War Stories
Gregory Clark’s 1965 Leacock Medal book describes bloody, plodding conflict in the two world wars. Its title, War Stories, is not misleading. But collectively, these stories also describe a different battle. The one to stay sane amidst the insane and to maintain a sense of humour. Books about war often take one of two approaches: the close-up, soldier’s eye view of death and ruin or the sanitized view from aloft of military strategists. But Clark, a decorated Vimy Ridge officer in the First World War and an embedded correspondent throughout almost all of the Second, speaks as a veteran soldier who also has the journalist’s capacity to analyze and observe. The combination gave him the inclination to look at the absurdities of war with sensitivity. The book draws its material from Clark’s feature articles in Weekend Magazine. In the “War Stories,” the difficult subject matter and the magazine format were merged into a refined technique. Almost all of the pieces were either heart-wrenching stories with a lighter twist at the end or a humorous episode punctuated with a reminder of war. Clark details a mob attack on a French woman “collaborator” who had been involved with a German soldier. Then his story jumps ahead to the day years later when “The German boy came back and married her.” The sad tale of an old Italian woman who was ostracized as a witch in her bombed out village transforms when she is revealed to be the protector of escaping Allied P.O.W.’s. In a story with a lighter core, Clark, a fly-fishing fanatic, describes the day he spent casting in the streams in southern England. He realizes that these streams were those celebrated in the iconic book Where the Bright Waters Meet. Clark was standing in the middle of his personal heaven. The day ends with a supper of fresh fish and talk of the book. But that’s not the end of this story. One last sentence adds a typical Clark twist: “The order presently came; and the young men piled into their lorries; and we went on down to the sea.” It was 1944. The men were off to Normandy and “the Sausage Machine.” Gregory Clark was in his fifties during the Second World War, and he could have easily avoided the grimness that time around. He had done his part in 1916 at Sanctuary Wood. In that battle, his battalion dropped from 22 officers and 680 men to 3 officers and 78 men in just two days of fighting. Four months later, with reinforcements, the same battalion lost another 1,000 men at the Somme. But he returned to the battles a few decades later and worked the World War II frontlines only coming home after the death of James Murray Clark of the Regina Rifle Regiment in 1944. Somehow Clark emerged from the wars, the loss of his son, and later personal tragedies with the capacity to hold onto those thoughts of fly-fishing, to focus on smiling faces, to care for others, and to celebrate the softer side to the end of his own life. The answer may lie in the journalist-soldier ability to stand back and observe even though you still feel. This may be, more than any technical writing tricks, the greatest lesson Greg Clark’s War Stories offers to those of us who hope to write, persevere, and keep a sense of humour in the wake of our own inevitable heartbreaks and setbacks.
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Wide Open: A Life in Supercross
Jeremy McGrath has been called 'the Michael Jordan of Supercross' by The Los Angeles Times, and in this revealing book the fans not only get his personal story, but also a detailed guide running throughout on how everyone can become a Supercross racer. The number 1 Supercross racer in the world – who has over 20 sponsors, his own film company, a toy line, Nintendo and Playstation games, and a Van signature shoe – talks about his life and the sport. Supercross started out as a redneck '70s sideshow, but thanks largely to Jeremy McGrath – known everywhere as the Michael Jordan of Supercross – it has become a massive extreme sport. Over the last three years, AMA Supercross attendance has mushroomed from 700,000 spectators a year to 1.5 million. This book will satisfy even the most hardcore fans, as it not only gives you the life and times of Jeremy McGrath, but acts as the calling card to the entire sport by including unique sections on how to become a Supercross racer, the work–out regimes, fixing common bike problems, and more.
not rated $36.99 $9.99 Add to cart
William C. Van Horne: Railway Titan
William C. Van Horne was one of North America's most accomplished men. Born in Illinois in 1843, Van Horne started working in the railway business at a young age. In 1881 he was lured north to Canada to become general manager of the fledgling Canadian Pacific Railway. The railroading general pushed through construction of the CPR's transcontinental line and then went on to become the company's president. During his time with the CPR, Van Horne developed a telegraph service, launched the Empress line of Pacific steamships in 1891, and founded CP Hotels. He capped his career by opening up Cuba's interior with a railway. A man of prodigious energy and many talents, he also became Canada's foremost art collector and one of the country"s leading financiers. For all of his amazing accomplishments, Van Horne was knighted in 1894. When he died church bells throughout the length and breadth of Cuba tolled to mark his passing, and when his funeral train made its way across Canada, all traffic on the CPR system was suspended for five minutes.
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Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman
Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman is also the title of the 2015 documentary about Paul Newman from director Adam Carolla. Read the book that inspired the film! Though he is famous as one of Hollywood's greatest actors, a world-class humanitarian, and the founder of the Newman's Own natural food empire, the late Paul Newman had another intriguing and lesser-known passion: he was an avid, successful, and well-respected car racer and team owner. In Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman, Matt Stone of Motor Trend teams up with Preston Lerner of Automobile magazine to bring you the incredible racing biography of a man whose serious racing days began at an age when many race car drivers contemplate retirement. It is the story of someone who entered the 24 Hours of Daytona at the age of 70 and made his last professional race outing at 82; whose roster of Newman Haas drivers reads like a who's-who of open-wheel racing; and whose interest in cars extended from the likely suspects to old trucks and new hybrids. Newman is also the charming pal who, when a miserably wrecked Ferrari was dropped at his door by the incorrigible prankster Robert Redford, returned the favor by having the car, crushed into a cube, delivered to Redford's living room. The anecdotes, the races, the cars... Winning contains them all, adding up to an award-winning and unprecedented look at Paul Newman's racing talent, unwavering conviction, endearing charm, and enduring spirit.
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Yenko: The Man, The Machines, The Legend
There is no question the collectible muscle car market is hot, and there are few cars hotter than those sold with the distinctive YENKO stripes and badges. A wide range of Chevrolet cars received the YENKO treatment, starting with the Stinger Corvairs and finishing with turbocharged Camaros and even Vegas. In between these two projects, Don Yenko would work his magic on Novas, Chevelles, and of course the legendary first-generation Camaros.
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Yesterday We Were in America
The author sets the background to the flight against the birth of manned powered flight and Britain in the aftermath of the First World War. He goes on to describe the record breaking flight in detail, drawing on Alcock and Brown’s written records and their flying log book, and concludes with a round-up of the fates of all the pioneers who are mentioned in the narrative, and the flight’s legacy for Everyman. Now published as a paperback, Yesterday We Were in America is the first accurate and atmospheric account of one of the most significant and dramatic flights in history.
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Young Henry Ford: A Picture History of the First Forty Years
Young Henry Ford is a visual and textual presentation of the first forty years of Henry Ford—an American farm boy who became one of the greatest manufacturers of modern times and profoundly impacted the habits of American life. In Young Henry Ford, Sidney Olson dispels some of the myths attached to this automobile legend, going beyond the Henry Ford of mass production and the five-dollar day, and offers a more intimate understanding of Henry Ford and the time he lived in. Through hundreds of restored photographs, including some of Ford's own taken with his first camera, Young Henry Ford revisits an America now gone—of long days on the farm, travel by horse and buggy, and one-room schoolhouses. Some of the rare illustrations include the first picture of Henry Ford, photos from Edsel's childhood, snapshots of the interior and exterior of the Ford homestead, Clara and Henry's wedding invitation, and photos of the early stages of the first automobile.
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Zora Arkus-Duntov -The Legend Behind Corvette
The story of Zora Arkus-Duntov is a quintessential American success story. From growing up during the Russian Revolution, life in Paris during the late-thirties, fleeing the Nazis during WWII, to coming to the U.S. and working on the first Corvettes, his life story would make great fiction if we didn't already know it was true. The name Zora Arkus-Duntov has long been inextricably linked with the Corvette in the minds of automotive historians and enthusiasts. But the story of Zora Arkus-Duntov runs far deeper than his twenty plus years of professional involvement as both Corvette's primary advocate within General Motors and as the fiberglass sports car's first chief engineer. Author Jerry Burton, founding editor and current editorial director of Corvette Quarterly, has written the first major biography of Zora Arkus-Duntov. In telling the complete story of this complex and fascinating man, Burton takes the reader from Zora's roots in revolutionary Russia to his relentless pursuit of the American dream amidst the backdrop of New York and Detroit during the height of America's love affair with the automobile.
not rated $51.95 Add to cart