• Biography & True Stories

      Almost Human – A Biography of Julius the Chimpanzee

      by Alfred Fidjestøl

      Julius the Chimpanzee is the most famous animal in Norway. He was born on Boxing Day 1979, in Kristiansand Zoo in southern Norway. Six weeks old he was rejected by his mother and lived with a human family for one year. A camera crew followed him during

    • Biography & True Stories
      July 2017

      Still I Rise

      The Persistence of Phenomenal Women

      by Marlene Wagman-Geller

      #1 New Release on Amazon! — Who are the great women leaders in history? Who are the women heroes who personify "girl power"?Intrepid women heroes: When Nelson Mandela was imprisoned in South Africa’s brutal Ro

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      February 2018

      'I Was Transformed' Frederick Douglass

      An American Slave in Victorian Britain

      by Laurence Fenton

      In the summer of 1845, Frederick Douglass, the young runaway slave catapulted to fame by his incendiary autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, arrived in Liverpool for the start of a near-two-year tour of Britain and Ireland he always called one of the most transformative periods of his life. Laurence Fenton draws on a wide array of sources from both sides of the Atlantic and combines a unique insight into the early years of one of the great figures of the nineteenth-century world with rich profiles of the enormous personalities at the heart of the transatlantic anti-slavery movement. This vivid portrait of life in Victorian Britain is the first to fully explore the ‘liberating sojourn’ that ended with Douglass gaining his freedom – paid for by British supporters – before returning to America as a celebrity and icon of international standing. It also follows his later life, through the American Civil War and afterwards. Douglass has been described as ‘the most influential African American of the nineteenth century’. He spoke and wrote on behalf of a variety of reform causes: women’s rights, temperance, peace, land reform, free public education and the abolition of capital punishment. But he devoted most of his time, immense talent and boundless energy to ending slavery. On April 14, 1876, Douglass would deliver the keynote speech at the unveiling of the Emancipation Memorial in Washington’s Lincoln Park.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      April 2018

      Lady M

      The Life and Loves of Elizabeth Lamb, Viscountess Melbourne 1751-1818

      by Colin Brown

      At a time of emerging women leaders, the life of Elizabeth Milbanke, Viscountess Melbourne, the shrewdest political hostess of the Georgian period, is particularly intriguing. It was Byron who called her ‘Lady M’ and it was Byron’s tempestuous and very public affair with Elizabeth’s daughter-in-law Lady Caroline Lamb that was the scandal of the age. Lady M rose above all adversity, using sex and her husband’s wealth to hold court among such glittering figures as Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, the Whig leader and wit Charles James Fox and the playwright Sheridan. Her many lovers included Lord Egremont, Turner’s wealthy patron, and the future George IV. Elizabeth schemed on behalf of her children and her ambitions were realised when her son William Lamb (‘Lord M’) became the young Queen Victoria’s confidant and Prime Minister. Based upon primary research – diaries, archives and extensive correspondence between Lady M and Lord Byron – Colin Brown examines the Regency period and its pre-Victorian code of morals from the perspective of a powerful and influential woman on the 200th anniversary of her death.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      January 2018

      Ordinary Heroes

      The Story of Civilian Volunteers in the First World War

      by Sally White

      Ordinary Heroes is the first book to focus on the staggering achievements of hundreds of thousands of civilian volunteers and charity workers, the majority of them women, during the First World War, both at home and abroad. It shows what a mass of untried and frequently untrained women and men from all backgrounds achieved through their innovation, adaptability, bravery and dogged commitment. As Lloyd George said, the war could not have been won without them. As the country was swept by patriotic fervour and a belief that it would all be over by Christmas, many women were as keen as the men to get involved. Organisations were all but overwhelmed by the initial tide of volunteers. They rushed to register for overseas service without knowing the devastating reality that would confront them. Others devoted their time to fundraising, collecting salvage, caring for refugees, working in canteens or helping in any other way they could. Conditions, particularly in the Balkans and Russia, were often appalling and yet the volunteers coped with and even relished the challenges. They came under fire, advanced or retreated with their respective armies, evacuated their patients through baking heat, mud or bitter cold, battled epidemics, performed operations by the light of a single candle, worked through the Russian Revolution and joined the Serbian Army on its Great Retreat. Several groups were taken prisoner. Wherever they worked, they were met with respect and gratitude −and sometimes incredulity that British people, especially gentlewomen, would help foreigners.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      March 2019

      Louis XIV

      by Josephine Wilkinson

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      March 2019

      Shoot for the Moon

      by James Donovan

    • I Live a Life Like Yours

      by Jan Grue

      Into the unknown: we don’t know where we’re going. We are sailing in a leaky boat; we know that we’re dying animals. With dreams of Byzantium, we bail out as much water as we can, sailing onward, together. We are Argonauts, astronauts, adventurers, exp

    • Glaciator

      Jens Esmark, Ice Ages and Climate Change

      by Geir Hestmark

      Jens Esmark is the great pioneer in the exploration of Norway's mountains, and this is the definitive story of his life, his expeditions, mountain ascents and glacier crossings. Not the least the book traces the paths to his epochal discovery of ice ag

    • Lifestyle, Sport & Leisure
      November 2018

      The Crossing

      Sir Vivian Fuchs, Sir Edmund Hillary and the Trans-Antarctic Expedition 1955–58

      by John Knight

      The Trans-Antarctic Expedition of 1955-58 organised and led by Sir Vivian Fuchs and supported by Sir Edmund Hillary was one of the most extraordinary exploits ever undertaken in Antarctica - but it has been underappreciated. On the sixtieth anniversary of the crossing, this book tells the complete story of this remarkable episode in the history of exploration. The Crossing is illustrated with photographs from the Royal Geographical Society, with the kind permission of Mary Lowe, widow of expedition photographer George Lowe, and from Peter and Sarah Hillary and the Auckland War Memorial Museum. Sir Ernest Shackleton had tried unsuccessfully to cross the Antarctic in 1914. He called it the Last Great Journey, but he and his men escaped by the skin of their teeth. The new post-war expedition was therefore, with knowledge of what had gone before, a brave attempt to conquer the vast frozen continent. For this historic endeavour, planning had to be done at opposite ends of the Earth, in the UK and New Zealand, and members of the expedition were drawn from the Commonwealth. The plan was meticulous but flawed, and the stakes were high: national, political and scientific interests all depended on its success. John Knight's account shows how the expedition was organised, from the scientific insight it relied on, to the voyage to Antarctica and the choice of the largely mechanised transport intended to carry the men across the ice desert - though the courageous dog teams would be crucial as pathfinders. Survival at times was touch and go, and controversies arose amid the pressure of the journey. This book not only provides a technical insight into a ground-breaking venture but touches on the human aspects of the challenge. Crucially, did Ed Hillary exceed his remit by pushing on south, when his specific instructions were to establish depots for ‘Bunny’ Fuchs’s journey, not to engage in a ‘Second Race to the Pole’? The Crossing charts a unique event in postwar history.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      December 2018

      The Rise of the Third Reich

      The Takeover of the Continent in the Words of Observers

      by Robert Lyman

      A vivid social history of Europe, as the Nazi menace casts a shadow over the continent. The Rise of the Third Reich is a poignant and powerful portrait of the years 1939 to 1941, which witnessed the march towards the greatest manmade catastrophe the world has ever experienced. The narrative follows events from 3 September 1939, when Britain and France declared war on Germany, to Pearl Harbor and America’s declaration of war in December 1941. It is told from the fresh perspective of expatriate Americans caught up in the exploding conflict. Uniquely, the book uses their contemporary accounts, to record a time when British and other nationalities were barred from Nazi-occupied territory, but US citizens could travel and report what they saw. They describe the foreboding, fear and suffering caused by the Nazi invasions. These were years of increasing calls for American intervention, as Britain faced its darkest days, and held off the Luftwaffe in the Battle of Britain, yet remained vulnerable. Meanwhile, European nations fell one after another, and Hitler’s power extended from the Mediterranean to the Baltic. Acclaimed historian Robert Lyman brings together a wide range of encounters, conversations and memories. The individuals range across the social spectrum, from the great singer, dancer and activist Josephine Baker to young volunteers in the RAF, such as aces James Goodison, Art Donahue, and the wealthy playboy Billy Fiske - the first American volunteer in the RAF to die in action during the Battle of Britain. The story unfolds as the war drags the whole of Europe and a reluctant United States into the maelstrom.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      December 2018

      Royal Dragoon Guards

      An Illustrated History

      by Anthony Dawson

      The Royal Dragoon Guards, formed in 1992 from the 4th/7th Royal Dragoon Guards and 5th Royal Inniskilling Dragoon Guards, has a proud history dating back to 1685: the Earl of Arran’s Regiment of Cuirassiers, the antecedents of the 4th (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards and the Duke of Shrewsbury’s Regiment of Horse (5th Dragoon Guards) were raised during the Monmouth Rebellion. Along with Sir Albert Cunningham’s Regiment of Horse (latterly the 6th Inniskilling Dragoons) they fought together at the Battle of the Boyne. These are regiments that have been present at some of the great battles and campaigns of history: Dettingen, Fontenoy, the Peninsula and Waterloo, where Inniskillings charged as part of the Union Brigade and are rumoured to have captured a French Eagle. At Balaklava, the Inniskillings and 4th Dragoon Guards took part in the far more successful, but less celebrated, ‘Charge of the Heavy Brigade’. All four regiments served during the Second Boer War, and it was the 4th Dragoon Guards that became the first members of the British Expeditionary Force to make contact with German troops in August 1914. In this book, Anthony Dawson draws on archival material from the Regimental Collection, as well as diaries and letters, to give a vivid, personal account of this famous regiment.

    • Biography & True Stories
      January 2019

      British Murder

      A Compendium: 1901-2000

      by William Wright

      The first study, year by year, of murder in Britain in the 20th century. The cases range from the long forgotten, like Rhoda Willis - last of the baby farmers - to the truly terrifying, such as Patrick Mackay (front cover). An introduction to each decade shows how investigative procedures and the criminal law changed during the century.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      January 2019

      Killing Napoleon

      The Plot to Blow up Bonaparte

      by Jonathan North

      It was Christmas Eve 1800. The streets of Paris were crowded with citizens. Some were shopping, some were eating and drinking. But others were plotting to murder the most famous and powerful man in France. They wheeled their improvised bomb into town earlier that day, and waited. Then, amongst the milling crowd, they saw the target. Despite knowing that the bomb would kill indiscriminately, the fuse was lit, and the enormous explosion wreaked havoc. The target for this early act of terrorism was Napoleon Bonaparte, who had seized power the year before and found himself the enemy of republicans and royalists alike. The terrorists belonged to the royal faction and although they failed to kill Napoleon, their atrocity hurled political violence in a new and terrifying direction; towards a now familiar place where civilian casualties would be collateral damage and where bombs in packed streets and squares would be the new conduit of terror. This book sets the scene with Napoleon’s coup and follows the cell of extremists as they prepare their plans and devise a weapon that became known as the ‘Infernal Machine’. After their attack, we follow the security services as they hunt down the perpetrators, baffled by the novelty of terrorism, as Napoleon uses public anger to launch a war on his opponents. Using first-hand accounts, trial transcripts and archival material - and with all the drama of a detective story - Killing Napoleon recounts one of the great crimes of its era, a story still largely unknown in the English-speaking world; and a precursor to the terrorist threats we know today.

    • Lifestyle, Sport & Leisure
      October 2019

      The Fighting Jew

      The Life and Times of Daniel Mendoza, Champion Boxer

      by Wynn Wheldon

      Daniel Mendoza is unarguably among the most important boxers in the history of the sport. Begetter of the Golden Age of British pugilism, one populated by dandies and royals, characterised by the bludgeon and revolution, Mendoza turned what had been a co

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      September 2019

      Four Queens and a Countess

      Mary Queen of Scots, Elizabeth I, Mary I, Lady Jane Grey and Bess of Hardwick: The Struggle for the Crown

      by Jill Armitage

      When Mary Stuart was forced off the Scottish throne she fled to England, a move that made her cousin Queen Elizabeth very uneasy. Elizabeth had continued the religious changes made by her father and England was a Protestant country, yet ardent Catholics plotted to depose Elizabeth and put Mary Stuart on the English throne. So what was Queen Elizabeth going to do with a kingdomless queen likely to take hers? She had her placed under house arrest with her old friend Bess of Hardwick, then married to her fourth husband, the wealthy and influential Earl of Shrewsbury. The charismatic Scotswoman was treated more like a dowager queen than a prisoner and enjoyed the Shrewsbury’s affluent lifestyle until Bess suspected Mary of seducing her husband. But for sixteen years, with the never-ending threat of a Catholic uprising, Bess was forced to accommodate Mary and her entourage at enormous cost to both her finances and her marriage. Bess had also known the doomed Jane Grey and Mary Tudor, Queen of France. She had been in service in the Grey household and companion to the infant Jane. Mary Tudor had been godmother to Bess’s fifth child. Four Queens and a Countess delves deep into the relationships of these women with their insurmountable differences, the way they tried to accommodate them and the lasting legacy this has left. The clash of personalities and its deadly political background have never been examined in detail before.

    • Biography & True Stories
      August 2019

      The Poisoners

      Foul, Strange and Unnatural Murder

      by Trevor Bond

      A Methodist minister, a mysterious Frenchwoman, a solicitor, a brace of housekeepers, and a recently discharged soldier: what links them? Being accused of murder by poison. Poisoning represents the ultimate domestic murder. Many alleged crimes - the deat

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      September 2019

      The Price of Freedom

      A Refugee Helper's Story of Escape, Imprisonment and Secret Deals between East and West Germany

      by Volker G. Heinz, Konrad Schiemann

      Berlin 1966, a city divided by an impenetrable wall erected by the communist German Democratic Republic. Together with his friends, the West German student Volker G. Heinz is looking for ways to help would-be fugitives escape from East to West. Their sear

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      October 2019

      Proudly She Served

      Women's Roles in the Second World War

      by Tracey-Ann Knight

      ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ the posters declared - an example of the stoic qualities of endurance and forbearance that the British Government wanted to encourage in those left behind on the home front in the Second World War. But it soon became clear that th

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      September 2019

      Victorian Murders

      by Jan Bondeson

      This book features fifty-six Victorian cases of murder covered in the sensational weekly penny journal the Illustrated Police News between 1867 and 1900. Some of them are famous, like the Bravo Mystery of 1876, the Llangibby Massacre of 1878 and the Mrs Pearcey case of 1890; others are little-known, like the Acton Atrocity of 1880, the Ramsgate Mystery of 1893 and the Grafton Street Murder of 1894. Take your ticket for the house of horrors.

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