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P. Colfox (England)
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The Day Freedom Died: The Colfax Massacre, the Supreme Court, and the Betrayal of Reconstruction
The Day Freedom Died: The Colfax Massacre, the Supreme Court, and the Betrayal of Reconstruction
by Charles Lane
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.07

5.0 out of 5 stars A Legal Compromise that Averted Another Civil War Later., 5 July 2014
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Being a Colfox (a cousin of the eponymous Colfax after whom the town was named) I was most intrigued by this history of how the emancipation of black slaves in the south of USA was postponed for about 100 years between about 1873 and the Kennedy and Obama eras of the 1960s and 2010s. As a foreigner living 2500 miles away in England I would never have guessed that the American Civil War having been won by those who abolished slavery did not lead to blacks having equal rights in America. America thinks of itself as the land of freedom and equality but it took 100 years or more for that to come about if indeed it has. As I have realised in many other contexts the struggle between good and evil, between freedom and oppression, between justice and injustice is very difficult. It is actually a matter of balance - for good to exist we do need evil: too much of one thing can lead to oppression of a different kind which is what the defeated whites of the South of the United States were more than fearful of when their previous slaves became mayors, judges and sherifs. For them this was too much, too quickly. They needed more balance and they continued their oppressive and murderous ways for many years, first continuing to lynch and murder blacks as at the Colfax massacre the subject of the book and later with support from the US Supreme Court introducing a system of apartheid that denied blacks the vote, the right to be educated together and many other forms of discrimination. The Civil War had been won to give the black man his freedom but the peace was won by the white man who kept the black in his place for another 100 years or more. The book also describes the political compromise, tough and brutal and unfair that it was that enabled there to be peace of sorts and 100 years later further democratic reform without the need for another civil war. This book is the story of the massacre that led to the compromise endorsed by the Supreme Court and it describes the legal process how the Supreme Court agreed to that compromise.


The Baklava Club (Yashim the Ottoman Detective)
The Baklava Club (Yashim the Ottoman Detective)
by Jason Goodwin
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £10.39

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I particularly liked the look touch feel and smells evoked by the ..., 5 July 2014
I could not stop myself turning the pages - often late for work or wishing I could get home early. Delightfully written, tense and a ripping yarn the Baklava Club features Yashim the Enuch detective in the Harem of 19th Century Istanbul and the Valide - mother of the Sultan - and Pawelski the ambassador to a long defunct Polish Empire. I particularly liked the look touch feel and smells evoked by the book - the day shooting duck in the Bosporus using ancient punt guns; the description of the archives of the patriarch of Constantinople; the cooking recipes; the walk in the mountains and the exquisite relationships described. Well worth getting.


Journey to Sirius
Journey to Sirius

5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible music for meditation, 9 Oct 2011
This review is from: Journey to Sirius (Audio CD)
The first time I heard this music I was meditating and had the deepest most rewarding meditation I have ever experienced. When I came out of it I felt completely energised and rested. It was fantastic. Now I use the music once a week or so to get myself renergised and focused. It is an absolutely must buy for anyone who wants to chill out or meditate or just feel better.


The Bellini Card (Yashim the Ottoman Detective)
The Bellini Card (Yashim the Ottoman Detective)
by Jason Goodwin
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £10.41

4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for all budding world statesmen, 23 Nov 2008
Goodwin's Palewski and Yashim strike again with a passionate and intriguing romp through 19th Century Venice and Istanbul. As modern Turkey struggles with its 50 year old application for accession to the European Union where it runs up against millennia of ingrained prejudice and bureaucratic sabotage, so Goodwin gives us the tools to understand the Ottoman and Byzantine Empires' deeply embedded links to the heart of Europe and European culture. With a ripping yarn of murder and intrigue bedecked with historical fact and fiction, Venice and its Eastern links comes alive and the pages keep turning up to a thrilling climax. Beautifully written - a novel for the 21st Century based on intercultural links - it should be read by all seeking to understand how we can live together in increasing proximity in the future and by everyone looking for a really good bit of fun.


The Janissary Tree (A 'Yashim the Eunuch' Mystery)
The Janissary Tree (A 'Yashim the Eunuch' Mystery)
by Jason Goodwin
Edition: Hardcover

36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best novel I have read in years, 29 July 2006
A gripping and hilarious romp through 19th Century Istanbul. Delicately crafted and exciting yarn, steeped in historical fact, beautiful descriptions of cooking that make you hungry; tasteful and amusing situations pile one on top of the other as delicately the plot builds up to a crashing crescendo. An excellent novel in the best tradition of English literature; full of interesting facts and delightful situations. I have bought five copies to give to my children's teachers!


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