Defiant -- The POWs Who Endured Vietnam's Most Infamous Prison, the Women Who Fought for Them, and the One Who Never Returned, by Alvin Townley, Dunne/St. Martin's '14, $27.99, 418 pages, ASIN #1250006538. Index, selected bibliography, notes, b&w images sprinkled through text.
While U.S. Sen. John McCain was his party's nominee for President in 2008, he is even better known as having lived six harrowing years as a Prisoner of War in Vietnam. McCain calls Defiant "a riveting tribute to the unyielding men who endured years of brutal captivity as POWs in Vietnam and the families they left behind."
From the dust jacket:
"During the Vietnam War, hundreds of American prisoners-of-war faced years of brutal conditions and horrific torture at the hands of North Vietnamese guards and interrogators who ruthlessly plied them for military intelligence and propaganda. Determined to maintain their Code of Conduct, the POWs developed a powerful underground resistance. To quash it, their captors singled out its eleven leaders, Vietnam's own 'dirty dozen,' and banished them to an isolated jail that would become known as Alcatraz. None would leave its solitary cells and interrogation rooms unscathed; one would never return.
"As these eleven men suffered in Hanoi, their wives at home launched an extraordinary campaign that would ultimately spark the nationwide POW/MIA movement. The members of these military families banded together and showed the courage not only to endure years of doubt about the fate of their husbands and fathers, but to bravely fight for their safe return. When the survivors of Alcatraz finally came home, one would go on to receive the Medal of Honor, another would become a U.S. Senator, and a third still serves in the U.S. Congress."
Author Alvin Townley of Atlanta, GA has written Legacy of Honor, Spirit of Adventure, and Fly Navy.
By the Rivers of Water -- A Nineteenth-Century Atlantic Odyssey by Erskine Clarke, BasicBooks '14, $29.99, 450 pages, ASIN #0465002722. Index of names, general index, notes, no bibliography, two groupings of b&w glossy images.
"By the Rivers of Waters is a history set in the midst of a 19th-century Atlantic world," explains historian Erskine Clarke in his Preface. "It is a story of a strange odyssey by a young white couple from the Georgia and South Carolina Lowcountry who left plantation homes and the elegant little city of Savannah and sailed ocean highways to West Africa.
"There they lived for 17 years, first in a cottage above the pounding surf at Cape Palmas and later in a cottage by the broad waters of the Gabon estuary. Odysseus-like, they sailed along what was for them an exotic coastline and sometimes ventured up great rivers and followed ancient paths.
"....By the Rivers of Water is the story of John Leighton Wilson and his wife, Jane Bayard Wilson, the best-known and most influential American missionaries in 'West Africa during the first half of the nineteenth century."
Author Erskine Clarke is professor emeritus of American religious history at Columbia Theological Seminary and recipient of Columbia University's Bancroft Prize for his book, Dwelling Place. He lives in North Carolina.
The First Treatise on Museums -- Samuel Quiccheberg's Inscriptions 1565 by Samuel Quiccheberg, Translation by Mark A. Meadow and Bruce Robertson, Introduction by Mark A. Meadow, Getty Publications '13 paperback, on glossy stock, 145 pages, ASIN #1606061496. Index, bibliography, notes, b&w and color glossy images sprinkled through text.
From the back cover:
"In 1565, Samuel Quiccheberg published the Inscriptiones, the earliest known treatise on museums. In this work, he proposes a model for the ideal princely curiosity cabinet, or Wunderkammer. He shows how the collecting of objects offered nobles a means to produce practical knowledge that would be of direct utility in governing the state.
"In mapping out the collectability of the material world, he demonstrates how grouping objects and comparing them helps make the world intelligible. Concerned with the practicalities of operating a large museum, Quiccheberg situates the Wunderkammer within a network of workshops and laboratories that produce, maintain, and study the objects of the collection.
"The First Treatise on Museums makes this work available for the first time in English translation. Quiccheberg's program for early modern collections provides a point of origin for today's museums and an implicit critique of their aims, asserting the fundamental research value of collections."