Anne Sebba - Les Parisiennes - Orion Publishing Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • Paperback £9.99
    More information
    • ISBN:9781780226613
    • Publication date:08 Jun 2017
  • Downloadable audio file £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781409161561
    • Publication date:14 Jul 2016

Les Parisiennes

How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved and Died in the 1940s

By Anne Sebba

  • E-Book
  • £P.O.R.

For readers of Suite Francaise and But You Did Not Come Back, Les Parisiennes recounts the true stories of Parisian women during and after the Second World War.

WINNER OF THE FRANCO-BRITISH SOCIETY BOOK PRIZE 2016

June, 1940. German troops enter Paris and hoist the swastika over the Arc de Triomphe. The dark days of Occupation begin. How would you have survived? By collaborating with the Nazis, or risking the lives of you and your loved ones to resist?

The women of Paris faced this dilemma every day - whether choosing between rations and the black market, or travelling on the Metro, where a German soldier had priority for a seat. Between the extremes of defiance and collusion was a vast moral grey area which all Parisiennes had to navigate in order to survive.

Anne Sebba has sought out and interviewed scores of women, and brings us their unforgettable testimonies. Her fascinating cast includes both native Parisiennes and temporary residents: American women and Nazi wives; spies, mothers, mistresses, artists, fashion designers and aristocrats. The result is an enthralling account of life during the Second World War and in the years of recovery and recrimination that followed the Liberation of Paris in 1944. It is a story of fear, deprivation and secrets - and, as ever in the French capital, glamour and determination.

Biographical Notes

Anne Sebba read History at King's College London then joined Reuters as a foreign correspondent based in London and Rome. She has written eight works of non-fiction, mostly about iconic women, presented BBC radio documentaries, and is an accredited NADFAS (National Association of Decorative & Fine Arts Societies) lecturer.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780297870999
  • Publication date: 14 Jul 2016
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: W&N
Wonderfully researched, this is an important retelling of Les Années Noires in Paris which puts women's stories, and the complications of their lives under Occupation, centre stage. Sebba reminds us that we should listen and put ourselves in their shoes, before leaping immediately to judgement, and backs this up with testimonies from many women whose voices have remained unheard — Kate Mosse, author of LABYRINTH and CITADEL
'Anne Sebba's fascinating and beautifully written study gives voice to a myriad of narratives belonging to the Parisian women who resisted, collaborated, flourished, suffered, died or survived through a mixture of defiance and compromise . . . Sebba skilfully weaves the history of 1940s Paris through the remarkable stories of women from all walks of life' — Clare Mulley, SPECTATOR
This is a fascinating book I couldn't stop reading. Anne Sebba knows everything about Paris during the war and she relates the end of all the whispered stories I've been hearing all my life. She understands everything about the chic, loathsome collaborators and the Holocaust victims, and their stories are told in an irresistible narrative flood — Edmund White, author of THE FLÂNEUR
'As Anne Sebba shows, life for a Parisian woman was a deeply ambiguous affair. Their experiences, like a kaleidoscope can be 'turned any number of ways to produce a different image'. Sebba's book, with its phenomenal amount of detailed research and its vast cast of characters, is rich in stories about the tricks of life under Occupation, the heroism of those who carried out acts of defiance, the slipperiness of collusion and the vast profits made by fixers, contacts, middlemen and entrepreneurs. She is particularly good on the fashion world and the scheming, equivocating social luminaries' — Caroline Moorehead, LITERARY REVIEW
Anne Sebba has the nearly miraculous gift of combining the vivid intimacy of the lives of women during the Occupation with the history of the time. This is a remarkable book — Edmund de Waal, author of THE HARE WITH AMBER EYES
'As Anne Sebba makes clear in her fascinating book Les Parisiennes, there was no Hollywood clarity about life in the City of Light . . . there were very many reasons not to resist ... Sebba has interviewed women who, remarkably, are talking about their experiences for the first time. This is a valuable book . . . Although Sebba salutes the bravery of Les Parisiennes, she is careful not to condemn the ones who chose simply to survive . . . To read this book is to admire female bravery and resilience, but also to understand why the scars left by the Second World War still run so deep' — Daisy Goodwin, THE TIMES
The debate over the extent of collaboration versus the extent of resistance during the occupation is not new, but Sebba has found an enthralling way of looking at the story by focusing on how the choice was made by French women, and, in particular, by the women of Paris . . . Sebba doesn't offer an explanation as to why some women chose one course, others another, rightly letting their actions, compelling life stories - and the physiognomy of the wonderful selection of photographs - speak for themselves — Sarah Helm, OBSERVER
'One of the distinctive features of Anne Sebba's richly intelligent history is her evocation of sound. Sebba has deliberately eschewed a focus on well-known primary documentation for her history of Parisian women during the Second World War, choosing instead to alert her readers to a 'quieter and frequently less well-known' set of voices. Those voices, belonging to women of all classes, ages and educational backgrounds, weep and sing through this extraordinary book . . . Sebba is adept at explaining the changing political climate of Paris as the war progressed, but she never allows politics to overshadow her subjects' voices. This book does not judge - instead, in the breadth of its humanity, it achieves some of the recognition that the Parisiennes' own heroic modesty often denied them' — Lisa Hilton, TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT
'The book takes an unflinching and sympathetic look at the roles women were asked to play in the war, and those they wrote for themselves . . . Sebba interviewed many of the surviving women, and tells their stories here, many for the first time . . . Les Parisiennes insists on the moral incertitude of wartime, 'especially through the eyes of women'. Perhaps because their lives were so complicated and roles so divided, they were more able to perceive, and be at home with, ambiguity . . . I am filled with admiration not only for the women themselves, but for Sebba's heroic research, for her meticulous tracking of these people and their exploits, of their fragility and their strength. This book is an important reminder of the fact that fully half of the story of the second world war is buried in memory and the archive, and has only recently been unearthed' — Lauren Elkin, GUARDIAN
'This is an elegant, enthralling and richly illustrated account of how the female residents of the French capital survived the Second World War and its aftermath with Parisian panache' — Caroline Sanderson, SUNDAY EXPRESS
'In the inter-war years women, who were yet to win the vote, had been encouraged to remain at home with motherhood vaunted as the ideal of womanhood. The reality of war propelled women into very different and often dangerous roles and it is these roles that Sebba explores in this powerful and moving book . . . Sebba's researches have been exhaustive: she has interviewed survivors and read countless documents' — Vanessa Berridge, DAILY EXPRESS
'Anne Sebba's tour de force of research and reflection, Les Parisiennes, is a testament of silk and sacrifice; of choices to resist or collaborate with the Nazis; of dalliance, defiance, and survival that turned on a concierge's random kindness or a stick of gelignite strapped to the chest . . . Sebba sources first-time stories of wartime women and records tales of collaboration horizontale with real sensitivity for the 'moral ambiguity' of those who exchanged sexual favours for privileges - or survival . . . extraordinary and evocative' — Madeleine Kingsley, JEWISH CHRONICLE
'This is the most wonderful book. It's something that you could read every night in small doses because it's packed with stories of women, both wonderful women and awful ones, aristocrats, concierges, prostitutes, actresses, they're all in here . . . The stories that you find, not just from diaries and ration books and things but actual interviews are completely riveting . . . making us think how we ourselves perhaps might behave, which is always the most interesting kind of history book . . . very moving . . . it's got everything, humour, bravery, tragedy and wonderful stories' — Amanda Craig, MONOCLE
'The fruit of thorough research and interviews with survivors, this is a collage of extraordinary stories' — Piers Paul Read, THE TABLET
'This is a fascinating account of how women lived in Paris during the Forties. Novelist Irène Némirovsky converted to Catholicism; the lesbian racing driver Violette Morris embraced the Nazi philosophy; Coco Chanel retreated to the Ritz with a lover. Chacun à son goût. Come liberation, of course, there was a heavy price to pay' — Sebastian Shakespare, TATLER
'The Nazi occupation of Paris and the violent aftermath of liberation forced women and young girls to be collaborators, resisters, bystanders or victims. Their moral dilemmas are told in Anne Sebba's poignant stories, many of them gleaned from interviews with survivors. Her theme is choice: to what extent did women passively collaborate in buying black-market food for their own children? How did so many women resist and save other people's children? Such life-and-death decisions beat at the heart of this powerful history' — SAGA magazine
'In Les Parisiennes, historian Anne Sebba explores the tough choices made during the occupation. By weaving together a range of stories - of struggling housewives, social climbers, artists and actresses - she brings alive the challenges of Les Années Noires . . . she also demonstrates that, under occupation, life was mostly blurred lines and ethical trade-offs . . . Is a degree of collusion justified if it puts you in a position to do good? And can too great an adherance to principles be counter-productive?... Sebba concludes surviving in occupied Paris did demand some sort of decision about how best to live alongside the Germans. 'It is not for the rest of us to judge, but, with imagination, we can understand,' she says. Her sweeping, nuanced account makes it easier for us to do just that' — Dani Garavelli, SUNDAY HERALD
'This account of the women of Paris living under the dark shadow of the Nazi occupation is a must-read' — Sarra Manning, RED ONLINE
'Les Parisiennes is the story of the famous and glamorous: Coco Chanel, jewelry designer Suzanne Belperron, novelist Irène Némirovsky, actress Simone Signoret and the daughters of the Dior, Van Cleef & Arpels, and de Rothschild families. The book also features a cast of ordinary women - Ravensbrück survivors, Resistance fighters and collaborators - doing their best to muddle through, keep up their physical appearances and their famous French allure during the country's darkest of days . . . The book, hard to put down, yet difficult to read in parts, is also the story of a city at its most vulnerable, and [an] intriguing insight into the importance of fashion to national self-esteem' — WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY
'Paris in the 1940s was a war-torn time of fear, power, deprivation, secrets and as ever in the French capital, glamour. Les Parisiennes explores how these years impacted on the women of the city, with character accounts from war collaborators and resisters to actresses and writers, together portraying a fascinating account of how the women of Paris lived, loved and died under the Nazi Occupation' — LIVING FRANCE magazine
'In World War II, the women of occupied Paris had to decide how to respond - should they resist? And if so, how? Sebba's compassionate, open-minded book tells some of their stories' — HISTORY REVEALED
'This is a flowing account of women's lives in extraordinary circumstances' — FAMILY TREE MAGAZINE
'Meticulously researched' — Nicky Haslam, SPECTATOR Books of the Year
This fascinating account of women during the Second World War tells hard-lived stories from housewives to Resistance fighters, shop girls to celebrities. It's a brilliantly researched, untold history that asks a fundamental question: how do people make choices in war? Collaborate, resist, do the right thing at great personal risk-or just survive? — Antonia Byatt, THE TIMES
An enthralling narrative of women's reactions to German Occupation as Paris became a place of 'power, fear, aggression, courage, deprivation and secrets' . Some chose to maintain glamour no matter what, others to resist; most just coped as best they could, and this is a sympathetic look at the choices they made — Mary S. Lovell, author of THE MITFORD GIRLS, THE WEEK
Anne Sebba's remarkable history of the women who chose to defy the invaders, often at a terrible cost to themselves, gives an inspiring account of the courageous contribution - still too little acknowledged - of French women to the Resistance — JANE SHILLING, DAILY MAIL
'Anne Sebba, author of a biography of Wallis Simpson, has written this vivid account, subtitled How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved and Died in the 1940s. This was after the German invasion, which brought out the best and worst in the women of Paris. A few, like Violette Szabo, killed at Ravensbrück, became heroines of the Resistance. Others hid Jews at great risk to themselves. Some collaborated with the Germans, to be imprisoned and ostracised after the war' — CATHOLIC HERALD
One of the best researched, least rabid accounts of the Vichy era — Edmund White, TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT
Anne Sebba's fabulous book, Les Parisiennes, sets out to show in a remarkably non-judgmental way, how the women of Paris acted when faced with German occupation in the Second World War, and perhaps even more interestingly, how they behaved in the years immediately following ... The Spinoff's choice not just as the best book of non-fiction of 2016 but as the best book of any kind — Linda Burgess, THE SPINOFF (NEW ZEALAND)
[M]ost enticingly, in addition to uncovering some little-known stories and accounts, Sebba has contributed original research in the form of interviews with surviving participants. These bring valuable testimony from women who survived roundups, deportation and camps, resisted in various ways, witnessed arrests, battles and head-shavings, experienced privations and face complex ethical choices. Sebba approaches difficult subject matter with tact and respect, seeking to understand the decisions and motivations of women on all sides. — FRENCH HISTORY
Orion

Daughters of the Winter Queen

Nancy Goldstone
Authors:
Nancy Goldstone
Orion

Francis I

Leonie Frieda
Authors:
Leonie Frieda

Francis I (1494-1547) was inconstant, amorous, hot-headed and flawed. Yet he was also arguably the most significant king that France ever had. This is his story. A contemporary of Henry VIII of England, Francis saw himself as the first Renaissance king, a man who was the exemplar of courtly and civilised behaviour throughout Europe. A courageous and heroic warrior, he was also a keen aesthete, an accomplished diplomat and an energetic ruler who turned his country into a force to be reckoned with. Yet he was also capricious, vain and arrogant, taking hugely unnecessary risks, at least one of which nearly resulted in the end of his kingdom. His great feud with his nemesis Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor, defined European diplomacy and sovereignty, but his notorious alliance with the great Ottoman ruler Suleiman the Magnificent threatened to destroy everything. With access to never-before-seen private archives, Leonie Frieda's comprehensive and sympathetic account explores the life of the most human of all Renaissance monarchs - and the most enigmatic.Read by Carole Boyd(p) Orion Publishing Group 2018

W&N

Istanbul

Bettany Hughes
Authors:
Bettany Hughes

THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER'Life-filled and life-affirming history, steeped in romance and written with verve' GUARDIAN'Richly entertaining and impeccably reserached' Peter FrankopanIstanbul has always been a place where stories and histories collide and crackle, where the idea is as potent as the historical fact. From the Qu'ran to Shakespeare, this city with three names - Byzantium, Constantinople, Istanbul - resonates as an idea and a place, and overspills its boundaries - real and imagined. Standing as the gateway between the East and West, it has served as the capital of the Roman, Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman Empires. For much of its history it was known simply as The City, but, as Bettany Hughes reveals, Istanbul is not just a city, but a story. In this epic new biography, Hughes takes us on a dazzling historical journey through the many incarnations of one of the world's greatest cities. As the longest-lived political entity in Europe, over the last 6,000 years Istanbul has absorbed a mosaic of micro-cities and cultures all gathering around the core. At the latest count archaeologists have measured forty-two human habitation layers. Phoenicians, Genoese, Venetians, Jews, Vikings, Azeris all called a patch of this earth their home. Based on meticulous research and new archaeological evidence, this captivating portrait of the momentous life of Istanbul is visceral, immediate and scholarly narrative history at its finest.

W&N

The Woman on the Stairs

Bernhard Schlink
Authors:
Bernhard Schlink

For decades the painting was believed to be lost. But, just as mysteriously as it disappeared, it reappears, an anonymous donation to a gallery in Sydney. The art world is stunned but so are the three men who loved the woman in the painting, the woman on the stairs. One by one they track her down to an isolated cottage in Australia. Here they must try to untangle the lies and betrayals of their shared past - but time is running out. The Woman on the Stairs is an intricately-crafted, poignant and beguiling novel about creativity and love, about the effects of time passing and the regrets that haunt us all.

W&N

The Boys: Triumph Over Adversity

Martin Gilbert
Authors:
Martin Gilbert

In August 1945, the first of 732 child survivors of the Holocaust reached Britain. First settled in the Lake District, they formed a tightly knit group of friends whose terrible shared experience is almost beyond imagining. This is their story, which begins in the lost communities of pre-World War II central Europe, moves through ghetto, concentration camp and death march, to liberation, survival, and finally, fifty years later, a deeply moving reunion. Martin Gilbert has brought together the recollections of this remarkable group of survivors. With magisterial narration, he tells their astonishing stories. The Boys bears witness to the human spirit, enduring the depths, and bearing hopefully the burden and challenge of survival.'Martin Gilbert is to be congratulated on producing a masterly and deeply moving tribute to those who had the courage and luck to survive' Literary Review

W&N

Evelyn Waugh

Philip Eade
Authors:
Philip Eade

'Brisk, lively and wonderfully entertaining' John Banville'Excellent ... read this book' Literary Review'The best single-volume life of the author available' Irish TimesThe much mythologised author of Decline and Fall, A Handful of Dust and Brideshead Revisited was hailed by Graham Greene as 'the greatest novelist of my generation', yet reckoned by Hilaire Belloc to have been possessed by the devil. Evelyn Waugh's literary reputation has continued to rise since Greene's assessment in 1966. Fifty years after his death, Philip Eade draws on extensive unpublished sources to paint a fresh and compelling portrait of this endlessly fascinating man, telling the full story of his dramatic, colourful and frequently bizarre life.

Gateway

The End of This Day's Business

Murray Constantine
Authors:
Murray Constantine
W&N

Empires in the Sun

Lawrence James
Authors:
Lawrence James
W&N

Dolce Vita Confidential

Shawn Levy
Authors:
Shawn Levy

The Sunday Times Stage & Screen Book of the Year'A beautifully written walk on the wild side ... It oozes nostalgic glamour' The Times 'Uproariously readable ... Levy is a master of the group biography' Sunday Times From the ashes of the Second World War, Rome in the 1950s was reborn as the epicentre of film, fashion, tabloid media and bold-faced libertinism that made 'Italian' a global synonym for style and flair. A confluence of cultural contributions created a bright, burning moment in history: it was the heyday of fashion icons such as Pucci, whose superb craftsmanship set the standard for women's clothing for decades. Rome's huge movie studio, Cinecittà, also known as 'Hollywood on the Tiber', attracted a dizzying array of stars from Charlton Heston, Audrey Hepburn, Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner and Frank Sinatra to that stunning and combustible couple, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, who began their extramarital affair during the making of Cleopatra. And behind these stars trailed street photographers - Tazio Secchiaroli, Pierluigi Praturlon and Marcello Geppetti - who searched, waited and pounced on their subjects in pursuit of the most unflattering and dramatic portraits of fame. Fashionistas, exiles, moguls and martyrs flocked to Rome hoping for a chance to indulge in the glow of old money, new stars, fast cars, wanton libidos and brazen news photographers. The scene was captured nowhere better than in Federico Fellini's masterpiece, starring Marcello Mastroianni and the Swedish bombshell Anita Ekberg. La Dolce Vita was condemned for its licentiousness, when in fact Fellini was satirizing the decadence of Rome's bohemian scene. Colourful and richly informed, Dolce Vita Confidential recreates Rome's stunning ascent with vivid and compelling tales of its glitterati and artists, down to every last outrageous detail of the city's magnificent transformation.

Gateway

Proud Man

Murray Constantine
Authors:
Murray Constantine

Originally published in England in 1934, this searing, still timely novel offers and incisive critique of the sexual politics and militarism of England, and the West as a whole.Proud Man is told from the perspective of a "Genuine Person" who has been thrown back in time thousands of years from a peaceful future society. The Genuine Person comes from a people that are androgynous, self-fertilizing, and vegetarian; they live without a national government and artificial social divisions of gender and class. Taking on first female, then male form, the "Genuine Person" confronts the deeply troubled reality of England in the 1930s, still battered after one World War and on the road to another.

Gollancz

Swastika Night

Murray Constantine
Authors:
Murray Constantine

SWASTIKA NIGHT takes place seven hundred years after Nazism achieved power, by which time Adolf Hitler is worshipped as a god. Elsewhere, the Japanese rule the Americas, Australia, and Asia. Though Japan is the only rival superpower to the Nazi West, their inevitable wars always end in stalemate. The fascist Germans and Japanese suffer much difficulty in maintaining their populations, because of the physical degeneration of their women. The protagonist is an Englishman named Alfred on a German pilgrimage. In Europe, the English are loathed because they were the last opponents of Nazi Germany in the war. Per official history, Hitler is a tall, blond god who personally won the war. Alfred is astounded when shown a secret, historic photograph depicting Hitler and a girl before a crowd. He is shocked that Hitler was a small man with dark hair and a paunch. And his discovery may mean his death...

W&N

The Rival Queens

Nancy Goldstone
Authors:
Nancy Goldstone

'A gripping tale of royal feuds and divided kingdoms' - AMANDA FOREMANSet in Renaissance France at the magnificent court of the Valois kings, THE RIVAL QUEENS is the history of two remarkable women, a mother and daughter driven into opposition by a terrible betrayal that threatened to destroy the realm. Catherine de' Medici, the infamous queen mother of France, was a consummate pragmatist and powerbroker who dominated the throne for 30 years. Her youngest daughter Marguerite, the glamorous 'Queen Margot', was a passionate free spirit, the only adversary whom her mother could neither intimidate nor fully control. When Catherine forces the Catholic Marguerite to marry her Protestant cousin Henry of Navarre she creates not only savage conflict within France but also a potent rival within her own family. Treacherous court politics, poisonings, international espionage and adultery form the background to a story whose fascinating array of characters include such celebrated figures as Elizabeth I, Mary, Queen of Scots, and Nostradamus.

W&N

East West Street

Philippe Sands
Authors:
Philippe Sands

WINNER OF THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE FOR NON-FICTION AND JQ-WINGATE LITERARY PRIZESHORTLISTED FOR THE SLIGHTLY FOXED BEST FIRST BIOGRAPHY AWARD AND DUFF COOPER PRIZE'A monumental achievement: profoundly personal, told with love, anger and great precision' - John le Carré'A triumph of astonishing research ... No novel could possibly match such an important work of truth' - Antony Beevor'Magnificent ... I was moved to anger and to pity. In places I gasped, in places I wept. I wanted to reach the end. I couldn't wait to reach the end. And then when I got there I didn't want to be at the end' - The TimesWhen human rights lawyer Philippe Sands received an invitation to deliver a lecture in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv, he began to uncover a series of extraordinary historical coincidences. It set him on a quest that would take him halfway around the world in an exploration of the origins of international law and the pursuit of his own secret family history, beginning and ending with the last day of the Nuremberg trial. Part historical detective story, part family history, part legal thriller, Philippe Sands guides us between past and present as several interconnected stories unfold in parallel. The first is the hidden story of two Nuremberg prosecutors who discover, only at the end of the trial, that the man they are prosecuting may be responsible for the murder of their entire families in Nazi-occupied Poland, in and around Lviv. The two prosecutors, Hersch Lauterpacht and Rafael Lemkin, were remarkable men, whose efforts led to the inclusion of the terms 'crimes against humanity' and 'genocide' in the judgement at Nuremberg. The defendant, Hans Frank, Hitler's personal lawyer and Governor-General of Nazi-occupied Poland, turns out to be an equally compelling character.The lives of these three men lead Sands to a more personal story, as he traces the events that overwhelmed his mother's family in Lviv and Vienna during the Second World War. At the heart of this book is an equally personal quest to understand the roots of international law and the concepts that have dominated Sands' work as a lawyer. Eventually, he finds unexpected answers to his questions about his family, in this powerful meditation on the way memory, crime and guilt leave scars across generations, and the haunting gaps left by the secrets of others.

W&N

Blood and Fears

Kevin Wilson
Authors:
Kevin Wilson
W&N

The Romanovs

Simon Sebag Montefiore
Authors:
Simon Sebag Montefiore
Gateway

Dracula

Bram Stoker, Bryan Hitch
Contributors:
Bram Stoker, Bryan Hitch

'The mouth was redder than ever, for on the lips were gouts of fresh blood, which trickled from the corners of the mouth and ran over the chin and neck - It seemed as if the whole awful creature were simply gorged with blood; he lay like a filthy leech, exhausted with his repletion.'When Jonathan Harker visits Transylvania to help Count Dracula purchase a London house he is disturbed by the horrifying discoveries he makes in his client's castle. But worse, Harker's actions introduce Dracula to London. Soon afterwards, the Count embarks on a reign of seduction and terror. And all, it seems, who encounter the charismatic Eastern European aristocrat - a succession of madmen, physicians and beautiful women - are never seen in daylight again...Bram Stoker's DRACULA has inspired countless movies, books, and plays since it's first publication in 1897. Few, if any, have been fully faithful to Stoker's original, best-selling novel of mystery and horror, love and death, sin and redemption. But in DRACULA, Stoker created a new word for terror, a new myth to feed our nightmares, and a character who will outlive us all.

W&N

Berlin

Rory MacLean
Authors:
Rory MacLean

The first single-volume biography of Berlin, one of the world's great cities - told via twenty-one portraits, from medieval times to the twenty-first century.A city devastated by Allied bombs, divided by a Wall, then reunited and reborn, Berlin today resonates with the echo of lives lived, dreams realised and evils executed. No other city has repeatedly been so powerful and fallen so low. And few other cities have been so shaped and defined by individual imaginations.Through vivid portraits spanning five centuries, Rory MacLean reveals the varied and rich history of Berlin, from its brightest to its darkest moments. We encounter an ambitious prostitute refashioning herself as a princess, a Scottish mercenary fighting for the Prussian Army, Marlene Dietrich flaunting her sexuality and Hitler fantasising about the mega-city Germania. The result is a uniquely imaginative biography of one of the world's most volatile yet creative cities.

W&N

Israel

Anita Shapira
Authors:
Anita Shapira

Written by one of Israel's most notable scholars, this volume provides a breathtaking history of Israel from the origins of the Zionist movement in the late 19th century to the present day.Anita Shapira's gripping narrative explores the emergence of Zionism in Europe against the backdrop of relations among Jews, Arabs and Turks, and the earliest pioneer settlements in Palestine under Ottoman rule. Weaving together political, social and cultural developments in Palestine under the British mandate, Shapira creates a tapestry through which to understand the challenges of Israeli nation-building, including mass immigration, shifting cultural norms, the politics of war and world diplomacy, and the creation of democratic institutions and a civil society. References to contemporary diaries, memoirs and literature bring a human dimension to the story of Israel, from its declaration of independence in 1948 through successive decades of waging war, negotiating peace, and building a modern state with a vibrant society and culture.Based on archival sources and the most up-to-date scholarly research, this authoritative history is a must-read for anyone with a passionate interest in Israel and the Middle East. ISRAEL: A HISTORY will be the gold standard in the field for years to come.

W&N

Massacre At Montsegur: A History Of The Albigensian Crusade

Zoe Oldenbourg
Authors:
Zoe Oldenbourg
W&N

The Reader

Bernhard Schlink
Authors:
Bernhard Schlink