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Download Hell and Good Company: The Spanish Civil War and the World it Made Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Hell and Good Company: The Spanish Civil War and the World it Made, by Richard Rhodes Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Richard Rhodes Narrator: Christian Coulson Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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From the Pulitzer Prize–winning and bestselling author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb comes the remarkable story of the Spanish Civil War through the eyes of the reporters, writers, artists, doctors, and nurses who witnessed it.

The Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) inspired and haunted an extraordinary number of exceptional artists and writers, including Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro, Martha Gellhorn, Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, and John Dos Passos. The idealism of the cause—defending democracy from fascism at a time when Europe was darkening toward another world war—and the brutality of the conflict drew from them some of their best work, including Guernica, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Homage to Catalonia, and The Spanish Earth.

The war spurred breakthroughs in military and medical technology as well. New aircraft, new weapons, new tactics, and new strategies all emerged in the intense Spanish conflict. Indiscriminate destruction raining from the sky became a dreaded reality for the first time. Progress also arose from the horror: the doctors and nurses who volunteered to serve with the Spanish defenders devised major advances in battlefield surgery and front-line blood transfusion. In those ways, and in many others, the Spanish Civil War served as a test bed for World War II, and for the entire twentieth century.

From the life of John James Audubon to the invention of the atomic bomb, readers have long relied on Richard Rhodes to explain, distill, and dramatize crucial moments in history. Now he takes us into battlefields and bomb shelters, into the studios of artists, into the crowded wards of war hospitals, and into the hearts and minds of a rich cast of characters to show how the ideological, aesthetic, and technological developments that emerged in Spain changed the world forever.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Rhodes, a Pulitzer Prize winner, always has a provocative perspective. His new book proves no exception. He skillfully explores the Spanish Civil War, dropping names such as Picasso and Hemingway along the way. His goal: to make us grasp this terrible conflict. He succeeds.”

    AARP, The Magazine

  • Hell and Good Company…reliably conveys the conflict’s broad outlines for those who know nothing about the bloody 1936-39 war between the leftist Republican government and the insurgent Nationalist forces of Francisco Franco, while adding enough well-sourced fresh material to interest those more familiar with its horrors…Mr. Rhodes succeeds in re-animating familiar scenarios. His solidly researched account of the initially hesitant, even reluctant gestation of Picasso’s “Guernica,” in particular, makes thrilling reading.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • "[An] informed and elegant narrative.”


  • “Sublime…The most extraordinary book about the Spanish Civil War I’ve ever encountered. His subject is not the war itself but the tremors it produced, the feelings it evoked, and the terrible horror it begat. He masterfully extracts huge meaning from small shards of conflict.”

    Washington Post

  • “A vivid, wrenching view of war, art, and love.”

    Shelf Awareness

  • “It is through the lives and works of individuals involved in this wasteful conflict [the Spanish Civil War] that Rhodes so graphically allows contemporary readers to appreciate all the nuances of what transpired in Spain in those dark years.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “An interesting collection of observations on an iconic war that the good guys lost but which produced important cultural and therapeutic advances.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Christian Coulson offers an evenhanded narration of this history of the Spanish Civil War…Coulson handles foreign phrases and places nicely, with no hesitation, which keeps the narrative flowing.”


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