Tag Archives: free audio books

San Francisco During April 1906

San Francisco During April 1906 by James B. Stetson

San Francisco During April 1906 by James B. Stetson

A first hand account essay of the earthquakes that shook San Francisco during 1906

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La Constantin

La Constantin by Alexandre Dumas

La Constantin by Alexandre Dumas

Dumas chronicles the court intrigues that led to the execution of Marie La Roux Constantin. La dame Constantin was known by French nobility in the 17th century as the “midwife to the Queen’s daughters.” This title was, in reality, a dark jest as her business was providing dangerous (often maternally fatal) abortions to women ensnared in the machinations of powerful noblemen. This case also highlights how strongly gender inequalities permeated the justice system of this time as reviews by historians, like Dr. Leigh Whaley, found La Constantin was condemned “without any tangible evidence against her.”

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Vaninka

Vaninka by Alexandre Dumas

Vaninka by Alexandre Dumas

The story of Vaninka, generally regarded as the most fictionalized of Dumas’ Celebrated Crimes series, occurs during the short and eccentric rule of Emperor Paul I of Russia. Vaninka is a general’s daughter whose love for one of her father’s officers leads to tragic death, savage crimes and perversions of justice.

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Captain Cook

Captain Cook by Walter Besant

Captain Cook by Walter Besant

James Cook, British explorer, navigator, cartographer, and captain in the Royal Navy was the son of a farm laborer. Apprenticed to a grocer, he ran away to sea. He saw hard service in the Baltic as a merchant seaman, while applying himself to the study of mathematics, navigation, and astronomy. In 1755 he volunteered for the Royal Navy, working his way up to captain. This little biography by Walter Besant, chronicles Cook’s three voyages of discovery and his violent death in Hawaii. Cook replaced vague mythology with accurate observations of people and places, animals and plants. Of his achievements Besant writes, “We seek St. Brendan’s Island and Terra Australis Incognita; and we find New Zealand and Cape Horn, the Continent of Australia, and the great Pacific Ocean, studded with islands as the firmament is studded by the stars.

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Memoirs of a Revolutionist

Memoirs of a Revolutionist by Peter Kropotkin

Memoirs of a Revolutionist by Peter Kropotkin

Peter Kropotkin was a Russian anarcho-communist and scientist. This is his autobiography, and he writes not only about his own life, but also about 19th century Russian society and politics. He was born into the nobility and had a military education, but he gradually abandoned the values of his social class and became an anti-authoritarian socialist, opposed to both the rule of the Tsars and to the seizing of power by the authoritarian Bolsheviks. He was also interested in literature, biology, economics and geographical exploration. This first volume of his memoirs covers his childhood, his education, and the time he spent in Siberia.

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Murat

Murat by Alexandre Dumas

Murat by Alexandre Dumas

Amidst the political winds from Napoleon’s downfall, this tale turns our attention to the flight of a former French marshal and King of Naples, Joachim Murat. Murat, unhappy with the deal he made to obtain pardon from the Austrian Emperor, takes a life-ending resolution to retake his crown rather than live in peaceful obscurity.

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Geronimo’s Story of His Life

Geronimo's Story of His Life by Geronimo

Geronimo's Story of His Life by Geronimo

Geronimo’s Story of His Life is the oral life history of a legendary Apache warrior. Composed in 1905, while Geronimo was being held as a U.S. prisoner of war at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

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Cleopatra

Cleopatra by Georg Ebers

Cleopatra by Georg Ebers

The world knows the fate of the classic lovers Cleopatra and Mark Antony, so there is no need to announce a spoiler alert. Georg Ebers was a German Egyptologist who deftly applied his comprehensive knowledge of Rome and Egypt into a fictionalized account of the ill-fated romance between the Egyptian Queen and her Roman lover Mark Antony.

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Nothing of Importance

Nothing of Importance by John Bernard Pye Adams

Nothing of Importance by John Bernard Pye Adams

Fighting in France during the Great War, Bernard Adams, an officer with a Welsh battalion, was moved to chronicle what he saw and experienced: the living conditions and duties of officers and “Tommies” (enlisted men) in their dank, rat-infested trenches and behind the lines; the maiming and deaths; and the quiet periods described in official reports as “nothing of importance”. Adams relates his wounding in June, 1916 and its aftermath. The concluding chapter, which he wrote during his convalescence in “Blighty” (soldiers’ slang for England), is an impassioned reflection on war. Following several months of recuperation Adams returned to the front where, on February 26, 1917 he was wounded again. The following day he died.

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Some Haunted Houses

Some Haunted Houses by Elliott O'Donnell

Some Haunted Houses by Elliott O'Donnell

Old buildings necessarily have a history. It is not always a happy history and folklore abounds. Sometimes unhappy souls come back to haunt the current residents or their guests. Whether you believe in ghosts or not, these narratives provide a fascinating insight into the history of the buildings and the hysteria they may induce.

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