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By Sepp De Giampietro. 2019
Available for the first time in English, a memoir of a member of the World War II Brandenburg German special forces…unit. The Brandenburgers were Hitler&’s Special Forces, a band of mainly foreign German nationals who used disguise and fluency in other languages to complete daring missions into enemy territory. Overshadowed by stories of their Allied equivalents, their history has largely been ignored, making this memoir all the more extraordinary. First published in German in 1984, de Giampietro's highly-personal and eloquent memoir is a vivid account of his experiences. He delves into the reality of life in the unit from everyday concerns and politics to training and involvement in Brandenburg missions. He details the often foolhardy missions undertaken under the command of Theodor von Hippel, including the June 1941 seizure of the Duna bridges in Dunaburg and the attempted capture of the bridge at Bataisk where half of his unit was killed. Given the very perilous nature of their missions, very few of these specially-trained soldiers survived World War II. Much knowledge of the unit has been lost forever, making this is a unique insight into a slice of German wartime history. Widely regarded as the predecessor of today&’s special forces units, this fascinating account brings to life the Brandenburger Division and its part in history in vivid and compelling detail.
By Joe Layden, Daniel Rodriguez. 2014
The &“harrowing, heartbreaking, redemptive&” memoir of a US Army veteran who fought through PTSD to play college football with the…Clemson Tigers (Sports Illustrated). Daniel Rodriguez joined the army just weeks after graduating from high school. Almost immediately, he was deployed to Iraq and then to Afghanistan. While there, he made a promise to his best friend: &“When I get out of this shithole, I&’m going to play college football.&” Wounded at the Battle of Kamdesh, Daniel received a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. He was lucky enough to make it out alive; his friend was not. Back at home, Daniel was unemployed and stuck in the clutches of PTSD, but he remembered the promise he had made and resolved to make good on it. When he posted a video online of his grueling training efforts, it went viral overnight. Through a mixture of hope, determination, and the power of the Internet, Daniel earned a spot on the Clemson University football team as a wide receiver. In Rise, Rodriguez tells his powerful and inspiring story. &“A compelling story of one man&’s quest to overcome the horrors of war through fortitude and determination.&” —San Antonio Express News
By Mitchell Zuckoff. 2014
The harrowing, true account from the brave men on the ground who fought back during the Battle of Benghazi.13 Hours…presents, for the first time ever, the true account of the events of September 11, 2012, when terrorists attacked the US State Department Special Mission Compound and a nearby CIA station called the Annex in Benghazi, Libya. A team of six American security operators fought to repel the attackers and protect the Americans stationed there. Those men went beyond the call of duty, performing extraordinary acts of courage and heroism, to avert tragedy on a much larger scale. This is their personal account, never before told, of what happened during the thirteen hours of that now-infamous attack.13 Hours sets the record straight on what happened during a night that has been shrouded in mystery and controversy. Written by New York Times bestselling author Mitchell Zuckoff, this riveting book takes readers into the action-packed story of heroes who laid their lives on the line for one another, for their countrymen, and for their country.13 Hours is a stunning, eye-opening, and intense book--but most importantly, it is the truth. The story of what happened to these men--and what they accomplished--is unforgettable.
By Damien Lewis. 2004
Operation Certain Death chronicles the story of the single most daring Special Forces operation since World War Two - Operation…Barras; the attempted rescue by the SAS of the British Forces who were being held captive by guerrilla gang the West Side Boys in the Sierra Leone jungle. The West Side Boys were a strange-looking bunch, wearing pink shades, shower caps, fluorescent wigs and voodoo charms they believed made them invulnerable to bullets - an impression re-enforced by ganja, heroine, crack cocaine and gallons of sweet palm wine. In 1999 a twelve man patrol of Royal Irish Rangers, who were training government troops in Sierra Leone, were captured and held hostage by the West Side Boys. They were held prisoner in a fortified jungle hideaway, with severed heads decorating the palisades, defended by some 400 heavily armed soldiers.Operation Barras, the rescue mission, was a combined force of 100 Paras, twelve members of the Special Boat Squadron, helicopters from the Navy and RAF and, spearheading the operation, 40-strong D squadron of the SAS. Against amazing odds the hostages were rescued - over 150 of the enemy were killed. Operation Certain Death is a thrilling true story of all out war. No hostages taken. Blood-letting on a vast scale inflicted on a very blood-thirsty enemy. A gripping piece of true military history, perfect for fans of action adventure stories and anyone interested in the top secret division of the British Army.'As good as any thriller I have ever read' Frederick Forsyth(P)2023 Quercus Editions Limited
By Colin Heaton, Anne-Marie Lewis. 2012
This WWII military biography chronicles the life of a legendary Nazi fighter pilot.German Luftwaffe Captain Hans-Joachim Marseille, the “Star of…Africa”, is a legendary figure in the annals of military history. With 158 kills to his name, he was one of the rare recipients of the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds, the Third Reich’s highest honor awarded for valor in combat.Unlike other German fighter aces, Marseille is also a famous in the United States and other English-speaking countries. His rebellious nature, iconoclastic behavior, and early death have nourished his reputation just as greatly as his exceptional skill and chivalrous conduct as an adversary.
By Brooks Simpson. 2000
“The best study of Grant’s military career since Bruce Catton’s two volumes. . . . The best treatment of Union military command and…strategy now in print.” —The New RepublicMany modern historians have painted Ulysses S. Grant as a butcher, a drunk, and a failure as president. Others have argued the exact opposite and portray him with saintlike levels of ethic and intellect.In Ulysses S. Grant: Triumph over Adversity 1822–1865, historian Brooks D. Simpson takes neither approach, recognizing Grant as a complex and human figure with human faults, strengths, and motivations. Simpson offers a balanced and complete study of Grant from birth to the end of the Civil War, with particular emphasis on his military career and family life and the struggles he overcame in his unlikely rise from unremarkable beginnings to his later fame as commander of the Union Army. Chosen as a New York Times Notable Book upon its original publication, Ulysses S. Grant is a readable, thoroughly researched portrait that sheds light on this controversial figure.“[An] eminently informed and finely balanced portrait of Ulysses S. Grant as man, husband, failed entrepreneur and shrewd, victorious general. Simpson . . . uses carefully excavated facts and anecdotes to reveal an individual far more complex than the caricature . . . handed down to us by popular history. At the same time, Simpson does not gloss over Grant’s shortcomings. Although a fan of the general’s, Simpson is not in the business of writing apologetics, and therein lies his strength.” —Publishers Weekly “Persuasively explains the complexities and seeming contradictions of his subject’s character and genius.” —Library Journal“Skillfully written. . . . Simpson, who has benefited from decades of Civil War study, wears his wide-ranging scholarship lightly. Guaranteed to enlighten and please.” —Kirkus Reviews“Simpson has done a masterly job. . . . He has given us a detailed and exciting narrative of how one man succeeded, where so many others had failed.” —The New York Times Book Review
By John Reeves. 2023
Presenting an original, thought-provoking look at Ulysses S. Grant, Soldier of Destiny evokes the life of the general through his…conflicted connection to slavery, allowing readers a clearer understanding of this great American. Captain Ulysses S. Grant, an obscure army officer who was expelled for alcohol abuse in 1854, rose to become general-in-chief of the United States Army in 1864. What accounts for this astonishing turn-around during this extraordinary decade? Was it destiny? Or was he just an ordinary man, opportunistically benefiting from the turmoil of the Civil War to advance to the highest military rank? Soldier of Destiny reveals that Grant always possessed the latent abilities of a skilled commander—and he was able to develop these skills out West without the overwhelming pressure faced by more senior commanders in the Eastern theater at the beginning of the Civil War. Grant was a true Westerner himself and it was his experience in the West—before and during the Civil War—that was central to his rise. From 1861 to 1864, Grant went from being ambivalent about slavery to becoming one of the leading individuals responsible for emancipating the slaves. Before the war, he lived in a pro-slavery community near St. Louis, where there were very few outright abolitionists. During the war, he gradually realized that Emancipation was the only possible outcome of the war that would be consistent with America&’s founding values and future prosperity. Soldier of Destiny tells the story of Grant&’s connection to slavery in far more detail than has been done in previous biographies. Grant&’s life story is an almost inconceivable tale of redemption within the context of his fraught relationships with his antislavery father and his slaveholding wife. This narrative explores the poverty, inequality, and extraordinary vitality of the American West during a crucial time in our nation&’s history. Writers on Grant have tended to overlook his St. Louis years (1854-1860), even though they are essential for understanding his later triumphs. Walt Whitman described Grant as &“a common trader, money-maker, tanner, farmer of Illinois—general for the republic, in its terrific struggle with itself, in the war of attempted secession. Nothing heroic, as the authorities put it—and yet the greatest hero. The gods, the destinies, seem to have concentrated upon him.&”
By Susan Shapiro, Aquilino Gonell. 2023
&“American Shield&” es una historia típicamente americano sobre el deber y la determinación — maravillosamente contada por un inmigrante, un…veterano de guerra, y un patriota.&”Nancy Pelosi, Speaker Emerita de la House of Representatives de los Estados UnidosAquilino Gonell era un jóven cuando llegó a los Estados Unidos de la República Dominicana. Aunque no hablaba inglés, se dedicó a su nueva tierra adoptada, luchando para conseguir el dichoso sueño americano. Su resolución de lograr una vida de éxito le llevó a alistarse en el ejército, como manera de pagar sus estudios universitarios. Tras combatir en Irak, volvió a los EEUU con TEPT, pero siguió con confianza en las promesas del gobierno, y se concentró en su familia y en el proceso de sanarse. Sus labores dieron fruto cuando ganó un puesto muy codiciado con la United States Capitol Police, en la ciudad de Washington DC, y llegó al rango de sargento.Todo cambió para siempre el 6 de enero de 2021. Cuando los insurreccionistas irrumpieron en el Capitolio, con mucha valentía el sargento Gonell no se rindió a los que intentaron frustrar la transferencia pacífica de poder. Las heridas brutales que sufrió aquel día pondría fin a su carrera como agente de policía. Pero justo cuando algunos de los mismos políticos que el sargento defendía intentaron desmentir la verdadera historia de aquel día, él eligió denunciar la injusticia que sufría al igual que el país. Una crónica de lo que significa llevar una vida de principios, una que se adhiere a las mejores nociones de nuestra democracia, American Shield es un testimonio fulgurante del poder la verdad, la justicia y la responsabilidad de la boca de un oficial decorado e inmigrante que ilustra las mejores aspiraciones de una nación agradecida.
By Karl Krause, Herbert Döhring, Anna Plaim. 2018
This collection paints a picture of Hitler from members of his household in the unique position of being seemingly ever-present,…yet totally unconnected to events.The reader is introduced to Hitler's Bodyguard Karl Krause (1934-39), his house administrator Herbert Dhring (1935-43) and chambermaid Anna Plaim (1941-43). From these accounts we get a deeper sense of Hitler in close proximity.These accounts massively add to our understanding of Hitler as a three dimensional character, especially from subjects like Plaim who only knew Hitler's home life, having rarely left Berghof.The series is able to shed light on his likes and dislikes from foods to his hobbies, creating a strange sense of humanity. This collection also provides the reader with fresh anecdotes, observations and portraits of Hitler's entourage and relatives. Plaim's images of Eva Braun come from finding torn fragments in the bin, whilst Dhring sheds light on Martin Bormann's demeanour.
'Incredible ... Staz is an inspiration' Nims Purja'A must read for anyone who wants to succeed and thrive under pressure'…Dylan Hartley'Stacked with insights ... The book you need when the going gets tough' Aldo KaneElite Discipline meets Creative EffortAnthony 'Staz' Stazicker served an impressive 13 years of distinguished and decorated military service, ten within the Special Forces, before founding the multi-million pound technical clothing company ThruDark. Throughout his career in the Special Forces - featuring gunfights, door-kicking operations, and against-the-odds escapes - he learned hard lessons that would later provide crucial intelligence equally applicable to business, innovation and enterprise. The Hard Road Will Take You Home provides a mission plan that distils the processes and tactics Staz gathered throughout his career and translates them into tools that can be used in any number of settings, and by individuals with a wide range of experience and backgrounds. It instils the psychological cues required to bring next level success to any mission. And it lays bare the levels of discipline required to maintain that next level success. Introducing four concepts that make up the life of an elite operator - battle prep; techniques, tactics and procedures; teamwork and the lessons we should all consider when learning how to innovate, persevere and succeed - this book comes stacked with insight, easily applicable techniques and psychological processes gathered from Staz's time serving with the most resilient fighting force in the world.As a creative resource, it's a weapon.
By Hampton Sides. 2001
NATIONAL BESTSELLER • &“The greatest World War II story never told&” (Esquire)—an enthralling account of the heroic mission to rescue…the last survivors of the Bataan Death March—from the author of Blood and Thunder. On January 28, 1945, 121 hand-selected U.S. troops slipped behind enemy lines in the Philippines. Their mission: March thirty rugged miles to rescue 513 POWs languishing in a hellish camp, among them the last survivors of the infamous Bataan Death March. A recent prison massacre by Japanese soldiers elsewhere in the Philippines made the stakes impossibly high and left little time to plan the complex operation. In Ghost Soldiers Hampton Sides vividly re-creates this daring raid, offering a minute-by-minute narration that unfolds alongside intimate portraits of the prisoners and their lives in the camp. Sides shows how the POWs banded together to survive, defying the Japanese authorities even as they endured starvation, tropical diseases, and torture. Harrowing, poignant, and inspiring, Ghost Soldiers is the mesmerizing story of a remarkable mission. It is also a testament to the human spirit, an account of enormous bravery and self-sacrifice amid the most trying conditions.
By Vincent Vargas. 2023
An inside look at the U.S./Mexican border through the eyes of former U.S. Border Patrol agent, Vincent Vargas, who served…in Iraq and Afghanistan with the U.S. Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment.Featuring a Foreword by #1 New York Times bestselling author Jocko Willink.The U.S./Mexican border stretches nearly 2,000 miles and is protected by a thin line of overworked and underfunded U.S. Border Patrol Agents, who risk their lives every day. Stigmatized in the media and fought over in the halls of Washington D.C., this is the true story of what is really happening on the U.S./Mexican border.Borderline provides an inside look through the eyes of former U.S. Border Patrol agent, Vincent Vargas, who is no stranger to violence, having served in Iraq and Afghanistan with the U.S. Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment.The story begins on the battlefields of the Middle East and culminates on the southwest border of the United States, where Vargas was tasked with protecting his country, his fellow agents, and the immigrants caught in the middle. He learned firsthand about the unforgiving brutality of the cartels, human traffickers and the desert. After bearing witness to the carnage, Vargas made the decision to join the Border Patrol’s elite search & rescue unit called BORSTAR.With almost unfettered access, Vargas provides an in-depth, never-before-seen look into the U.S. Border Patrol, from the agency’s origins to its present-day missions.
A WWII Air Force Cadet shares his incredible story of serving his country and being shot down over Japan in…this vivid POW memoir.The day after Fisk Hanley graduated from Texas Technical College, in May of 1943, he boarded a train for Boca Raton, Florida, where he would begin his training as an Air Force Aviation Cadet. Like so many other young men that year, Hanley had been drafted to serve the United States in the Second World War. Assigned to the 504th Bombardment Group in the Pacific Theater, Hanley became a flight engineer on a B-29 bomber squad. On his seventh mission, he and his crew were shot down over Japan. In Accused War Criminal, Hanley shares his experiences from his training and commissioning to his deployment on a failed mission that led to his capture. He recounts how he managed to survive as a prisoner of war until his eventual rescue and recovery. With candid honesty and telling details, this is a humbling and harrowing tale of one man&’s bravery under unimaginable circumstances.
By Amanda Herbert-Davies. 2017
&“Stunning photographs&” and firsthand accounts propel a book that &“brings together the memories of more than 200 child survivors of…the Blitz&” (Daily Mail). It was not just the upheaval caused by evacuation and the blitzes that changed a generation&’s childhood, it was how war pervaded every aspect of life. From dodging bombs by bicycle and patrolling the parish with the vicar&’s WWI pistol, to post air raid naps in school and being carried out of the rubble as the family&’s sole survivor, children experienced life in the war zone that was Britain. This reality, the reality of a life spent growing up during the Second World War, is best told through the eyes of the children who experienced it firsthand. Children in the Second World War unites the memories of over two hundred child veterans to tell the tragic and the remarkable stories of life, and of youth, during the war. Each veteran gives a unique insight into a childhood that was unlike any that came before or after. This book poignantly illustrates the presence of death and perseverance in the lives of children through this tumultuous period. Each account enlightens and touches the reader, shedding light on what it was really like on the home front during the Second World War.
*An Amazon Best Book of 2023**An Apple Book of the Month for January*The incredible true story of Ana Montes, the most…damaging female spy in US history, drawing upon never-before-seen material and to be published upon her release from prison, for readers of Agent Sonya and A Woman of No Importance.Just days after the 9-11 attacks, a senior Pentagon analyst eased her red Toyota Echo into traffic and headed to work. She never saw the undercover cars tracking her every turn. As she settled into her cubicle on the 6th floor of the Defense Intelligence Agency in Washington, FBI Agents and twitchy DIA officers were hiding in nearby offices. For this was the day that Ana Montes--the US Intelligence Community superstar who had just won a prestigious fellowship at the CIA--was to be arrested and publicly exposed as a secret agent for Cuba.Like spies Aldrich Ames and Robert Hanssen before her, Ana Montes blindsided her colleagues with brazen acts of treason. For nearly 17 years, Montes succeeded in two high-stress jobs. By day, she was one of the government&’s top Cuba experts, a buttoned-down GS-14 with shockingly easy access to classified documents. By night, she was on the clock for Fidel Castro, listening to coded messages over shortwave radio, passing US secrets to handlers in local restaurants, and slipping into Havana wearing a wig. Montes didn&’t just deceive her country. Her betrayal was intensely personal. Her mercurial father was a former US Army Colonel. Her brother and sister-in-law were FBI Special Agents. And her only sister, Lucy, also worked her entire career for the Bureau. The highlight of her distinguished 31 years as a Miami-based language specialist: Helping the FBI flush Cuban spies out of the United States. Little did Lucy or her family know that the greatest Cuban spy of all was sitting right next to them at Thanksgivings, baptisms, and weddings.In Code Name Blue Wren, investigative journalist Jim Popkin weaves the tale of two sisters who chose two very different paths, plus the unsung heroes who had to fight to bring Ana to justice. With exclusive access to a &“Secret&” CIA behavioral profile of Ana, family memoirs, and Ana&’s incriminating letters from prison, Popkin reveals the making of a traitor—a woman labelled &“one of the most damaging spies in U.S. history&” by America&’s top counter-intelligence official.After more than two decades in federal prison, Montes will be freed in January 2023. Code Name Blue Wren is a thrilling detective tale, an insider&’s look at the clandestine world of espionage, and an intimate exploration of the dark side of betrayal.
By Timothy Smith. 2023
Killed in action at the bloody Battle of Shiloh, Confederate general Albert Sidney Johnston stands as the highest-ranking American military…officer to die in combat. His unexpected demise had cascading negative consequences for the South’s war effort, as his absence created a void in adequate leadership in the years that followed. In The Iron Dice of Battle, noted Civil War historian Timothy B. Smith reexamines Johnston’s life and death, offering remarkable insights into this often-contradictory figure.As a commander, Johnston frequently faced larger and better-armed Union forces, dramatically shaping his battlefield decisions and convincing him that victory could only be attained by taking strategic risks while fighting. The final wager came while leading his army at Shiloh in April 1862. During a desperate gambit to turn the tide of battle, Johnston charged to the front of the Confederate line to direct his troops and fell mortally wounded after sustaining enemy fire.The first work to survey the general’s career in detail in nearly sixty years, The Iron Dice of Battle builds on recent scholarship to provide a new and incisive assessment of Johnston’s life, his Confederate command, and the effect his death had on the course of the Civil War in the West.
By Paul Lockhart. 2008
“A terrific biography….The dramatic story of how the American army that beat the British was forged has never been better…told than in this remarkable book.”—Doris Kearns Goodwin, New York Times bestselling author of Team of RivalsThe true story of the Baron de Steuben and the making of the American Army, The Drillmaster of Valley Forge is the first biography in half a century of the immigrant Prussian soldier who molded George Washington’s ragged, demoralized troops into the fighting force that eventually triumphed in America’s War of Independence. Praised by renowned historian Thomas Fleming as “an important book for anyone interested in the American Revolution,” The Drillmaster of Valley Forge rights a historical wrong by finally giving a forgotten hero his well-deserved due.
By Carlo D'Este. 2008
As riveting as the man it portrays, Warlord is a masterful, unsparing portrait of Winston Churchill, one of history’s most fascinating and…influential leaders. “Epic. . . . A brilliantly exciting narrative. . . . D’Este has given us, finally, the lion not only in winter, but at war: impetuous, brazen, misguided, but indefatigable, indomitable, and magnanimous: the greatest and most energetic generalissimo of the 20th century.” —Boston GlobeCarlo D’Este’s definitive chronicle of Churchill’s crucial role in the major military campaigns of the 20th century, Warlord uses extensive, untapped archival materials to provide “a very human look at Churchill’s lifelong fascination with soldiering, war, and command.” (Washington Post)
Lawrence of Arabia meets Sebastian Junger's War in this unique, incendiary, and dramatic true story of heroism and heartbreak in…Afghanistan written by a Pulitzer Prize–nominated war correspondent.Army Special Forces Major Jim Gant changed the face of America’s war effort in Afghanistan. A decorated Green Beret who spent years in Afghanistan and Iraq training indigenous fighters, Gant argued for embedding autonomous units with tribes across Afghanistan to earn the Afghans’ trust and transform them into a reliable ally with whom we could defeat the Taliban and counter al-Qaeda networks. The military's top brass, including General David Petraeus, commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, approved, and Gant was tasked with implementing his controversial strategy.Veteran war correspondent Ann Scott Tyson first spoke with Gant when he was awarded the Silver Star in 2007. Tyson soon came to share Gant’s vision, so she accompanied him to Afghanistan, risking her life to embed with the tribes and chronicle their experience. And then they fell in love.Illustrated with dozens of photographs, American Spartan is their remarkable story—one of the most riveting, emotional narratives of wartime ever published.
By Suzanne Simons. 2009
“Suzanne Simons is a masterful storyteller. But make no mistake—Master of War is not a work of fiction….A powerful and…true account.”—Wolf Blitzer, anchor, CNN’s The Situation RoomMaster of War is the riveting true story of Eric Prince, the ex-Navy SEAL who founded Blackwater and built the world’s largest military contractor, privatizing war for client nations around the world. A CNN producer and anchor, Suzanne Simons is the first journalist to get deep inside Blackwater—and, as a result of her unprecedented access, Master of War provides the most complete and revelatory account of the rise of this powerful corporate army and the remarkable entrepreneur who brought it into being, while offering an eye-opening, behind-the-scenes look at the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.