Favorite Quotes

"For my totem, the alley cat. We share the situation of small predators who easily become prey. I have my equivalent of claws and teeth, and indeed my arched back and loud hiss are my best defenses. When I need to hide my size and weakness, I can look fiercer than I am, but when I cannot talk or threaten or argue my way out of trouble, then I am in a lot of trouble. We are scavengers in the alleys and streets of a society we do not control and scarcely influence. We survive and perish both by taking lovers. Freedom is a daily necessity like water, and we love most loyally and longest those who allow us at least occasionally to vanish and wander the curious night. To them we always return from the eight deaths before the last."

from Braided Lives by Marge Piercy

Reader's Link

French wine makers in WWII: an inspiring story!

Wine and War: The French, the Nazis, and the Battle for France's Greatest Treasure.

Title: Wine and War: The French, the Nazis, and the Battle for France's Greatest Treasure.
By: Don and Petrie Kladstrup

The authors interviewed several members of five prominent wine making families in France. Very interesting stories of how they personally hid Jewish refugees in wine caves and smuggled members of the Resistance in wine barrels! We read of grape harvests ruined because of the shortage of horses, sulfur dust and lack of people to work the crops; how the Nazis were given bottles of inferior wine while the good vintages were holed up in private caves. Interspersed with a clear analysis of the Vichy government, de Gaulle's leadership and the anticipation of the Allied forces coming to liberate France and help recover rare stolen French wine. Great imagery and very well written book.

View similarly tagged posts: non-fiction, history

Posted by pollockl on March 19, 2009 at 11:41 a.m.
1 Comment


July 17, 2009 at 10:42 a.m.:

This is a fascinating book with many historical details and tales of courage. It shows the best of humanity amidst the horrors of war and genocide. I love the story of the German general who spared Paris and returned years later. You don't need to be interested in either wine or war to find this a compelling read -- almost plotted like a novel, but all true!

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