Antell, Gerson and W. Harris. Western Civilization. New York: Amsco School Publications, 1983. This was my high school history textbook that I always wanted to get around to reading "for real." Having completed it, I can see why history is so often a struggle for students. Although the text is a competent overview of European (it's certainly not comprehensively "Western") history, it often strips away the details that would arouse the passion of the reader. As a result, the "story" part of history never quite comes alive. Indeed, it wasn't until the authors began to focus on Napoleon that I really began to get into the rhythm of the text; before that it seemed to be one dry fact after another.