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The Ghost Map: A Street, an Epidemic and the Two Men Who Battled to Save Victorian London
I enjoyed most of the book, but I hated the concluding chapter. I would have preferred it if he had stuck to his subject rather than stringing togethe ...more
Jul 24, 2008
Dec 29, 2007
The Lodger Shakespeare: His Life on Silver Street
This book reads well as a history of everyday life in Jacobean England. It does not read well as a biography of Shakespeare. As is the problem with al ...more
Aug 09, 2008
Feb 25, 2008
The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History
The writing style was dry, but I had never heard of the monument men before this. What a way to spend a war. It is depressing to think of what they di ...more
not set
Jan 08, 2010
Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little Town: Where History and Literature Meet
**spoiler alert** I noted this review as containing spoilers because I wanted to warn people who might prefer their illusions intact. It's a good "fac ...more
Mar 2008
Jan 17, 2008
Sampler View of Colonial Life
I would have loved this book as a nine-year old. It is a history of girls education in colonial America written for eight to ten year olds. There is a ...more
Oct 08, 2008
Oct 06, 2008
Silver Like Dust: One Family's Story of America's Japanese Internment
I couldn't decide on two or three stars for this one. The subject is always interesting to me. I appreciate that she brought up the situations where t ...more
May 23, 2012
May 22, 2012
The Bagel: The Surprising History of a Modest Bread
I usually love "histories of the everyday". (Salt: A World History is my favorite) This one, however, never engaged me. I wish I could put my finger o ...more
May 25, 2010
May 18, 2010
America's Women: 400 Years of Dolls, Drudges, Helpmates, and Heroines
This is reasonably well-written but I knew too many of the early stories and sort of tuned out the audiobook for a while. I liked the 20th century bet ...more
not set
Aug 15, 2011
Power, Faith, and Fantasy: America in the Middle East: 1776 to the Present
I listened to this one and found that it was far more like a "Teaching Company" series of lectures than a single book. I liked the section on the Barb ...more
Apr 23, 2011
Apr 22, 2011
Stubborn Twig: Three Generations in the Life of a Japanese American Family
Too often this was just a list of the accomplishments of the family. I really, really didn't care about the high school activities and awards of the s ...more
Nov 13, 2010
Nov 05, 2010
The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America
Having spent the weekend in a National Park, it was interesting to learn a bit about the beginning of the National Park System. I had never thought mu ...more
Aug 31, 2010
Aug 25, 2010
Buried in the Bitter Waters: The Hidden History of Racial Cleansing in America
This more a collection of events than an analysis of the events but the sheer number of the events builds a disturbing history. What is perhaps more h ...more
not set
Dec 11, 2010
American Prometheus
The details of the bomb project didn't interest me, but I never knew of Oppenheimer's association with The Left prior to his Los Alomas time. As was t ...more
Apr 30, 2010
Apr 27, 2010
Resistance: A French Woman's Journal of the War
I was a little confused by the diary/memoir format of this book and the afterward didn't help much. That said, she paints a brutal picture of life in ...more
Jun 12, 2010
Jun 03, 2010
Betsy Ross and the Making of America
This is a good discussion of what is factual and what is fictional in the Betsy Ross legend. I didn't care so much for those details, but enjoyed the ...more
May 04, 2010
May 01, 2010
I've Got a Home in Glory Land: A Lost Tale of the Underground Railroad
This is the history of the Underground Railroad told through the story of one couple whose lives were fairly well documented at the time. The author f ...more
Apr 20, 2008
Mar 15, 2008
Cooking Up U.S. History: Recipes and Research to Share with Children
This is clearly written as a teacher's manual rather than a cookbook. On the downside, most of the recipes in this book could come from any cookbook. ...more
not set
Nov 03, 2008
Three Empires on the Nile: The Victorian Jihad, 1869-1899
Having read several fairly dry histories recently, I gave up on this one. There was just too much military history for my taste.
Jul 2009
Jun 30, 2009
Bound for Canaan: The Epic Story of the Underground Railroad, America's First Civil Rights Movement
I learned a lot about the underground railroad, but it struck me more as a series of lectures than a single narrative.
Aug 15, 2011
Aug 13, 2011
Dearest Friend: A Life of Abigail Adams
Well-written, but I didn't learn anything new and it got repetitive. This would be a good introduction to Abigail Adams life.
Apr 20, 2010
Apr 16, 2010
Assassin's Accomplice
Interesting, but very repetitive.
May 30, 2009
May 29, 2009
Marco Polo: From Venice to Xanadu
This book filled in what was apparently a gaping hole in my knowledge of Marco Polo. I had no idea that he spent time as a "civil servant" in Mongolia ...more
Aug 23, 2009
May 03, 2008
Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold History of English
I loved that the rule about not ending a sentence with a preposition was described as a "nineteenth century fetish".
Mar 26, 2013
Mar 16, 2013
The Late Middle Ages
I "read" the audiobook version and found it engaging. I am never quite sure if the Teaching Company Courses count as "books".
Aug 18, 2010
Aug 07, 2010
The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey
I had heard nothing of this adventure of Teddy Roosevelt before reading this book. It is strange to think of how unknown (to his party) the region was ...more
not set
May 29, 2010
Ladies of Liberty: The Women Who Shaped Our Nation
This book drags quite a bit but I am giving it three stars based on the story of Louisa Adams (wife of John Quincy Adams) crossing Europe during warti ...more
not set
Jan 24, 2009
The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America
First of all, this is more a biography of Gifford Pinchot, the founder of the US Forest Service, than of Teddy Roosevelt. I was glad to learn more of ...more
Oct 16, 2010
Nov 22, 2009
Peter the Great: His Life and World
This is well-written and I learned quite a bit about Peter's life but there was way to much military history for me. I would have preferred a book mor ...more
May 04, 2012
Feb 22, 2008
The Demon Under the Microscope: From Battlefield Hospitals to Nazi Labs, One Doctor's Heroic Search for the World's First Miracle Drug
I enjoyed this. I generally like books about the history of science and this one was good. I like how he puts the development of sulfa drugs into the ...more
Dec 06, 2011
Feb 03, 2008
An American Plague
This was boring. I am not sure young adults, the target audience, would like it. I may have been bored because I already knew the facts of the outbrea ...more
Jun 06, 2010
Apr 30, 2010
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