OK Amateur Historians, What are You Reading in the 2nd Quarter of '08 (Apr, May, June)

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OK Amateur Historians, What are You Reading in the 2nd Quarter of '08 (Apr, May, June)

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Apr 1, 2008, 6:59am

Well somehow I've got too many books going on. Still reading one on medieval travellers to the Khan's court. Also, "Founding Faith" by Steven Waldman and a book that's proving to be a real slog about the Chouteaus': Before Lewis and Clark: The story of the Chouteaus.

But to prove I'm a glutton for punishment, I'll ask what you'all are reading as I never say no to my TBR :)

Apr 7, 2008, 9:33am

I'm going through a "Colonial Wars" phase. Just finished Quebec 1759 the seige and the battle by Stacey, and now I'm reading Crucible of War by Fred Anderson. Next up will be A few acres of snow by Leckie.

Edited: Apr 12, 2008, 4:30pm

Can't remember if I listed the first one of these or not. (Too lazy to go look)

"The Laws of Spain in Their Application to the American Indians"

"Notes on the Cosmogony and Theogony of the Mojave Indians of the Rio Colorado, Arizona"

Both are articles by John Gregory Bourke, circa 1888-1892.

Apr 15, 2008, 5:10pm

Two books about the Greek War of Independence. At this moment I am reading The Greek Adventure by David Howarth. The other one is a reread: William St. Clair’s That Greece might still be free. St. Clair is about the philhellenes and more in-depth, but Howarth’s is a very good story. Absorbing.

Apr 15, 2008, 8:39pm

Just finished Almost a Miracle: The American Victory in the War of Independence and am now on to Alexander Hamilton.

Edited: Apr 18, 2008, 9:47am

"The Moquis of Arizona" by J. Bourke, written in 1880s.

The touchstone may bring up the wrong reference. This is a short paper available at Archive.org.

Apr 20, 2008, 7:13am

Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World, and Barbarian Migrations and the Roman West, 376 - 568. Weatherford wraps up the Mongol era in a short concise volume and Halsall examines the "Wolkerwanderung" and the collapse of the Western Roman Empire.

Apr 22, 2008, 11:18am

Washington's Secret War by Thomas Fleming. A good book on what was going on "behind the scenes" at Valley Forge. Shows Washington's development as a politician, as he fights, and defeats, the Gates/Conway/Mifflin cabal and their allies in Congress who tried to bring him down that winter.

Apr 22, 2008, 11:44am

I just finished reading Four Queens, and started The Battle for New York. (This pair of books neatly covers most of my taste in history books.)

Edited: Apr 29, 2008, 6:42am

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer.

I've been meaning to read this one and finally got around to getting it from the library. It's sorta history ;

Apr 29, 2008, 9:05am

Reading Bunker Hill by Richard M. Ketchum. After that it will be A Magnificent Catastrophe about the Adams-Jefferson election of 1800. It's my book group's selection. Yes, I'm in an all-male book group.

May 5, 2008, 6:01am

Just got "Colonial Ste. Genevieve" by Carl J. Ekberg.

St. G~ is a small French/Indian village on the western shore of the Mississippi. Circa 1750.

May 5, 2008, 8:46am

My book on the German occupation of the Channel Islands, War on the Margins: A Novel is FINALLY out in paperback. I hope someone enjoys it.

Libby Cone

May 5, 2008, 9:03am

I spent an hour digging through the history section at a local library book sale Saturday and one book I found has moved to the top of my TBR list Nuts and bolts of the past: A history of American technology, 1776-1860 by David F. Hawke. The sub-title describes what it is about, there was a lot more than just the cotton gin being developed in those years. It was the only book I found that had anything even remotely to do with American labor, my main area of interest.

I picked up a few other titles that piqued my interest but I will mention those when I have a chance to read them. That might be soon, this is finals week and I am taking a lighter class load over the summer.

May 7, 2008, 8:34am

I'm in a civil war phase. I am reading a four volume set that begins with The Battle of the Wilderness and goes throughCold Harbor: Grant and Lee, May 26-June3, 1864. The books set forth moment by moment narration of the battles, the bloodiest of the war. The author also provides good analysis of the strategy and tactics of the Generals. In the Battle of the Wilderness Grant was defeated worse than Joe Hooker at Chancellorsville. I read the short section in Grant's memoirs on the battle and he didn't consider it a defeat at all. Also he did not retreat like Hooker did.
It is a very good series but the detailed violence and carnage does wear on me at times. Reading about men charging over the dead bodies from yesterday is very graphic. I have to pick up something else to give me a break. So far I am 100 pages into the third volume.

May 7, 2008, 1:36pm

At this moment I am reading Minotaur by J. A. Macgillavry. A biography, and a critical assessment of Evans' work at Knossos by someone with his own expertise in the archaeology of Crete.
The backcover tells me that the author shows that Evans anticipated what he found, having decided before he began his excavations at Knossos what his discoveries would mean (his Minoans were perfect Victorians).
As I have spent many happy hours reading about the Minoans as well as Victorians, I am very curious about Macgillvray's story

According to the Kathimerini (3-4-2008) Minoan civilization was built by people from Anatolia – and not from Africa, as maintained by Martin Bernal. (This is the conclusion of a new study resulting from a DNA analysis. “The DNA analysis indicates that the arrival of Neolithic man in Greece from Anatolia coincided with the social and cultural upsurge that led to the birth of Minoan civilization. ‘Until now we only had the archaeological evidence – now we have the genetic data too and we can date the DNA’'' one of the researchers states.).

Edited: May 13, 2008, 9:16pm

Just finished reading:

"Of Agues and Fevers: Malaria in the Early Chesapeake" by Darrett B. Rutman and Anita H. Rutman

Very interesting article on malaria and it's possible consequences in the new world.

May 13, 2008, 10:55pm

I finished The Battle for New York a good while back. After a history intermission for the Early Review program I'm working on The Life of Thomas More.

May 14, 2008, 8:46am

Paul Revere's Ride by David Hackett Fischer.

May 14, 2008, 10:37am

How is that? I've read Washington's Crossing and have been considering getting Fischer's other books.

May 14, 2008, 2:39pm

I like it a lot. He really got into the details of how the word was spread when the British started their move on Concord and how quickly, and how far it spread. I'm just at the point where the militia is starting to gather. He's a really good writer.

May 14, 2008, 4:53pm

Duly noted and wishlisted.

May 15, 2008, 4:36am

I'm reading primarily all six volumes of Winston S. Churchill's Second World War - some very nice Houghton Mifflin hardcover editions too boot.

On the side I've been reading Adrian Goldsworthy's The Fall of Carthage, William Manchester's Winston Churchill biography, and occasionally something else.

Edited: May 15, 2008, 9:38pm

Just started reading:

"Heavy Shadows and Black Night": Disease and Depopulation in Colonial Spanish America"

W. George Lovell is actually a pretty amusing author thus far. Definitely going to see if he's written other articles.

May 27, 2008, 4:10pm

Just finished The Souls of Black Folk. Except for the last few chapters I had trouble remembering that it was written over a hundred years ago.

Just started Death in the Haymarket by James Green. So far it is interesting and an easy read. If not for summer classes I think I could get through in a few days.

Edited: Jun 19, 2008, 6:43am

"Co. Aytch" by Sam Watkins.

It's a CW memoir by a private. Absolutely wonderful primary source. Learned more about the war from this book than any textbook I've read.

Edited: Jun 20, 2008, 10:31am

I just finished Death in the Haymarket by James Green. He covers the events leading up to the Haymarket event and the results and reactions up to the present time. It reads like a novel but is well documented, often quoting from the archives of the Chicago Tribune. I was amazed at the impact the events had worldwide. This is another bit of US history that has been, let’s say ignored, because of the deplorable actions of government officials. Can anyone recommend a biography of Albert and Lucy Parsons? I thought they were the most fascinating people involved in the entire event.

I am just starting Chronology of Labor in the United States by Russell Wright a short book, only 105 pages not counting the appendixes, bibliography, and index. Hopefully I will have better luck pulling myself away from it to study for class than I did with Haymarket. I was a good student up until the middle of that book then I really spent too much time with it.

not having any luck with the Touchstones

Edited: Jun 27, 2008, 4:41pm

Finished Chronology of Labor in the United States by Russell O. Wright and posted a review.

Just started Nuts and Bolts of the Past American technology from 1716 to 1860.

Jun 27, 2008, 5:58pm

Am now about halfway through Leviathan by Eric Jay Dolin, which meets so many of my interests -- whaling, New England, early American history.... but for some reason I am just really distracted and its taken me a while to get thus far.. I think its me, not the book this time.