Capturing the Enigma: The Unsung Heroes of HMS Bulldog, by Patrick Spencer

Capturing The Enigma: The Unsung Heroes of HMS Bulldog (Secrets of WWII)Capturing The Enigma: The Unsung Heroes of HMS Bulldog by Patrick Spencer

  • Paperback: 28 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (September 14, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1537670638
  • ISBN-13: 978-1537670638
  • My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

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    Book Review: Sky Rivals, by Adam L. Penenberg

    Sky RivalsSky Rivals by Adam L. Penenberg

    • Paperback: 212 pages
    • Publisher: Wayzgoose Press (February 5, 2016)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 193875719X
    • ISBN-13: 978-1938757198

     

     

    My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

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    Book Review: Our Man in Charleston: Britain’s Secret Agent in the Civil War South, by Christopher Dickey

    Our Man in Charleston: Britain's Secret Agent in the Civil War SouthOur Man in Charleston: Britain’s Secret Agent in the Civil War South by Christopher Dickey

    Print Length: 410 pages

  • Publisher: Crown (July 21, 2015)
  • Publication Date: July 21, 2015
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00OWWC25S
  • My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

    About The Author:

    Award-winning author CHRISTOPHER DICKEY, the foreign editor of The Daily Beast, is based in France. Previously he was the Paris bureau chief and the Middle East editor for Newsweek. He served as Cairo bureau chief for the Washington Post and, before that, as the paper’s Central America bureau chief. His books include the acclaimed memoir Summer of Deliverance as well as Securing the City, Expats, With the Contras, and two novels about espionage and terrorism.

    My Review:

    This is the story of Robert Bunch, the British government’s consul in Charleston, South Carolina, before the start of the civil war. I have never read such chilling accounts of the slave industry as I did in this book. To know that even after it had been banned in the south a ship was confiscated and proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that it was carrying what was left of four hundred plus Africans to America, it was treated as a nonoccurrence.

    After reading these secret memos that Robert Bunch sent back to England, you can understand the distaste for the south that he conveyed. He had seen into the deepest darkest aspect of life in Charleston. He had been privy to the leader’s inner workings and their flawed decisions about human trafficking.

    When the Echo was brought into Charleston’s harbor, the city was given a birdseye view of the destruction, horrors, and inhumanity of slavery. Yet, when given an opportunity to prosecute the perpetrators, aka the ship owners, they were let go by the leaders of the legal system in Charleston. This shines a different light on what we in the south were told about slavery and Northern aggression. The north was not left out of the slavery problem as they were many times the owners and builders of these slave ships. Ships built to hide hundreds of illegally acquired Africans.

    Bunch was in the thick of things in Charleston and he saw things that many were not able to see. Sending dispatches back to England allowed them to have inside knowledge of the slave mentality of the Southern states and America​ in general. Written in an easy to understand manner, I was pulled into the history of the prewar south.
    An excellent read that encapsulates the real reasons behind that war and why Great Britain was so staunchly anti-confederacy. I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

    My Recommendation:

    I can highly recommend this well crafted and researched book to anyone that wants to know​ the truth behind the slavery question of pre-civil war America This book brought so many points to the forefront that I had never seen in print before. It is an excellent resource. I felt I had to give it 5 stars, as it was wonderfully written.

    Where to Find Our Man in Charleston:

    This​ book is available in Hardback, Paperback, Audiobook, Kindle, and Nook.

    Book Review: Jefferson’s America by Julie M. Fenster

    Jefferson

    • Print Length: 442 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0307956482
    • Publisher: Crown (May 10, 2016)
    • Publication Date: May 10, 2016
    • Sold by: Random House LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B013ZNK5D0

     

    Book Blurb:

    The surprising story of how Thomas Jefferson commanded an unrivaled age of American exploration—and in presiding over that era of discovery, forged a great nation.
     
    At the dawn of the nineteenth century, as Britain, France, Spain, and the United States all jockeyed for control of the vast expanses west of the Mississippi River, the stakes for American expansion were incalculably high. Even after the American purchase of the Louisiana Territory, Spain still coveted that land and was prepared to employ any means to retain it. With war expected at any moment, Jefferson played a game of strategy, putting on the ground the only Americans he could: a cadre of explorers who finally annexed it through courageous investigation.

    Responsible for orchestrating the American push into the continent was President Thomas Jefferson. He most famously recruited Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, who led the Corps of Discovery to the Pacific, but at the same time there were other teams who did the same work, in places where it was even more crucial. William Dunbar, George Hunter, Thomas Freeman, Peter Custis, and the dauntless Zebulon Pike—all were dispatched on urgent missions to map the frontier and keep up a steady correspondence with Washington about their findings.

    But they weren’t always well-matched—with each other and certainly not with a Spanish army of a thousand soldiers or more. These tensions threatened to undermine Jefferson’s goals for the nascent country, leaving the United States in danger of losing its foothold in the West. Deeply researched and inspiringly told, Jefferson’s America rediscovers the robust and often harrowing action from these seminal expeditions and illuminates the president’s vision for a continental America.

    My Rating :

    ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

     

    My Review: 

    I enjoyed reading Jefferson’s America the President, The Purchase, and The Explorers who Transformed a Nation so much. there were great stories that told about the men that were sent out to discover the passageways to the Pacific ocean and map the west. There were some colorful characters that I did not expect to encounter.

    One of these explorers, John  Evans, was sent to be a go between for the United States and Spain that controlled so much of the area west of the Mississippi River. The Spanish  were controlling the expansion while in New Orleans and so the Evans  arrived there, spoke to the leaders of the Spanish government and was recruited to go into the wilderness, establish trade with the Native Americans. He was ordered to make peace and establish trade with the Mandan Indians  and plot the routes he took. He was happy to become an agent for Spain, until he reached south Dakota where he decided to become a freelance trader. His story was so fun to read. He was like always changing sides and sometimes was working for both governments at the same time.

    That is just one of the stories that were so fascinating. The book is packed with stories and recounting of the travels of Meriwether Lewis and George Rogers Clark. These were known as some of  Jefferson’s men and they were actively engaged in discovering cities and towns all across the country. There are snippets of letters included in the book. So fascinating to see that President Jefferson spelled knowledge as “knoledge”. There are stories of women and children that lived harsh lives because of these early explorers and tradesmen. There is so much information about the Louisiana Purchase. A great deal of factual information complete with photo’s, letters, and human interest stories.

    One of the main attractions of this Historic non Fiction book is the in-depth knowledge you gain about Thomas Jefferson.  He was way ahead of the time in his thinking. When it came to farming, governing, and exploring. He did not want just rough and ready explorers on these missions, he wanted educated men. He wanted philosophers, astronomers, biologists, and anthropologists to gather information about the entire country.  The projects were insistent on documenting their finds with drawings, copious notes and  detailed maps. He knew what he wanted and he gathered men of all ages to do the task at hand. It was an amazing adventure to read about. I was so impressed with Jefferson’s brain.

    If you love history or are just curious about how America was populated, this is a wonderful opportunity to read all about that. reading about Lewis and Clark was especially poignant because I live in the same area that George Rogers Clark is from.  The High school here named after him.  Makes local history even more fun now that I know more about him.  I was provided this book by Blogging for books in exchange for this review. I have to admit I am a junkie for history, so I assure you the love I had for this subject, the writing and the anecdotal stories made my heart and my brain very happy. In this book some of the most obscure and some of the most recognizable names in American history are discussed in a personable and interesting way.

    Recommendation:

    This is a great tool for learning in an easy to read, interesting and colorful book. If you home school or just love having informative and comprehensive books on History, this is the book for you. It covers many years of growth and expansion for the United States.

     

    Where To Find:

    Jefferson’s America the President, The Purchase, and The Explorers who Transformed a Nation is available in many formats. Kindle, Hardback, Audio book and CD. By clicking  the links shown  below.

    Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble  |  Audible

     

    AudioBook Review: Leopold & Loeb Killed Bobby Franks by Bruce Caplan and Ken Rossignol

    Leopold & Loeb Killed Bobby FranksLeopold & Loeb Killed Bobby Franks by Bruce M. Caplan

    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    Overall *****

    Performance*****

    Story*****

    It was 1924 in Cook County Illinois. Two young men, Richard Loeb and Nathan Leopold grew up together. They seemed to feed off each other. Both young men were highly intelligent and both very dangerous. They both had IQ’s over 160.   They were both from wealthy families. They both had attended prestigious schools. There was no history of abuse in their family. The family seemed a normal well to do family.

    After planning the perfect kidnapping and murder for months, the men set out one day to commit an  intentional murder. It is very hard to understand this much evil. Loeb and Leopold made so many plans in order to pull this murder off. They left the victim up to chance, but the rest was well thought out.

    The facts of this case are so stark and chilling. These men did not care what happened to their small kidnapping victim. There were so many mistakes for such a perfectly plotted crime. They bungled the entire thing and were easily named the main suspects.

    The police and the District Attorney when questioning the two got direct answers as Loeb confessed to his part. With no emotions, no concerns. It was like he was playing a part.

    Leopold also just answered questions with no responses that showed any feelings about what they had done at all. Even when being questioned there was no remorse. They believed they were too intelligent to get caught. They believed they had the perfect crime planned out.

    Since they were only murderers were only 18 and 19 years old they were treated differently in sentencing. Ken Rossignol and Bruce Caplan did a great job with the research and brought this story to light.

    There was a child, a trusting child that was murdered. The murderers never showed any compassion for that little boy, Bobby Franks. It did not even matter that the child was related to one of his murderers.

    I am glad I listened this book, because I never would have believed it to be true if I had not.

    This was an Audible AudioBook and it was well represented. The narrator Stan Jenson was impressive. The characters were clearly different in their speech patterns. He had a clear concise narration voice. The tones of the voices were well defined. His tone matched the era that the events took place.

    This AudioBook is available at Audible.com. The Paperback and Kindle version are both available on Amazon.

    View all my reviews

    Book Review: Panama 1914 by Ken Rossignol

    Panama 1914 (The early years of the Big Dig)Panama 1914 by Ken Rossignol
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    So much interesting information that really let the reader know how much danger and hard work was involved in creating that mammoth canal. The dangers were real and the cost was extremely high. In money, in lives and livelihood.

    I loved the real accounts of the event. There are so much history and newsworthy accounts. The photos and illustrations were such a lovely feature of the book.

    The newspaper accounts that are shared in the book showed just what an important and huge event this was. Even the president was actively promoting it and there are pictures and tons of information on the Presiden’t participation.

    Advertisers even included the building project in their ads. It was on everyone’s mind. It was funny how the advertising guru’s decided to promote products based on their availability to the people in and around the construction zone.

    I really enjoyed learning all these facts. The way it was written was engaging. It is obvious to me that the writer Ken Rossingnol is a huge lover of history. It is obvious that he has some amazing research in this book.

    As a lover of history, I was in heaven reading this. I can recommend that anyone that loves history should read this book.

    Pick up a copy of Panama 1914 at Amazon.

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    Book Review: The American Earl by Joan Wolf

    The American EarlThe American Earl by Joan Wolf
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    This book had a unique perspective. an american has inherited the Earldom from his uncle. He has never been to England before and he is an American through and through. He is a patriot from Boston.

    When Evan arrives at Stoverton he is met by Julia Marshall his cousin and she is not happy about his arrival. She is a headstrong opinionated and very self sufficient young lady. She has no use for Americans.

    The family decides to go to London for the season and both Evan and Julia are not that excited about the dancing and husband hunting. There are many cute scenes that show just how daring Lady Julia is. Evan is such a good guy. He truly wants to make things better for Julia and her sister Maria. Lizzy is a great character too, her own husband hunt livens up the book a lot. Her mother, Lady Barbara is another matter entirely. Just a great group of characters.

    Events occur that throw everyone into a tizzy. It is very interesting to see the London season from an American male’s point of view. I enjoyed reading this book. I will be reading more by Joan Wolf.

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    Wreck Of The Whale Ship Essex by Chase Owen

    Wreck of the Whale Ship EssexWreck of the Whale Ship Essex by Owen Chase
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    Wreck of the Whale Ship Essex is the story of the real life ship that inspired the fictional story of Moby Dick.

    This book tells the horror these survivors faced while on the ship and while at sea. The telling is chilling. This whaler, Chase Owen, used his own journals to assure his facts were accurate. He gives a day by day accounting of their struggle. He begins his story explaining how he was hired by the captain of the Essex for a period of three years.

    The Essex was a whaling ship and has about twenty whalers on board. While harpooning one whale and focusing on that whale, one whale attacked while they were occupied with that other whale. the ship was torn apart and began to sink.

    The surviving men loaded into the smaller boats and they stayed afloat for over a month. Over twenty men left the ship with few provisions and leaky boats. Many of the men were lost. They landed on an uninhabited island and faced starvation there and all but three men were forced to leave the safety of the island and head back to sea. Another long period of floating in order to reach Easter Island over eight hundred miles away.

    There are other stories included that tell of whale attacks and there is some interesting facts about whale production. It is a very interesting read. Loved the history of it all.

    View all my reviews

    Four World War 2 History Books by Ryan Jenkins

    World War 2 Snipers: WWII Famous Snipers and Sniper Battles RevealedWorld War 2 Snipers: WWII Famous Snipers and Sniper Battles Revealed by Ryan Jenkins
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    Such good information about the snipers of the World War 2. I had no idea that women were recruited as snipers at that time. These were young women and men that had shown skill with the rifle. This book covers the Soviet, Finnish and German snipers.

    There were Japanese snipers that had a totally different style. I was surprised to find that America did not have a dedicated sniper training program during that time.

    There are many books on the subject of World War 1 and World War 2 that I plan on reading next. Great job from the author in compiling such detailed information.

    World War 2 Soldier Stories Part II: More Untold Tales of the Soldiers on the Battlefields of WWII (World War 2, World War II, WWII, Soldier Story, True ... Bill Donovan, Monuments Men Book Book 1)World War 2 Soldier Stories Part II: More Untold Tales of the Soldiers on the Battlefields of WWII by Ryan Jenkins
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    It is wonderful to see the stories of heroes that you had no idea about their stories.

    One of the most amazing stories was about Daniel Inuoye. I knew him when he was a senator, but I did not have a clue about him before then. What a great book of amazing people.

    This is another one of the short books by Ryan Jenkins that everyone should read.

    World War 2 Soldier Stories Part XI: More Untold WW2 German Soldier Stories (World War 2, World War II, WW2, WWII, German soldiers, soldier stories, unbroken, ... Higher Call, Killing Patton, Forgotten 500)World War 2 Soldier Stories Part XI: More Untold WW2 German Soldier Stories by Ryan Jenkins
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars

    Interesting and informative

    I really learned so much about two different types of men. One a man that wanted to be the best during the worst of times. A man that has to think about the dangers to his wife and his self. Really a fascinating read on a good man.

    The other man was not a kind man. He was driven and could be hard. He made decisions that showed his intelligence but also showed his coldness. Such details in the experiences that he faced really brought the war clearer to my mind. Great reading.

    World War 2 Soldier Stories Part X: Stories of Bravery in the American Home Front (World War 2, WW2, World War II, WWII, soldier stories, a higher call, ... killing patton, unbroken, american Book 1)World War 2 Soldier Stories Part X: Stories of Bravery in the American Home Front by Ryan Jenkins
    My rating: 4 of 5 stars

    This book about the bravery in the American home front really put the light on the people here in the states that struggled and suffered through the war years.

    It explained about the workers and the farmers that were reeling from the depression then were involved in the war effort.

    It was a good book to see what was going on at home during the war.

    View all my reviews