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THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


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KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


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READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


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THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


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TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


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PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


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SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


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ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


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IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


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I've decided to stop accepting review copies. The downside of getting buried in free books is that reading increasingly becomes an obligatory act. After some seven years of blogging books, it's time for me to return to the simple pleasure of reading only the books I want to read, when I want to read them.



  
From a random review:

  

« Moore, Christopher: Bloodsucking Fiends: A Love Story | Main | Barnard, Robert: The Mistress of Alderly »

Hoffman, Paul: Wings of Madness

  

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Theia © 2003, 380 pages [amazon]
4.5 stars

Alberto Santos-Dumont, a Brazilian who emigrated to Paris at the age of 19, was perhaps the most celebrated man in France in the early 20th century. An effete eccentric with a genius for mechanical invention, Santos designed and regularly flew about Paris a series of airships. Most of these were powered, lighter-than-air vessels--hydrogen balloons to which he had attached a motor. But later in his career Santos also experimented with heavier-than-air flying machines--though not, to his great disappointment, before the Wright brothers had themselves achieved sustained flight. Among the aviator's airships was the world's first, and only, personal flying machine. Santos hopped around Paris in his "Baladeuse," or "Wanderer," alighting to order an aperitif at some sidewalk café, or dropping anchor at a club where, upon disembarking, he would hand the reins of his machine to a valet.

Santos hopped around Paris in his "Baladeuse," or "Wanderer," alighting to order an aperitif at some sidewalk café, or dropping anchor at a club where, upon disembarking, he would hand the reins of his machine to a valet.Paul Hoffman's seamless account of Santos-Dumont's life and career follows the aviator from his childhood on his father's coffee plantation to his sad death in 1932. Always somewhat tormented--Santos craved the adoration his pioneering exploits won for him--he ended his days apparently guilt-ridden over the lethal use to which airplanes--which were to his mind his own invention--were being put.

Hoffman's well-written book is fascinating for its invocation of a lost world. The author is to be applauded, too, for bringing the flamboyant, troubled Santos-Dumont once again to the attention of the public.

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About the blogger: Debra is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece, including Trying Neaira: The True Story of a Courtesan's Scandalous Life in Ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.

  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  






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Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.