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The Best History Books of 2018

This holiday, share a memorable and thoughtful gift to the history lover in your life! Give the best history books of 2018, from biographies on the founding fathers to military accounts of World War II. Find a gift for dad or a gift for the person who has everything. Keep your relatives and history buff friends informed with these new nonfiction reads by Jon Meacham, Nathaniel Philbrick, Ben Macintyre, and more. Find more holiday books by browsing our gift guide.
  1. 1

    On Desperate Ground

    From the New York Times bestselling author of Ghost Soldiers and In the Kingdom of Ice, a chronicle of the extraordinary feats of heroism by Marines called on to do the impossible during the greatest battle of the Korean War.

    On Desperate Ground Book Cover Picture
  2. 2

    American Dialogue

    The award-winning author of Founding Brothers and The Quartet now gives us a deeply insightful examination of the relevance of the views of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and John Adams to some of the most divisive issues in America today.

    American Dialogue Book Cover Picture
  3. 3

    The Soul of America

    #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Pulitzer Prize–winning author Jon Meacham helps us understand the present moment in American politics and life by looking back at critical times in our history when hope overcame division and fear.

    The Soul of America Book Cover Picture
  4. 4

    Speeches of Note

    From the author of the New York Times bestseller Letters of Note comes a collection of 75 of history’s most interesting, profound, and sometimes unknown speeches from a range of scintillating personalities such as Frederick Douglass, Justin Trudeau, Albert Einstein, Meghan Markle, Barbara Jordan, and Ursula K. Le Guin.

    Speeches of Note Book Cover Picture
  5. 5

    Thomas Cromwell

    The long-awaited biography of the genius who masterminded Henry VIII’s bloody revolution in the English government, which reveals at last Cromwell’s role in the downfall of Anne Boleyn.

    Thomas Cromwell Book Cover Picture
  6. 6

    Living with the Gods

    In the same format as his best-selling books A History of the World in 100 Objects and Germany: Memories of a Nation–the acclaimed art historian now gives us a magnificent new book that explores the relationship between faith and society.

    Living with the Gods Book Cover Picture
  7. 7


    In this landmark biography of Winston Churchill based on extensive new material, the true genius of the man, statesman and leader can finally be fully seen and understood–by the bestselling, award-winning author of Napoleonand The Storm of War.

    Churchill Book Cover Picture
  8. 8

    Titans of History

    In this inspiring, horrifying, and accessible collection of short, entertaining, and vivid life stories, Simon Sebag Montefiore—one of our pre-eminent historians and a prizewinning writer—presents the giant characters who have changed the course of world history.

    Titans of History Book Cover Picture
  9. 9

    In the Hurricane’s Eye

    The thrilling story of the year that won the Revolutionary War. A riveting and wide-ranging story, full of dramatic, unexpected turns that shows the fate of the American Revolution depended, in the end, on Washington and the sea.

    In the Hurricane's Eye Book Cover Picture
  10. 10

    Capitalism in America

    From the legendary former Fed Chairman and the acclaimed Economist writer and historian, the full, epic story of America’s evolution from a small patchwork of threadbare colonies to the most powerful engine of wealth and innovation the world has ever seen.

    Capitalism in America Book Cover Picture
  11. 11


    An intimate, powerful, and inspiring memoir by the former First Lady of the United States.

    Becoming Book Cover Picture
  12. 12

    The Invisible Emperor

    Part forensic investigation, part dramatic jailbreak adventure, Mark Braude’s The Invisible Emperor is a gripping narrative history of Napoleon Bonaparte’s ten-month exile on the Mediterranean island of Elba.

    The Invisible Emperor Book Cover Picture
  13. 13

    The Battle of Arnhem

    The prizewinning historian and internationally bestselling author of D-Day reconstructs the devastating airborne battle of Arnhem in this gripping new account.

    The Battle of Arnhem Book Cover Picture
  14. 14

    Founding Martyr

    A rich and illuminating biography of America’s forgotten Founding Father, the patriot physician and major general who fomented rebellion and died heroically at the battle of Bunker Hill on the brink of revolution.

    Founding Martyr Book Cover Picture
  15. 15

    God Save Texas

    With humor and the biting insight of a native, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Looming Tower explores the history, culture, and politics of Texas, while holding the stereotypes up for rigorous scrutiny.

    God Save Texas Book Cover Picture
  16. 16

    The Woman’s Hour

    The nail-biting climax of one of the greatest political battles in American history: the ratification of the constitutional amendment that granted women the right to vote.

    The Woman's Hour Book Cover Picture
  17. 17

    Presidents of War

    Ten years in the research and writing, Presidents of War is a fresh, magisterial, intimate look at a procession of American leaders as they took the nation into conflict and mobilized their country for victory.

    Presidents of War Book Cover Picture
  18. 18

    Killers of the Flower Moon

    From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of The Lost City of Z, a twisting, haunting true-life murder mystery about one of the most monstrous crimes in American history.

    Killers of the Flower Moon Book Cover Picture
  19. 19

    Red Famine

    From the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Gulag and the National Book Award finalist Iron Curtain, a revelatory history of one of Stalin’s greatest crimes—the consequences of which still resonate today.

    Red Famine Book Cover Picture
  20. 20

    The Jungle Grows Back

    A brilliant and visionary argument for America’s role as an enforcer of peace and order throughout the world–and what is likely to happen if we withdraw and focus our attention inward.

    The Jungle Grows Back Book Cover Picture
  21. 21

    The Spy and the Traitor

    The celebrated author of Double Cross and Rogue Heroes returns with his greatest spy story yet, a thrilling Americans-era tale of Oleg Gordievsky, the Russian whose secret work helped hasten the end of the Cold War.

    The Spy and the Traitor Book Cover Picture
  22. 22

    Boom Town

    Award-winning journalist Sam Anderson’s long-awaited debut is a brilliant, kaleidoscopic narrative of Oklahoma City–a great American story of civics, basketball, and destiny.

    Boom Town Book Cover Picture
  23. 23


    From New York Times bestselling biographer Bob Spitz, a full and rich biography of an epic American life, capturing what made Ronald Reagan both so beloved and so transformational.

    Reagan Book Cover Picture

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