If one casualty of The Great War was the Ottoman Empire, one creation was modern Turkey. How a multi-ethnic splinter of a defunct empire dating back 625 years became the nation formally recognized in 1923 is the fascinating story of Charles King’s Midnight at the Pera Palace (W.W. Norton, $27.95). Using Istanbul between the wars as the lens for focusing on the larger national context, King’s comprehensive social history pivots on the moment when 1925 became 1926 and, for the first time, “all Istanbullus … agreed on a thing called midnight.” Similarly, citizens of Kemal’s new state embraced a common identity as “Turks,” a term that previously had meant little more than “country bumpkin.” Delving into the politics, demographics, entertainment, and industry of interwar Istanbul, King spotlights a wide range of activities, from the restoration of the 13th-century Byzantine mosaics in the Hagia Sophia to the 1930s network for spiriting Jews through Istanbul to Palestine, from the development of a distinctive Turkish tango to the true meaning of “harem” and the misreading that turned the Osman dynasty into “Ottoman.” This book is full of insight about a complex place still struggling to find its balance on the cusp of East and West.

Midnight at the Pera Palace: The Birth of Modern Istanbul Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393089141
Availability: Out of Print in This Format
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - September 15th, 2014

Midnight at the Pera Palace: The Birth of Modern Istanbul Cover Image
$17.95
ISBN: 9780393351866
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - November 2nd, 2015

Dan Jones, the brilliant mind behind The Plantagenets, continues his vivid chronicle of the cousins competing to rule Britain. As the families tore themselves apart and the Tudors rose to power, the history becomes more cut-throat and intriguing than any fantasy series. The Wars of the Roses: The Fall of the Plantagenets and the Rise of the Tudors (Viking, $36) evokes the era of Joan of Arc, of power-hungry queens, and roving men-at-arms. This is history as compelling as a modern political thriller, but though the pages turn quickly, Jones imparts a great deal of period information, as well as telling stories that have clear ramifications for the struggles and revolutions of our own world.

The Wars of the Roses: The Fall of the Plantagenets and the Rise of the Tudors Cover Image
$36.00
ISBN: 9780670026678
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Viking Books - October 14th, 2014

The Wars of the Roses: The Fall of the Plantagenets and the Rise of the Tudors Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143127888
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Penguin Books - October 6th, 2015

As the one-hundredth anniversary of the Easter Rising nears, the title of this book harkens us back to W.B. Yeats’s “Easter, 1916”; who were the men and women that changed history? Meet these brave souls with Vivid Faces: The Revolutionary Generation (W.W. Norton, $29.95) in R.F. Foster’s account of the patriots willing to risk everything. Indeed, Foster has investigated every facet of his subjects’ lives, and includes details of religion, sex, voting rights, literature, bawdy songs, and favorite foods as he charts the actions of this great generation driven to give their blood to gain independence. From creating the world-famous Abbey Theatre to preserving the Gaelic tongue and their Celtic creation mythology to the more intimate experiences of young couples sacrificing personal happiness to bring about change, Foster’s book offers a complex portrait of Irish freedom fighters active between 1890 and 1923.
Vivid Faces: The Revolutionary Generation in Ireland, 1890-1923 Cover Image
$29.95
ISBN: 9780393082791
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - January 26th, 2015

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