English for the Natives
By Harry Ritchie
'My first English lesson was grammar with the terrifying Mrs Petrie. She spent the entire time marching up and down the classroom, thwacking various items of school furniture with a ruler while she banged on about the ING part of the verb. I sat there, vibrating with fear, desperately trying to figure out what on earth she could mean. Irregular Negative Gerund? Intransitive Nominative Genitive? It was only years later, when I was teaching English to foreign students, that I realised that English grammar wasn't obscure and wilfully difficult but a fascinating subject which I was already brilliant at - and this book will prove that you are too.'Forget the little you think you know about English grammar and start afresh with this highly entertaining and accessible guide. English for the Natives outlines the rules and structures of our language as they are taught to foreign students - and have never before been explained to us. Harry Ritchie also examines the grammar of dialects as well as standard English and shows how non-standard forms are just as valid. With examples from a wide variety of sources, from Ali G to John Betjeman, Margaret Thatcher to Match of the Day, this essential book reveals some surprising truths about our language and teaches you all the things you didn't know you knew about grammar.
Emma (flipback edition)
Published for the first time in flipback - the new, portable, stylish format that's taken Europe by storm.'I am not only not going to be married, at present, but have very little intention of ever marrying at all.'Beautiful, clever and rich, Emma Woodhouse thinks she knows best, particularly when it comes to love. A determined meddler in other people's affairs, she blithely ignores the wise counsel of her good friend Mr Knightley. But when it all goes wrong, can Emma learn from her mistakes and find true love herself before it's too late?Often described as Jane Austen's most perfect novel, Emma is published for the first time in flipback classics - so now you can always carry an Austen in your pocket.
The End of the Monsoon
By John Lathrop
Michael Smith, at the US embassy in Cambodia, has an urgent assignment: do what it takes to help a US oil company secure its contract with the Cambodian government before upcoming elections strengthen a Chinese competitor. His affair with Zainab, the British chargé's wife, complicates events. Unaware of Smith's role, Zainab pushes hard for reform, convincing her candidate to tie oil concessions to clean government, and Chinese concessions to the release of a dissident monk. The ruling party works for the monk's release, but insists that Zainab, a Buddhist herself, travels to the remote northern border for the handover. Smith considers a British diplomat's spouse to be a protected species in Cambodia. But does she really qualify?With tension, moral complexity and an authentic feel for modern Cambodia, The End of the Monsoon is a gripping story of love and the struggle for integrity.
By Jack Hight
Salah ad-Din, or Saladin as he is known to the Franks, was a Kurd, the son of a despised people, and yet he became Sultan of Egypt and Syria. He united the peoples of Allah, recaptured Jerusalem, and drove the Crusaders to the very edge of the sea. He battled, and in the end tamed King Richard the Lionheart, who well deserved his savage name. He was a great man, the greatest man that I ever knew, but when I first met him, he was only a skinny child... - The Chronicle of Yahya al-DimashqBut alongside the legend of Saladin there is another story. When the Crusader army is routed beneath the walls of Damascus in 1148, a young Saxon named John is captured and enslaved. He is bought by Yusuf, a slight, bookish boy, for the price of a pair of sandals.And so begins the story of two enemies brought together by fate and of a friendship that will change the face of the Holy Land. Timid Yusuf will grow up to become the warrior Saladin, nicknamed 'the Eagle'; John will first teach his young master the art of war, before returning west to serve first the King of Jerusalem and then King Richard himself.From spectacular set-piece battles to the political manoeuvrings of the corrupt Crusader court, from the brutality of single combat to the sophistication of Islamic life, this is the first in a remarkable trilogy that will chart the story of the greatest leader the Middle East has ever known.
Eating for Britain
By Simon Majumdar
'Who are these people? Look at what they eat.'Simon Majumdar travels the country to find out what British food - from Arbroath Smokies to Welsh rarebit to chicken tikka masala - reveals about British identity. Exploring the history of British food, he celebrates the wealth of fare on offer today, and meets the people all over the country - the farmers, the fishermen, the brewers, bakers and cheese makers - who have given the British reason to love their food again.Join Simon as he becomes a judge at the Great British Pie Competition (where, to his sorrow, he ends up judging vegetarian pies), as he learns to make Balti with a true Brummie, hunts for grouse, and sees seaside rock being made in Blackpool. EATING FOR BRITAIN is an impassioned and hilarious journey into the meaning of eating British.
The English Marriage
By Maureen Waller
The story of the English marriage is unique and eccentric. Long after the rest of Europe and neighbouring Scotland had reformed their marriage laws, England clung to the chaotic and contradictory laws of the medieval Church, making it all too easy to enter into a marriage but virtually impossible to end an unhappy one.If England was a 'paradise for wives' it could only have been through the feistiness of the women. Married women were placed in the same legal category as lunatics. While Englishmen prided themselves on their devotion to liberty, their wives were no freer than slaves. It was a husband's jealously guarded right to beat his wife, as long as the stick was no bigger than his thumb. Only after 1882 could a married woman even retain her own property. But then marriage was all about property in a society which was both mercenary and violent, where a girl was virtually sold into marriage and a price was put on a wife's chastity. With a cast of hundreds, from loyal and devoted wives in troubled times to those who featured in notorious trials for adultery, from abusive husbands whose excesses were only gradually curbed by the law to the modern phenomenon of the toxic wife, acclaimed historian Maureen Waller draws on intimate letters, diaries, court documents and advice books to trace the evolution of the English marriage. It is social history at its most revealing, astonishing and entertaining.
Eat My Globe
By Simon Majumdar
Simon is obsessed with food. He is able to remember every meal he has ever eaten and comes from a family of food lovers whose relationships are all based around food. In the midst of a mid-life crisis, Simon Majumdar decided to pack in his 9 to 5 day job and embark on a trip of a lifetime: to go everywhere and eat everything. Part travelogue, part memoir EAT MY GLOBE is a culinary tour of the world that Simon has always dreamed of making. From Philly Cheese steak in the US to mouldy shark in Iceland, he crosses the globe in search of variety and the ultimate taste experience. He also meets a fascinating array of peope, whose foodie passion impresses even Simon. Both witty and inspirational, EAT MY GLOBE is an eye-opening look at the world through food.
By Claudia Schreiber
Emma lives alone in a big farmhouse with her animals for company: she talks to her chickens, cuddles up to her pigs in the sty and caresses her cows. But she also must make a living from her livestock, selling meat and making sausages. For Emma, it's all part of a natural process, and she does her best to give the pigs a short and sweet death, having developed her very own way of killing her pigs most tenderly.For all her happiness on the farm, there are two things in Emma's life she desperately wants: money to save her farm, which is deeply in debt, and a man. One night, she is woken by a crash. In her field, she finds a wrecked Ferrari. and in it, an unconscious man - with an enormous amount of cash.It looks like Emma's prayers have been answered - but have they? Will the mysterious Max adapt to rural life, or will his past come back to haunt them?
Extremes along the Silk Road
By Nick Middleton
The Silk Road is the fabled route that cuts through one of the most extraordinary tracts of land on this planet. A vast region separating China from the Mediterranean, it rates as one of the least hospitable on Earth – a succession of hostile deserts and towering mountain ranges, a harsh terrain of howling winds, searing heat and blistering cold.No stranger to unforgiving territory, Nick Middleton follows in the footsteps of Alexander the Great and Marco Polo overland from China to Istanbul, surviving as they did the life-sapping Gobi desert, the icy passes of high altitude Tibet, and the great Steppes of Turkmenistan, and encounters those who eke out existences there today.Nick's great gift as an adventure writer is to weave together the personal experience of ridiculous endurance - from sleeping on steaming rocks in the middle of a sub-zero desert to eating the most dubiously-cooked local delicacies - with the bigger picture of our planet and its peoples.
Eight Feet in the Andes
By Dervla Murphy
The eight feet belong to Dervla Murphy, her nine-year-old daughter Rachel and Juana, an elegant mule, who together clambered the length of Peru, from Cajamarca near the border with Ecuador, to Cuzco, the ancient Inca capital, over 1300 miles to the south.With only the most basic necessities to sustain them and spending most of their time above 10,000 feet, their journey was marked by extreme discomfort, occasional danger and even the temporary loss of Juana over a precipice. Yet mother and daughter, a formidable duo, were unflagging in their sympathetic response to the perilous beauty and impoverished people of the Andes.In this extraordinary adventure, Dervla Murphy is at her intrepid best, facing up to the terrors, horrors and joys of her journey along the mountain paths.