the final battle of a quarrel that had raged between them for years. Outnumbered, outmanoeuvred and certain to lose, Simon chose to fight, knowing that he could not possibly win the day. The Song of Simon de Montfort is the story of this extraordinary man: heir to a great warrior, devoted husband and father, fearless crusader knight and charismatic leader. It is the story of a man whose passion for good governance was so fierce that, in 1258, frustrated by the King's refusal to take the advice of his nobles and the increasing injustice meted out to his subjects, he marched on Henry III's hall at Westminster and seized the reins of power. Montfort established a council to rule in the King's name, overturning the social order in a way that would not be seen again until the rule of Oliver Cromwell in the seventeenth century. Having defeated the King at the Battle of Lewes in 1264, Montfort and his revolutionary council ruled England for some fifteen months, until the enmity between the two sides exploded on that August day in 1265. When the fighting was over, Montfort and a host of his followers had been cut down on the battlefield, in an outpouring of noble blood that marked the end of chivalry in England as it had existed since the Norman Conquest. Drawing on an abundance of sources that allow us to trace Montfort's actions and personality in a depth not possible for earlier periods in medieval history, Sophie Therese Ambler tells his story with a clarity that reveals all of the excitement, chaos and human tragedy of England's first revolution.
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  • The House of Government

    Yuri Slezkine

    Product Code: BXILD
    Paperback
    The epic story of an enormous Soviet apartment building where Communist true believers lived before their destruction The House of Government is unlike any other book about the Russian Revolution and the Soviet experiment. Written in the tradition of Tolstoy (TM)s War and Peace, Grossman (TM)s Life and Fate, and Solzhenitsyn (TM)s The Gulag Archipelago, Yuri Slezkine (TM)s gripping narrative tells the chilling true story of an enormous Moscow apartment building where Soviet leaders and their families lived until hundreds of these Bolshevik true believers were led, one by one, to prison or to their deaths in Stalin (TM)s purges. Drawing on letters, diaries, and interviews with survivors, and featuring hundreds of rare photographs, this epic story weaves together biography, literary criticism, architectural history, and fascinating new theories of revolutions, millennial prophecies, and reigns of terror. The result is an unforgettable saga of a building that, like the Soviet Union itself, became a haunted house, forever disturbed by the ghosts of the disappeared.
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