July 4th: The Lost Boys : A Family Ripped Apart by War

Catherine Bailey (author of Black Diamonds and The Secret Rooms) will be talking to Elinor Goodman about her latest history book, The Lost Boys.

Berlin, September 1944. Ulrich von Hassell, former ambassador to Italy and a key member of the German Resistance, is executed for his part in an assassination plot against Hitler. In response to the attack, Himmler, leader of the SS, orders the arrest of all the families of the plotters.

In a remote castle in Italy, von Hassell’s beloved daughter, Fey, is discovered just when she thought she had escaped the Nazi net. She is arrested and her two sons, aged three and two are seized by the SS. Fey has no idea of her children’s fate as she is dragged away on a terrifying journey to the darkest corners of a Europe savaged by war.

Moving from a palazzo in the heart of the Italian countryside to the horrors of Buchenwald, Catherine Bailey tells an extraordinary story of resistance at the heart of the Second World War. The Lost Boys is an illuminating and devastating account of great personal sacrifice, of loss and, above all, of defiance

‘To say that Catherine Bailey makes history come alive is such a cliche and yet it’s so true, she is absolutely one of my favourite writers’ Kate Atkinson.

‘One of the most harrowing, beautifully written and brilliantly researched books I have read in a very long time’ Selina Hastings

Hungerford Hub (Library) at 7:30pm on July 4th.

Tickets £8 (includes £5 off the book on the night and a glass of wine).

July 9th: Socrates in Love: The Making of a Philosopher

Prof. Armand D’Angour is Associate Professor in Classic at Jesus College, Oxford. As well as an innovative classicist he is a musician and businessman who has played a distinguished role in promoting ancient Greek to modern audiences.

In his new, highly readable book ‘Socrates in Love’ he sheds new light on the formative journey of the philosopher, finally revealing the identity of the woman who Socrates claimed inspired him to develop ideas that have captivated thinkers for 2,500 years.

Our conception of Socrates has relied upon Plato and Xenophon – men who met him when he was in his fifties and a well-known figure in war-torn Athens. There is mystery at the heart of Socrates’ story: what turned the young Socrates into a philosopher? What drove him to pursue with such persistence, at the cost of social acceptance and ultimately of his life, a whole new way of thinking about the meaning of existence? In this revisionist biography, Armand D’Angour draws on neglected sources to explore the passions and motivations of young Socrates, showing how love transformed him into the philosopher he was to become. What emerges is the figure of Socrates as never previously portrayed: a heroic warrior, an athletic wrestler and dancer – and a passionate lover.

Join the author in Hungerford Library as he talks about his book. Q&A and a signing follows.

Hungerford Hub/Library 7:30, July 9th.

Tickets £6 (includes a glass of wine and money off the book)