Related to: 'How Britain Really Works'

John Murray Learning

Tally Ho!

Lizzie Mary Cullen
Authors:
Lizzie Mary Cullen
Hodder & Stoughton

Unleashing Demons

Craig Oliver
Authors:
Craig Oliver
John Murray

Tweet of the Day

Brett Westwood, Stephen Moss
Authors:
Brett Westwood, Stephen Moss

Imagine a jazz musician, improvising on a theme. Then imagine that he is able to play half a dozen instruments - not one after another, but almost simultaneously, switching effortlessly between instruments and musical styles with hardly a pause for breath. If you can countenance that, you are halfway towards appreciating the extraordinary song of the nightingale . . .Wherever we are, there are birds. And wherever there are birds, there is birdsong. It's always a pleasure (and a relief) to hear sounds which prove the world's still spinning: whether it's the sighing of migrating redwings on a damp October night, the twitter of swallows fresh in from South Africa in April or the call of the cuckoo in May. Based on the scripts of BBC Radio 4's beloved year-long series, and distilling two lifetimes' knowledge, insight and enthusiasm into these pages, Brett Westwood and Stephen Moss take you month by month through the year, and the changing lives of our favourite birds. From peregrines swapping sea-cliffs for skyscrapers to swifts spending almost their entire lives on the wing; from charms of goldfinches to murmurations of starlings; from ptarmigans thriving in the Highland snow to the bright green parakeets thronging London's parks; this book is packed full of extraordinary insights and memorable facts. Tweet of the Day is a book for everyone who loves Britain's birds.(Illustrations © Carry Akroyd)

Mulholland Books

Deadly Secrets

Britta Bolt
Authors:
Britta Bolt
Hodder & Stoughton

Altar of Blood: Empire IX

Anthony Riches
Authors:
Anthony Riches

'A master of the genre' The TimesThe ninth novel in the thrilling Empire sequence leads Centurion Marcus Aquila and the Tungrians to the battlefield that was one of Rome's most disastrous defeats.The Tungrians have no sooner returned to Rome than they find themselves tasked with a very different mission to their desperate exploits in Parthia. Ordered to cross the river Rhenus into barbarian Germany and capture a tribal priestess who may be the most dangerous person on the empire's northern border, they are soon subject to the machinations of an old enemy who will stop at nothing to sabotage their plans before they have even set foot on the river's eastern bank. But after their Roman enemy is neutralised they face a challenge greater still. With two of the Bructeri tribe's greatest treasures in their hands they must regain Roman territory by crossing the unforgiving wilderness that was the graveyard of Roman imperial strategy two hundred years before. And capture by the Bructeri's vengeful chieftain and his warband can only end in one way - a horrific sacrificial death on the tribe's altar of blood.

Nicholas Brealey Publishing

Stuff Brits Like

Fraser McAlpine
Authors:
Fraser McAlpine

As the lead writer for BBC Anglophenia, Fraser McAlpine (a man assembled from almost every region of the UK*) spends his life explaining Brits to foreigners. Now he lifts the lid on our Marmite pot of nations and takes you on a journey from the Isle of Wight to Inverness, Belfast to Bangor, exploring the joyful enthusiasms (and pet hates) of an endlessly multifarious Britain. Stuff Brits Like celebrates why we like puns and pedantry, decorum and drawing willies on things, Trainspotting and Downton Abbey, apologizing needlessly (sorry) and cocking a snook. We cheer both the underdog and the bad guy, we adore melancholy types like Morrissey and grumpy Eeyore... and we love being told off by scolds. Meet mythical beasts from the Scottish Nuckelavee to the Cornish Knocker; the branch of the WI called the Iron Maidens, and the British Cheese Board (yes, it is really called that); find out which eccentric Lord would only eat his meals in his swimming pool, why postboxes are bright red (it's health and safety gone mad) and the origin of weird traditions such as the Burning of the Clocks.Stuff Brits Like takes you through why Doctor Who could only have come from Britain, why cricket is a form of siege warfare in whites, and why we argue about the best five British films or what makes The Great British Guitar Band...

John Murray

Operation Sealion

Leo McKinstry
Authors:
Leo McKinstry

'Superbly written and gripping' Daily ExpressThe thrilling true account of Hitler's first defeat.In the summer of 1940, the Nazi war machine was at its zenith. France, Denmark, Norway and the Low Countries were all under occupation after a series of lightning military campaigns. Only Britain stood in the way of the complete triumph of Nazi tyranny. But for the first time in the war, Hitler did not prevail. The traditional narrative of 1940 holds that Britain was only saved from German conquest by the pluck of RAF Fighter Command during the Battle of Britain. The image of Dad's Army recruits training with broomsticks is a classic symbol of the nation's supposed desperation in the face of the threat from Operation Sealion, as the German plan for invasion was code-named. Yet as Leo McKinstry details, the British were far more ruthless and proficient than is usually recognised. The brilliance of the RAF was not an exception but part of a pattern of magnificent organisation. In almost every sphere of action, such as the destruction of the French naval fleet or the capture of German spies, Britain's approach reflected an uncompromising spirit of purpose and resolution. Using a wealth of primary materials from both British and German archives, Leo McKinstry provides a ground-breaking new assessment of the six fateful months in mid-1940, beginning with Winston Churchill's accession to power in May and culminating in Germany's abandonment of Operation Sealion.

John Murray

Acts of Omission

Terry Stiastny
Authors:
Terry Stiastny

Winner of the Paddy Power Political Novel of the Year1998: foreign minister Mark Lucas is in a dilemma. A disk containing the names of British informants to the Stasi has ended up in the hands of the government. Now he faces resistance from the diplomatic service who don't want him to return it to the Germans.Alex Rutherford, a young man working for the intelligence services, wakes up one morning with a hangover and a frightening memory that his computer is lost and, with it, the only copy of that disk.When the disk is delivered to the newspaper where journalist Anna Travers works, she finds herself unravelling not just a mystery, but many people's lives . . .Based on the true story of Stasi files of agents in the UK, Acts of Omission is suspenseful, exquisitely constructed and thought-provokingly topical - it is a novel about the leak of state secrets, the responsibility of newspapers, and the human cost of all of those.

Coronet

Under the Bearskin

Mark Evans, Andrew Sharples
Authors:
Mark Evans, Andrew Sharples

'A fast-paced, thrilling account of British heroism, brave men surrounded and fighting against overwhelming odds. This is the real, sometimes shocking, and deeply personal story of modern warfare and PTSD.' Andy McNabTrapped in an isolated outpost on the edge of the Helmand desert, a small force of British and Afghan soldiers is holding out against hundreds of Taliban fighters. Under brutal siege conditions, running low on food and ammunition, he experiences the full horror of combat. As the casualties begin to mount and the enemy closes in, Evans finds both his leadership and his belief in the war severely tested. Returning home, he is haunted by the memories of Afghanistan. He can't move on and his life begins to spin out of control.

Hodder Paperbacks

A Line in the Sand

Gerald Seymour
Authors:
Gerald Seymour

In a village on the Suffolk coast, Frank Perry waits for his past to arrive. A decade before he spied for the Government on the Iranian chemical and biological weapon installations. His information damaged their killing capacity for years.Now, Iran will have its revenge and has despatched their most deadly assassin to fulfil the task. Codenamed the Anvil, he will move with stealth towards his chosen objective unless Perry's protectors can reach him first.As he draws nearer, the ring of steel around Perry grows tighter. But against a faceless adversary, and with the job fatally compromised by the stifling political bureaucracy surrounding it, there seems little chance that the past will not have its day once more...

Hodder & Stoughton

Modern Japan: All That Matters

Jonathan Clements
Authors:
Jonathan Clements
John Murray

Good Ideas

Michael Rosen
Authors:
Michael Rosen

We live in a world surrounded by all the stuff that education is supposed to be about: machines, bodies, languages, cities, votes, mountains, energy, movement, plays, food, liquids, collisions, protests, stones, windows. But the way we've been taught often excludes all sorts of practical ways of finding out about ideas, knowledge and culture - anything from cooking to fixing loo cisterns, from dance to model making, from collecting leaves to playing 'Who am I?'. The great thing is that you really can use everything around you to learn more.Learning should be much more fun and former children's laureate, million-selling author, broadcaster, father of five and all-round national treasure, Michael Rosen wants to show you how. Forget lists, passing tests and ticking boxes, the world outside the classroom can't be contained within the limits of any kind of curriculum - and it's all the better for it. Long car journeys, poems about farting, cake baking, even shouting at the TV can teach lessons that will last a lifetime. Packed with enough practical tips, stories and games to inspire a legion of anxious parents and bored children, Good Ideas shows that the best kind of education really does start at home.

Hodder & Stoughton

Vanishing Grace

Philip Yancey
Authors:
Philip Yancey

'Why does the church stir up such negative feelings?' This is a question that Philip Yancey has been asking all his life - for himself, as a pilgrim; for others, as a journalist. The question is more relevant now than ever: in the UK Christianity continues to decline, even as it is increasingly thought to be linked with intolerant, fundamentalist attitudes.Yet while identification with traditional forms of Christian religion is dropping, indicators show that interest in spirituality is rising. Why the disconnect? Why are so many asking, 'What's so good about the "good news?"'Yancey's lifelong writing career has always focused on the search for honest faith that makes a visible difference for a world in pain. In his landmark book What's So Amazing about Grace? he issued a benchmark call for Christians to be as grace-filled in their behaviour as they are in asserting their beliefs.People inside and outside the church are still thirsty for grace, Yancey points out. Perhaps what the church seemed to lack in its heyday is now, in its increasingly marginalised stance, exactly what it needs to recover in order to thrive. Grace can bridge the gap across the movement away from Christianity, inviting outsiders as well as insiders the chance to take a deep second look at why it matters and what could reignite its appeal to future generations.How can Christians offer grace in a way that is compelling to a jaded society? And how can they make a difference in a world of such wrenching need? Vanishing Grace: Whatever Happened to the Good News is a milestone book for all those who are striving to make sense of their faith and live it out amid the changing landscape of our day. Philip explores how Christians may have contributed to hostility toward them by presenting the gospel in ways that come across as strident and judgemental. Then he explores what kind of news is good to a culture that thinks it has rejected the Christian version. And finally, he offers illuminating stories of how faith can be expressed in ways that disarm even the most cynical critics - through pilgrims, activists, and artists rather than through preachers, evangelists, and apologists.

Hodder & Stoughton

International Relations: All That Matters

Ken Booth
Authors:
Ken Booth

Everybody these days needs to know about international relations, because their workings shape all our lives. This book, explaining the particular significance of the international level of world politics, offers a comprehensive, accessible, and challenging overview of what is at stake, and what you need to know.World politics can be understood, simply, as Who Gets What, Where and How? (globally) to borrow a title from a famous old book by Harold Lasswell. International relations are a critical level in that business of determining who gets what across the world. Decisive things take place at the international level, and they directly or indirectly affect all our lives: war, trade, and the provision (or not) of human rights for example. This is why the practice of international relations matter. The reason academic International Relations matter is because it is the subject that asks the most fundamental questions about the politics of who gets what and how, and in the biggest political arena of all.

Hodder Paperbacks

A Fête to Remember

Julia Stagg
Authors:
Julia Stagg

It's summertime in the French Pyrenees and the mountain commune of Fogas is en fête. But Christian Dupuy has no time for the frivolity of les vacances. For a start, he's just been struck by the arrows of l'amour and doesn't have a clue how to approach the woman who's stolen his heart.Then there is the not-so-small matter of local politics. With moves afoot to wipe his community from the map, Christian has to enter the fray once more to save the place that he cherishes.In the midst of a sweltering heatwave and with the residents of Fogas at each other's throats over their future, the lovesick and embattled deputy mayor must decide if all really is fair in love and war.

Hodder & Stoughton

Beatrice and Benedick

Marina Fiorato
Authors:
Marina Fiorato
Hodder & Stoughton

Watching the English: The International Bestseller Revised and Updated

Kate Fox
Authors:
Kate Fox
John Murray

Bosworth 1485

Michael Jones
Authors:
Michael Jones

In 1485 the Battle of Bosworth marked an epoch in the lives of two great houses: the house of York fell to the ground when Richard III died on the field of battle; and the house of Tudor rose from the massacre to reign for the next hundred years. Michael Jones, co-author of The King's Grave: The Search for Richard III, rewrites this landmark event in English history. He shifts our perspective of its heroes and villains and puts Richard firmly back into the context of his family and his times.

John Murray

Russian Roulette

Giles Milton
Authors:
Giles Milton

'It reads like fiction, but it is, astonishingly, history' The TimesRussian Roulette tells the story of the first global plot and the British spies who were sent to thwart it. The Soviet plot was breathtaking in scale: its aim was to destroy British rule in India, as a precursor to toppling the democracies of the West. It was to bring together two deadly forces - Soviet revolutionaries and Islamic jihadis - to form a highly toxic threat.Unbeknownst to Moscow, a small band of British spies had been secretly smuggled into Russia in the aftermath of the 1917 revolution. They were an unlikely group of men: self taught and highly educated. Their boss was endearingly eccentric. Mansfield Cumming was a monocled, one-legged sea captain with a passion for secret inks and homemade explosives. Cumming gave his agents free range to do whatever they wanted once they were inside Soviet Russia: 'Just don't get yourself killed,' was his only injunction. Over the course of the next three years, his spies would be involved in murder, deception and duplicity on a grand scale. Living in disguise - and constantly switching identities - they would infiltrate Soviet commissariats, the Red Army and Cheka (secret police), and would come within a whisker of assassinating Lenin. The pinnacle of their achievement was to unmask Lenin's plan for global revolution. It would reach its denouement in the Central Asian city of Tashkent. Lenin's global plot would be spectacularly unravelled. Britain's spies proved brilliantly successful in saving the Western world from catastrophe. They found a wholly new way in which to deal with enemies, one that relied on espionage and dirty tricks rather than warfare. As such, they were the unsung founders of today's modern, highly professional secret services and, in their way, inspiration for fictional heroes to follow, from James Bond to Jason Bourne.Russian Roulette draws on little known records from India Political Intelligence that have only recently been released into the public domain, including rare duplicated copies of reports from MI6's closed archives.

Two Roads

Eleven Days

Lea Carpenter
Authors:
Lea Carpenter