Related to: 'Fascinating Footnotes From History'

John Murray

D-Day

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton
John Murray

Churchill's Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton
Sceptre

The Valentine House

Emma Henderson
Authors:
Emma Henderson

'Henderson's Grace Williams Says It Loud was shortlisted for the Orange Prize and this more than matches it.'Elizabeth Buchan, Daily MailIn June 1914, Sir Anthony Valentine, a keen mountaineer, arrives with his family to spend the summer in their chalet, high in the French Alps. There, for the first time, fourteen-year-old foundling Mathilde starts work as one of the 'uglies' - village girls employed as servants and picked, it is believed, to ensure they don't catch Sir Anthony's roving eye. For Mathilde it is the start of a life-long entanglement with les anglais - strange, exciting people, far removed from the hard grind of farming. Except she soon finds the Valentines are less carefree than they appear, with a curiously absent daughter no one talks about. It will be decades - disrupted by war, accidents and a cruel betrayal - before Mathilde discovers the key to the mystery. And in 1976, the year Sir Anthony's great-great grandson comes to visit, she must decide whether to use it. Vividly evoking the dramatic landscape that so enthrals the Valentines, this deeply involving, intriguing novel tells the story of an English family through the generations and a memorable French woman, whose lives seem worlds apart yet which become inextricably connected.

John Murray

The Invention of Nature

Andrea Wulf
Authors:
Andrea Wulf
Coronet

The Gestapo

Frank McDonough
Authors:
Frank McDonough

A Daily Telegraph 'Book of the Week' (August 2015)Longlisted for 2016 PEN Hessell-Tiltman PrizeRanked in 100 Best Books of 2015 in the Daily TelegraphProfessor Frank McDonough is one of the leading scholars and most popular writers on the history of Nazi Germany. Frank McDonough's work has been described as, 'modern history writing at its very best...Ground-breaking, fascinating, occasionally deeply revisionist' by renowned historian Andrew Roberts. Drawing on a detailed examination of previously unpublished Gestapo case files this book relates the fascinating, vivid and disturbing accounts of a cross-section of ordinary and extraordinary people who opposed the Nazi regime. It also tells the equally disturbing stories of their friends, neighbours, colleagues and even relatives who were often drawn into the Gestapo's web of intrigue. The book reveals, too, the cold-blooded and efficient methods of the Gestapo officers. This book will also show that the Gestapo lacked the manpower and resources to spy on everyone as it was reliant on tip offs from the general public. Yet this did not mean the Gestapo was a weak or inefficient instrument of Nazi terror. On the contrary, it ruthlessly and efficiently targeted its officers against clearly defined political and racial 'enemies of the people'. The Gestapo will provide a chilling new doorway into the everyday life of the Third Reich and give powerful testimony from the victims of Nazi terror and poignant life stories of those who opposed Hitler's regime while challenging popular myths about the Gestapo.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Last Battle

Cornelius Ryan
Authors:
Cornelius Ryan

The Battle for Berlin was the final struggle of World War II in the European theatre, the last offensive against Hitler's Third Reich, which devastated one of Europe's historic capitals and brought an end to the Nazi regime. It lasted more than two weeks across April -- May 1945, and was one of the bloodiest and most pivotal episodes of the war, one which would play a part in determining the shape of international politics for decades to come. THE LAST BATTLE is a story of brutal extremes, of stunning military triumph alongside the stark conditions that the civilians of Berlin experienced in the face of the Allied assault. It is history at its best, a masterful illumination of the effects of war on the lives of individuals, and one of the enduring works on World War II.

John Murray

Operation Sealion

Leo McKinstry
Authors:
Leo McKinstry
Hodder & Stoughton

Modern Japan: All That Matters

Jonathan Clements
Authors:
Jonathan Clements
Hodder & Stoughton

Agincourt

Ranulph Fiennes
Authors:
Ranulph Fiennes

600 years after the Battle of Agincourt, Sir Ranulph Fiennes casts new light on this epic event that has resonated throughout British and French history.On 25th October 1415, on a French hillside near the village of Agincourt, four men sheltered from the rain and prepared for battle. All four were English knights, ancestors of Sir Ranulph Fiennes, and part of the army of England's King Henry V. Across the valley, four sons of the French arm of the Fiennes family were confident that the Dauphin's army would win the day... Ranulph Fiennes explains how his own ancestors were key players through the centuries of turbulent Anglo-French history that led up to Agincourt, and he uses his experience as expedition leader and soldier to give us a fresh perspective on one of the bloodiest periods of medieval history. With fascinating detail on the battle plans, weaponry and human drama of Agincourt, this is a gripping evocation of a historical event integral to English identity.

John Murray

When Britain Burned the White House

Peter Snow
Authors:
Peter Snow

As heard on BBC Radio 4's Book of the Week.Shortlisted for the Paddy Power Political History Book of the Year Award 2014.In August 1814 the United States' army is defeated in battle by an invading force just outside Washington DC. The US president and his wife have just enough time to pack their belongings and escape from the White House before the enemy enters. The invaders tuck into the dinner they find still sitting on the dining-room table and then set fire to the place. 9/11 was not the first time the heartland of the United States was struck a devastating blow by outsiders. Two centuries earlier, Britain - now America's close friend, then its bitterest enemy - set Washington ablaze before turning its sights to Baltimore. In his compelling narrative style, Peter Snow recounts the fast-changing fortunes of both sides of this extraordinary confrontation, the outcome of which inspired the writing of the 'Star-Spangled Banner', America's national anthem. Using a wealth of material including eyewitness accounts, he also describes the colourful personalities on both sides of these spectacular events: Britain's fiery Admiral Cockburn, the cautious but immensely popular army commander Robert Ross, and sharp-eyed diarists James Scott and George Gleig. On the American side: beleaguered President James Madison, whose young nation is fighting the world's foremost military power, his wife Dolley, a model of courage and determination, military heroes such as Joshua Barney and Sam Smith, and flawed incompetents like Army Chief William Winder and War Secretary John Armstrong. When Britain Burned the White House highlights this unparalleled moment in American history, its far-reaching consequences for both sides and Britain's and America's decision never again to fight each other.

John Murray

Russian Roulette

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton
Hodder Paperbacks

The Secret Hunters

Ranulph Fiennes
Authors:
Ranulph Fiennes
John Murray

The Riddle and the Knight

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

In 1322 Sir John Mandeville left England on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Thirty-four years later, he returned, claiming to have visited not only Jerusalem, but India, China, Java, Sumatra and Borneo as well.His book about that voyage, THE TRAVELS, was heralded as the most important book of the Middle Ages as Mandeville claimed his voyage proved it was possible to circumnavigate the globe.In the nineteenth century sceptics questioned his voyage, and even doubted he had left England.The Riddle and the Knight sets out to discover whether Mandeville really could have made his voyage or whether, as is claimed, THE TRAVELS was a work of imaginative fiction.Bestselling historian Giles Milton unearths clues about the journey and reveals that THE TRAVELS is built upon a series of riddles which have, until now, remained unsolved.

John Murray

Nathaniel's Nutmeg

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton
John Murray

Big Chief Elizabeth

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

In April 1586, Queen Elizabeth I acquired a new and exotic title. A tribe of North American Indians had made her their weroanza - 'big chief'.The news was received with great joy, both by the Queen and her favourite, Sir Walter Ralegh. His first American expedition had brought back a captive, Manteo, whose tattooed face had enthralled Elizabethan London. Now Manteo was returned to his homeland as Lord and Governor. Ralegh's gamble would result in the first English settlement in the New World, but it would also lead to a riddle whose solution lay hidden in the forests of Virginia.A tale of heroism and mystery, Big Chief Elizabeth is illuminated by first-hand accounts to reveal a remarkable and long-forgotten story.

John Murray

Wolfram

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

The Aïchele family were decent, cultured, peace-loving Germans trying their hardest not to get swept up in the madness of Hitler's Third Reich. But by the time war came, for civilians on all sides, there was nowhere left to hide.The conflict took Wolfram, the family's gentle, 18-year-old son, to the Russian Front and the Normandy beaches. It also engulfed the town of his childhood, obliterating its inhabitants in a devastating firestorm.Wolfram is a powerful story of human survival. It is testimony to the fact that even in the darkest times there remains a spark of humanity that can never be totally extinguished.

John Murray

Paradise Lost

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

On Saturday 9th September, 1922, the victorious Turkish cavalry rode into Smyrna, the richest and most cosmopolitan city in the Ottoman Empire. What happened over the next two weeks must rank as one of the most compelling human dramas of the twentieth century. Almost two million people were caught up in a disaster of truly epic proportions.PARADISE LOST is told with the narrative verve that has made Giles Milton a bestselling historian. It unfolds through the memories of the survivors, many of them interviewed for the first time, and the eyewitness accounts of those who found themselves caught up in one of the greatest catastrophes of the modern age.

Hodder & Stoughton

HH3626 White Gold (digital download)

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

John Murray

White Gold

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

This is the forgotten story of the million white Europeans, snatched from their homes and taken in chains to the great slave markets of North Africa to be sold to the highest bidder. Ignored by their own governments, and forced to endure the harshest of conditions, very few lived to tell the tale.Using the firsthand testimony of a Cornish cabin boy named Thomas Pellow, Giles Milton vividly reconstructs a disturbing, little known chapter of history. Pellow was bought by the tyrannical sultan of Morocco who was constructing an imperial pleasure palace of enormous scale and grandeur, built entirely by Christian slave labour. As his personal slave, he would witness first-hand the barbaric splendour of the imperial court, as well as experience the daily terror of a cruel regime.Gripping, immaculately researched, and brilliantly realised, WHITE GOLD reveals an explosive chapter of popular history, told with all the pace and verve of one of our finest historians.

John Murray

Samurai William

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

In 1611 an astonishing letter arrived at the East India Trading Company in London after a tortuous seven-year journey. Englishman William Adams was one of only twenty-four survivors of a fleet of ships bound for Asia, and he had washed up in the forbidden land of Japan.The traders were even more amazed to learn that, rather than be horrified by this strange country, Adams had fallen in love with the barbaric splendour of Japan - and decided to settle. He had forged a close friendship with the ruthless Shogun, taken a Japanese wife and sired a new, mixed-race family.Adams' letter fired up the London merchants to plan a new expedition to the Far East, with designs to trade with the Japanese and use Adams' contacts there to forge new commercial links.SAMURAI WILLIAM brilliantly illuminates a world whose horizons were rapidly expanding eastwards.