Category History in the Making

The Wrong Enemy

The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan, 2001-2014The Wrong Enemy
By Carlotta Gall
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Retail Price:  $28.00
Amazon Price:  15.12

Book Description:  Carlotta Gall has reported from Afghanistan and Pakistan for almost the entire duration of the American invasion and occupation, beginning shortly after 9/11. She knows just how much this war has cost the Afghan people, and how much damage can be traced to Pakistan and its duplicitous government and intelligence forces. Now that American troops are withdrawing, it is time to tell the full history of how we have been fighting the wrong enemy, in the wrong country.Gall combines searing personal accounts of battles and betrayals with moving portraits of the ordinary Afghanis who endured a terrible war of more than a decade. Her firsthand accounts of Taliban warlords, Pakistani intelligence thugs, American generals, Afghani politicians, and the many innocents who were caught up in this long war are riveting.  Her evidence that Pakistan fueled the Taliban and protected Osama bin Laden is revelatory. This is a sweeping account of a war brought by well-intentioned American leaders against an enemy they barely understood, and could not truly engage.

Review

This book is really about history in the making.  I am posting it on History’s Women, because I believe that  the author, Carlotta Gall, a journalist stationed in Afghanistan for nearly14 years, is a courageous women who is speaking the truth, even if it is difficult to hear.  She is a reformer at heart and is using her experiences in Afghanistan to help us understand what truly when on across the globe during the 13 years of war.

Reading this book is like watching a documentary film on the area and the people.  She writes in such a way that you feel as if you are walking the dusty roads with her.  Gall helps us face the hard facts of the war in Afghansitan including divulging shocking evidence that doesn’t put the U.S. Government in the best light.  I give her credit for having the courage to tell it like she saw it, no holds-barred.  This book will shock you, enlighten you, and give you compassion for our soldiers who were fighting a war so far from home for so many years.

Giveaway

If you would like a chance to win a free copy of this book email us by the end of the month.  Be sure to include the name of the book in the body of the email along with your name and address

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    Thank You, Sisters

    Thank You, Sisters: Stories of Women Religious and How They Enrich Our Lives

    Thank You, Sisters
    By John Feister
    Franciscan Media
    Retail Price $14.99
    Amazon Price: $12.48

    Book Description: 

    Since the April 2012 announcement of the Doctrinal Assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, there has been considerable media attention focused on Catholic Sisters.

    The first report, and the consequent naming of bishop-oversight and guidance of LCWR for the next five years, has resulted in an outcry of support for U.S. religious sisters from much of the Church, and a concurrent outcry of support for the Holy See and criticism of sisters from other parts of the Church. There has not been much reliable analysis of this reaction yet: Is it liberal-conservative? Young or old? Neither is the point of this book.

    Thank You, Sisters highlights the positive impact that sisters have had on a cross-section of Catholics. It steps back from finger-pointing and position-taking and simply tells inspiring, true stories of Sisters and the people they have influenced. The book shows the effect religious women have had not only on the U.S. Catholic Church, but on the nation as a whole, in areas such as health care, education, social justice, and pastoral ministry.

    The contributors to this book are prominent Catholics who write from a wide range of experience. They include:

    • James Martin, S.J.
    • Cokie Roberts
    • Mary Fishman— producer of Band of Sisters
    • Adriana Trigiani
    • Binka Le Breton, on Amazon martyr Sister Dorothy Stang
    • Maureen Orth
    • Liz Scott, on Sr. Helen Prejean
    • Teresa Gardner and Sr. Chris Kenney
    • Maurice Nutt, C.S.S.R. on Sr. Thea Bowman
    • Teresa Wilson on Sr. Joan Chittister
    • Dan Horan, O.F.M.

    Review

    Written in simple to understand language, this book takes a look at women’s history from the perspective of Catholic Sisters and their contributions to society. Many of the Sisters in the book have been social activists, helping to feed the hungry and provide health care to the poor.  Some of the sisters were political activists, fighting for the rights of the those who could not fight themselves.  The work they have done has often been overlooked, but this book seeks to right that wrong and pay tribute to this group of women who are truly an inspiration.

    ~Reviewed by Fran O.

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      Women of Vision

      Women of Vision: National Geographic Photographers on AssignmentWomen of Vision
      By Chris Johns
      National Geographic
      Retail Price $30.00
      Amazon Price: $21.68

      Book Description: 

      Women photographers have produced many of National Geographic’s most powerful photo-narratives of the past decade. These talented photojournalists are celebrated in this captivating photography book, covering places and subjects around the globe and sharing the same passion and commitment to storytelling that has come to define National Geographic magazine, with more than 31 million readers worldwide.

      Women of Vision
      is a tribute to the spirit and the ambition of these journalists and artists who have created riveting, visual experiences through the insightful, sensitive, and strategic use of a camera. With an introduction by Chris Johns, editor-in-chief of National Geographic magazine, and a thoughtful foreword by acclaimed journalist Ann Curry, this book presents both personal reflections and stunning selections of photographic assignment work from the past decade, setting a new standard for excellence that will continue to inspire for decades to come.

      From the elegant landscapes of the Mongolian steppes to the war-torn battlefields of Iraq; from the last great wildernesses of Africa to the flash and tumult of the Jersey Shore, these stories explore the realities of our world and the depths of what it means to be human in the 21st century.

      Review

      Photojournalists often tell the untold stories, that behind the scenes that words can’t even begin to describe.  They show us that a picture is indeed worth a thousand words!  While this makes a great coffee table book, it is so much more.  While the photographs are stunning, they are accompanied by comprehensive biographies of each of the photographers, each of which are very intriguing.  While it used to be a man’s world, National Geographic is showing us that this world is opened up to women and that women are excelling in the field.

      ~Reviewed by Allie B.

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