Rachel Cox, "Into Dust and Fire"

05/03/2012 7:00 pm

Rachel Cox, Into Dust and Fire: Five Young Americans Who Went First to Fight the Nazi Army, Thursday May 3rd, 2012 at 7 p.m.

A touch of local history brings this author to Concord. Rachel Cox's uncle, Rob Cox, made a career for himself at St. Paul's School, which is also the site of his initial decision to go to war.

A multifaceted, moving story of five American Ivy League students who committed themselves to fight alongside the British in the spring of 1941.

Rachel will be bringing photos and maps from her research, as well as a few minutes of film footage from St. Pauls in 1941.

Journalist Cox, the relative of one of the recruits, pieces together this extraordinary story of five patriotic young students at Dartmouth and Harvard who bucked the official U.S. decision to remain out of the war while the Nazis were conquering Europe and offered themselves as volunteers for the King’s Royal Rifle Corps. Dartmouth senior Charles G. Bolté led the way by firing off an incendiary letter to President Roosevelt on the front page of the student newspaper announcing, “Now we have waited long enough.” At Harvard, senior Rob Cox had been wrestling with his own decision, spurred by a high draft number; while visiting a friend at Dartmouth that spring, he persuaded fellow Dartmouth students Jack Brister and Bill Durkee, along with Harvard sophomore Heyward Cutting, to join the fight. Within six weeks the five well-educated, fairly privileged young men arrived by Allied convoy to Halifax. Mixing in with the English they underwent recruit and officer training at Winchester and were considered curiosities and often displayed for the press and upper echelon. When events in North Africa boiled over, they were finally sent out by freighter in June 1942—the author gives a terrific account of onboard shenanigans and reflections by the bored, fearful men. They endured harsh conditions in the desert and were engaged in the decisive, ferocious Battle of El Alamein in October 1942. Brister was the only Yank not wounded in this battle; once Cox had recovered from being shot in the back, he and Brister returned to fight, and they both died in the Battle of Mareth in 1943. Bolté went on to pursue the cause of veterans’ rights and international peace; his first book, The New Veteran (1945), was dedicated to his fallen colleagues.

A unique take on the war, from the point of view of the young, idealistic and foolhardy.

Rachel Cox, author
Book List
$5.99
ISBN-13: 9780451234759
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: NAL Hardcover, 4/2012
"A moving, beautifully written tale of five young Ivy Leaguers, romantics and idealists all, who left their privileged lives in peacetime America to join the British Army in its pre-Pearl Harbor struggle against the Nazis. In her quest to trace the wartime experiences of her uncle, Rob Cox, and his four colleagues, Rachel Cox has produced a masterpiece of storytelling, infused with romance, danger, adventure, humor, and heartbreaking loss. It is, hands down, the best description of the transformation of untested young men into soldiers that I have ever read." ~Lynne Olson, Citizens of London.

Location: 
Street:
27 S Main St
Additional:
City:
Concord
,
Province:
New Hampshire
Postal Code:
03301
Country:
United States

New books, new trailers

Tuesday, September 16th, 7 p.m., Hugo Award-winning science fiction author John Scalzi joins us to present his newest novel, Lock In. While you eagerly await, check out this book theme song, commissioned by Scalzi, and written and performed by indie rocker William Beckett.

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Attention history buffs, poetry lovers, and beer enthusiasts. August 18th, 2014


Tuesday, August 19, 7 PM
Join us as we welcome Jessica Lander, author of Driving Backwards, to Gibson's Bookstore.  Driving Backwards is a memoir of Gilmanton, which briefly was the best known small town in the United States. Read more about this fascinating book here, and please join us!
“Take a small town, add a fresh voice, mix in some truly memorable detail, and you have Driving Backwards. Charming, vivid, informative, and a little bit scandalous, it crosses Robert Frost with John McPhee—just marvelous.”  —Gish Jen, author of The Love Wife and Tiger Writing
Meet the Poet Laureate of NH, Alice Fogel, and fellow poet Patrice Pinette,
Wed., August 20, at 7 PM
The Poetry Society of New Hampshire meets at Gibson's on the third Wednesday of each month. This month, our guests are Alice Fogel and Patrice Pinette. Their readings will be followed by an open-mic event. Come to read, come to listen--all are welcome!


New Hampshire Beer! Thursday, Aug. 21, 7 PM
Come learn all about the history and craft of brewing beer in New Hampshire!
Brian Aldrich started writing about beer for his blog Seacoast Beverage Lab in March 2010. Along with his blog and craft beer podcast, Brian is the beer master at the Sheraton Portsmouth Harborside Hotel, providing guests with a unique craft beer experience. He lives in Newfields, New Hampshire, with his wife, Lisa, and dog Madison. Visit him at www.seacoastbeveragelab.com.
We've just learned--happy coincidence!--that our friends in True Brew Cafe will be hosting a beer tasting at the same time as our author event. This will be a great night at Gibson's for beer lovers!

August sale!
You deserve a reward if you've read this far. Our annual August sale will be this weekend, Friday through Sunday. Almost everything in the store, plus most special orders, will be 25% off! Tell all your friends!
Store hours for the sale: Fri-Sat 9-9; Sun 11-6.

New store hours
We're making a minor adjustment to our store hours, starting next week (August 25). Our new store hours will be Monday through Wednesday from 9 AM to 7 PM; Thursday through Saturday from 9 AM to 9 PM; and Sunday from 11-6.
(The short version of why? Concord does not have a lot of night life early in the week. But when we have events we will stay open late, until 9 PM, even on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Call ahead to check.)

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