Tag: War What Is It Good For

Dance Or Die: From Stateless Refugee To International Ballet Star by Ahmad Joudeh

I love dance books, and often find them a source of luminous prose and inspiration. Couple this with the true story of a stateless ballet dancer who grew up and performed in war-torn Syria, and who is active in dancing and advocating for peace and for the rights of refugees worldwide, and I absolutely had …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/09/30/dance-or-die-from-stateless-refugee-to-international-ballet-star-by-ahmad-joudeh/

The Making of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes, Pt. 2

The Making of the Atomic Bomb turns 35 this year. My copy is a 25th anniversary edition, and it opens with the words, “More than seven decades after its conception under the looming storm front of the Second World War, the Manhattan Project is fading into myth.” The book itself was written and published in …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2021/09/26/the-making-of-the-atomic-bomb-by-richard-rhodes-pt-2/

Dark Age (Red Rising Saga #5) by Pierce Brown

With a book titled Dark Age in a futuristic series that consciously bases itself on Roman history, you know the contents are going to be pretty grim. Our hero from the start, Darrow of Lykos, is fighting a losing campaign on Mercury against the treacherous Gold-elevating Society led by the depraved Atalantia au Grimmus. His …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/08/12/dark-age-red-rising-saga-5-by-pierce-brown/

Forgotten Bastards of the Eastern Front by Serhii Plokhy

Forgotten Bastards of the Eastern Front

With Forgotten Bastards of the Eastern Front Serhii Plokhy delivers on his subtitle, “An Untold Story of World War II.” Not literally untold of course, but one that lived on mainly in the archived files, official histories, and small print runs of participants’ memoirs. Plokhy’s most useful source from a major publisher was The Strange …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2020/02/04/forgotten-bastards-of-the-eastern-front-by-serhii-plokhy/

The Silence Of The Girls by Pat Barker

The Silence Of The Girls by Pat Barker

Gosh, I still can’t get over how clunky that title is. That said, I was disappointed with this novel. Pat Barker’s Regeneration trilogy is one of the all-time best examinations of the horrors of war, and her skill at writing about armed conflict and the toll it takes on the men who fight in it …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/10/28/the-silence-of-the-girls-by-pat-barker/

The Making of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes, pt. 1

The Making of the Atomic Bomb

“Give it what it’s worth, Doug,” said my Cockney editor one afternoon before deadline when I asked how long a newspaper article should be. Richard Rhodes takes one of the most important stories in human history — the story of the discovery of atomic structure and how that structure could be opened up, releasing vast …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/09/26/the-making-of-the-atomic-bomb-by-richard-rhodes-pt-1/

Hitler’s Empire by Mark Mazower

In Hitler’s Empire Mark Mazower, a professor of history at Columbia University, describes how Nazi Germany ruled most of the rest of Europe. Briefly, Nazi rule was both incompetent and inhumane. In that sense, Mazower’s book does not break much new ground. Instead, it takes on several other interesting tasks. It situates Nazism “as an …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/05/19/hitlers-empire-by-mark-mazower/

Barbarossa by Alan Clark

Barbarossa by Alan Clark

So I asked the friend whose copy of Barbarossa I had acquired what the virtues were of an account published in 1965. He replied that Clark wrote clearly and was particularly good on the politicking among the German generals, and between the German high command and the leaders in the field. Thus encouraged, I picked …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2019/05/18/barbarossa-by-alan-clark/

The Last Days of New Paris by China Miéville

I should not have taken as long as I did to get through China Miéville’s novella, The Last Days of New Paris. The main story is less than 180 pages; the afterword tacks on another 15 or so, and I mostly did not read the notes that are appended afterward. That the words “get through” …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/03/07/the-last-days-of-new-paris-by-china-mieville/

Revolutionary Russia 1891–1991 by Orlando Figes

Orlando Figes’ title presents the essence of his argument: The Russian Revolution should be looked at over a much longer period than historians, and the interested public, usually give it. Revolutions succeeded in February and October of 1917 because they had been brewing for a long time; the Soviet Union claimed to be a revolutionary …

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/10/09/revolutionary-russia-1891-1991-by-orlando-figes/