Without question one of the best books ever written by an Englishman on the Turks' William Dalrymple
Philip Mansel's highly acclaimed history of Constantinople (formerly known as Byzantium) absorbingly charts the interaction between the vibrantly cosmopolitan capital - the city of the world's desire - and its ruling family.
In 1453, Mehmed the Conqueror entered Constantinople on a white horse, beginning an Ottoman love affair with the city that lasted until 1924, when the last Caliph hurri..
Orlando Figes' Crimea is a powerful history of the Crimean War, the conflict that dominated the nineteenth century. The Crimean War one of the fiercest battles in Russia's history, killing nearly a million men and completely redrawing the map of Europe. Pitting the Tsar's empire against an alliance of Britain, France and the Ottoman Empire, it was the first conflict to use photography, the telegraph and newspapers; a war over territory, from the Balkans to the Persian Gulf; a war of religion, dr..
The Crimean War was the most destructive conflict of Queen Victoria’s reign, the outcome of which was indecisive; most historians regard it as an irrelevant and unnecessary conflict despite its fame for Florence Nightingale and the Charge of the Light Brigade.
Here Hugh Small shows how the history of the Crimean War has been manipulated to conceal Britain’s – and Europe’s – failure. The war governments and early historians combined to withhold the truth from an already disappointed nation in ..
A major new history of the Crusades that illuminates the strength and sophistication of the Western and Muslim armies During the Crusades, the Western and Muslim armies developed various highly sophisticated strategies of both attack and defense, which evolved during the course of the battles. In this ambitious new work, Steve Tibble draws on a wide range of Muslim texts and archaeological evidence as well as more commonly cited Western sources to analyze the respective armies' strategy, adaptat..
From the bestselling author of The Templars.
'Voyages, battles, sieges and slaughter: Dan Jones's tumultuous and thrilling history of the crusades is one of the best' SUNDAY TIMES.
'A powerful story brilliantly told. Dan Jones writes with pace, wit and insight' HELEN CASTOR.
'A fresh and vibrant account of a conflict that raged across medieval centuries' JONATHAN PHILLIPS.
Dan Jones, best-selling chronicler of the Middle Ages, turns his attention to the history of the Crusades the sequence of..
European and Arab versions of the Crusades have little in common. For Arabs, the twelfth and thirteenth centuries were years of strenuous efforts to repel a brutal and destructive invasion by barbarian hordes. Under Saladin, an unstoppable Muslim army inspired by prophets and poets finally succeeded in destroying the most powerful Crusader kingdoms. The memory of this greatest and most enduring victory ever won by a non-European society against the West still lives in the minds of millions of Ar..
Released to coincide with a major BBC TV documentary series on the crusades presented by the author.
In the eleventh century, a vast Christian army, summoned to holy war by the pope, rampaged through the Muslim world of the eastern Mediterranean, seizing possession of Jerusalem, a city revered by both faiths. Over the two hundred years that followed this First Crusade, Islam and the West fought for dominion of the Holy Land, clashing in a succession of chillingly brutal wars, both firm in the..
SHORTLISTED FOR THE PEN HESSELL-TILTMAN PRIZE 2017
After the economic disaster of the Great Leap Forward that claimed tens of millions of lives between 1958 and 1962, an ageing Mao launched an ambitious scheme to shore up his reputation and eliminate those he viewed as a threat to his legacy. The stated goal of the Cultural Revolution was to purge the country of bourgeois, capitalist elements he claimed were threatening genuine communist ideology. But the Chairman also used the Cultural Revolut..
Cursed Victory tells the story of Israel's troubled presence in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, the Golan Heights and the Sinai Peninsula since its sweeping victory in the 1967 Six Day War. Drawing on countless high-level interviews, never-before-seen letters and top secret memos, distinguished Israeli historian Ahron Bregman traces the evolution of the military occupation over four decades. Cursed Victory provides vivid portraits of the key players in this unfolding drama, including Moshe Dayan, Bil..
For centuries much of Europe was in the hands of the very peculiar Habsburg family. An unstable mixture of wizards, obsessives, melancholics, bores, musicians and warriors, they saw off - through luck, guile and sheer mulishness - any number of rivals, until finally packing up in 1918. From their principal lairs along the Danube they ruled most of Central Europe and Germany and interfered everywhere - indeed the history of Europe hardly makes sense without them.
Simon Winder's extremely funny..
From award-winning historian Mark Mazower, Dark Continent: Europe's Twentieth Century retells the story of a century of division, charting the struggles of rival ideologies to create a new world order for mankind.
The end of the First World War saw old empires swept away and the opportunity to build a better society from the ruins. Yet the result was division and bloodshed on an unprecedented scale, as liberal democracy, communism and fascism struggled against one another for mastery of the w..
In The Darkening Age, Catherine Nixey tells the little-known - and deeply shocking - story of how a militant religion deliberately tried to extinguish the teachings of the Classical world, ushering in unquestioning adherence to the 'one true faith'.
The Roman Empire had been generous in embracing and absorbing new creeds. But with the coming of Christianity, everything changed. This new faith, despite preaching peace, was violent, ruthless and intolerant. And once it became the religion of em..
From the prize-winning screenwriter of The Theory of Everything, this is a cinematic, behind-the-scenes account of a crucial moment which takes us inside the mind of one of the world's greatest leaders - and provides a revisionist, more rounded portrait of his leadership.
May, 1940. Britain is at war, European democracies are falling rapidly and the public are unaware of this dangerous new world. Just days after his unlikely succession to Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, faces this horror -..
'The book to read' GQ
'A revelatory book' John Lewis-Stempel
While the laws that guide our lives are written by the politicians we elect, much of the world around us - from the food we eat to the products we buy to the medications we take - is shaped by private negotiations and business deals few of us know about.
For twenty years, Peretti has interviewed the people behind the decisions that have altered our world, from CEOs of multinational corporations to politicians, economists, and ..
Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, published between 1776 and 1788, is the undisputed masterpiece of English historical writing which can only perish with the language itself. Its length alone is a measure of its monumental quality: seventy-one chapters, of which twenty-eight appear in full in this edition. With style, learning and wit, Gibbon takes the reader through the history of Europe from the second century AD to the fall of Constantinople in 1453 - an enthralling account by 't..
It proposes a convincing contemporary answer answer to an ages-old mystery and conundrum: why, in the seventh century CE, did the seemingly powerful and secure Sasanian empire of Persia succumb so quickly and disastrously to the all-conquering Arab armies of Islam? Offering an impressive appraisal of the Sasanians' nemesis at the hands of the Arab forces which scythed all before them, the author suggests a bold solution to the enigma. On the face of it, the collapse of the Sasanians - given thei..
From the secretary of state and bestselling author - a sweeping look at the global struggle for democracy and why America must continue to support the cause of human freedom.
From the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union to the ongoing struggle for human rights in the Middle East, Condoleezza Rice has served on the front lines of history. In this book, Rice explains what these epochal events teach us about democracy.
When the United States was founded, it was the only a..
The dictator who grew so rich on his country's cocoa crop that he built a 35-storey-high basilica in the jungles of the Ivory Coast. The austere, incorruptible leader who has shut Eritrea off from the world in a permanent state of war and conscripted every adult into the armed forces. In Equatorial Guinea, the paranoid despot who thought Hitler was the saviour of Africa and waged a relentless campaign of terror against his own people. The Libyan army officer who authored a new work of political ..
A New Statesman, Financial Times and Economist Book of the Year
'Brilliant' NEW STATESMAN, BOOKS OF THE YEAR
'Enlightening and a good read' SPECTATOR
'Moving and perceptive' NEW STATESMAN
Mussolini, Hitler, Stalin, Mao Zedong, Kim Il-sung, Ceausescu, Mengistu of Ethiopia and Duvalier of Haiti.
No dictator can rule through fear and violence alone. Naked power can be grabbed and held temporarily, but it never suffices in the long term. A tyrant who can compel his own people to acclaim him wil..
Cook's great voyages marked the end of an era in world history. As he sailed into Hawaii in January 1778 he made contact with the last of the human civilizations to grow up independently of the rest of the world. But equally for the Polynesians and Melanesians of the Pacific, Cook's arrival in their midst merely marked a further (if disastrous) twist in diverse histories already many centuries old.
In this immensely enjoyable and absorbing book Cook's journeys are reimagined, attempting tolea..
‘If great books encourage you to look at the world in an entirely new way, then Dominion is a very great book indeed . . . Written with terrific learning, enthusiasm and good humour, Holland’s book is not just supremely provocative, but often very funny’ Sunday Times History Book of the Year
Christianity is the most enduring and influential legacy of the ancient world, and its emergence the single most transformative development in Western history. Even the increasing number in the West today w..
Already a classic, this landmark account of early Western thought now appears in a new edition with expanded coverage of the Middle Ages.
The Dream of Reason takes a fresh look at the writings of the great thinkers of classic philosophy and questions many pieces of conventional wisdom. The book invites comparison with Bertrand Russell's monumental History of Western Philosophy, "but Gottlieb's book is less idiosyncratic and based on more recent scholarship" (Colin McGinn, Los Angeles Times).
'Powerful . . . there is rage in his ink. McKay's book grips by its passion and originality. Some 25,000 people perished in the firestorm that raged through the city. I have never seen it better described' Max Hastings, Sunday Times
In February 1945 the Allies obliterated Dresden, the 'Florence of the Elbe'. Explosive bombs weighing over 1,000 lbs fell every seven and a half seconds and an estimated 25,000 people were killed. Was Dresden a legitimate military target or was the bombing a last ac..
Part of the Ladybird Expert History of the Second World War series, The Eastern Front 1941-1944, is an authoritative and accessible introduction to the brutal confrontation between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union along a 1,200 mile front.
Historian, author and broadcaster James Holland draws on the latest research and interviews with participants to bring colour, detail and a fresh perspective to the story of the largest military campaign in history.
Inside, you'll discover how tactics, ..
Meticulously researched and vividly written, Eight Days at Yalta is a remarkable work of intense historical drama.
In the last winter of the Second World War, Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin arrived in the Crimean resort of Yalta. Over eight days of bargaining, bombast and intermittent bonhomie they decided on the conduct of the final stages of the war against Germany, on how a defeated and occupied Germany should be governed, on the constitution of the nascent United..
This book is the winner of the 2015 Bancroft Prize and the 2015 Philip Taft Prize. It is the finalist for the 2015 Pulizter Prize for History and shortlisted for the 2015 Cundill Prize in Historical Literature.
For about 900 years, from 1000 to 1900, cotton was the world's most important manufacturing industry. It remains a vast business - if all the cotton bales produced in 2013 had been stacked on top of each other they would have made a somewhat unstable tower 40,000 miles high. Sven Becke..
‘A dense narrative and a wealth of examples’ Literary Review
‘Reid-Henry narrates this story with elegance and gusto’ Washington Post
‘[Reid-Henry] conveys an important message: Individual political action must become accountable to society’s interests’ Kirkus
‘Reid-Henry’s scholarship is impressive, gathering a wide range of historical anecdotes and referencing a diverse set of thinkers’ Publishers Weekly
The first panoramic history of the Western world from the 1970s to the present day: Em..
The revolutionary new understanding of how the gun trade facilitated the expansion of the British Empire and changed the course of world history.History teaches that from the seventeenth to the nineteenth century the industrial revolution transformed Britain from an agricultural and artisanal economy to one dominated by industry and machine, ushering in unprecedented growth in technology and trade and putting the country at the centre of the world.In Empire of Guns, prize-winning historian Priya..
Abducted by slave traders from her home in Ruthenia – modern-day Ukraine – around 1515, Roxelana was brought to Istanbul and trained in the palace harem as a concubine for Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent, ruler of the Ottoman Empire and one of the world’s most powerful men.Suleyman became besotted with Roxelana and foreswore all other concubines, freeing and marrying her. The bold and canny Roxelana became a shrewd diplomat and philanthropist, helping Suleyman keep pace with a changing world in ..
ECONOMIST, SUNDAY TIMES, FINANCIAL TIMES AND GUARDIAN BOOKS OF THE YEAR 2017
'Comprehensive and compelling ... A nuanced, landmark study that has deservedly won plaudits from both Palestinian and Israeli historians' Justin Marozzi, The Times
A century after Britain's Balfour Declaration promised a Jewish 'national home' in Palestine, veteran Guardian journalist Ian Black has produced a major new history of one of the most polarising conflicts of the modern age.
Drawing on a wide range o..
Between July 1920 and February 1921, in the territory known as Mesopotamia (now the modern state of Iraq), an Arab revolt came perilously close to inflicting a shattering defeat upon the British Empire. A huge peasant army besieged British garrisons with sand-bagged entrenchments and bombarded them with captured artillery; columns and armoured trains were ambushed and destroyed; and well-armed gunboats were sunk or captured. Britain's quest for oil was central to its Middle East policy during th..
In The English and their History, the first full-length account to appear in one volume for many decades, Robert Tombs gives us the history of the English people, and of how the stories they have told about themselves have shaped them, from the prehistoric 'dreamtime' through to the present day
If a nation is a group of people with a sense of kinship, a political identity and representative institutions, then the English have a claim to be the oldest nation in the world. They first came ..
Shortlisted for the Stanford Dolman Travel Book of the Year 2020
'A thought-provoking treatise interwoven with blistered-feet-on-the-ground accounts of spots both pretty and gritty' National Geographic
'Compelling, thought-provoking, and courageous, this epic-poetic journey peels back layers of collective emotional and imaginative inheritance. Jubber gets under the skin of our complicated continent and his timing is dead right' Kapka Kassabova
'A genuine epic' Wanderlust
'The prose is colou..
A 'brilliant and sobering' (Paul Kennedy, Wall Street Journal) look at the history and human costs of pandemic outbreaks.
'The World Economic Forum #1 book to read for context on the coronavirus outbreak.'
This sweeping exploration of the impact of epidemic diseases looks at how mass infectious outbreaks have shaped society, from the Black Death to today, and in a new preface addresses the global threat of COVID-19. In a clear and accessible style, Frank M. Snowden reveals the ways that diseas..
The ancient Greeks gave us our alphabet and much of our scientific, medical and cultural language; they invented democracy, atomic theory, and the rules of logic and geometry; laid the foundations of philosophy, history, tragedy and comedy; and debated everything from the good life and the role of women, to making sense of foreigners and the best form of government, all in the most sophisticated terms.
But who were they? In Eureka!, Peter Jones tells their epic story, which begins with the Tr..
The conventional narrative of the Second World War is well known: after six years of brutal fighting on land, sea and in the air, the Allied Powers prevailed and the Nazi regime was defeated. But as in so many things, the truth is somewhat different. Bringing a fresh eye to bear on a story we think we know, Norman Davies.Davies forces us to look again at those six years and to discard the usual narrative of Allied good versus Nazi evil, reminding us that the war in Europe was dominated by two ev..
'Magnificent. Beautifully written, immaculately researched and thoroughly absorbing from start to finish. A tour de force that explains how Europe's cultural life transformed during the course of the 19th century - and so much more' Peter Frankopan
From the bestselling author of Natasha's Dance, The Europeans is richly enthralling, panoramic cultural history of nineteenth-century Europe, told through the intertwined lives of three remarkable people: a great singer, Pauline Viardot, a great writ..
Exodus is an insightful, expert foray into the explosive issue of immigration, from Paul Collier, award-winning economist and author of The Bottom Billion
Mass international migration is a response to extreme global inequality, and immigration has a profound impact on the way we live. Yet our views - and those of our politicians - remain caught between two extremes: popular hostility to migrants, tinged by xenophobia and racism; and the view of business and liberal elites that 'open doors' ar..
Celt si crestin, print si sfant, acest om remarcabil din secolul sase a fost cunoscut drept Colmcille in Irlanda natala si drept Clumba din Iona in Scotia si in restul lumii. Cartea prezinta povestea lui si a lumii in care a trait si in care a jucat un rol politic important ca sfetnic al regilor si marilor capetenii din Irlanda si Scotia si ca intemeietor al manastirii din Iona, unde a dezvoltat arta manuscriselor...
SUNDAY TIMES TOP TEN BESTSELLER
The final destruction of the Ottoman Empire - one of the great epics of the First World War, from bestselling historian Eugene Rogan
For some four centuries the Ottoman Empire had been one of the most powerful states in Europe as well as ruler of the Middle East. By 1914 it had been drastically weakened and circled by numerous predators waiting to finish it off. Following the Ottoman decision to join the First World War on the side of the Central Powers the ..
A sweeping narrative of the decline and fall of the Roman Empire.
The Fall of the Roman Empire has been a best-selling subject since the 18th century. Since then, over 200 very diverse reasons have been advocated for the collapse of the western half of the Roman Empire. Until very recently, the academic view embarrassedly downplayed the violence and destruction, in an attempt to provide a more urbane account of late antiquity: barbarian invasions were mistakenly described as the movement of p..
SHORTLISTED FOR THE SALTIRE NON-FICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR
A SCOTSMAN BOOK OF THE YEAR, 2016
Buildings are more like us than we realise. They can be born into wealth or poverty, enjoying every privilege or struggling to make ends meet. They have parents -- gods, kings and emperors, governments, visionaries and madmen -- as well as friends and enemies. They have duties and responsibilities. They can endure crises of faith and purpose. They can succeed or fail. They can live. And, sooner or la..
You’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts
Fantasy is the USA’s primary product. From the Pilgrim Fathers onward America has been a place where renegades and freaks came in search of freedom to create their own realities with little objectively regulated truth standing in their way. The freedom to invent and believe whatever the hell you like is, in some ways, an unwritten constitutional right. But, this do-your-own-thing freedom also is the driving credo of America's current ..
A personal and urgent examination of Fascism in the twentieth century and how its legacy shapes today’s world, written by one of America’s most admired public servants, the first woman to serve as U.S. secretary of state.
A Fascist, observes Madeleine Albright, ‘is someone who claims to speak for a whole nation or group, is utterly unconcerned with the rights of others, and is willing to use violence and whatever other means are necessary to achieve the goals he or she might have.’
After Germany’s humiliating World War II defeat, numerous German generals published memoirs claiming that their country’s brilliant military leadership had been undermined by the Führer’s erratic decision making. The author of three highly acclaimed books on the era, Stephen Fritz upends this characterization of Hitler as an ill-informed fantasist and demonstrates the ways in which his strategy was coherent and even competent. That Hitler saw World War II as the only way to retrieve Germany’s fo..
An authoritative and poignant account of the first millennium of Christian history How did a community that was largely invisible in the first two centuries of its existence go on to remake the civilizations it inhabited, culturally, politically, and intellectually? Beginning with the life of Jesus, Robert Louis Wilken narrates the dramatic spread and development of Christianity over the first thousand years of its history. Moving through the formation of early institutions, practices, and belie..
A. J. P. Taylor was one of the most acclaimed and uncompromising historians of the twentieth century. In this clear, lively and now-classic account of the First World War, he tells the story of the conflict from the German advance in the West, through the Marne, Gallipoli, the Balkans and the War at Sea to the offensives of 1918 and the state of Europe after the war. Containing photographs and maps, this an essential history of the war that 'cut deep into the consciousness of modern man'...
Humanity's last major source of food from the wild, and how it enabled and shaped the growth of civilization In this history of fishing-not as sport but as sustenance-archaeologist and best-selling author Brian Fagan argues that fishing was an indispensable and often overlooked element in the growth of civilization. It sustainably provided enough food to allow cities, nations, and empires to grow, but it did so with a different emphasis. Where agriculture encouraged stability, fishing demanded m..
THE #1 SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER WINNER OF THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE FOR NONFICTION 2019 'An angry and important work of historical detection, calling time on the misogyny that has fed the Ripper myth. Powerful and shaming' GUARDIANPolly, Annie, Elizabeth, Catherine and Mary-Jane are famous for the same thing, though they never met. They came from Fleet Street, Knightsbridge, Wolverhampton, Sweden and Wales. They wrote ballads, ran coffee houses, lived on country estates, they breathed ink-dust fr..
'Many books claim to tell an "unknown" story of the Second World War. Few of them actually do. Forgotten Bastards is a rare exception . . . This is gripping history' Duncan Weldon, Prospect
A riveting story of World War II from the author of Chernobyl, winner of the Baillie Gifford Prize for non-fiction
In November 1943, with the outcome of the Second World War hanging in the balance, the Allies needed a new plan. The Americans' audacious suggestion to the Soviets was to open a second air fron..
In this vast and vivid panorama of history, Martin Meredith, bestselling author of The State of Africa, follows the fortunes of Africa over a period of 5,000 years. With compelling narrative, he traces the rise and fall of ancient kingdoms and empires; the spread of Christianity and Islam; the enduring quest for gold and other riches; the exploits of explorers and missionaries; and the impact of European colonisation. He examines, too, the fate of modern African states and concludes with a glimp..