Best Selling Audio Books in History - Europe

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release date: Sep 19, 2017
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Killing England: The Brutal Struggle for American Independence (Bill O'Reilly's Killing Series)

This program features an introduction read by Bill O'Reilly.

The Revolutionary War as never told before.

The breathtaking latest installment in Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard’s mega-bestselling Killing series transports listeners to the most important era in our nation’s history, the Revolutionary War. Told through the eyes of George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and Great Britain’s King George III, Killing England chronicles the path to independence in gripping detail, taking the listener from the battlefields of America to the royal courts of Europe. What started as protest and unrest in the colonies soon escalated to a world war with devastating casualties.

O’Reilly and Dugard recreate the war’s landmark battles, including Bunker Hill, Long Island, Saratoga, and Yorktown, revealing the savagery of hand-to-hand combat and the often brutal conditions under which these brave American soldiers lived and fought. Also here is the reckless treachery of Benedict Arnold and the daring guerilla tactics of the “Swamp Fox” Frances Marion.

A must listen, Killing England reminds one and all how the course of history can be changed through the courage and determination of those intent on doing the impossible.

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release date: Nov 07, 2017
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Darkest Hour: How Churchill Brought England Back from the Brink
[Read by John Lee]

From the acclaimed novelist and screenwriter of The Theory of Everything comes a revisionist look at the period immediately following Winston Churchill's ascendancy to prime minister -- soon to be a major motion picture starring Gary Oldman.

May 1940. Britain is at war, Winston Churchill has unexpectedly been promoted to prime minister, the horrors of blitzkrieg witness one Western European democracy fall after another in rapid succession. Facing this horror, with pen in hand and typist-secretary at the ready, Churchill wonders what words could capture the public mood when the invasion of Britain seems mere hours away.

It is this fascinating period that Anthony McCarten captures in this deeply researched and wonderfully written new book. A day-by-day -- and often hour-by-hour -- narrative of this crucial moment in history provides a revisionist look at Churchill, a man plagued by doubt through those turbulent weeks but who emerged having made himself into the iconic, lionized figure we remember.

release date: Mar 15, 2013
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A Higher Calling: An Incredible True Story of Combat and Chivalry in the War-Torn Skies of World War II
[Read by Robertson Dean]

The story of two enemy fighter pilots who met in the skies in the midst of a bloody war.

Four days before Christmas in 1943, a badly damaged American bomber struggled to fly over wartime Germany. At its controls was a twenty-one-year-old pilot. Half his crew lay wounded or dead. It was their first mission. Suddenly a sleek, dark shape pulled up on the bomber's tail - a German Messerschmitt fighter. Worse, the German pilot was an ace, a man able to destroy the American bomber with the squeeze of a trigger. What happened next would defy imagination and later be called the most incredible encounter between enemies in World War II.

This is the true story of the two pilots whose lives collided in the skies that day - the American - Second Lieutenant Charlie Brown, a former farm boy from West Virginia who came to captain a B-17 -- and the German - Second Lieutenant Franz Stigler, a former airline pilot from Bavaria who sought to avoid fighting in World War II.

A Higher Call follows both Charlie and Franz's harrowing missions. Charlie would face takeoffs in English fog over the flaming wreckage of his buddies' planes, flak bursts so close they would light his cockpit, and packs of enemy fighters that would circle his plane like sharks. Franz would face sandstorms in the desert, a crash alone at sea, and the spectacle of one thousand bombers, each with eleven guns, waiting for his attack.

Ultimately, Charlie and Franz would stare across the frozen skies at one another. What happened between them, the American Eighth Air Force would later classify as top secret. It was an act that Franz could never mention without facing a firing squad. It was the encounter that would haunt both Charlie and Franz for forty years until, as old men, they would search for one another, a last mission that could change their lives forever.
release date: Mar 27, 2012
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Hitler
Written by acclaimed biographer A. N. Wilson, Hitler is a short, sharp, gripping account of one of the twentieth century's most notorious figures. In it, Wilson offers a fresh interpretation of the life of the ''ultimate demon-tyrant of history.''

A ruthless dictator who saved his country from economic ruin only to nearly destroy it--and an entire people--in his quest for world domination, Adolf Hitler forever changed the course of history. His unlikely rise to power and his uncanny ability to manipulate his fellow man resulted in the deaths of millions of Europeans and a horrific world war, yet despite his colossal role in world history, he remains mythologized and, as a result, misunderstood. In this masterful account of Hitler's life, A. N. Wilson pulls back the curtain to reveal the man behind the mythic figure, shedding new light on Hitler's personality, desires, and complex relationship with the German people. Wilson limns this mysterious figure with great verve and acuity, showing that it is Hitler's frightening normalcy--not some otherworldly evilness--that makes him so truly terrifying.

In a field dense with lengthy tomes, this brief, penetrating portrait provides a compelling introduction to a man whose evil continues to fascinate and appall.
release date: Sep 06, 2016
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Courage and a Clear Mind: True Adventures of the Ancient Greeks

Jim Weiss narrates thrilling episodes from the history and culture of ancient Greece, including the Olympics, the 300 Spartans, and the wisdom of Socrates.

In these vivid, true stories, Jim Weiss takes you back 25 centuries to Golden Age Greece. You’ll charge into land & sea battles to defend the world’s first democracy against a vast, tyrannical empire; attend the original Olympics; hear history’s most famous storyteller, Homer, spin his classic adventure, “The Trojan Horse;” laugh and learn with Socrates, the wisest (and funniest) man in Greece; and meet artists and authors, as well as typical families, in the rival cities of Athens and Sparta. Jim Weiss’s “Courage and a Clear Mind” is sure to inspire your own exploration of the potential that lies within us all.
release date: Nov 07, 2012
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The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume Three: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965
[Read by Clive Chafer ]

More than twenty years in the making -- this is the third and final volume of William Manchester's biography of Winston Spencer Churchill. The Last Lion presents a revelatory and unparalleled portrait of this brilliant, flawed, and dynamic leader. This is popular history at its most stirring.

Spanning the years 1940 to 1965, Defender of the Realm, the third volume of William Manchester's The Last Lion, picks up shortly after Winston Churchill became prime minister -- when his tiny island nation stood alone against the overwhelming might of Nazi Germany. The Churchill portrayed by Manchester and Reid is a man of indomitable courage, lightning-fast intellect, and an irresistible will to action. This volume brilliantly recounts how Churchill organized his nation's military response and defense, compelled President Roosevelt to support America's beleaguered cousins, and personified the ''never surrender'' ethos that helped the Allies win the war, while at the same time adapting himself and his country to the inevitable shift of world power from the British Empire to the United States.
release date: May 05, 2015
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The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris
The #1 bestseller that tells the remarkable story of the generations of American artists, writers, and doctors who traveled to Paris, fell in love with the city and its people, and changed America through what they learned, told by America’s master historian, David McCullough, is now available from Encore for a great value!

Not all pioneers went west.

In The Greater Journey, David McCullough tells the enthralling, inspiring—and until now, untold—story of the adventurous American artists, writers, doctors, politicians, and others who set off for Paris in the years between 1830 and 1900, hungry to learn and to excel in their work. What they achieved would profoundly alter American history.

Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female doctor in America, was one of this intrepid band. Another was Charles Sumner, whose encounters with black students at the Sorbonne inspired him to become the most powerful voice for abolition in the US Senate. Friends James Fenimore Cooper and Samuel F. B. Morse worked unrelentingly every day in Paris, Morse not only painting what would be his masterpiece, but also bringing home his momentous idea for the telegraph. Harriet Beecher Stowe traveled to Paris to escape the controversy generated by her book, Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Three of the greatest American artists ever—sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens, painters Mary Cassatt and John Singer Sargent—flourished in Paris, inspired by French masters.

Almost forgotten today, the heroic American ambassador Elihu Washburne bravely remained at his post through the Franco-Prussian War, the long Siege of Paris, and the nightmare of the Commune. His vivid diary account of the starvation and suffering endured by the people of Paris is published here for the first time.

Telling their stories with power and intimacy, McCullough brings us into the lives of remarkable men and women who, in Saint-Gaudens’ phrase, longed “to soar into the blue.”
release date: Aug 16, 2011
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The Sugar Barons: Family, Corruption, Empire, and War in the West Indies
To those who travel there today, the West Indies are unspoiled paradise islands. Yet that image conceals a turbulent, dramatic, and shocking history. For some two hundred years after 1650, the West Indies became the strategic center of the Western world, witnessing one of the greatest power struggles of the age as Europeans made and lost immense fortunes growing and trading in sugar-a commodity so lucrative it became known as "white gold." As Matthew Parker skillfully chronicles in his sweeping history, the sugar revolution made the English, in particular, a nation of voracious consumers, so much so that the wealth of her island colonies came to underpin the entire British economy, ultimately fueling the Industrial Revolution. Yet beside the incredible wealth came untold misery: the horrors of slavery and of slaves, on whose backs the sugar empires were brutally built; the rampant disease that claimed the lives of one third of all whites within three years of arrival in the Caribbean; the cruelty, corruption, and decadence of the plantation culture. For those on the ground, the British West Indian empire presented a disturbing moral universe. Parker vividly interweaves the human stories-since lost to history-of visitors and slaves, overseers and soldiers, and of the families whose fortunes and fame rose and fell on sugar. Their wealth drove the development of the North American mainland states, and with it a slave culture, as the racist plantation model was exported to the warm southern states. Eventually opposition to sugar policy in London helped to unite the North American colonies against Britain. Broad in scope and rich in detail, The Sugar Barons freshly links the histories of Europe, the West Indies, and North America, and reveals the full impact of the sugar revolution, the resonance of which is still felt today.
release date: Dec 29, 2017
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Devil's Guard
The personal account of a guerrilla fighter in the French Foreign Legion reveals the Nazi Battalion's inhumanities to Indochinese villagers.
release date: Oct 08, 2007
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The Forgotten 500: The Untold Story of the Men Who Risked All for the Greatest Rescue Mission of World War II
The astonishing, never-before-told story of the greatest rescue mission of World War II-when the OSS set out to recover more than 500 airmen trapped behind enemy lines... During a bombing campaign, hundreds of American airmen were shot down in Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia. Local Serbian villagers risked their own lives to give refuge to the soldiers, and for months the airmen lived in hiding, waiting for rescue. In 1944, Operation Halyard was born. The risks were incredible. The starving Americans in Yugoslavia had to construct a landing strip-without tools, without alerting the Germans, and without endangering the villagers. And the rescue planes had to make it through enemy airspace and back-without getting shot down themselves. Classified for over half a century for political reasons, the full account of this unforgettable story of loyalty, self-sacrifice, and bravery is now being told for the first time. The Forgotten 500 is the breathtaking, behind-the-scenes look at the greatest escape of World War II.
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