History = Their Stories (59 books)

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Life is a trip...

Mother's Day

History gets up close and personal thanks to these intimate looks at historical events, and the perspectives of people who lived them.

 

When the Mississippi Ran Backwards

by Jay Feldman

On December 15, 1811, two of Thomas Jefferson's nephews murdered a slave in cold blood and put his body parts into a roaring fire. The evidence would have been destroyed but for a rare act of God -- or, as some...


Untouchables: My Family's Triumphant Journey Out of the Caste System in Modern India

by Narendra Jadhav

Every sixth human being in the world today is an Indian, and every sixth Indian is an untouchable. For thousands of years the untouchables, or Dalits, the people at the bottom of the Hindu caste system, have...


Uncle Tom's Children

by Richard Wright

Set in the American Deep South, each of the powerful novellas collected here concerns an aspect of the lives of black people in the post-slavery era, exploring their resistance to white racism and oppression....


Thunderstruck

by Erik Larson

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Devil in the White City, a true story of love, murder, and the end of the world’s “great hush”

In Thunderstruck, Erik Larson tells the interwoven stories...


Threads and Flames

by Esther Friesner

It's 1910, and thirteen-year-old Raisa has just traveled alone from a small Polish shtetl all the way to New York City. It's overwhelming, awe-inspiring, and even dangerous, especially when she discovers that...


The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration

National Book Critics Circle for General Non-fiction 2010

by Isabel Wilkerson

One of The New York Times Book Review’s 10 Best Books of the Year

In this epic, beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of...


The Sentimentalists

by Johanna Skibsrud

The Scotiabank Giller Prize-winning novel by Johanna Skibsrud. Haunted by the vivid horrors of the Vietnam War, exhausted from years spent battling his memories, Napoleon Haskell leaves his North Dakota trailer...


The Secret of Chanel No. 5

by Tilar J. Mazzeo

The unauthorized biography of the world's most famous, seductive, and successful perfume

With its rich golden hue, art deco–inspired bottle, and timeless, musky scent, Chanel No. 5 is the world's bestselling...


The Poet of Baghdad: A True Story of Love and Defiance

by Jo Tatchell

In the winter of 1979 Nabeel Yasin, Iraq's most famous young poet, gathered together a handful of belongings and fled Iraq with his wife and son. Life in Baghdad had become intolerable. Silenced by a series...


The Memory of All That

by Katharine Weber

The Memory of All That is Katharine Weber’s memoir of her extraordinary family. 

Her maternal grandmother, Kay Swift, was known both for her own music (she was the first woman to compose the score to a hit...


The Map That Changed the World

by Simon Winchester

In 1793, a canal digger named William Smith made a startling discovery. He found that by tracing the placement of fossils, which he uncovered in his excavations, one could follow layers of rocks as they dipped...


The Manhattan Project: The Birth of the Atomic Bomb in the Words of Its Creators, Eyewitnesses, and Historians

by CynthiaC. Kelly & Richard Rhodes

The first collection ever of the writings and insights of the original creators of the atomic bomb, along with pieces by the most important historians and interpreters of the subject, is now in paperback.

Born...


The Man Who Made Lists: Love, Death, Madness, and the Creation of Roget's Thesaurus

by Joshua Kendall

In the tradition of The Professor and the Madman, a "brisk and vivid"( Los Angeles Times) account of an obsessive scholar.

Polymath, eccentric, and synonym aficionado, Peter Mark Roget had a host of female admirers,...


The Jade Peony

Trillium Book Award 1996

by Wayson Choy

The Jade Peony is a 2010 Canada Reads Selection! Chinatown, Vancouver, in the late 1930s and '40s provides the setting for this poignant first novel, told through the vivid and intense reminiscences of the three...


The Interpreter

by Alice Kaplan

No story of World War II is more triumphant than the liberation of France, made famous in countless photos of Parisians waving American flags and kissing GIs, as columns of troops paraded down the Champs Élysées....


The Help

by Kathryn Stockett

Visit www.penguin.com for the latest news, tour information and more.

Listen to an excerpt from the audiobook.

The wildly popular New York Times bestseller and reading group favorite

Aibileen is a black maid in...


The Good War: An Oral History of World War II

Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction 1985

by Studs Terkel

The Good War for which Terkel won the Pulitzer Prize, is a testament not only to the experience of war but to the extraordinary skill of Terkel as interviewer. As always, Terkel’s subjects are open and unrelenting...


The Good Daughter: A Memoir of My Mother's Hidden Life

by Jasmin Darznik

We were a world of two, my mother and I, until I started turning into an American girl. That's when she began telling me about The Good Daughter. It became a taunt, a warning, an omen.

Jasmin Darznik came to...


The Forgotten Founding Father: Noah Webster's Obsession and the Creation of an American Culture

by Joshua Kendall

Noah Webster's name is now synonymous with the dictionary he created, but his story is not nearly so ubiquitous. Now acclaimed author of The Man Who Made Lists, Joshua Kendall sheds new light on Webster's life,...


The Eyes of Willie McGee: A Tragedy of Race, Sex, and Secrets in the Jim Crow South

by Alex Heard

A gripping saga of race and retribution in the Deep South and a story whose haunting details echo the themes of To Kill a Mockingbird

In 1945, Willie McGee, a young African-American man from Laurel, Mississippi,...


The Dentist of Auschwitz: A Memoir

by Benjamin Jacobs

" In 1941 Berek Jakubowicz (now Benjamin Jacobs) was deported from his Polish village and remained a prisoner of the Reich until the final days of the war. His possession of a few dental tools and rudimentary...


The Day Nina Simone Stopped Singing

by Darina Al-Joundi & Mohamed Kacimi

The wild ride of a young woman’s sexual rebellion in war-torn Beirut.


The Cost of Sugar

by Cynthia McLeod

The Cost of Sugar is an intriguing history of those rabid times in Dutch Surinam between 1765-1779 when sugar was king. Told through the eyes of two Jewish step sisters, Eliza and Sarith, descendants of the...


The Cellist of Sarajevo

by Steven Galloway

A spare and haunting, wise and beautiful novel about war and the endurance of the human spirit and the subtle ways individuals reclaim their humanity.

In a city under siege, four people whose lives have been...


The Buddha in the Attic

PEN/Faulkner Award 2012

by Julie Otsuka

Winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award For Fiction

National Book Award and Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist

A New York Times Notable Book

A gorgeous novel by the celebrated author of When the Emperor Was Divine...


The Auslander

by Paul Dowswell

When Peter's parents are killed, he is sent to an orphanage in Warsaw, Poland. But Peter is Volksdeutscher-of German blood. With his blond hair and blue eyes, he looks just like the boy on the Hitler Youth poster....


The Anatomy of a Moment

by Javier Cercas

A riveting, unconventional work of literary nonfiction-a reconsideration of a 1981 coup in Spain and the fictions we weave into our national narratives.


Stalin's Children

by Owen Matthews

On a mid-summer day in 1937, a car pulled up to the house of the Bibikov family in Chernigov in the heart of the Ukraine. Boris, the father, kissed his two daughters and wife goodbye and disappeared inside the...


Spy Dust: Two Masters of Disguise Reveal the Tools and Operations that Helped Win the Cold War

by Antonio Mendez, Jonna Mendez & Bruce Henderson

From the author of the Golden Globe winner and Oscar nominated Argo, a true-life thriller set against the backdrop of the Cold War, which unveils the life of an American spy from the inside and dramatically...


Small Acts of Amazing Courage

by Gloria Whelan

Kindness has incredible consequences in this compelling novel set in colonial India from a “master storyteller” (Publishers Weekly) and National Book Award-winning author.

It is India, 1918, six months after...


Remembering Jim Crow: African Americans Tell about Life in the Segregated South

by William Henry Chafe & Gavins

Published in association with Lyndhurst Books of the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University.

Remembering Jim Crow: African Americans Tell About Life in the Segregated South is the "viscerally powerful......


Passionate Minds

by David Bodanis

It was 1733 when the poet and philosopher Voltaire met Emilie du Châtelet, a beguiling-and married—aristocrat who would one day popularize Newton's arcane ideas and pave the way for Einstein's theories. In...


Lucky Child: A Daughter of Cambodia Reunites with the Sister She Left Behind

by Loung Ung

After enduring years of hunger, deprivation, and devastating loss at the hands of the Khmer Rouge, ten-year-old Loung Ung became the "lucky child," the sibling chosen to accompany her eldest brother to America...


Lilla's Feast: One Woman's True Story of Love and War in the Orient

by Frances Osborne

At the end of her life, Frances Osborne’s one-hundred-year-old great-grandmother Lilla was as elegant as ever–all fitted black lace and sparkling-white diamonds. To her great-grandchildren, Lilla was both...


Letters to Jackie: Condolences from a Grieving Nation

by Ellen Fitzpatrick

It is perhaps the most memorable event of the twentieth century, a moment that left a family and a nation mourning, one that many Americans recall as their first historical memory—the assassination of President...


Last Man Out: Surviving the Burma-Thailand Death Railway: A Memoir

by H. Robert Charles

From June 1942 to October 1943, more than 100,000 Allied POWs who had been forced into slave labor by the Japanese died building the infamous Burma-Thailand Death Railway, an undertaking immortalized in the...


Journey to a Revolution

by Michael Korda

The Hungarian Revolution of 1956 was perhaps the most dramatic single event of the Cold War and a major turning point in history. Though it ended unsuccessfully, the spontaneous uprising of Hungarians against...


Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

by Harriet Jacobs & Nell Painter

A haunting, evocative recounting of her life as a slave in North Carolina and of her final escape and emancipation, Harriet Jacobs's classic narrative, written between 1853 and 1858 and published pseduonymously...


In the Name of Salome

by Julia Alvarez

In her most ambitious work since In the Time of Butterflies, Julia Alvarez tells the story of a woman whose poetry inspired one Caribbean revolution and of her daughter whose dedication to teaching strengthened...


In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin

by Erik Larson

Erik Larson, New York Times bestselling author of Devil in the White City, delivers a remarkable story set during Hitler’s rise to power.

The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s...


In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer

by Irene Opdyke & Jennifer Armstrong

IRENE GUT WAS just 17 in 1939, when the Germans and Russians devoured her native Poland. Just a girl, really. But a girl who saw evil and chose to defy it.

“No matter how many Holocaust stories one has read,...


How I Learned to Smoke: An American Girl in Iran

by Jane Galer

This coming of age memoir, set in the 1960's at the height of the Shah's rule, spans six years of Jane Galer's life spent in Abadan, Iran and Beirut, Lebanon. It is a clear-eyed, funny, and sometimes chilling...


Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression

by Studs Terkel

In this unique recreation of one of the most dramatic periods in modern American history, Studs Terkel recaptures the Great Depression of the 1930s in all its complexity. featuring a mosaic of memories from...


Gringo: A Coming of Age in Latin America

by Chesa Boudin

Gringo charts two journeys, both of which began a decade ago. The first is the sweeping transformation of Latin American politics that started with Hugo Chávez's inauguration as president of Venezuela in 1999....


Foreign Correspondence: A Pen Pal's Journey from Down Under to All Over

by Geraldine Brooks

As a young girl in a working-class neighborhood of Sydney, Australia, Geraldine Brooks longed to discover the places where history happens and culture comes from, so she enlisted pen pals who offered her a window...


Flying Cloud

by David W. Shaw

Flying Cloud is the riveting and thoroughly researched tale of a truly unforgettable sea voyage during the days of the California gold rush. In 1851, navigator Eleanor Creesy set sail on the maiden voyage of...


Flory: Survival in the Valley of Death

by Flory Van Beek

In 1939, as the Nazi occupation grew from threat to reality, the Jewish population throughout Europe faced heart-wrenching decisions—to flee and lose their homes or to go into hiding, hoping against all odds...


Esquire Presents: What It Feels Like: *To Walk on the Moon*To Be Gored by a Bull*To Survive an Avalanche *To Swallow S words*To Go Over Niagara Falls

by A.J. Jacobs

Have you ever wondered what it feels like:

to be stuck in a tornado?

“[It] is exactly the feel of a freight train approaching—that low, ever-louder howl and the shuddering ground.”

to participate in an orgy?...


Electric Universe: The Shocking True Story of Electricity

by David Bodanis

In his bestselling E=mc2, David Bodanis led us, with astonishing ease, through the world’s most famous equation. Now, in Electric Universe, he illuminates the wondrous yet invisible force that permeates our...


Eden Hunter

by Skip Horack

In 1816, five years after being captured and sold into slavery, Kau, a pygmy tribesman, flees south into the Florida wilderness, determined to find a place where he can once again live in harmony with nature....


Doc Holliday: The Life and Legend

by Gary L. Roberts

"You can't beat this story for drama. . . . An omnibus of everything ever known, spoken, or written about Doc Holliday."

-Publishers Weekly

"An engagingly written, persuasively argued, solidly documented work...


Counting on Grace

by Elizabeth Winthrop

1910. Pownal, Vermont. At 12, Grace and her best friend Arthur must leave school and go to work as a “doffers” on their mothers’ looms in the mill. Grace’s mother is the best worker, fast and powerful,...


City Boy

by Edmund White

An irresistible literary treat: a memoir of the social and sexual lives of New York City's cultural and intellectual in-crowd in the tumultuous 1970s, from acclaimed author Edmund White.


Citizens of London: The Americans Who Stood with Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour

by Lynne Olson

The acclaimed author of Troublesome Young Men reveals the behind-the-scenes story of how the United States forged its wartime alliance with Britain, told from the perspective of three key American players...


Charms for the Easy Life

by Kaye Gibbons

Margaret struggles toward adulthood in a world torn apart by the Second World War and complicated by her strong-willed mother, Sophia, and grandmother, Charlie Kate, in a story about three generations of passionate,...


Anne Frank's Tales from the Secret Annex

by Anne Frank

Hiding from the Nazis in the "Secret Annexe"  of an old office building in Amsterdam, a  thirteen-year-old girl named Anne Frank became a writer.  The now famous diary of her private life and  thoughts...


American Nightingale: The Story of Frances Slanger, Forgotten Heroine of Normandy

by Bob Welch

Of the 350,000 American women in uniform during World War II, none instilled more hope in American GIs than Frances Slanger. In Army fatigues and helmet she splashed ashore with the first nurses to hit the Normandy...


A Taste of Honey: Stories

by Jabari Asim

Poignant and powerful, this debut collection from preeminent writer and critic Jabari Asim heralds his arrival as an exciting new voice in African American fiction.

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A People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present

by Howard Zinn

Since its original landmark publication in 1980, A People's History of the United States has been chronicling American history from the bottom up, throwing out the official version of history taught in schools–with...


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