[Free Audiobooks] 2 free titles from AudioSYNC Summer of Reading [Young Adult, History, Fantasy, Comedy]

AudioFile’s SYNC Summer of Listening 2017 promotion for young adults continues, which offers 2 free audiobooks per week—1 classic or non-fiction, 1 modern—as free MP3 downloads, usually available worldwide (some titles are subject to geo-restrictions, and you can see the planned release schedule here).

This week’s two selected titles—which have a theme of witchcraft, both comedic and serious—, available until 7am Eastern Time on June 29th, are as follows:

  • The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacey Schiff, is her meticulously-researched history, giving a dramatized recounting of the background and details of the Salem witch trials, and the factors and personalities involved as a group of adolescent girls sparked events with accusations, and the community’s panicked response; from Hachette Audio, read by Eliza Foss
  • The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories by Terry Pratchett is a posthumous collection of tween/YA-level short stories by the late grandmaster of humorously poignant fantasy, many written early in his career; from HarperAudio, read by actor Julian Rhind-Tutt

Offered as DRM-free MP3s through 7am Eastern Time on June 29th, available in selected countries worldwide (requires installing Overdrive Media console software on your PC, Mac, Android, or iDevice, and you need to finish downloading before the time limit).

[Free eBook] London: A Concise History by Geoffrey Trease [History]

London: A Concise History: From the Romans to the Twentieth Century by the late British author Geoffrey Trease, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature who was known for his meticulous historical research and contributions to children’s literature, is his vintage place history, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press.

This was originally published in 1975 by Thames and Hudson.

This history covers the founding and development of England’s capital city, from its earliest days as a Roman town, onward through to modern times (as of shortly after WWII), dwelling upon its assorted attractions and colourful inhabitants over the centuries.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] London: A Concise History by Geoffrey Trease [History]”

[Free eBook] Three Great Impresarios: Emperors of Song by Freddie Stockdale [Opera Company Founders Biography]

Three Great Impresarios: Emperors of Song by British author Freddie Stockdale, the founder of a small opera touring company as well as a pseudonymous crime novelist, is his historical musical arts figure biography cum business history, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press.

This was originally published in 1998 by John Murray.

This book presents a joint biography of three colourful musical history figures, Colonel James Mapleson, Oscar Hammerstein I, and John Christie, who were impresarios—private businessmen who established opera companies and employed the great stars of the day—during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, as they experienced both spectacular success and spectacular disaster with their assorted ambitious ventures.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

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[Free eBook] Goughie: The Life of General Sir Hubert Gough by Anthony Farrar-Hockley [WWI Military Biography]

Goughie: The Life of General Sir Hubert Gough by the late British author Anthony Farrar-Hockley, a distinguished British Army general turned military historian, is his vintage historical military figure biography, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press.

This was originally published in 1975 by Hart-Davies, MacGibbon Ltd.

This biography of General Sir Hubert Gough, a British Army general who played a prominent role in a number of important battles during World War I but later fell prey to political scapegoating and controversy, covers the entire length of his career, from the late Victorian days to the post-WWI years.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] Goughie: The Life of General Sir Hubert Gough by Anthony Farrar-Hockley [WWI Military Biography]”

[Free eBook] Into the Darkness Laughing: The Story of Jeanne Hébuterne, Modigliani’s Last Mistress by Patrice Chaplin [Early 20th C Artist Biography]

Into the Darkness Laughing: The Story of Jeanne Hébuterne, Modigliani’s Last Mistress by British author Patrice Chaplin is her historical arts figure biography, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press’ Odyssey imprint.

This was originally published in 1990 by Virago. This biography of Jeanne Hébuterne, an aspiring artist who was also the lover and frequent model of early 20th century painter and sculptor Amedeo Modigliani, who both died tragically young, examines her life and their relationship.

The author, a journalist as well as novelist, drew upon previously unseen documents and artworks, as well as interviews with Hébuterne’s surviving friends and their families.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] Into the Darkness Laughing: The Story of Jeanne Hébuterne, Modigliani’s Last Mistress by Patrice Chaplin [Early 20th C Artist Biography]”

[Free Audiobooks] 2 free titles from AudioSYNC Summer of Reading [Young Adult, History Essays, Historical Fiction]

AudioFile’s SYNC Summer of Listening 2017 promotion for young adults continues, which offers 2 free audiobooks per week—1 classic or non-fiction, 1 modern—as free MP3 downloads, usually available worldwide (some titles are subject to geo-restrictions, and you can see the planned release schedule here).

This week’s two selected titles, available until 7am Eastern Time on June 22nd, are as follows:

  • The Red Umbrella by Christina Diaz Gonzalez, is her young adult historical literary fiction coming of age novel, set during the 1960s and based on a real-life child evacuation program known as Operation Pedro Pan, starring a Cuban girl and her brother sent alone to the U.S. to flee Castro’s revolution, and their experiences adjusting to a new life; from Ideal Audiobooks, read by Kyla Garcia
  • The Souls of Black Folk by W. E. B. DuBois, is his classic seminal compilation of literary essays about the history and experience of African-American life in the generations shortly after the abolition of slavery; from Dreamscape Media, read by Rodney Gardiner

Offered as DRM-free MP3s through 7am Eastern Time on June 22nd, available in selected countries worldwide (requires installing Overdrive Media console software on your PC, Mac, Android, or iDevice, and you need to finish downloading before the time limit).

[Free eBook] The Dancing Bear by Frances Faviell [Vintage WWII Postwar Germany Memoir]

The Dancing Bear by Frances Faviell, a pseudonym for the late author and painter Olivia Faviell Lucas, is her vintage historical personal expat memoir, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Dean Street Press.

This was originally published in 1954 by Rupert Hart-Davis under the title The Dancing Bear: Berlin de profundis — An account of the author’s experiences in Berlin, 1946-49, and this reprint edition includes an afterword by the author’s son, and contains never before published sketches by the author made while they lived in Berlin.

The memoir covers the experiences of postwar conditions and daily life in Berlin during the years immediately after World War II, where the author’s husband, a British civil servant, was posted as part of the reconstruction efforts alongside his family. Some of the observations about their German friends and neighbours eventually formed the basis of Faviell’s literary fiction novel A House on the Rhine, which has previously been offered free.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] The Dancing Bear by Frances Faviell [Vintage WWII Postwar Germany Memoir]”

[Free eBook] The Dragonflies: The Story of Helicopters and Autogiros 1919-1970 by Robert Jackson [Aviation History]

The Dragonflies: The Story of Helicopters and Autogiros 1919-1970 by Yorkshire-born British author Robert Jackson, a former pilot turned prolific author of military & aviation thrillers and history, is his vintage aviation history, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press.

This was originally published in 1971 by Arthur Baker Ltd under the title The Dragonflies: The Story of Helicopters and Autogiros. This book covers the history of helicopters in modern times, with a brief overview of early medieval and Renaissance attempts at envisioning this form of flight, and then going on to the actual 20th century development of viable versions of it and various uses (primarily focused on military and search & rescue operations, but also a few chapters for travel and news reporting, etc.) up until the then-present day (circa 1971).

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] The Dragonflies: The Story of Helicopters and Autogiros 1919-1970 by Robert Jackson [Aviation History]”

[Free eBook] Past Vulnerability: Vulcanic eruptions and human vulnerability in traditional societies past and present [Earth Science & Natural Disaster Response History]

Past Vulnerability: Vulcanic eruptions and human vulnerability in traditional societies past and present edited by Felix Riede, an associate professor in the Department of Archaeology at Aarhus University, is a collection of academic essays on the link between geological and human activity, free for a limited time courtesy of the Aarhus University Press in Denmark.

This collection of essays explores past volcanic events from 10,000s of years ago to relatively recent times, and their effects on the local cultures surrounding, via a combination of geological and archaeological and literature studies approaches to examine their physical and social impacts.

There are some pretty nifty ones which do things like look through old Icelandic literature (and the Bible and Quran) for reports on tales of eruptions handed down through various means before being recorded into an official historical document, and how people coped with the after effects (and maybe an explanation for the fabled Fimbulwinter of Norse mynthology), as well as directly examining the remains of archaeological evidence from hunter-gatherers several thousands of years BCE.

Offered worldwide through May, available from the university’s website as their featured English-language Free Book of the Month selection.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] Past Vulnerability: Vulcanic eruptions and human vulnerability in traditional societies past and present [Earth Science & Natural Disaster Response History]”

[Free eBook] Scotland Yard Casebook by Joan Lock [19th-20th C British Police History]

Scotland Yard Casebook by British author Joan Lock, a former policewoman, is her history of early policing in the UK, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press.

This was originally published in 1993 by Robert Hale under the title Scotland Yard Casebook: The Making of the CID, 1865-1935.

This history of British law enforcement focuses especially on the creation of Scotland Yard’s Criminal Investigation Department which replaced the previous scandal-ridden Detective Branch, and covers some of its early cases, as well as the decades following its formation during which various crime-solving technologies and innovations were adopted, and social changes such as the introduction of women detectives and the difficulties they faced.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

Continue reading “[Free eBook] Scotland Yard Casebook by Joan Lock [19th-20th C British Police History]”