Deep in the forested Vietnamese island of Cat Bac, a jungle seethes with the irrepressible force of its own history. Haunted by agonies of temptation and frustration, �the women on the island� are prisoners of the power of the place, the power of the past, the power of desire and constraint. Yet like the jungle of jackfruit trees and bamboo itself, desire is a force that cannot be subdued.This novel illuminates the plight of a generation of men and women in post-war Vietnam. It explores issues of family and gender and charts Vietnam�s effort to redefine its relationship to its past and future. Popular writer Ho Anh Thai brings into view the struggle of women who survived their service during the war years. Like male veterans in America and Vietnam, they returned to a society which they had defended, but which in many ways had no place for them. By confronting these issues, Ho Anh Thai has contributed to the debate in Vietnam over the rights of unmarried women with children. Through the lens of this particular time and place, The Women on the Island probes the timeless question of how we find ways to live in harmony with the tangled and contradictory compulsions of our own souls.
Edward Teach Blackbeard-is one of the legends of the so-called golden age of piracy. There have been so many accounts of his short, bloody career that it is hard to see him and his times in a clear historical light. This new study looks for the man behind the legend, and it gives a vivid insight into the nature of piracy and the naval operations that were launched against it.The narrative focuses on the roles played by the Governor of Virginia Alexander Spotswood who masterminded the pursuit of Blackbeard, and Lieutenant Robert Maynard of HMS Pearl who led the pursuit and finally cornered Teach and his crew and, after a vicious fight, saw him killed.In vivid detail, it reveals how the hunt for Blackbeard was orchestrated, how he was tracked down, and the parts played in the drama by the larger-than-life leading characters in this extraordinary story. This freshly researched study of the pursuit of the notorious pirate and his crew—and of the final fight in which Blackbeard lost his life—makes compelling reading.
This satirical short novel displays a side of Cooper unfamiliar to many modern readers. It is told from the point of view of an actual handkerchief: its origins in a French flax field, how it was passed around New York City society in the 1830s, and its eventual return to its maker. In this story, Cooper makes a point of ridiculing Victorian materialism—which places value on consumption, not production.
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