Friday, 7 May 2010

Review and win one of the latest history books

Every month, we offer our readers the opportunity to review some of the latest history publications and to have their review published on the History Today Books Blog. Here is our selection for May. To submit a review, please send an email to Kathryn Hadley (k.hadley[at] specifying your choice of book. We will then send you the book with a one-month deadline to send us your review. Books will be sent on a first come first served basis. (Unfortunately, we are unable to send out books to the USA).

The Making of Modern Britain, Andrew Marr (Pan Macmillan)
Andrew Marr charts 45 years of British history from the death of Queen Victoria in 1901 to the end of the Second World War, when Britain moved from being an empire to a democracy and ‘modern Britain’ was born.

Sophistication: A Literary and Cultural History, Faye Hammill (Liverpool University Press)
Drawing on historical documents, magazines, adverts, films and novels, a literary, linguistic and cultural history of ‘sophistication’ from the Romantics, via the emergence of the dandy and then of modernism, to the meaning of sophistication in the 21st century.

Crime and Society in England, 1750-1900, Clive Emsley (Pearson)
The fourth edition of this introduction to the history of crime in the 18th and 19th centuries, which examines the developments in policing, the courts and the penal system as England became increasingly industrialised and urbanised.

The KGB’s Poison Factory, Boris Volodarsky (Frontline Books)
In this study of KGB poisoning operations, former Russian military intelligence officer Volodarsky argues that the assassination of Alexander Litvinenko in London in late November 2006 was just one episode in a series of murders carried out by the Russian security services which began with Lenin and the Cheka in 1917.

The Mexican Wars for Independence, Timothy J. Henderson (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
The paperback edition of Henderson’s account of the Mexican Wars of Independence (1810-1821), a battle for social and political reform rather than mere political independence, which traces the major leaders and conflicts and explores the complicated meaning of independence for Mexico’s past and present.

A Social History of the Media: From Gutenberg to the Internet, Asa Briggs and Peter Burke (Polity Press)
A revised edition of this overview of communication and media and of the social and cultural contexts within which they emerged and evolved over time. Drawing on the latest developments in the field, the third edition notably charts the media developments of the early 21st century, including the rise of social media and the impact of digitalisation.

Growing up in England, Anthony Fletcher (Yale University Press)
Drawing on personal testimony from contemporary diaries and letters of both parents and children, a study of the upbringing of English children in upper and professional class families in the period between 1600 and 1914.

The Highland Clans, Alistair Moffat (Thames & Hudson)
A history of the Highland clans of Scotland, from their Celtic origins to the coming of the Romans, through the great battles of Bannockburn and Flodden, to the Clearances and the present day.

Poland: A History, Adam Zamoyski (Harper Press)
A full revision of the author’s classic history of Poland, first written in the 1980s, when the country was in a state of subjugation and its living culture survived only underground or in exile.

Holocaust: The Nazi Persecution and Murder of the Jews, Peter Longerich (Oxford University Press)
The first English translation of Peter Longerich’s account of the Holocaust. Focusing on the perpetrators and exploring closely the process of decision making, he argues that anti-Jewish policy was a central tenet of the Nazi movement’s attempts to implement and secure National Socialist rule.

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