The Field of Blood: The Battle for Aleppo and the Remaking of the Medieval Middle East [Audiobook]

The Field of Blood: The Battle for Aleppo and the Remaking of the Medieval Middle East [Audiobook]
The Field of Blood: The Battle for Aleppo and the Remaking of the Medieval Middle East [Audiobook] by Nicholas Morton, read by Julian Elfer
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 6 hrs 36 mins | 181.64MB

In 1119, the people of the Near East came together in an epic clash of horses, swords, sand, and blood that would decide the fate of the city of the Aleppo - and the eastern Crusader states. Fought between tribal Turkish warriors on steppe ponies, Arab foot soldiers, Armenian bowmen, and European knights, the battlefield was the amphitheater into which the people of the Near East poured their full gladiatorial might.

Carrying a piece of the true cross before them, the Frankish army advanced, anticipating a victory that would secure their dominance over the entire region. But the famed Frankish cavalry charge failed them, and the well-arranged battlefield dissolved into a melee. Surrounded by enemy forces, the crusaders suffered a colossal defeat. With their advance in Northern Syria stalled, the momentum of the crusader conquest began to evaporate, and would never be recovered.

The Discovery of France: A Historical Geography [Audiobook]

The Discovery of France: A Historical Geography [Audiobook]
The Discovery of France: A Historical Geography [Audiobook] by Graham Robb, read by Saul Reichlin
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 16 hrs 49 mins | 463.53MB

A narrative of exploration―full of strange landscapes and even stranger inhabitants―that explains the enduring fascination of France. While Gustave Eiffel was changing the skyline of Paris, large parts of France were still terra incognita. Even in the age of railways and newspapers, France was a land of ancient tribal divisions, prehistoric communication networks, and pre-Christian beliefs. French itself was a minority language.

Graham Robb describes that unknown world in arresting narrative detail. He recounts the epic journeys of mapmakers, scientists, soldiers, administrators, and intrepid tourists, of itinerant workers, pilgrims, and herdsmen with their millions of migratory domestic animals. We learn how France was explored, charted, and colonized, and how the imperial influence of Paris was gradually extended throughout a kingdom of isolated towns and villages.

The Discovery of France explains how the modern nation came to be and how poorly understood that nation still is today. Above all, it shows how much of France―past and present―remains to be discovered.

Secret Pigeon Service: Operation Columba, Resistance and the Struggle to Liberate Europe [Audiobook]

Secret Pigeon Service: Operation Columba, Resistance and the Struggle to Liberate Europe [Audiobook]
Secret Pigeon Service: Operation Columba, Resistance and the Struggle to Liberate Europe [Audiobook] by Gordon Corera, read by William Hope
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 10 hrs 18 mins | 284.67MB

A riveting spy story set in World War Two. Using declassified documents and extensive original research, Secret Pigeon Service tells the dramatic untold story of MI 14(d) and its spy networks including the remarkable 'Leopold Vindictive', a Belgian resistance cell who used the pigeon they found in 1941 to spy on the Nazis.

Everyone has heard of MI5 and MI6. Some may even have heard of MI9, which helped downed airmen escape in World War II. Few have heard of MI14(d) - home to Operation Columba. In this new spy story set during the Second World War, Gordon Corera uses declassified documents and extensive original research to tell the story of the Secret Pigeon Service for the first time.

Between 1941 and 1944, 16,000 pigeons were dropped in an arc from Bordeaux to Copenhagen as part of 'Columba' - a secret British operation to bring back intelligence from those living under Nazi occupation. The messages flooded back written on tiny pieces of rice paper tucked into canisters and tied to the legs of the birds - authentic voices from rural France, Holland, Belgium, sometimes comic, often tragic and occasionally invaluable, with details of German troop movements and fortifications, new Nazi weapons, radar systems or the deployment of the V-1 and V-2 rockets that terrorized London.

Who were the people who provided this rich seam of intelligence? Many were not trained agents nor people with experience of spying. At the centre of this audiobook is the 'Leopold Vindictive' network - a small group of Belgian villagers prepared to take huge risks. They were led by an extraordinary priest, Josef Raskin - a man connected to royalty and whose intelligence was so valuable it was shown to Churchill, leading MI6 to parachute agents to assist him.

A powerful and tragic tale of espionage, the book brings together the British and Belgian sides of Leopold Vindictive's story and reveals for the first time the wider history of a quirky, quarrelsome band of spy masters and their special wartime operations as well as how bitter rivalries in London placed the lives of secret agents at risk. It is an audiobook about not so much pigeons as the remarkable people living trapped in occupied Europe who were faced with the choice of how to respond to a call for help - and took the decision to resist.

Reinventing Capitalism in the Age of Big Data [Audiobook]

Reinventing Capitalism in the Age of Big Data [Audiobook]
Reinventing Capitalism in the Age of Big Data [Audiobook] by Viktor Mayer-Schonberger, Thomas Ramge, read by John Chancer
2018 | MP3@64 kbps | 7 hrs 55 mins | 218.31MB

Markets have long been acknowledged to be a superior mechanism for managing resources, but until the advent of big data, they largely functioned better in theory than in practice. Now, as ideal markets are within reach because of vastly greater access to information, we are on the verge of a major disruption. As data becomes a more valuable asset than cash, the rules for surviving and thriving are changing.

Reinventing Capitalism is a provocative look at how data is reinventing markets and, in so doing, is ushering in an era where the firm is no longer predominant. With richer and more comprehensive information about human wants and needs, an economy powered by data offers the possibility of increased abundance, equality and resilience. The data-driven markets that will thrive in this environment are far better than firms at organising human endeavors, meaning that finance-driven capitalism is being displaced by its more efficient, more sustainable and more democratic disruptor: data capitalism.

Life's Too Short to Go So F*cking Slow: Lessons from an Epic Friendship That Went the Distance [Audiobook]

Life's Too Short to Go So F*cking Slow: Lessons from an Epic Friendship That Went the Distance [Audiobook]
Life's Too Short to Go So F*cking Slow: Lessons from an Epic Friendship That Went the Distance [Audiobook] by Susan Lacke, read by Amy McFadden
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 3 hrs 35 mins | 100.47MB

Susan and Carlos were unlikely friends. She was a young, overweight college professor and a bit of a trainwreck - juggling a divorce, a pack-a-day habit, and hiding empty boxes of wine under her bed. He was her boss, an Ironman triathlete, with life figured out. She was a whiner, he was a hard-ass. He had his shit together, she most assuredly did not.

Trash-talking workouts, breakdowns, a devastating diagnosis - this heartwarming story of training buddies reveals a deep and abiding friendship that traversed life, sport, and everything in between. Their journey reveals the inspiring power of sports and friendship to change lives forever.

Amusing and poignant, Life's Too Short to Go So F--king Slow is about running and triathlon, growth and heartbreak, and an epic friendship that went the distance.

Ladies of the Canyons: A League of Extraordinary Women and Their Adventures in the American Southwest [Audiobook]

Ladies of the Canyons: A League of Extraordinary Women and Their Adventures in the American Southwest [Audiobook]
Ladies of the Canyons: A League of Extraordinary Women and Their Adventures in the American Southwest [Audiobook] by Lesley Poling-Kempes, read by Jo Anna Perrin
2018 | MP3@64 kbps | 11 hrs 6 mins | 305.48MB

Ladies of the Canyons is the true story of remarkable women who left the security and comforts of genteel Victorian society and journeyed to the American Southwest in search of a wider view of themselves and their world.

Educated, restless, and inquisitive, Natalie Curtis, Carol Stanley, Alice Klauber, and Mary Cabot Wheelwright were plucky, intrepid women whose lives were transformed in the first decades of the 20th century by the people and the landscape of the American Southwest. Part of an influential circle of women that included Louisa Wade Wetherill, Alice Corbin Henderson, Mabel Dodge Luhan, Mary Austin, and Willa Cather, these ladies imagined and created a new home territory, a new society, and a new identity for themselves and for the women who would follow them.

Their adventures were shared with the likes of Theodore Roosevelt and Robert Henri, Edgar Hewett and Charles Lummis, Chief Tawakwaptiwa of the Hopi, and Hostiin Klah of the Navajo. Their journeys took them to Monument Valley and Rainbow Bridge, into Canyon de Chelly, and across the high mesas of the Hopi, down through the Grand Canyon, and over the red desert of the Four Corners, to the pueblos along the Rio Grande and the villages in the mountains between Santa Fe and Taos.

Although their stories converge in the outback of the American Southwest, the saga of Ladies of the Canyons is also the tale of Boston's Brahmins, the Greenwich Village avant-garde, the birth of American modern art, and Santa Fe's art and literary colony. Ladies of the Canyons is the story of New Women stepping boldly into the New World of inconspicuous success, ambitious failure, and the personal challenges experienced by women and men during the emergence of the Modern Age.

In the Heat of the Summer: The New York Riots of 1964 and the War on Crime [Audiobook]

In the Heat of the Summer: The New York Riots of 1964 and the War on Crime [Audiobook]
In the Heat of the Summer: The New York Riots of 1964 and the War on Crime (Politics and Culture in Modern America) [Audiobook] by Michael W Flamm, read by Marlin May
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 14 hrs 10 mins | 390.5MB

On the morning of July 16, 1964, a white police officer in New York City shot and killed a black teenager, James Powell, across the street from the high school where he was attending summer classes. Two nights later, a peaceful demonstration in Central Harlem degenerated into violent protests. During the next week, thousands of rioters looted stores from Brooklyn to Rochester and pelted police with bottles and rocks. In the symbolic and historic heart of black America, the Harlem Riot of 1964, as most called it, highlighted a new dynamic in the racial politics of the nation. The first "long, hot summer" of the 60s had arrived.

In this gripping narrative of a pivotal moment, Michael W. Flamm draws on personal interviews and delves into the archives to move briskly from the streets of New York, where black activists like Bayard Rustin tried in vain to restore peace, to the corridors of the White House, where President Lyndon Johnson struggled to contain the fallout from the crisis and defeat Republican challenger Barry Goldwater, who had made "crime in the streets" a centerpiece of his campaign. In the Heat of the Summer spotlights the extraordinary drama of a single week when peaceful protests and violent unrest intersected.

Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up [Audiobook]

Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up [Audiobook]
Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up [Audiobook] by Daphne Miller MD, read by Sarah Mollo-Christensen
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 8 hrs 14 mins | 226.93MB
  • Is there a connection between microbes in the soil and in our bodies?
  • Why does a dirty farm offer protection from allergies while a dirty urban apartment does not?
  • What can pastured hens teach us about "good" stress and "bad" stress?
  • How can a vineyard pest management system inspire more effective cancer treatment?
  • What can cows teach us about raising healthy eaters?
  • Can urban farms reduce neighborhood crime?

These may not sound like typical questions for a family physician to consider, but in Farmacology, Daphne Miller, MD, ventures out of her medical office and travels to seven innovative family farms around the country on a quest to discover the hidden connections between how we care for our bodies and how we grow our food.

Miller also seeks out the perspectives of noted biomedical scientists and artfully weaves in their insights and research, along with stories from her own medical practice. Farmacology offers a profound new approach to healing, combined with practical advice for how to treat disease and maintain wellness.

Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying [Audiobook]

Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying [Audiobook]
Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying [Audiobook] by James M Olson, read by Joel Richards
2018 | MP3@64 kbps | 10 hrs 36 mins | 292.26MB

Revolutionary War officer Nathan Hale, one of America's first spies, said, "Any kind of service necessary to the public good becomes honorable by being necessary." A statue of Hale stands outside CIA headquarters, and the agency often cites his statement as one of its guiding principles. But who decides what is necessary for the public good, and is it really true that any kind of service is permissible for the public good?

These questions are at the heart of James M. Olson's book, Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying. Olson, a veteran of the CIA's clandestine service, takes listeners inside the real world of intelligence to describe the difficult dilemmas that field officers face on an almost daily basis. Far from being a dry theoretical treatise, this fascinating book uses actual intelligence operations to illustrate how murky their moral choices can be. Listeners will be surprised to learn that the CIA provides very little guidance on what is, or is not, permissible.

Rather than empowering field officers, the author has found that this lack of guidelines actually hampers operations. Olson believes that US intelligence officers need clearer moral guidelines to make correct, quick decisions.

Dock Boss: Eddie McGrath and the West Side Waterfront [Audiobook]

Dock Boss: Eddie McGrath and the West Side Waterfront [Audiobook]
Dock Boss: Eddie McGrath and the West Side Waterfront [Audiobook] by Neil G Clark, read by Chris Andrew Ciulla
2018 | MP3@64 kbps | 9 hrs 4 mins | 249.76MB

Dock Boss: Eddie McGrath and the West Side Waterfront is the fascinating account of one gangster's ascension from altar boy to the leader of New York City's violent Irish Mob.

Eddie McGrath's life and crimes are traced through the tail-end of Prohibition, the gang warfare of the 1930s that propelled him into the position of an organized crime boss, the sordid years of underworld control over the bustling waterfront, McGrath's involvement in dozens of gangland murders, and finally the decline of the dock mobsters following a period of longshoremen rebellion in the 1950s.

Like walking into the backroom of a smoky West Side tavern, the book also features all the other unsavory characters who operated on the waterfront, including McGrath's brother-in-law, John "Cockeye" Dunn; the gang's hitman of choice, Andrew "Squint" Sheridan; racketeers such as Mickey Bowers, Timothy O'Mara, Charlie Yanowsky, Joe Butler, and Albert Ackalitis; as well as a plethora of corrupt union officials, robbers, enforcers, shakedown artists, loan sharks, boss loaders, and bookies.

Blue Dreams: The Science and the Story of the Drugs that Changed Our Minds [Audiobook]

Blue Dreams: The Science and the Story of the Drugs that Changed Our Minds [Audiobook]
Blue Dreams: The Science and the Story of the Drugs that Changed Our Minds [Audiobook] by Lauren Slater, read by Betsy Foldes Meiman
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 13 hrs 33 mins | 373.38MB

A groundbreaking and revelatory history of psychotropic drugs, from "a thoroughly exhilarating and entertaining writer" (Washington Post).

Although one in five Americans now takes at least one psychotropic drug, the fact remains that nearly seventy years after doctors first began prescribing them, not even their creators understand exactly how or why these drugs work--or don't work--on what ails our brains. Blue Dreams offers the explosive story of the discovery and development of psychiatric medications, as well as the science and the people behind their invention, told by a riveting writer and psychologist who shares her own experience with the highs and lows of psychiatric drugs.

Lauren Slater's revelatory account charts psychiatry's journey from its earliest drugs, Thorazine and lithium, up through Prozac and other major antidepressants of the present. Blue Dreams also chronicles experimental treatments involving Ecstasy, magic mushrooms, the most cutting-edge memory drugs, placebos, and even neural implants. In her thorough analysis of each treatment, Slater asks three fundamental questions: how was the drug born, how does it work (or fail to work), and what does it reveal about the ailments it is meant to treat?

Fearlessly weaving her own intimate experiences into comprehensive and wide-ranging research, Slater narrates a personal history of psychiatry itself. In the process, her powerful and groundbreaking exploration casts modern psychiatry's ubiquitous wonder drugs in a new light, revealing their ability to heal us or hurt us, and proving an indispensable resource not only for those with a psychotropic prescription but for anyone who hopes to understand the limits of what we know about the human brain and the possibilities for future treatments.

Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States [Audiobook]

Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States [Audiobook]
Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States [Audiobook] by James C Scott, read by Eric Martin
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 8 hrs 35 mins | 236.63MB

An account of all the new and surprising evidence now available for the beginnings of the earliest civilizations that contradict the standard narrative

Why did humans abandon hunting and gathering for sedentary communities dependent on livestock and cereal grains and governed by precursors of today's states? Most people believe that plant and animal domestication allowed humans, finally, to settle down and form agricultural villages, towns, and states, which made possible civilization, law, public order, and a presumably secure way of living. But archaeological and historical evidence challenges this narrative. The first agrarian states, says James C. Scott, were born of accumulations of domestications: first fire, then plants, livestock, subjects of the state, captives, and finally women in the patriarchal family - all of which can be viewed as a way of gaining control over reproduction.

Scott explores why we avoided sedentism and plow agriculture, the advantages of mobile subsistence, the unforeseeable disease epidemics arising from crowding plants, animals, and grain, and why all early states are based on millets and cereal grains and unfree labor. He also discusses the "barbarians" who long evaded state control, as a way of understanding continuing tension between states and nonsubject peoples.