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Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
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Fort Bend Owl Offline
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Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
I just finished reading a really good one by David Grann called 'Killers of the Flower Moon' which details the reign of terror of the killings of the Osage Indians in the 1920's to get their oil wealth (it also talks about the birth of the FBI). Very good book, especially if you weren't as familiar with the story as some may be (I realize other sources have talked about the Osage murders but I guess they've escaped my reading and viewing lists). I may try one of his other books (Lost City of Z seems interesting).

I love the Erik Larson genre of historical non-fiction books about interesting murders. My favorites from Larson are Isaac's Storm (well that's more about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 so no true killing spree by a serial killer but it's a fascinating and quick read nonetheless). But my favorite by him is Devil and the White City which talks about the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago and Dr. H.H. Holmes, who many have called America's first serial killer. That one is a great read and I can't believe it hasn't been turned into a film yet.

Any other suggestions in that genre?
12-25-2017 10:53 AM
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AdoptedMonarch Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
(12-25-2017 10:53 AM)Fort Bend Owl Wrote:  I just finished reading a really good one by David Grann called 'Killers of the Flower Moon' which details the reign of terror of the killings of the Osage Indians in the 1920's to get their oil wealth (it also talks about the birth of the FBI). Very good book, especially if you weren't as familiar with the story as some may be (I realize other sources have talked about the Osage murders but I guess they've escaped my reading and viewing lists). I may try one of his other books (Lost City of Z seems interesting).

I love the Erik Larson genre of historical non-fiction books about interesting murders. My favorites from Larson are Isaac's Storm (well that's more about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 so no true killing spree by a serial killer but it's a fascinating and quick read nonetheless). But my favorite by him is Devil and the White City which talks about the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago and Dr. H.H. Holmes, who many have called America's first serial killer. That one is a great read and I can't believe it hasn't been turned into a film yet.

Any other suggestions in that genre?

"Killers of the Flower Moon" was one of my Christmas gifts. I am looking forward to it.

I've enjoyed all of the Larsen books you mention. Another of that quality and similar subject matter is "The Devil in the Grove" by Gilbert King. It follows the efforts of the NCAA to prosecute lynchings in Florida.
12-26-2017 06:41 AM
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DogPoundNorth Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
If you are at all interested in non American history, I can't recommend Eureka Street: A Novel of Ireland Like No Other by Robert McLiam Wilson enough. It's a great book about a couple of friends, one a rough and tumble Catholic, the other, a chubby Protestant boy with big dreams, trying to live a life in the war zone that was Belfast in the mid 90s.
12-26-2017 08:34 AM
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Lush Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
(12-25-2017 10:53 AM)Fort Bend Owl Wrote:  I just finished reading a really good one by David Grann called 'Killers of the Flower Moon' which details the reign of terror of the killings of the Osage Indians in the 1920's to get their oil wealth (it also talks about the birth of the FBI). Very good book, especially if you weren't as familiar with the story as some may be (I realize other sources have talked about the Osage murders but I guess they've escaped my reading and viewing lists). I may try one of his other books (Lost City of Z seems interesting).

I love the Erik Larson genre of historical non-fiction books about interesting murders. My favorites from Larson are Isaac's Storm (well that's more about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 so no true killing spree by a serial killer but it's a fascinating and quick read nonetheless). But my favorite by him is Devil and the White City which talks about the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago and Dr. H.H. Holmes, who many have called America's first serial killer. That one is a great read and I can't believe it hasn't been turned into a film yet.

Any other suggestions in that genre?

scorsese's doing the devil in the white city. fascinating book. even though the architect's plight was harrowing indeed, hh holmes was spellbinding. really want to check out isaac's storm

the last good history book i read was edward peyson weston's semi biography by wayne curtis called the last great walk. ed weston was a professional walker in the late eighteen hundreds and early nineteens. we would walk across the country up till he was in his mid eighties. he might have been said to have invented merchandising as he hawked genuine ed peyson weston souvies along his path. he's becoming one of my favorite historical figures. loved cocaine

his official biography was called a man in a hurry
12-26-2017 09:48 AM
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nomad2u2001 Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo. The story of Thomas-Alexandre Dumas, the highest ranking black man in European military history. Hes also the father of Alexandre Dumas (The Count of Monte Cristo, The Three Musketeers).
12-26-2017 07:58 PM
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
The Tyrannicide Brief explains how the law was used to try and execute Charles the First and set the stage for the international war tribunals.
American Nations, compelling argument that who first settles a region sets the culture of the region.
Adams vs. Jefferson. self-explantory.
12-27-2017 02:06 AM
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I45owl Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
(12-25-2017 10:53 AM)Fort Bend Owl Wrote:  I just finished reading a really good one by David Grann called 'Killers of the Flower Moon' which details the reign of terror of the killings of the Osage Indians in the 1920's to get their oil wealth (it also talks about the birth of the FBI). Very good book, especially if you weren't as familiar with the story as some may be (I realize other sources have talked about the Osage murders but I guess they've escaped my reading and viewing lists). I may try one of his other books (Lost City of Z seems interesting).

I heard an interview with Grann, and was fascinated by the story, shameful as it was (Largely Forgotten Osage Murders Reveal A Conspiracy Against Wealthy Native Americans : NPR)
12-27-2017 04:03 AM
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Fort Bend Owl Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
Thanks for all the suggestions. I just ordered Devil in the Grove.

Actually Scorsese (and Leonardo DiCaprio who is surgically attached to Scorsese's hip) are reportedly going to film both Devil in the White City and Killers of the Flower Moon. But I don't know - seems like DiCaprio has been attached to the Erik Larson book for awhile and nothing may ever come out of it.
12-29-2017 02:22 PM
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chess Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
Thank you, for recommending this book.
12-30-2017 08:26 AM
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Shannon Panther Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
If you haven't read Larson's Dead Wake about the Lusitania, it is a great read. Two others I can recommend are "The Unthinkable, Who Survives and Why" by Amanda Ripley and "Freakonomics" by Stephen Dubnar and Steven Levitt. Neither is a new book but both are fascinating reads.
(This post was last modified: 01-03-2018 03:56 PM by Shannon Panther.)
01-03-2018 03:55 PM
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
Just finished The Red Famine by Anne Applebaum about the Holodomor. Tough read stylistically but very well researched.
01-05-2018 04:29 PM
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AdoptedMonarch Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
(12-26-2017 06:41 AM)AdoptedMonarch Wrote:  
(12-25-2017 10:53 AM)Fort Bend Owl Wrote:  I just finished reading a really good one by David Grann called 'Killers of the Flower Moon' which details the reign of terror of the killings of the Osage Indians in the 1920's to get their oil wealth (it also talks about the birth of the FBI). Very good book, especially if you weren't as familiar with the story as some may be (I realize other sources have talked about the Osage murders but I guess they've escaped my reading and viewing lists). I may try one of his other books (Lost City of Z seems interesting).

I love the Erik Larson genre of historical non-fiction books about interesting murders. My favorites from Larson are Isaac's Storm (well that's more about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 so no true killing spree by a serial killer but it's a fascinating and quick read nonetheless). But my favorite by him is Devil and the White City which talks about the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago and Dr. H.H. Holmes, who many have called America's first serial killer. That one is a great read and I can't believe it hasn't been turned into a film yet.

Any other suggestions in that genre?

"Killers of the Flower Moon" was one of my Christmas gifts. I am looking forward to it.

I've enjoyed all of the Larsen books you mention. Another of that quality and similar subject matter is "The Devil in the Grove" by Gilbert King. It follows the efforts of the NCAA to prosecute lynchings in Florida.

F.B. Owl, I just finished "Killers of the Flower Moon". It was excellent. I thought it even better than Grann's more popular book, "Lost City of Z", mostly because there was less guesswork involved in the presentation.

Thanks for starting this thread.
01-07-2018 03:13 PM
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I45owl Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
I'm listening to Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari.

Among the interesting viewpoints that he's brought up thus far:
  • Homo Sapiens is by far the most damaging invasive species in history, and the disruption to the environment tens of thousands of years ago is equal/greater to that of global warming to date
  • A System of Dualistic gods explains the presence of good and evil, but not morality, A Monotheistic System of a benevolent god explains morality, but not good and evil (intellectual gymnastics aside), but only a Monotheistic System of an evil god explains both

As someone that doesn't believe in a god of revelation (i.e. one that talks to people), I wonder why it is that monotheists generally universally believe that their god is moral... most polytheists do not.

Sapiens - Yuval Noah Harari
Quote:Homo sapiens rules the world because it is the only animal that can believe in things that exist purely in its own imagination, such as gods, states, money and human rights.

Starting from this provocative idea, Sapiens goes on to retell the history of our species from a completely fresh perspective. It explains that money is the most pluralistic system of mutual trust ever devised; that capitalism is the most successful religion ever invented; that the treatment of animals in modern agriculture is probably the worst crime in history; and that even though we are far more powerful than our ancient ancestors, we aren’t much happier.

By combining profound insights with a remarkably vivid language, Sapiens has already acquired almost cultic status among diverse audiences, captivating teenagers as well as university professors, animal rights activists alongside government ministers. It is currently being translated into close to thirty languages.

As an aside, a fantastic comment I heard recently is that someone wanted the Kindle to be smart enough to set a bookmark at the last page that you were paying attention as you were reading. I often find that I've gone 25 pages whilst thinking about something triggered by the book I was reading or something completely unrelated.
02-08-2018 11:52 AM
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JerryJeff Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
(12-25-2017 10:53 AM)Fort Bend Owl Wrote:  I just finished reading a really good one by David Grann called 'Killers of the Flower Moon' which details the reign of terror of the killings of the Osage Indians in the 1920's to get their oil wealth (it also talks about the birth of the FBI). Very good book, especially if you weren't as familiar with the story as some may be (I realize other sources have talked about the Osage murders but I guess they've escaped my reading and viewing lists). I may try one of his other books (Lost City of Z seems interesting).

I love the Erik Larson genre of historical non-fiction books about interesting murders. My favorites from Larson are Isaac's Storm (well that's more about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 so no true killing spree by a serial killer but it's a fascinating and quick read nonetheless). But my favorite by him is Devil and the White City which talks about the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago and Dr. H.H. Holmes, who many have called America's first serial killer. That one is a great read and I can't believe it hasn't been turned into a film yet.

Any other suggestions in that genre?

I read the "Lost City of Z" and enjoyed it. I'm gonna check out "Killers of the Flower Moon". Looks like an interesting read. I also enjoyed "Devil in the White City". A book that i really enjoyed was "Skeletons on the Zahara" by Dean King. It's about American sailors who were shipwrecked, captured and sold into slavery. Took place in 1815.
(This post was last modified: 02-08-2018 12:04 PM by JerryJeff.)
02-08-2018 12:04 PM
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gdunn Online
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
Outlaw Platoon is probably the last good one I read. I have one on the Alamo on my list. I think it's called Three Roads to the Alamo.
02-08-2018 08:15 PM
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Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
Has anyone read The Framers' Coup: The Making of the United States Constitution? Looks interesting


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02-08-2018 10:56 PM
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Lord Stanley Online
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
Ravensbruck: Life and Death in Hitler's Concentration Camp for Women

https://www.amazon.com/Ravensbruck-Death...0307278719

Quote:Months before the outbreak of World War II, Heinrich Himmler—prime architect of the Holocaust—designed a special concentration camp for women, located fifty miles north of Berlin. Only a small number of the prisoners were Jewish. Ravensbrück was primarily a place for the Nazis to hold other inferior beings: Jehovah’s Witnesses, Resistance fighters, lesbians, prostitutes, and aristocrats—even the sister of New York’s Mayor LaGuardia. Over six years the prisoners endured forced labor, torture, starvation, and random execution. In the final months of the war, Ravensbrück became an extermination camp. Estimates of the final death toll have ranged from 30,000 to 90,000.


Heroes of Jadotville: The Soldiers' Story


https://www.amazon.com/Heroes-Jadotville...EE04YM8JFV

Quote:In 1961, during the United Nations intervention in the Katangan conflict in the Congo, central Africa, a company of Irish peacekeeping troops was forced to surrender to soldiers loyal to Katanga’s prime minister, Moise Tshombe. Originally dispatched to protect Belgian colonists in Jadotville, they were isolated, without water, supplies or support when they were attacked and forced to defend themselves in a brutal and bloody five day battle. Shamefully neglected by their superiors, they were portrayed as cowards upon their return home.
02-09-2018 10:31 AM
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Lush Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
what about anything on the industrial revolution?
02-13-2018 11:43 AM
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Lord Stanley Online
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
(02-13-2018 11:43 AM)Lush Wrote:  what about anything on the industrial revolution?

Related, and a (UK accent) smashing good read. 07-coffee3

https://www.amazon.com/Londons-Sewers-Sh...0747814317

Quote:Named by The Guardian as One of the Top 10 Science and Technology Books for June 2014

Victorian London was filthy. The city was growing at an exponential rate, and the existing systems of waste disposal could not cope, resulting in a sanitary crisis. The solution was a new drainage system for the entire city, which was constructed mainly in the 1860s. Paul Dobraszczyk charts the development and construction of this immense project, using both contemporary and modern imagery to illustrate the complex engineering and magnificent architecture built deep underground to service the modern city of London.
02-14-2018 10:42 AM
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Lush Offline
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RE: Recommendations for interesting non-fiction history books
tnx brother stanley. i'm reading the industrial revolutionaries by gavin weightman currently. does this balance the pros and cons of the era? i think the book i've just started reading might just be more about the tinkers

i just finished storming heaven by denise giardina. west virginny miners trying to unionize in the early 1900's. they eventually succumbed to the us army
02-15-2018 01:58 PM
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