A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II

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A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II
Title A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II
Author
Publisher Penguin Books
Release DateApril 9, 2019
Category Biographies & Memoirs
Total Pages 368 pages
ISBN B07DN155VV
Book Rating 4.6 out of 5 from 4.259 reviews
Language EN, ES, BE, DA ,DE , NL and FR
Book Review & Summary:

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER Chosen as a BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR by NPR, the New York Public Library, Amazon, the Seattle Times, the Washington Independent Review of Books, PopSugar, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, BookBrowse, the Spectator, and the Times of London Winner of the Plutarch Award for Best Biography “Excellent…This book is as riveting as any thriller, and as hard to put down.” -- The New York Times Book Review "A compelling biography of a masterful spy, and a reminder of what can be done with a few brave people -- and a little resistance." - NPR "A meticiulous history that reads like a thriller." - Ben Macintyre A never-before-told story of Virginia Hall, the American spy who changed the course of World War II, from the author of Clementine. In 1942, the Gestapo sent out an urgent transmission: "She is the most dangerous of all Allied spies. We must find and destroy her." The target in their sights was Virginia Hall, a Baltimore socialite who talked her way into Special Operations Executive, the spy organization dubbed Winston Churchill's "Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare." She became the first Allied woman deployed behind enemy lines and--despite her prosthetic leg--helped to light the flame of the French Resistance, revolutionizing secret warfare as we know it. Virginia established vast spy networks throughout France, called weapons and explosives down from the skies, and became a linchpin for the Resistance. Even as her face covered wanted posters and a bounty was placed on her head, Virginia refused order after order to evacuate. She finally escaped through a death-defying hike over the Pyrenees into Spain, her cover blown. But she plunged back in, adamant that she had more lives to save, and led a victorious guerilla campaign, liberating swathes of France from the Nazis after D-Day. Based on new and extensive research, Sonia Purnell has for the first time uncovered the full secret life of Virginia Hall--an astounding and inspiring story of heroism, spycraft, resistance, and personal triumph over shocking adversity. A Woman of No Importance is the breathtaking story of how one woman's fierce persistence helped win the war.

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Title A Woman Of No Importance
Author Oscar Wilde
Publisher BEYOND BOOKS HUB
Release Date 2021-10-16
Category Self-Help
Total Pages 186
ISBN 9203456XXXX
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde is "a new and original play of modern life", in four acts, first given on 19 April 1893 at the Haymarket Theatre, London. Like Wilde's other society plays, it satirises English upper-class society.Oscar Wilde's audacious drama of social scandal centres around the revelation of Mrs Arbuthnot's long-concealed secret. A house party is in full swing at Lady Hunstanton's country home, when it is announced that Gerald Arbuthnot has been appointed secretary to the sophisticated, witty Lord Illingworth. Gerald's mother stands in the way of his appointment, but fears to tell him why, for who will believe Lord Illingworth to be a man of no importance?

A Woman Of No Importance by Sonia Purnell

Title A Woman of No Importance
Author Sonia Purnell
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2019-04-09
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 368
ISBN 9780735225305
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER Chosen as a BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR by NPR, the New York Public Library, Amazon, the Seattle Times, the Washington Independent Review of Books, PopSugar, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, BookBrowse, the Spectator, and the Times of London Winner of the Plutarch Award for Best Biography “Excellent…This book is as riveting as any thriller, and as hard to put down.” -- The New York Times Book Review "A compelling biography of a masterful spy, and a reminder of what can be done with a few brave people -- and a little resistance." - NPR "A meticiulous history that reads like a thriller." - Ben Macintyre A never-before-told story of Virginia Hall, the American spy who changed the course of World War II, from the author of Clementine. In 1942, the Gestapo sent out an urgent transmission: "She is the most dangerous of all Allied spies. We must find and destroy her." The target in their sights was Virginia Hall, a Baltimore socialite who talked her way into Special Operations Executive, the spy organization dubbed Winston Churchill's "Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare." She became the first Allied woman deployed behind enemy lines and--despite her prosthetic leg--helped to light the flame of the French Resistance, revolutionizing secret warfare as we know it. Virginia established vast spy networks throughout France, called weapons and explosives down from the skies, and became a linchpin for the Resistance. Even as her face covered wanted posters and a bounty was placed on her head, Virginia refused order after order to evacuate. She finally escaped through a death-defying hike over the Pyrenees into Spain, her cover blown. But she plunged back in, adamant that she had more lives to save, and led a victorious guerilla campaign, liberating swathes of France from the Nazis after D-Day. Based on new and extensive research, Sonia Purnell has for the first time uncovered the full secret life of Virginia Hall--an astounding and inspiring story of heroism, spycraft, resistance, and personal triumph over shocking adversity. A Woman of No Importance is the breathtaking story of how one woman's fierce persistence helped win the war.

A Woman Of No Importance by Sonia Purnell

Title A Woman of No Importance
Author Sonia Purnell
Publisher Hachette UK
Release Date 2019-03-28
Category History
Total Pages 416
ISBN 9780349010151
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

'A METICULOUS HISTORY THAT READS LIKE A THRILLER' BEN MACINTYRE, TEN BEST BOOKS TO READ ABOUT WORLD WAR II An astounding story of heroism, spycraft, resistance and personal triumph over shocking adversity. 'A rousing tale of derring-do' THE TIMES * 'Riveting' MICK HERRON * 'Superb' IRISH TIMES THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER In September 1941, a young American woman strides up the steps of a hotel in Lyon, Vichy France. Her papers say she is a journalist. Her wooden leg is disguised by a determined gait and a distracting beauty. She is there to spark the resistance. By 1942 Virginia Hall was the Gestapo's most urgent target, having infiltrated Vichy command, trained civilians in guerrilla warfare and sprung soldiers from Nazi prison camps. The first woman to go undercover for British SOE, her intelligence changed the course of the war - but her fight was still not over. This is a spy history like no other, telling the story of the hunting accident that disabled her, the discrimination she fought and the secret life that helped her triumph over shocking adversity. 'A cracking story about an extraordinarily brave woman' TELEGRAPH 'Gripping ... superb ... a rounded portrait of a complicated, resourceful, determined and above all brave woman' IRISH TIMES WINNER of the PLUTARCH AWARD FOR BEST BIOGRAPHY

Clementine by Sonia Purnell

Title Clementine
Author Sonia Purnell
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2015-10-27
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 448
ISBN 9780698408203
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

“Engrossing…the first formal biography of a woman who has heretofore been relegated to the sidelines.”–The New York Times From the author of the New York Times bestseller A Woman of No Importance, a long overdue tribute to the extraordinary woman who was Winston Churchill’s closest confidante, fiercest critic and shrewdest advisor that captures the intimate dynamic of one of history’s most fateful marriages. Late in life, Winston Churchill claimed that victory in the Second World War would have been “impossible” without the woman who stood by his side for fifty-seven turbulent years. Why, then, do we know so little about her? In this landmark biography, a finalist for the Plutarch prize, Sonia Purnell finally gives Clementine Churchill her due. Born into impecunious aristocracy, the young Clementine Hozier was the target of cruel snobbery. Many wondered why Winston married her, when the prime minister’s daughter was desperate for his attention. Yet their marriage proved to be an exceptional partnership. "You know,"Winston confided to FDR, "I tell Clemmie everything." Through the ups and downs of his tumultuous career, in the tense days when he stood against Chamberlain and the many months when he helped inspire his fellow countrymen and women to keep strong and carry on, Clementine made her husband’s career her mission, at the expense of her family, her health and, fatefully, of her children. Any real consideration of Winston Churchill is incomplete without an understanding of their relationship. Clementine is both the first real biography of this remarkable woman and a fascinating look inside their private world. "Sonia Purnell has at long last given Clementine Churchill the biography she deserves. Sensitive yet clear-eyed, Clementine tells the fascinating story of a complex woman struggling to maintain her own identity while serving as the conscience and principal adviser to one of the most important figures in history. I was enthralled all the way through." –Lynne Olson, bestselling author of Citizens of London

D Day Girls by Sarah Rose

Title D Day Girls
Author Sarah Rose
Publisher Crown
Release Date 2019-04-23
Category History
Total Pages 400
ISBN 9780451495105
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • The dramatic, untold history of the heroic women recruited by Britain’s elite spy agency to help pave the way for Allied victory in World War II “Gripping. Spies, romance, Gestapo thugs, blown-up trains, courage, and treachery (lots of treachery)—and all of it true.”—Erik Larson, author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake In 1942, the Allies were losing, Germany seemed unstoppable, and every able man in England was on the front lines. To “set Europe ablaze,” in the words of Winston Churchill, the Special Operations Executive (SOE), whose spies were trained in everything from demolition to sharpshooting, was forced to do something unprecedented: recruit women. Thirty-nine answered the call, leaving their lives and families to become saboteurs in France. In D-Day Girls, Sarah Rose draws on recently de­classified files, diaries, and oral histories to tell the thrilling story of three of these remarkable women. There’s Andrée Borrel, a scrappy and streetwise Parisian who blew up power lines with the Gestapo hot on her heels; Odette Sansom, an unhappily married suburban mother who saw the SOE as her ticket out of domestic life and into a meaningful adventure; and Lise de Baissac, a fiercely independent member of French colonial high society and the SOE’s unflap­pable “queen.” Together, they destroyed train lines, ambushed Nazis, plotted prison breaks, and gathered crucial intelligence—laying the groundwork for the D-Day invasion that proved to be the turning point in the war. Rigorously researched and written with razor-sharp wit, D-Day Girls is an inspiring story for our own moment of resistance: a reminder of what courage—and the energy of politically animated women—can accomplish when the stakes seem incalculably high. Praise for D-Day Girls “Rigorously researched . . . [a] thriller in the form of a non-fiction book.”—Refinery29 “Equal parts espionage-romance thriller and historical narrative, D-Day Girls traces the lives and secret activities of the 39 women who answered the call to infiltrate France. . . . While chronicling the James Bond-worthy missions and love affairs of these women, Rose vividly captures the broken landscape of war.”—The Washington Post “Gripping history . . . thoroughly researched and written as smoothly as a good thriller, this is a mesmerizing story of creativity, perseverance, and astonishing heroism.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Code Girls by Liza Mundy

Title Code Girls
Author Liza Mundy
Publisher Hachette Books
Release Date 2017-10-10
Category History
Total Pages 432
ISBN 9780316352550
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The award-winning New York Times bestseller about the American women who secretly served as codebreakers during World War II--a "prodigiously researched and engrossing" (New York Times) book that "shines a light on a hidden chapter of American history" (Denver Post). Recruited by the U.S. Army and Navy from small towns and elite colleges, more than ten thousand women served as codebreakers during World War II. While their brothers and boyfriends took up arms, these women moved to Washington and learned the meticulous work of code-breaking. Their efforts shortened the war, saved countless lives, and gave them access to careers previously denied to them. A strict vow of secrecy nearly erased their efforts from history; now, through dazzling research and interviews with surviving code girls, bestselling author Liza Mundy brings to life this riveting and vital story of American courage, service, and scientific accomplishment.

Title The Lady Is a Spy Virginia Hall World War II Hero of the French Resistance
Author Don Mitchell
Publisher Scholastic Inc.
Release Date 2019-03-26
Category Young Adult Nonfiction
Total Pages 288
ISBN 9780545936569
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The Lady Is a Spy is the audacious and riveting true story of Virginia Hall, America's greatest spy and unsung hero, brought to vivid life by acclaimed author Don Mitchell.

First Lady by Sonia Purnell

Title First Lady
Author Sonia Purnell
Publisher Aurum
Release Date 2015-05-14
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 400
ISBN 9781781314708
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

From the personal and political upheavals of the Great War, through the Churchills’ ‘wilderness years’ in the 1930s, to Clementine’s desperate efforts to preserve her husband’s health during the struggle against Hitler, this is the inspiring but often ignored story of one of the most important women in modern history. Without Churchill’s inspiring leadership Britain could not have survived its darkest hour and repelled the Nazi menace. Without his wife Clementine, however, he might never have become Prime Minister. By his own admission, the Second World War would have been ‘impossible without her’. Clementine was Winston’s emotional rock and his most trusted confidante; not only was she involved in some of the most crucial decisions of war, but she exerted an influence over her husband and the Government that would appear scandalous to modern eyes. Yet her ability to charm Britain’s allies and her humanitarian efforts on the Home Front earned her deep respect, both behind closed doors in Whitehall and among the population at large. That Clementine should become Britain’s ‘First Lady’ was by no means pre-ordained. Born into impecunious aristocracy, her childhood was far from gilded. Her mother was a serial adulteress and gambler, who spent many years uprooting her children to escape the clutches of their erstwhile father, and by the time Clementine entered polite society she had become the target of cruel snobbery and rumours about her parentage. In Winston, however, she discovered a partner as emotionally insecure as herself, and in his career she found her mission. Her dedication to his cause may have had tragic consequences for their children, but theirs was a marriage that changed the course of history. Now, acclaimed biographer Sonia Purnell explores the peculiar dynamics of this fascinating union.

Code Name Lise by Larry Loftis

Title Code Name Lise
Author Larry Loftis
Publisher Simon and Schuster
Release Date 2019-01-15
Category History
Total Pages 384
ISBN 9781501198670
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

NATIONAL BESTSELLER A Goodreads Choice Awards semifinalist Florida Book Awards Silver Medalist Featured in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Time, New York Newsday, and on Today! Best Nonfiction Books to Read in 2019—Woman’s Day The Best Nonfiction Books Coming Out This Year—BookBub “A nonfiction thriller.”—The Wall Street Journal From New York Times and international bestselling author of the “gripping” (Michael Connelly, #1 New York Times bestselling author) Into the Lion’s Mouth comes the extraordinary true story of Odette Sansom, the British spy who operated in occupied France and fell in love with her commanding officer during World War II—perfect for fans of Unbroken, The Nightingale, and Code Girls. The year is 1942, and World War II is in full swing. Odette Sansom decides to follow in her war hero father’s footsteps by becoming an SOE agent to aid Britain and her beloved homeland, France. Five failed attempts and one plane crash later, she finally lands in occupied France to begin her mission. It is here that she meets her commanding officer Captain Peter Churchill. As they successfully complete mission after mission, Peter and Odette fall in love. All the while, they are being hunted by the cunning German secret police sergeant, Hugo Bleicher, who finally succeeds in capturing them. They are sent to Paris’s Fresnes prison, and from there to concentration camps in Germany where they are starved, beaten, and tortured. But in the face of despair, they never give up hope, their love for each other, or the whereabouts of their colleagues. In Code Name: Lise, Larry Loftis paints a portrait of true courage, patriotism, and love—of two incredibly heroic people who endured unimaginable horrors and degradations. He seamlessly weaves together the touching romance between Odette and Peter and the thrilling cat and mouse game between them and Sergeant Bleicher. With this amazing testament to the human spirit, Loftis proves once again that he is adept at writing “nonfiction that reads like a page-turning novel” (Parade).

Title Madame Fourcade s Secret War
Author Lynne Olson
Publisher Random House
Release Date 2019-03-05
Category History
Total Pages 464
ISBN 9780812994773
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The little-known true story of Marie-Madeleine Fourcade, the woman who headed the largest spy network in occupied France during World War II, from the bestselling author of Citizens of London and Last Hope Island “Brava to Lynne Olson for a biography that should challenge any outdated assumptions about who deserves to be called a hero.”—The Washington Post NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR AND THE WASHINGTON POST In 1941 a thirty-one-year-old Frenchwoman, a young mother born to privilege and known for her beauty and glamour, became the leader of a vast intelligence organization—the only woman to serve as a chef de résistance during the war. Strong-willed, independent, and a lifelong rebel against her country’s conservative, patriarchal society, Marie-Madeleine Fourcade was temperamentally made for the job. Her group’s name was Alliance, but the Gestapo dubbed it Noah’s Ark because its agents used the names of animals as their aliases. The name Marie-Madeleine chose for herself was Hedgehog: a tough little animal, unthreatening in appearance, that, as a colleague of hers put it, “even a lion would hesitate to bite.” No other French spy network lasted as long or supplied as much crucial intelligence—including providing American and British military commanders with a 55-foot-long map of the beaches and roads on which the Allies would land on D-Day—as Alliance. The Gestapo pursued them relentlessly, capturing, torturing, and executing hundreds of its three thousand agents, including Fourcade’s own lover and many of her key spies. Although Fourcade, the mother of two young children, moved her headquarters every few weeks, constantly changing her hair color, clothing, and identity, she was captured twice by the Nazis. Both times she managed to escape—once by slipping naked through the bars of her jail cell—and continued to hold her network together even as it repeatedly threatened to crumble around her. Now, in this dramatic account of the war that split France in two and forced its people to live side by side with their hated German occupiers, Lynne Olson tells the fascinating story of a woman who stood up for her nation, her fellow citizens, and herself. “Fast-paced and impressively researched . . . Olson writes with verve and a historian’s authority. . . . With this gripping tale, Lynne Olson pays [Marie-Madeleine Fourcade] what history has so far denied her. France, slow to confront the stain of Vichy, would do well to finally honor a fighter most of us would want in our foxhole.”—The New York Times Book Review

Title A Woman of No Importance
Author Oscar Wilde
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 1895*
Category
Total Pages 182
ISBN 0712904115
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Title The Women Who Flew for Hitler
Author Clare Mulley
Publisher St. Martin's Press
Release Date 2017-07-18
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 400
ISBN 9781250133168
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Biographers' Club Prize-winner Clare Mulley’s The Women Who Flew for Hitler—a dual biography of Nazi Germany's most highly decorated women pilots. Hanna Reitsch and Melitta von Stauffenberg were talented, courageous, and strikingly attractive women who fought convention to make their names in the male-dominated field of flight in 1930s Germany. With the war, both became pioneering test pilots and were awarded the Iron Cross for service to the Third Reich. But they could not have been more different and neither woman had a good word to say for the other. Hanna was middle-class, vivacious, and distinctly Aryan, while the darker, more self-effacing Melitta came from an aristocratic Prussian family. Both were driven by deeply held convictions about honor and patriotism; but ultimately, while Hanna tried to save Hitler’s life, begging him to let her fly him to safety in April 1945, Melitta covertly supported the most famous attempt to assassinate the Führer. Their interwoven lives provide vivid insight into Nazi Germany and its attitudes toward women, class, and race. Acclaimed biographer Clare Mulley gets under the skin of these two distinctive and unconventional women, giving a full—and as yet largely unknown—account of their contrasting yet strangely parallel lives, against a changing backdrop of the 1936 Olympics, the Eastern Front, the Berlin Air Club, and Hitler’s bunker. Told with brio and great narrative flair, The Women Who Flew for Hitler is an extraordinary true story, with all the excitement and color of the best fiction.Biographers' Club Prize-winner Clare Mulley’s The Women Who Flew for Hitler—a dual biography of Nazi Germany's most highly decorated women pilots. Hanna Reitsch and Melitta von Stauffenberg were talented, courageous, and strikingly attractive women who fought convention to make their names in the male-dominated field of flight in 1930s Germany. With the war, both became pioneering test pilots and were awarded the Iron Cross for service to the Third Reich. But they could not have been more different and neither woman had a good word to say for the other. Hanna was middle-class, vivacious, and distinctly Aryan, while the darker, more self-effacing Melitta came from an aristocratic Prussian family. Both were driven by deeply held convictions about honor and patriotism; but ultimately, while Hanna tried to save Hitler’s life, begging him to let her fly him to safety in April 1945, Melitta covertly supported the most famous attempt to assassinate the Führer. Their interwoven lives provide vivid insight into Nazi Germany and its attitudes toward women, class, and race. Acclaimed biographer Clare Mulley gets under the skin of these two distinctive and unconventional women, giving a full—and as yet largely unknown—account of their contrasting yet strangely parallel lives, against a changing backdrop of the 1936 Olympics, the Eastern Front, the Berlin Air Club, and Hitler’s bunker. Told with brio and great narrative flair, The Women Who Flew for Hitler is an extraordinary true story, with all the excitement and color of the best fiction.

The Wolves At The Door by Judith L. Pearson

Title The Wolves at the Door
Author Judith L. Pearson
Publisher Diversion Books
Release Date 2014-05-25
Category History
Total Pages 374
ISBN 9781626812925
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

"Judith Pearson does a remarkable job of bringing one of America's greatest spies back to life. I highly recommend this story of derring-do and white knuckles suspense." —Patrick O'Donnell, Combat Historian and Author of Operatives, Spies, and Saboteurs The remarkable story of one of WWII’s greatest spies. Virginia Hall left her comfortable Baltimore roots in 1931 to follow a dream of becoming a Foreign Service Officer. After watching Hitler roll over Poland and France, she enlisted to work for the British Special Operations Executive (SOE), a secret espionage and sabotage organization. She was soon deployed to occupied France where, if captured, imprisonment and torture at the hands of the Gestapo was all but assured. Against such an ominous backdrop, Hall managed to locate drop zones for money and weapons, helped escaped POWs and downed Allied airmen flee to England, and secured safe houses for agents. And she did it all on one leg: Virginia Hall had lost her left leg before the war in a hunting accident. Soon, wanted posters appeared throughout France, offering a reward for her capture. By winter of 1942, Hall had to flee France via the only route possible: a hike on foot through the frozen Pyrénées Mountains into neutral Spain. Upon her return to England, the American espionage organization, the Office of Special Services, recruited her and sent her back to France disguised as an old peasant woman. While there, she was responsible for killing 150 German soldiers and capturing 500 others. Sabotaging communications and transportation links and directing resistance activities, her work helped change the course of the war. This is the true story of Virginia Hall. "Riveting..." —Publishers Weekly

Russian Tattoo by Elena Gorokhova

Title Russian Tattoo
Author Elena Gorokhova
Publisher Simon and Schuster
Release Date 2016-01-26
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 336
ISBN 9781451689839
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

"In A Mountain of Crumbs, Elena Gorokhova describes coming of age behind the Iron Curtain and leaving her mother and her motherland for a new life in the United States. Now, in Russian Tattoo, Elena learns that the journey of an immigrant is filled with everyday mistakes, small humiliations, and a loss of dignity. Cultural disorientation comes in the form of not knowing how to eat a hamburger, buy a pair of shoes, or catch a bus. But through perseverance and resilience, Elena gradually adapts to her new country"--

The Girls Of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan

Title The Girls of Atomic City
Author Denise Kiernan
Publisher Simon and Schuster
Release Date 2014-03-11
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 373
ISBN 9781451617535
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Looks at the contributions of the thousands of women who worked at a secret uranium-enriching facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee during World War II.

The Light Of Days by Judy Batalion

Title The Light of Days
Author Judy Batalion
Publisher HarperCollins
Release Date 2021-04-06
Category History
Total Pages 576
ISBN 9780062874238
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER! Also on the USA Today, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Globe and Mail, Publishers Weekly, and Indie bestseller lists. One of the most important stories of World War II, already optioned by Steven Spielberg for a major motion picture: a spectacular, searing history that brings to light the extraordinary accomplishments of brave Jewish women who became resistance fighters—a group of unknown heroes whose exploits have never been chronicled in full, until now. Witnesses to the brutal murder of their families and neighbors and the violent destruction of their communities, a cadre of Jewish women in Poland—some still in their teens—helped transform the Jewish youth groups into resistance cells to fight the Nazis. With courage, guile, and nerves of steel, these “ghetto girls” paid off Gestapo guards, hid revolvers in loaves of bread and jars of marmalade, and helped build systems of underground bunkers. They flirted with German soldiers, bribed them with wine, whiskey, and home cooking, used their Aryan looks to seduce them, and shot and killed them. They bombed German train lines and blew up a town’s water supply. They also nursed the sick, taught children, and hid families. Yet the exploits of these courageous resistance fighters have remained virtually unknown. As propulsive and thrilling as Hidden Figures, In the Garden of Beasts, and Band of Brothers, The Light of Days at last tells the true story of these incredible women whose courageous yet little-known feats have been eclipsed by time. Judy Batalion—the granddaughter of Polish Holocaust survivors—takes us back to 1939 and introduces us to Renia Kukielka, a weapons smuggler and messenger who risked death traveling across occupied Poland on foot and by train. Joining Renia are other women who served as couriers, armed fighters, intelligence agents, and saboteurs, all who put their lives in mortal danger to carry out their missions. Batalion follows these women through the savage destruction of the ghettos, arrest and internment in Gestapo prisons and concentration camps, and for a lucky few—like Renia, who orchestrated her own audacious escape from a brutal Nazi jail—into the late 20th century and beyond. Powerful and inspiring, featuring twenty black-and-white photographs, The Light of Days is an unforgettable true tale of war, the fight for freedom, exceptional bravery, female friendship, and survival in the face of staggering odds.

Wtf What The French by Olivier Magny

Title WTF What the French
Author Olivier Magny
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2016-10-04
Category Humor
Total Pages 288
ISBN 9780698410237
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

With Stuff Parisians Like, Olivier Magny shared his hilarious insights into the fervently held opinions of his fellow Parisians. Now he moves beyond the City of Light to skewer the many idiosyncrasies that make modern France so very unique. In France, the simple act of eating bread is an exercise in creative problem solving and attempting to spell requires a degree of masochism. But that’s just how the French like it—and in WTF, Olivier Magny reveals the France only the French know. From the latest trends in baby names, to the religiously observed division of church and state, prepare yourself for an insider's look at French culture that is surprising, insightful, and chock full of bons mots. INCLUDES PHOTOGRAPHS

Title The Woman Who Smashed Codes
Author Jason Fagone
Publisher HarperCollins
Release Date 2017-09-26
Category History
Total Pages 464
ISBN 9780062430502
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

NATIONAL BESTSELLER NPR Best Book of 2017 “Not all superheroes wear capes, and Elizebeth Smith Friedman should be the subject of a future Wonder Woman movie.” — The New York Times Joining the ranks of Hidden Figures and In the Garden of Beasts, the incredible true story of the greatest codebreaking duo that ever lived, an American woman and her husband who invented the modern science of cryptology together and used it to confront the evils of their time, solving puzzles that unmasked Nazi spies and helped win World War II. In 1916, at the height of World War I, brilliant Shakespeare expert Elizebeth Smith went to work for an eccentric tycoon on his estate outside Chicago. The tycoon had close ties to the U.S. government, and he soon asked Elizebeth to apply her language skills to an exciting new venture: code-breaking. There she met the man who would become her husband, groundbreaking cryptologist William Friedman. Though she and Friedman are in many ways the "Adam and Eve" of the NSA, Elizebeth’s story, incredibly, has never been told. In The Woman Who Smashed Codes, Jason Fagone chronicles the life of this extraordinary woman, who played an integral role in our nation’s history for forty years. After World War I, Smith used her talents to catch gangsters and smugglers during Prohibition, then accepted a covert mission to discover and expose Nazi spy rings that were spreading like wildfire across South America, advancing ever closer to the United States. As World War II raged, Elizebeth fought a highly classified battle of wits against Hitler’s Reich, cracking multiple versions of the Enigma machine used by German spies. Meanwhile, inside an Army vault in Washington, William worked furiously to break Purple, the Japanese version of Enigma—and eventually succeeded, at a terrible cost to his personal life. Fagone unveils America’s code-breaking history through the prism of Smith’s life, bringing into focus the unforgettable events and colorful personalities that would help shape modern intelligence. Blending the lively pace and compelling detail that are the hallmarks of Erik Larson’s bestsellers with the atmosphere and intensity of The Imitation Game, The Woman Who Smashed Codes is page-turning popular history at its finest.

The Invisible Woman by Erika Robuck

Title The Invisible Woman
Author Erika Robuck
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2021-02-09
Category Fiction
Total Pages 368
ISBN 9780593102152
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

“An extraordinary profile of immense courage and daring.”—Chanel Cleeton, New York Times bestselling author of Before We Left Cuba “If you only read one WWII book this year, make it this one."—Natasha Lester, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Orphans In the depths of war, she would defy the odds to help liberate a nation…a gripping historical novel based on the remarkable true story of World War II heroine Virginia Hall, from the bestselling author of Hemingway’s Girl France, March 1944. Virginia Hall wasn't like the other young society women back home in Baltimore—she never wanted the debutante ball or silk gloves. Instead, she traded a safe life for adventure in Europe, and when her beloved second home is thrust into the dark days of war, she leaps in headfirst. Once she's recruited as an Allied spy, subverting the Nazis becomes her calling. But even the most cunning agent can be bested, and in wartime trusting the wrong person can prove fatal. Virginia is haunted every day by the betrayal that ravaged her first operation, and will do everything in her power to avenge the brave people she lost. While her future is anything but certain, this time more than ever Virginia knows that failure is not an option. Especially when she discovers what—and whom—she's truly protecting.

Hall Of Mirrors by Craig Gralley

Title Hall of Mirrors
Author Craig Gralley
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 2019-02-22
Category
Total Pages 240
ISBN 1733541535
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Danger was the air she breathed. Pain was her companion. Freedom was her heartbeat. In World War II France, she went by the name of Marie. Or Brigitte. Or any of a half dozen other names. Some saw her as a middle-aged newspaper reporter. To others, she was a doddering old woman. To the Nazis, she was an elusive enemy, "The Lady Who Limps." Her real name was Virginia Hall. She had a wooden leg. And she was a spy. As the Allies' first agent to live behind the lines in Vichy, France, she organized resistance groups, helped conduct sabotage operations, and reported secret intelligence back to the Allies. She was one of the first women agents in the CIA and was the only civilian woman of the war to receive the Distinguished Service Cross. This is the story of Virginia Hall and her immense personal courage and determination, and how she broke through barriers of physical limitation and gender discrimination to become America's greatest spy of World War II.

Agent Sonya by Ben Macintyre

Title Agent Sonya
Author Ben Macintyre
Publisher Signal
Release Date 2020-09-15
Category History
Total Pages 368
ISBN 9780771001956
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The international bestselling author of A Spy and the Traitor and A Spy Among Friends reveals one of the last great untold spy stories of the twentieth century--the woman hidden in plain sight who set the stage for the Cold War. If you happened to be in the quiet English village of Great Rollright in 1942, you might have seen a thin, elegant woman emerging from a cottage and climbing onto her bicycle. Ursula Burton had three children and a husband named Len, who worked as a machinist nearby. She was friendly but reserved, and spoke English with a very slight foreign accent. Her neighbours in the Cotswolds knew little about her. They did not know that Burton was a dedicated communist, a Soviet Colonel, and a veteran spy who had already conducted espionage operations in China, Poland, and Switzerland. They did not know that Len was also a Soviet spy, or that Burton kept a powerful radio transmitter connected to Moscow in their outhouse. They did not know that in her last espionage mission, Burton had infiltrated communist spies into a top-secret American intelligence operation parachting anti-Nazi agents into the Third Reich. But perhaps the most remarkable thing they did not know was that when Burton hopped onto her bike and pedaled away, she was heading to a countryside rendezvous with Klaus Fuchs, the nuclear physicist working on Britain's top secret atomic weapons program. Klaus was Burton's best agent, and together they were gathering the scientific secrets that would enable the Soviet Union to build the bomb. Ben Macintyre's latest true-life spy story is a masterpiece about the woman code-named "Sonya," one of the most important female spies in history. Hunted by the Chinese, the Japanese, the Nazis, MI5, MI6, and the FBI, she evaded all of them, and survived as well the brutal Soviet purges that left many of her friends and colleagues dead. Her story reflects the great ideological clash of the twentieth century, between communism, fascism, and Western democracy, and casts new light on the spy battles and shifting allegiances of our own times. With access to Sonya's papers and her intelligence files from multiple countries, Macintyre has conjured a thrilling secret history of a landmark agent, a true original who altered the course of the Cold War and helped plunge the world into a nuclear standoff that would last for decades.

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