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Beiträge von John L. Edwards
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Rezensionen verfasst von
John L. Edwards

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The Guns of August: The Outbreak of World War I; Barbara W. Tuchman's Great War Series (Modern Library 100 Best Nonfiction Books)
The Guns of August: The Outbreak of World War I; Barbara W. Tuchman's Great War Series (Modern Library 100 Best Nonfiction Books)
von Barbara W. Tuchman

1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Good read, but needed to be Guns of 1870 to November 1914, 23. Juni 1999
A bit curious that I enjoyed Tuchman's "The First Salute" more than this book, as Salute is generally considered her weakest, and August her strongest. I felt a bit disarmed because I do not have a good understanding of the previous war (1870). Also, the book ended a bit abruptly rather than continue into the beginning of the French reversal and trench warfare that would ensue. A good read, but I needed more to put a cap on it. I feel like I only got half the story.
Tuchman has a way of digging into a person, and getting to the nut of their situation, their crisis, and how they chose to resolve it. What I enjoy most is that she often leaves the "why" question to the reader, which is appropriate because no one save the characters themselves really knows the why. Still, she neatly frames the entire issue, and then tosses the why in front of you, giving you pause that continues even after you have finished the book. A nice habit of hers. She also seems to have a keen insight into the issues that plague a commander in the field (also in Salute), the intangible factors that most authors and readers ignore. The meddle that some of the Generals she wrote about showed is impressive, and Tuchman has a talent for presenting that in a very human way; refreshing in the glare of "Action" films and books where officers are shown as uncaring army drivers.
I recommend the book, but suggest a review of 19th century European history first. Even an hour's worth of review will prove very useful prior to reading this pup. It's a shame Barb didn't do it herself (as she did in Salute) and include it as a foreward.
"A Distant Mirror" covers an entire century. That should be enough to keep me happy. I'll think I'll read that one next.

Foucault's Pendulum
Foucault's Pendulum
von Umberto Eco
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 33,72

4.0 von 5 Sternen Great Book, 20. November 1997
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Foucault's Pendulum (Gebundene Ausgabe)
I'm 100 pages from the end, and the fascination factor just keeps increasing!
I was warned by several friends that it was impossible to read. Here's the secret -- only the first chapter is a hell-read. The rest is just gobs of fun. Hack your way through chapter one and you're set.

Symbolism of the Celtic Cross
Symbolism of the Celtic Cross
von Derek Bryce
Preis: EUR 12,33

4.0 von 5 Sternen Very Enjoyable!, 20. November 1997
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Symbolism of the Celtic Cross (Taschenbuch)
Mr Bryce's book was a surprisingly good read. Received as a Christmas gift, it sat on my desk for eight months before I got the chance to read it, as I thought it would require a good chunk of quiet time (it is a reference book after all). Not so! The pace of the book is fast, it lays out the history of the Celtic cross, pagan to modern, in a very concise fashion, and describes and displays examples along the way that greatly enhance the text.
Plenty of fun tidbits are included, but Mr. Bryce's text is so engaging that you find they sneak by you and you don't want to go back. I read the book three times to solve the problem! I was quite surprised to discover that both the Celtic cross and the modern cross do not have their origin in the crucifixion -- one of the more astonishing facts he presents.
Just an hour or two to read front to back, and a great primer for someone new to the subject, or soon to travel to Britain. The only drawback is that he didn't write more about it. It was my best gift last year, and at eight bucks just can't be beat.
Loved the drawings. Great detail

The Killer Angels: The Classic Novel of the Civil War (Civil War Trilogy, Band 2)
The Killer Angels: The Classic Novel of the Civil War (Civil War Trilogy, Band 2)
von Michael Shaara
Preis: EUR 7,96

5.0 von 5 Sternen Waiting for him to do the rest of the war..., 20. November 1997
Killer Angels = Killer Read. NOT to be missed.

How the Irish Saved Civilization (Hinges of History)
How the Irish Saved Civilization (Hinges of History)
von Thomas Cahill

4.0 von 5 Sternen Good, but does not have the depth that was needed., 27. August 1997
Cahill's book sets out to prove a bold premise (that would hold NO water with anyone born east of Istanbul) but doesn't go into the level of detail that is needed for the task. Although I found the book quite interesting, I found myself hoping for more detail at the end of each chapter and not finding it. In fact, I read this book just after reading Brendan Lehane's "Early Celtic Christianity," which I recommend more highly, and found that had it not been for Lehane's strong foundation (particularly on Columbanus) I most likely would not have been able to see deeply into many of the issues that Cahill just took a glancing look at. I am of the opinion that Mr Cahill would be interesting to sit down to dinner with, but that this book only reveals the surface of his thoughts.

A good read for people new to the subject matter. Get Lehane's book next (if you can find it).

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