#BookTour “Thomas Jefferson: Family Secrets” by William G. Hyland, Jr.

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Nonfiction / Biography / History

 

Date Published: 2-1-22

Publisher: Palmetto Publishing / Blackstone Publishing

A fascinating biography of Thomas Jefferson that presents an entirely new and provocative look at the final years of his life, as seen through the eyes of his most trusted family confidants. A powerful profile based on fresh research and unpublished memoirs.

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EXCERPT

On April 13, 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the Jefferson Memorial  on the edge of the Tidal Basin in Washington, DC. World War II had injected the two hundredth anniversary of Thomas Jefferson’s birth with special significance. The tide of history had just shifted its course.  One of the foremost political figures in American history finally took his place in the ultimate American pantheon, within sight of George Washington’s soaring monument and Abraham Lincoln’s brooding, seated statue. No American has ever before enjoyed such a transcendent status as Thomas Jefferson. And over the next 250 years of American history, no public figure would ever reach the same historic heights.

This is the triumphant “political” image of Jefferson, yet one far from reality. Jefferson had desired to live in the “tranquil, permanent felicity” that flowed from a secluded home life at his elegant mountain estate, Monticello.[i] But during the last seventeen years of his cloistered family life, his story was infused with high drama in a congealed world of alcoholism, domestic violence, family jealousies, bankruptcy, and a grisly murder. Then came a humiliating series of political wounds, including an alleged sexual affair with a slave, corroding Jefferson’s personal and professional reputation.

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About the Author

A Virginia native, William G. Hyland Jr. is the author of four widely praised historical biographies, including “In Defense Of Thomas Jefferson” (St. Martin’s/Thomas Dunne Books), which was nominated for the Virginia Literary Award. He is a seasoned litigation attorney with a national law firm and nearly thirty years of high profile trial experience. He is also a former Adjunct Professor of Law at Stetson University College of Law. His professional lectures have included speeches at the National Archives and the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Hyland is a member of the Virginia and New York Historical Societies and serves on the Board of Directors of the Thomas Jefferson Heritage Society. Mr. Hyland holds a B.A. from the University of Alabama and a J.D. from Samford University. Before law school, Mr. Hyland held a Top Security clearance and worked for the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

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#ReleaseBlitz “Thomas Jefferson: Family Secrets” by William G. Hyland, Jr.

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Nonfiction / Biography / History

 

Date Published: 2-1-22

Publisher: Palmetto Publishing / Blackstone Publishing

A fascinating biography of Thomas Jefferson that presents an entirely new and provocative look at the final years of his life, as seen through the eyes of his most trusted family confidants. A powerful profile based on fresh research and unpublished memoirs.

~~~

About the Author

A Virginia native, William G. Hyland Jr. is the author of four widely praised historical biographies, including “In Defense Of Thomas Jefferson” (St. Martin’s/Thomas Dunne Books), which was nominated for the Virginia Literary Award. He is a seasoned litigation attorney with a national law firm and nearly thirty years of high profile trial experience. He is also a former Adjunct Professor of Law at Stetson University College of Law. His professional lectures have included speeches at the National Archives and the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Hyland is a member of the Virginia and New York Historical Societies and serves on the Board of Directors of the Thomas Jefferson Heritage Society. Mr. Hyland holds a B.A. from the University of Alabama and a J.D. from Samford University. Before law school, Mr. Hyland held a Top Security clearance and worked for the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

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#BlogTour “Clipped Wings: The Rise and Fall of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPS) of World War II” by Molly Merryman

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I am thrilled to share this extraordinary book with all of you today! Please read on for an excerpt from Clipped Wings by Molly Merryman and a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card!

ClippedWings (2)Clipped Wings: The Rise and Fall of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPS) of World War II

Publication Date: September 15, 2020

Genre: History/ WWII/ Avation/ Female Pilots

In her exhilerating book Clipped Wings: The Rise and Fall of the Women Airforce Service Pilots of WWII, author Molly Merryman shines light on the critical and dangerous work of the daring female aviators who changed history. New York University Press classics series has just updated the book with Merryman’s reflections on the changes in women’s aviation in the past twenty years. A documentary based on Merryman’s work, Coming Home: Fight For A Legacy, is currently in production.

The WASP directly challenged the assumptions of male supremacy in wartime culture. They flew the fastest fighter planes and heaviest bombers; they test-piloted experimental models and worked in the development of weapons systems. Yet the WASP were the only women’s auxiliary within the armed services of World War II that was not militarized.

In Clipped Wings, Merryman draws upon finally-declassified military documents, congressional records, and interviews with the women who served as WASP during World War II to trace the history of the over one thousand pilots who served their country as the first women to fly military planes. She examines the social pressures that culminated in their disbandment in 1944—even though a wartime need for their services still existed—and documents their struggles and eventual success, in 1977, to gain military status and receive veterans’ benefits.

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Excerpt

WASP Missions

Airplane ferrying was the initial mission for which WASPs were created, and it would occupy nearly half of all active WASP graduates when the program ended in December 1944. Planes produced in the United States needed to be flown from the factories to air bases at home, in Canada, and overseas. To handle this transportation demand, the ATC hired thousands of male civilian pilots to ferry planes. These male pilots were later commissioned directly into the AAF if they met the requirement and desired commissioning. The WASPs were brought on as ferrying pilots, and by the time they were disbanded in December 1944, they had delivered 12,652 planes on domestic missions. By that time, 141 WASPs were assigned to the ATC. Although they comprised a small percentage of the total Ferrying Division pilots, WASPs had a significant impact. By 1944, WASPs were ferrying the majority of all pursuit planes and were so integrated into the Ferrying Division that their disbandment caused delays in pursuit deliveries.

The days of ferrying pilots were long and unpredictable. At bases that handled a range of planes, pilots did not know from one day to the next what planes they would be flying or how long of a flight to expect. In Minton’s words, “We usually reported to the flight line at seven o’clock in the morning and looked at the board to see what had been assigned us in the way of an airplane, where it went and what we would need in the way of equipment to take along, and then we would go out to find our airplane and sign it out at operations and check it over to be sure everything was okay with the airplane. And then we would take off to wherever the plane was supposed to go.”

Ferrying military aircraft during World War II was not an easy task. The majority of these planes were not equipped with radios, so pilots navigated by comparing air maps with physical cues (highways, mountains, rivers, etc.) or by flying the beam. (The “beam” was a radio transmission of Morse code signals. A grid of such beams was established across the United States. To follow the beam, a pilot would listen on her headphone for aural “blips” or tones to direct her. This required a great deal of concentration and was not always accurate.) Both navigational techniques were difficult, and this was compounded by the facts that many air bases and factories were camouflaged, blackouts were maintained in coastal areas, and the navigational beams were prone to breaking down. Problems sometimes arose with the planes themselves, which ha d been tested at the factories but never flown. Cross-continental flights often took several days, depending on the planes being flown and weather conditions.

In addition, planes equipped with top secret munitions or accessories had to be guarded while on the ground, and WASPs received orders to protect these planes at all cost. WASPs flying these planes were issued .45 caliber pistols and were trained to fire machine guns.

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About the Author

Merryman, Molly

Molly Merryman, Ph.D. is the founding director of the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality and an Associate Professor at Kent State University. She is the Historical Research Producer on the upcoming Red Door Films documentary about the WASP, Coming Home: Fight For A Legacy. She has directed and produced nine documentaries that have been broadcast and screened in the United States and United Kingdom. She is the research director for the Queer Britain national LGBT+ museum and is a visiting professor and advisory board member for the Queer History Centre at Goldsmiths, University of London. Merryman is the vice president of the International Visual Sociology Association.

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“Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution” by Ji-Ji Jiang

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Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution

by Ji-Ji Jiang

Genre: Memoirs/Middle Grades/Geography & Culture/History/Asia

1.99 at time of posting!

Publishers Weekly Best Book * ALA Best Book for Young Adults * ALA Notable Children’s Book * ALA Booklist Editors’ Choice

Moving, honest, and deeply personal, Red Scarf Girl is the incredible true story of one girl’s courage and determination during one of the most terrifying eras of the twentieth century.

It’s 1966, and twelve-year-old Ji-li Jiang has everything a girl could want: brains, popularity, and a bright future in Communist China. But it’s also the year that China’s leader, Mao Ze-dong, launches the Cultural Revolution—and Ji-li’s world begins to fall apart. Over the next few years, people who were once her friends and neighbors turn on her and her family, forcing them to live in constant terror of arrest. And when Ji-li’s father is finally imprisoned, she faces the most difficult dilemma of her life.

Written in an accessible and engaging style, this page-turning autobiography will appeal to readers of all ages, and it includes a detailed glossary and a pronunciation guide.

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“King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed an African Village” by Peggielene Bartels

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King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed an African Village

by Peggielene Bartels, Eleanor Herman

Genre: Biographies & Memoirs/History/West Africa

The charming real-life fairy tale of an American secretary who discovers she has been chosen king of an impoverished fishing village on the west coast of Africa. King Peggy has the sweetness and quirkiness of The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series and the hopeful sense of possibility of Half the Sky.

King Peggy chronicles the astonishing journey of an American secretary who suddenly finds herself king to a town of 7,000 souls on Ghana’s central coast, half a world away. Upon arriving for her crowning ceremony in beautiful Otuam, she discovers the dire reality: there’s no running water, no doctor, and no high school, and many of the village elders are stealing the town’s funds. To make matters worse, her uncle (the late king) sits in a morgue awaiting a proper funeral in the royal palace, which is in ruins. The longer she waits to bury him, the more she risks incurring the wrath of her ancestors. Peggy’s first two years as king of Otuam unfold in a way that is stranger than fiction. In the end, a deeply traditional African town has been uplifted by the ambitions of its headstrong, decidedly modern female king. And in changing Otuam, Peggy is herself transformed, from an ordinary secretary to the heart and hope of her community.

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“Obama: An Intimate Portrait” by Pete Souza

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Obama: An Intimate Portrait

by Pete Souza

Genre: Photography/Photojournalism/History

Relive the extraordinary Presidency of Barack Obama through White House photographer Pete Souza’s behind-the-scenes images and stories in this #1 New York Times bestseller–with a foreword from the President himself.
During Barack Obama’s two terms, Pete Souza was with the President during more crucial moments than anyone else–and he photographed them all. Souza captured nearly two million photographs of President Obama, in moments highly classified and disarmingly candid.
Obama: An Intimate Portrait reproduces more than 300 of Souza’s most iconic photographs with fine-art print quality in an oversize collectible format. Together they document the most consequential hours of the Presidency–including the historic image of President Obama and his advisors in the Situation Room during the bin Laden mission–alongside unguarded moments with the President’s family, his encounters with children, interactions with world leaders and cultural figures, and more.
Souza’s photographs, with the behind-the-scenes captions and stories that accompany them, communicate the pace and power of our nation’s highest office. They also reveal the spirit of the extraordinary man who became our President. We see President Obama lead our nation through monumental challenges, comfort us in calamity and loss, share in hard-won victories, and set a singular example to “be kind and be useful,” as he would instruct his daughters.
This book puts you in the White House with President Obama, and will be a treasured record of a landmark era in American history.
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Unseen: Unpublished Black History from the New York Times Photo Archives

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Unseen: Unpublished Black History from the New York Times Archives

by Darcy Eveleigh, Dana Canedy, Damien Cave, Rachel L. Swarns

Genre: Photography/African-American/History

 

Hundreds of stunning images from black history have long been buried in The New York Times archives. None of them were published by The Times–until now. UNSEEN uncovers these never-before published photographs and tells the stories behind them.

It all started with Times photo editor Darcy Eveleigh discovering dozens of these photographs. She and three colleagues, Dana Canedy, Damien Cave and Rachel L. Swarns, began exploring the history behind them, and subsequently chronicling them in a series entitled Unpublished Black History, that ran in print and online editions of The Times in February 2016. It garnered 1.7 million views on The Times website and thousands of comments from readers. This book includes those photographs and many more, among them: a 27-year-old Jesse Jackson leading an anti-discrimination rally of in Chicago, Rosa Parks arriving at a Montgomery Courthouse in Alabama a candid behind-the-scenes shot of Aretha Franklin backstage at the Apollo Theater, Ralph Ellison on the streets of his Manhattan neighborhood, the firebombed home of Malcolm X, Myrlie Evans and her children at the funeral of her slain husband , Medgar, a wheelchair-bound Roy Campanella at the razing of Ebbets Field.

Were the photos–or the people in them–not deemed newsworthy enough? Did the images not arrive in time for publication? Were they pushed aside by words at an institution long known as the Gray Lady? Eveleigh, Canedy, Cave, and Swarms explore all these questions and more in this one-of-a-kind book.

UNSEEN dives deep into The Times photo archives–known as the Morgue–to showcase this extraordinary collection of photographs and the stories behind them.

 

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“The Color Purple Collection” by Alice Walker

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“The Color Purple Collection”

Author: Alice Walker

Genre: African American/Historical/Cultural Heritage

Release Date: September 11, 2012

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Three novels by a New York Times–bestselling author—including the Pulitzer Prizewinner The Color Purple—that speak to the African experience in America.
The Color Purple is Alice Walker’s stunning, Pulitzer Prize–winning novel of courage in the face of oppression. Celie grows up in rural Georgia, navigating a childhood of ceaseless abuse. Not only is she poor and despised by the society around her, she’s badly treated by her family. As a teenager, she begins writing letters directly to God in an attempt to transcend a life that often seems too much to bear. Her letters span twenty years and record a journey of self-discovery and empowerment through the guiding light of a few strong women and her own implacable will to find harmony with…

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“We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria” by Wendy Pearlman


We Crossed a Bridge cover

“We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria

Genre: History/World/Revolutionary
Release Date: June 6, 2017
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Reminiscent of the work of Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich, an astonishing collection of intimate wartime testimonies and poetic fragments from a cross-section of Syrians whose lives have been transformed by revolution, war, and flight.

Against the backdrop of the wave of demonstrations known as the Arab Spring, in 2011 hundreds of thousands of Syrians took to the streets demanding freedom, democracy, and human rights. The government’s ferocious response and the refusal of the demonstrators to back down sparked a brutal civil war that over the past five years has escalated into the worst humanitarian catastrophe of our times.

Yet despite all the reporting, the video, and the wrenching photography, the stories of ordinary Syrians remain unheard, while the stories told about them have been distorted by broad brush dread and political expediency. This fierce and poignant collection changes that. Based on interviews with hundreds of displaced Syrians conducted over four years across the Middle East and Europe, We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled is a breathtaking mosaic of first-hand testimonials from the frontlines. Some of the testimonies are several pages long, eloquent narratives that could stand alone as short stories; others are only a few sentences, poetic and aphoristic. Together, they cohere into an unforgettable chronicle that is not only a testament to the power of storytelling but to the strength of those who face darkness with hope, courage, and moral conviction.

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Wendy Pearlman is a professor and award-winning teacher at Northwestern University, specializing in Middle East politics. Educated at Harvard, Georgetown, and Brown, Pearlman speaks fluent Arabic and has spent more than twenty years studying and living in the Arab World. She is the author of numerous articles and three books, including Occupied Voices: Stories of Everyday Life from the Second Intifada (Nation Books, 2003) and Violence, Nonviolence, and the Palestinian National Movement (Cambridge University Press, 2011). Her book We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria was recently published by Custom House (an imprint of HarperCollins) in June 2017. She lives in Chicago, Illinois.

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