75 in 2015: June, Part II

carthage-must-be-destroyedCarthage Must Be Destroyed: The Rise and Fall of an Ancient Civilization by Richard Miles (2011)

I am an archivist and historian by trade, but ancient history isn’t typically my preference. I thought it would be nice to mix-it-up a bit though and this book jumped out at me from my library’s audiobook offerings. It was . . . dense, to say the least. Perhaps I should have picked something a bit more manageable than the entire history of Carthage. That being said, it was very interesting and I certainly learned a lot. I now have some concrete facts to add to my broad-picture Carthage history.

From Amazon.com: “The devastating struggle to the death between the Carthaginians and the Romans was one of the defining dramas of the ancient world. In an epic series of land and sea battles, both sides came close to victory before the Carthaginians finally succumbed and their capital city, history, and culture were almost utterly erased. The first full-scale history of Carthage in decades, Carthage Must Be Destroyed reintroduces modern readers to the larger-than-life historical players and the ancient glory of this almost forgotten civilization.”

girlsDear Girls Above Me: Inspired by a True Story by Charles McDowell (2013)

A very enjoyable, fun read. Recommended.

From Amazon.com: “When Charlie McDowell began sharing his open letters to his noisy upstairs neighbors—two impossibly ditzy female roommates in their mid-twenties—on Twitter, his feed quickly went viral. His followers multiplied and he got the attention of everyone from celebrities to production studios to major media outlets such as Time and Glamour. Now Dear Girls breaks out of the 140-character limit as Charlie imagines what would happen if he put the wisdom of the girls to the test. After being unceremoniously dumped by the girl he was certain was “the one,” Charlie realized his neighbors’ conversations were not only amusing, but also offered him access to a completely uncensored woman’s perspective on the world. From the importance of effectively Facebook-stalking potential girlfriends and effortlessly pulling off pastel, to learning when in the early stages of dating is too presumptuous to bring a condom and how to turn food poisoning into a dieting advantage, the girls get Charlie into trouble, but they also get him out of it—without ever having a clue of their impact on him.”

liartemptressLiar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy: Four Women Undercover in the Civil War by Karen Abbott (2014)

So good. This book had my full attention from the first few pages. I actually found myself disappointed to leave work every afternoon knowing that I likely wouldn’t have a chance to keep listening to the book at home. Highly recommended if you enjoy women’s history or have an interest in the Civil War. This is one of my favorite reads so far this year.

From Amazon.com: “Karen Abbott illuminates one of the most fascinating yet little known aspects of the Civil War: the stories of four courageous women—a socialite, a farmgirl, an abolitionist, and a widow—who were spies. After shooting a Union soldier in her front hall with a pocket pistol, Belle Boyd became a courier and spy for the Confederate army, using her charms to seduce men on both sides. Emma Edmonds cut off her hair and assumed the identity of a man to enlist as a Union private, witnessing the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. The beautiful widow, Rose O’Neale Greenhow, engaged in affairs with powerful Northern politicians to gather intelligence for the Confederacy, and used her young daughter to send information to Southern generals. Elizabeth Van Lew, a wealthy Richmond abolitionist, hid behind her proper Southern manners as she orchestrated a far-reaching espionage ring, right under the noses of suspicious rebel detectives.”

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