Avenue of Spies: A True Story of Terror, Espionage, and One American Family's Heroic Resistance in Nazi-Occupied Paris
By: Alex Kershaw
Sumner Jackson came to France as a doctor with the American Doughboys during World War I. He fell in love and married the Swiss-born Toquette after the war, and they settled in Paris. Jackson was a dedicated surgeon at the American Hospital of Paris when the second World War began. Instead of fleeing for the U.S., the Jacksons became members of the French Resistance, committing acts of espionage virtually under the noses of their Nazi neighbors on the exclusive Avenue Foch. Readers interested in World War II and the French Resistance will enjoy this well-written, fast-paced book.
By: Val McDermid
Novelist McDermid offers a change of pace with this excellent work of nonfiction. The methodical study of evidence in crime has become more and more important in the past two hundred years. Maggots and insects can tell scientists a great deal about the timing of death. Technological advances, such as DNA testing and modern security cameras, make it harder and harder to commit the "perfect" crime. McDermid's book is captivating and written for the layperson in mind. This is an outstanding introduction for anyone interested in forensic sciences.
By: Adam Makos
This story of heroic sacrifice takes the reader from Quonset Point to inside enemy territory in the Korean War. Two Navy pilots, one white, Tom Hudner from New England and one black, Jesse Brown from Mississippi, team up to protect the forces on the ground. When Jesse is shot down, Tom makes the heroic choice to save him. Even for those who don’t read military history, this amazing tale is highly recommended.
By: Lucia Jang, Susan McClelland
The author describes a life of starvation and privation in North Korea that is horrible for anyone to endure but even worse for women. Lucia begins to know hunger at a very young age. As a young woman, she is raped by her fiancé, becomes pregnant, lives in an abusive marriage only to see her baby sold to a childless couple. As food becomes nearly impossible to find, Lucia finally joins the numbers of North Koreans who illegally cross into China looking for work and food for their Korean families. She agrees to be sold to a Chinese man to serve as a wife, but eventually she escapes. She finds brief happiness working on a farm, but a jealous neighbor informs on her and she is sent to a Korean prison. North Korean prison life for women is full of brutality and sexual abuse. Years later, Lucia, with a baby she fought to keep, manages to escape from North Korea and is given asylum in Canada. This is a stomach-turning account which will leave readers wondering how anyone could unearth the fortitude and determination to even stay alive never mind finding the gumption to escape to another country.
By: Drew Barrymore
Not a memoir or a biography, this book is more a collection of vignettes from the author's life. Now forty, Barrymore has embraced motherhood, finding joy and fulfillment in a family life that eluded her own childhood years. Barrymore's career was in tatters by her late teens, but she turned her life around through hard work and determination. Even readers who aren't huge fans will find it hard not to admire Barrymore's transformation into a savvy businesswoman, talented actress, dedicated U.N. ambassador, and loving mother. The audio version of this book, read by the author, is entertainment in itself.