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The Best One Hour History

The Best One-Hour History Books

The Best One-Hour History series is for those who want a quick but coherent overview of major historical events. It will also serve those who need a competent high-level introduction before going further. Each of the 20 books in the series provides a clear, concise and compelling account of the episode under discussion. In about an hour, the reader will obtain a satisfying understanding of why each subject holds iconic status in Western Civilization.

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The Renaissance Book Cover
In the 1400s Europe awoke from a thousand-year slumber, rediscovering its genetic roots in classical Greece and Rome. This book explains how this “rebirth” emerged from the breakdown of the Middle Ages, producing an entirely new vision of man. It discusses exemplars in arts and letters, and wholly new institutions. Finally, it considers the critical questions of why these events occurred there and then.
The Protestant Reformation Book Cover
The Protestant Reformation looks at one of the greatest upheavals of the western world. It starts with the context of the time, including the Christian unity of Europe and the provocation of Indulgences. It goes on to explain Luther’s “protest,” its theological implications, how the protest escalated, and the Catholic Church’s reaction. It concludes with an analysis of how the Reformation helped launch the modern age.
The English Civil War Book Cover
The English Civil War marked a turning point in the development of Western Constitutionalism and Parliamentary government. This volume traces the War’s roots in economic, religious, and political conflicts of the early seventeenth century. It covers the lead up to War and the War itself, the trial and execution of Charles I, and the Interregnum under Oliver Cromwell. In concludes with a discussion of the Glorious Revolution and a reflection of the War’s impact on the founding of America.
The Scientific Revolution Book Cover
The Scientific Revolution is the story of how Europeans broke out of the intellectual stagnation of the Middle Ages. It details the limitations of both the Aristotelian system and theological paradigm of the day, and the way that a new “scientific method” proved superior. It discusses the surprising roles that religion played in science’s early years and concludes with a brief tour through the major fields of science and the scientists who founded them.
The French Revolution Book Cover
The French Revolution discusses one of the most tumultuous upheavals to established government in the last thousand years. It opens with an overview and then explores a range of different causes, from immediate, proximate causes to deeper, philosophical ones. It provides a detailed description of each of the six different governments from 1789 to 1815. Prominent themes of the Revolution are presented. It closes with a reflection on the enduring effects of the Revolution and a timeline of the major events.
World War I Book Cover
In 1914 Europe blundered into a civil war that would become the most significant event of the last thousand years:  World War I.  This book explores the tensions between European states that had been building for decades and the strategic positions of the major players which drove them to War.  It looks at how the War began, major themes during the War, and how it ended.  It concludes with a reflection of the major consequences of the War.
The Interwar Years Book Cover
The InterWar Years
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The InterWar Years details the path from Versailles in 1919 to the invasion of Poland in 1939.  It considers the failings of the Treaty, the influence of communism, the rise of fascism, and the role of economics as they led to war.  It provides a detailed chronology of the path to war beginning with Hitler’s ascension to power in 1933.   It concludes with a discussion of why European democracies were unable to stop Hitler.
The Cold War Book Cover
The Cold War was the dominant global conflict of the Twentieth Century.  This volume begins with a discussion of the War’s roots, both deep and recent.  It analyzes the early years of the War, immediately following World War II.  It looks at the major events of the War and considers some of the themes that defined it as a military, economic, and cultural phenomenon.  It closes with an examination of the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and a detailed timeline of the War.
The Vietnam War Book Cover
The Vietnam War explains “the first war America ever lost.”  The book begins with the War’s origins after World War II and discusses the Cold War context of the 1950s.  It moves on to the War’s escalation in the 1960s and details the drawdown and defeat in the 1970s.  Included is an extensive discussion of why the U.S. lost the War.  Finally, the text discusses the consequences to America’s psyche in the War’s aftermath.

Coming Soon

Ancient Greece Book Cover
Ancient Greece
Rome Book Cover
Rome
The Middle Ages Book Cover
The Middle Ages
European Wars of Religion Book Cover
European Wars of Religion
The Enlightenment Book Cover
The Enlightenment
The American Revolution Book Cover
The American Revolution
The Industrial Revolution Book Cover
The Industrial Revolution
Europe in the 1800s Book Cover
Europe in the 1800s
The American Civil War Book Cover
The American Civil War
European Imperialism Book Cover
European Imperialism
World War II Book Cover
World War II