Churchill's Shadow: The Life and Afterlife of Winston Churchill - Geoffrey

A fascinating insight into notable political speeches that were never delivered, showing what could have been if history had gone down a different path.

For almost every delivered speech, there exists an undelivered opposite. These "second speeches" provide alternative histories of what could have been if not for schedule changes, changes of heart, or momentous turns of events.

In Undelivered, political speechwriter Jeff Nussbaum presents the most notable speeches the public never heard, from Dwight Eisenhower's apology for a D-Day failure to Richard Nixon's refusal to resign the presidency, and even Hillary Clinton's acceptance for a 2016 victory--the latter never seen until now.

Examining the content of these speeches and the context of the historic moments that almost came to be, Nussbaum considers not only what they tell us about the past but also what they can inform us about our present.

 

 


Undelivered: The Never-Heard Speeches That Would Have Rewritten History - Jeff Nussbaum (Flatiron Books)

A fascinating insight into notable political speeches that were never delivered, showing what could have been if history had gone down a different path.

For almost every delivered speech, there exists an undelivered opposite. These "second speeches" provide alternative histories of what could have been if not for schedule changes, changes of heart, or momentous turns of events.

In Undelivered, political speechwriter Jeff Nussbaum presents the most notable speeches the public never heard, from Dwight Eisenhower's apology for a D-Day failure to Richard Nixon's refusal to resign the presidency, and even Hillary Clinton's acceptance for a 2016 victory--the latter never seen until now.

Examining the content of these speeches and the context of the historic moments that almost came to be, Nussbaum considers not only what they tell us about the past but also what they can inform us about our present.

 

 


Ethics In The Real World - Peter Singer (Princeton University Press)

Peter Singer is often described as the world's most influential philosopher. He is also one of its most controversial. The author of important books such as Animal Liberation, Practical Ethics, Rethinking Life and Death, and The Life You Can Save, he helped launch the animal rights and effective altruism movements and contributed to the development of bioethics. Now, in Ethics in the Real World, Singer shows that he is also a master at dissecting important current events in a few hundred words.

In this book of brief essays, he applies his controversial ways of thinking to issues like climate change, extreme poverty, animals, abortion, euthanasia, human genetic selection, sports doping, the sale of kidneys, the ethics of high-priced art, and ways of increasing happiness. Singer asks whether chimpanzees are people, smoking should be outlawed, or consensual sex between adult siblings should be decriminalized, and he reiterates his case against the idea that all human life is sacred, applying his arguments to some recent cases in the news. In addition, he explores, in an easily accessible form, some of the deepest philosophical questions, such as whether anything really matters and what is the value of the pale blue dot that is our planet. The collection also includes some more personal reflections, like Singer's thoughts on one of his favorite activities, surfing, and an unusual suggestion for starting a family conversation over a holiday feast.

Provocative and original, these essays will challenge--and possibly change--your beliefs about a wide range of real-world ethical questions.


River Of The Gods - Candice Mallard (Anchor Books)

For millennia the location of the Nile River's headwaters was shrouded in mystery. In the 19th century, there was a frenzy of interest in ancient Egypt. At the same time, European powers sent off waves of explorations intended to map the unknown corners of the globe - and extend their colonial empires.

Richard Burton and John Hanning Speke were sent by the Royal Geographical Society to claim the prize for England. Burton spoke twenty-nine languages, and was a decorated soldier. He was also mercurial, subtle, and an iconoclastic atheist. Speke was a young aristocrat and Army officer determined to make his mark, passionate about hunting, Burton's opposite in temperament and beliefs.

From the start the two men clashed. They would endure tremendous hardships, illness, and constant setbacks. Two years in, deep in the African interior, Burton became too sick to press on, but Speke did, and claimed he found the source in a great lake that he christened Lake Victoria. When they returned to England, Speke rushed to take credit, disparaging Burton. Burton disputed his claim, and Speke launched another expedition to Africa to prove it. The two became venomous enemies, with the public siding with the more charismatic Burton, to Speke's great envy. The day before they were to publicly debate, Speke shot himself.

Yet there was a third man on both expeditions, his name obscured by imperial annals, whose exploits were even more extraordinary. This was Sidi Mubarak Bombay, who was enslaved and shipped from his home village in East Africa to India. When the man who purchased him died, he made his way into the local Sultan's army, and eventually traveled back to Africa, where he used his resourcefulness, linguistic prowess and raw courage to forge a living as a guide. Without Bombay and men like him, who led, carried, and protected the expedition, neither Englishman would have come close to the headwaters of the Nile, or perhaps even survived.

In River of the Gods Candice Millard has written another peerless story of courage and adventure, set against the backdrop of the race to exploit Africa by the colonial powers.


Fellowship Point - Alice Elliott Dark (S&s/Marysue Rucci Books)

Celebrated children's book author Agnes Lee is determined to secure her legacy--to complete what she knows will be the final volume of her pseudonymously written Franklin Square novels; and even more consuming, to permanently protect the peninsula of majestic coast in Maine known as Fellowship Point. To donate the land to a trust, Agnes must convince shareholders to dissolve a generations-old partnership. And one of those shareholders is her best friend, Polly.

Polly Wister has led a different kind of life than Agnes: that of a well-off married woman with children, defined by her devotion to her husband, a philosophy professor with an inflated sense of stature. She strives to create beauty and harmony in her home, in her friendships, and in her family. Polly soon finds her loyalties torn between the wishes of her best friend and the wishes of her three sons--but what is it that Polly wants herself?

Agnes's designs are further muddied when an enterprising young book editor named Maud Silver sets out to convince Agnes to write her memoirs. Agnes's resistance cannot prevent long-buried memories and secrets from coming to light with far-reaching repercussions for all.


The Unsinkable Greta James - Jennifer E. Smith (Ballantine Books)

Just after the death of her mother--her first and most devoted fan--and weeks before the launch of her high-stakes sophomore album, Greta James falls apart on stage. The footage quickly goes viral and she stops playing, her career suddenly in jeopardy--the kind of jeopardy her father, Conrad, has always predicted.

Months later, Greta--still heartbroken and very much adrift--reluctantly agrees to accompany Conrad on the Alaskan cruise her parents had booked to celebrate their fortieth anniversary. It could be their last chance to heal old wounds in the wake of shared loss. But the trip will also prove to be a voyage of discovery for them both, and for Ben Wilder, a charming historian struggling with a major upheaval in his own life. As Greta works to build back her confidence and Ben confronts an uncertain future, they find themselves drawn to and relying on each other.

It's here in the unlikeliest of places--at sea, far from the packed city venues where she usually plays and surrounded by the stunning Alaskan wilderness--that Greta will have to decide what her path forward might look like--and how to find her voice again.


Flatlands - Sue Hubbard (Pushkin Press)

A moving tale of unlikely friendship and the beauty of nature, set in the wild wetland landscape of the English Fens during World War II

Perfect for fans of Atonement, this gorgeous coming of age explores the connection between Philip, a conscientious objector, and Freda, a young London evacuee housed by a cruel family

Freda is a twelve-year-old evacuee from East London, who has been sent away at the start of the war, leaving behind everything familiar to her, to escape the expected German bombing.

In her new temporary home in Lincolnshire, Freda finds herself billeted with a strange, cold and, ultimately, abusive couple, whose lives mirror the barren landscape in which they live a hand to mouth existence, based upon subsistence farming and poaching. There, deprived of any warmth, she meets a young man - Philip Rhayader -a conscientious objector who has left Oxford and his prospective vocation in the church following a nervous breakdown.

Together they explore the wild, beautiful landscape of the Wash, teeming with migrating birds, and nurse an injured goose back to health. As they do so, Philip introduces Freda to the wonders of the natural world and its enduring power to heal.


Two Wheels Good: The History and Mystery of the Bicycle - Jody Rosen (Crown Publishing Group)

The bicycle is a vestige of the Victorian era, seemingly at odds with our age of smartphones and ride-sharing apps and driverless cars. Yet we live on a bicycle planet. Across the world, more people travel by bicycle than any other form of transportation. Almost anyone can learn to ride a bike--and nearly everyone does.

In Two Wheels Good, journalist and critic Jody Rosen reshapes our understanding of this ubiquitous machine, an ever-present force in humanity's life and dream life--and a flash point in culture wars--for more than two hundred years. Combining history, reportage, travelogue, and memoir, Rosen's book sweeps across centuries and around the globe, unfolding the bicycle's saga from its invention in 1817 to its present-day renaissance as a "green machine," an emblem of sustainability in a world afflicted by pandemic and climate change. Readers meet unforgettable characters: feminist rebels who steered bikes to the barricades in the 1890s, a prospector who pedaled across the frozen Yukon to join the Klondike gold rush, a Bhutanese king who races mountain bikes in the Himalayas, a cycle-rickshaw driver who navigates the seething streets of the world's fastest-growing megacity, astronauts who ride a floating bicycle in zero gravity aboard the International Space Station.

Two Wheels Good examines the bicycle's past and peers into its future, challenging myths and clichés while uncovering cycling's connection to colonial conquest and the gentrification of cities. But the book is also a love letter: a reflection on the sensual and spiritual pleasures of bike riding and an ode to an engineering marvel--a wondrous vehicle whose passenger is also its engine.


Nietzche In Italy - Guy De Pourtales (Pushkin Press)

Endlessly fascinating and highly readable, Nietzsche in Italy will enthrall anyone interested in Nietzsche's relationship with the country that enriched his soul more than any other.

For fifteen years, after his first visit to the country in 1876, Nietzsche was repeatedly and irresistibly drawn back to Italy's climate and lifestyle. It was there that he composed his most famous works, including Thus Spake Zarathustra and Ecce Homo.

This classic biography follows the troubled philosopher from Rome, to Florence, via Venice, Sorrento, Genoa, Sicily and finally to the tragic denouement in Turin, the city in which Nietzsche found a final measure of contentment before his irretrievable collapse.


The Last Heir to Blackwood Library - Hester Fox (Graydon House)

With the stroke of a pen, twenty-three-year-old Ivy Radcliffe becomes Lady Hayworth, owner of a sprawling estate on the Yorkshire moors. Ivy has never heard of Blackwood Abbey, or of the ancient bloodline from which she's descended. With nothing to keep her in London since losing her brother in the Great War, she warily makes her way to her new home.

The abbey is foreboding, the servants reserved and suspicious. But there is a treasure waiting behind locked doors: a magnificent library. Despite cryptic warnings from the staff, Ivy feels irresistibly drawn to its dusty shelves, where familiar works mingle with strange, esoteric texts. And she senses something else in the library too, a presence that seems to have a will of its own.

Rumors swirl in the village about the abbey's previous owners, about ghosts and curses, and an enigmatic manuscript at the center of it all. And as events grow more sinister, it will be up to Ivy to uncover the library's mysteries in order to reclaim her own story--before it vanishes forever.