2,000 years of history in one riveting afternoon A country both admired and feared, Germany has been the epicenter of world events time and again: the Reformation, both World Wars, the fall of the Berlin Wall. It did not emerge as a modern nation until 1871 - yet today, Germany is the world´s fourth-largest economy and a standard-bearer of liberal democracy. ´´There´s no point studying the past unless it sheds some light on the present´´, writes James Hawes in this brilliantly concise history that has already captivated hundreds of thousands of readers and listeners. ´´It is time, now more than ever, for us all to understand the real history of Germany.´´ 1. Language: English. Narrator: Matthew Lloyd Davies. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/tant/015235/bk_tant_015235_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The history of East Germany was closely intertwined with the development of its security services, specifically the Stasi. In an era of totalitarian countries dominated by repressive state agencies, the Stasi stood out for its size and the sheer breadth and depth of its surveillance. Films such as Das Leben der Anderen (The Lives of Others) encapsulated post-unification attitudes and conceptions of both life in East Germany and the activities of the Stasi. Despite its notoriety, the legacy of the Stasi is contested in modern Germany. Former West Germans, and Westerners more generally, closely align the East German state and the Stasi, framing a ´´Stasi State´´. Those in the former East Germany, however, resent the patronizing attitudes and conflation of the two institutions, preferring to focus on the social elements of the East German state. Uwe Spiekermann, of the German Historical Institute, succinctly sets out the impressions of many when considering East Germany and its culture of surveillance: ´´In retrospect, the Stasi has become a symbol for the GDR [East Germany].´´ The East German State Security Service, or Staatssicherheitsdienst in German (abbreviated to Stasi) was formed in 1950. It purported to be the state’s ´´shield and sword´´ and closely monitored much of the population for the next 40 years. Some of the figures are startling. By the end of the 1980s, Stasi files were kept on six million out of 18 million inhabitants. When the Stasi archives were opened in the 1990s, files were discovered that stretched for 178 kilometers. Over the course of East Germany’s existence, up to two million people acted as spies, and 90,000 people worked at the Ministry, not to mention the numerous ´´unofficial´´ informers. East Germany also had a much-feared foreign intelligence arm of its intelligence services, the HV A (German: Hauptverwaltung A or central department), which proved expert at infiltrating West Ge 1. Language: English. Narrator: Colin Fluxman. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/110801/bk_acx0_110801_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Heinz Schultz´s word could send a man to prison. Though only a youth of 15, he was strong, tall, and blond. The boys in his Deutsches Jungvolk unit esteemed him and feared him. And they wanted to be just like him. Emil Radle wanted to be just like him. A dedicated member of Hitler Youth, Emil was loyal to the Fuehrer before family, a champion for the cause and a fan of the famous Luftwaffe air force. Emil´s friends Moritz and Johann discover a shortwave radio and everything changes. Now they listen to the forbidden BBC broadcast of news reports that tell both sides. Now they know the truth. The boys along with Johann´s sister Katharina, band together to write out the reports and covertly distribute flyers through their city. It´s an act of high treason that could have them arrested - or worse. As the war progresses, so does Emil´s affection for Katharina. He´d do anything to have a normal life and to stay in Passau by her side. But when Germany´s losses become immense, even their greatest resistance can´t prevent the boys from being sent to the Eastern Front. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Bruce Wiebe. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/054375/bk_acx0_054375_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The exemplary life of a noble soldier/statesman, a description of ancient Germany, and a discussion of oratory are the subjects of three short masterpieces by the brilliant Roman historian, Tacitus. The Life of Cnaeus Julius Agricola is an almost perfect example of what the Romans called the panegyric, a type of salutary obituary which was invariably produced at the death of renowned persons. Agricola was certainly no ordinary man. For one thing, he was the father-in-law of Tacitus. And for another, he was a genuinely gifted soldier of the highest character, the kind of unsung hero who made possible the success of Roman civilization. Germany and its Tribes is one of the most interesting pieces to come down to us. It is a very insightful and informed commentary on the feared tribes who lived beyond the Rhine. Although some of the information is incorrect or nonsensical, most of it is quite cogent and represents an accurate picture of the German people in those days. Many will recognize traits that have survived into modern times. The Dialogue on Oratory is a spirited discussion among four men about the merits or demerits of the state of oratory in their time versus its practice in the past. By turns amusing and dazzling, the conversation keeps the listener entertained. This production uses the famous translation by Church and Brodribb, considered the finest in the English language. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Charlton Griffin. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acon/000066/bk_acon_000066_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
His weapon is the stiletto, his codename: The Needle. He is Henry Faber, a coldly professional killer and Germany´s most feared deep-cover agent in Britain. His task: to discover the Allies´ plans for D-Day and get them to Germany at all costs. It´s a task he undertakes with customary relish and ruthlessness - until he encounters Storm Island and a woman named Lucy. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Christopher Cazenove. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/macm/000007/bk_macm_000007_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Learn to take action and make a difference - one step at a time. How to Change the World combines insights from Tolstoy, Gandhi and Sartre and outlines a refreshing theory of political power, giving examples of successful non-violent action from across the world, from the start of recorded history to the present day. The book shows how careful planning by non-violent activists overthrew the feared dictator Slobodan Milosevic and reveals that, contrary to widespread belief, a great deal was done in Germany to curb Hitler´s regime. If more people had done more – the book argues – perhaps the regime’s worst excesses might have been prevented altogether. Of course, we don´t all need to topple dictators, but any attempt to change the status quo requires us to overcome inertia, indifference and perhaps active hostility from people who feel threatened. How to Change the World shows that we can break down our goals into small pieces, and that there will never be a better time to start. 1. Language: English. Narrator: David Thorpe. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/macm/000609/bk_macm_000609_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Nazi Germany is entering a dangerous period of its existence and a young German boy, Wolf Kruger, dreams of becoming a fighter ace in the feared Luftwaffe. His parents, however, have higher aspirations for their talented son and are beginning to voice concerns over Hitler and his increasingly frightening megalomania, something which ultimately costs them their lives. Meanwhile, in Great Britain, there is a single voice of reason, standing up to the rise of the Nazis and challenging the appeasement of the British government as they give in, time and again, to Hitler´s demands. Winston Churchill warns against allowing the Fuhrer to get away with too much and urges others to make a stand. Little does Churchill and Kruger realize, but their lives are soon to become inextricably intertwined as the boy grows into a man, and the politician in the wilderness grows into one of the most formidable statesmen of the 20th Century. Packed with history, fighter pilots and intrigue, this is the first book in the fast-paced Epic War series, featuring the intellect and persona of Winston Churchill and a host of other memorable characters, including Madeline, Winston´s headstrong niece who is a match for any man...or fighter pilot. The book has been re-edited. As Winston Churchill might have said in this case, ´´The author will do the right thing...eventually. And he was kind enough to light my cigar.´´ 1. Language: English. Narrator: Jim Raposa. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/094976/bk_acx0_094976_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
From the author of Wartime and The Thirties comes an outstanding history of the most prolonged and devastating attack ever endured by Britain´s civilian population – the Blitz. September 1940 marked the beginning of Nazi Germany´s sustained attack on civilian Britain. Lasting eight months, the Blitz was a new and terrible form of warfare that had been predicted throughout the 1930s, widely feared since Neville Chamberlain´s declaration that Britain was at war. Yet, compared with other great events of that war - Dunkirk, the Battle of Britain, D-Day - the Blitz remains curiously overlooked; while the London Blitz has been much documented, there exists very little in the way of a comprehensive account of the Blitz experience as a whole - or of its social, political and cultural implications. In her new book, critically acclaimed historian Juliet Gardiner finally gives the Blitz the historical attention it deserves. Exploring this national story, she charts the impact of the nightly bombings on the entire country. And while loss and devastation affected the whole of Britain, the attacks also served to galvanise the nation: in the face of the terrifying Nazi onslaught, a new determination steadily emerged. Revealing, original and beautifully written, The Blitz is a much-needed re-examination of one of the most important aspects of Second World War history. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Catherine Harvey. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/hcuk/000769/bk_hcuk_000769_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The most feared man of the Nazi elite. Two Czechoslovakian patriots who are ready to risk their own lives to stop him. The most daring assassination of WW2. ´´You are tasked with a mission of the utmost importance. As you know, Reich Protector Reinhard Heydrich is one of the most powerful men in Nazi Germany as of now. He´s efficient in his methods, ruthless, extremely intelligent, and can´t be underestimated. A man like him will give you only one chance to kill him; if you don´t use it, he´ll kill you and it won´t be a fast and merciful death.´´ The Gestapo chief and the man, whom Hitler himself calls The Man with the Iron Heart, arrives in Prague and soon earns himself a name of The Hangman among its population. When the order comes from London calling the Czech resistance to assassinate Reinhard Heydrich, they have to decide fast, what is stronger: self-preservation or heroic death in the name of freedom. ´´We can´t die tonight. Fate wouldn´t allow us to die before we complete our mission. Heydrich´s appointment as the Protector has perverted the very sense of the word. He´s not the Protector; we are. We are coming to restore the correct order of things, how they should be. When the strong protect the weak, not when the strong bully everyone who goes against them into blind submission, or hangs them regardless of age, sex, class or origin. No, we can´t die. Otherwise, this whole world won´t make sense to me anymore.´´ Based on true events, ´´Killing the Hangman´´ follows Josef Gabčík´s and Jan Kubiš´s training in Britain, their parachute drop into Czechoslovakia, and the eventual planning of the assassination itself. It also provides an intimate glimpse into a life of Heydrich himself, his recent appointment, the infamous Wannsee Conference, and the eventual death. (Formerly a part of a USA Today bestselling anthology ´´The Darkest Hour´´)