Set in the early thirties, this excellent story for boys comes from an author who is better-known as a playwright and deals with the escapades of Corky and Ginger, two of the scores of Pony Boys employed to deliver light loads - a common sight in City streets in those days. In the later chapters the urge takes the boys to see the world and they head for Liverpool with the idea of getting jobs on a trawler. Written with humour and understanding, the book is authentic but never old fashioned.
Bill Oddie has been the voice and face of birding broadcasting for more than three decades. Those of a certain age will fondly remember Bill as the shortest and hairiest of the trio of The Goodies, a popular and long-running comedy series that followed hot on the heels of Monty Python. After those heady days, Bill reinvented himself as the face (and voice) of mainstream birdwatching in Britain. He fronted television and radio programmes and wrote widely in the press on subjects close to his heart. Never one to shirk controversy, Bill's writings were always informative and entertaining.
In this new book, Bill has compiled and expanded a collection of his recent published musings about birds and birdwatching, and the wildlife he has been fortunate to see on his many travels over the years. The collection covers a wide array of subjects, from a less than satisfactory press trip to the Galapgaos in the 1980s and recent disagreements with his London neighbours over the noisy squadrons of parakeets over their respective gardens, to encounters with Orcas in Argentina and Iceland, and with an invisible Tiger in India. Writing in his witty and inimitable style, Bill is sure to entertain and enthrall his many fans with this new book of thoughts and opinions on the world of natural history. The book is illustrated throughout with Bill's charming and comic line drawings.
Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year award.
One winter's night in 1976, over 20 million people in Britain watched John Curry skate to Olympic glory on an ice rink in Austria. Many millions more watched around the world. Overnight he became one of the most famous men on the planet. He was awarded the OBE. He was chosen as BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
Curry had changed ice skating from marginal sport to high art. And yet the man was - ' and would always remain - ' an absolute mystery to a world that had been dazzled by his gift. Surely, men's skating was supposed to be Cossack-muscular, not sensual and ambiguous like this.
Curry himself was an often-tortured man of labyrinthine complexity. For the first time, Alone untangles the extraordinary web of his toxic, troubled, brilliant - ' and short - ' life. It is a story of childhood nightmares, furious ambition, sporting genius, lifelong rivalries, homophobia, Cold War politics, financial ruin and deep personal tragedy. Alone reveals the restless, impatient, often dark soul of a man whose words could lacerate, whose skating invariably moved audiences to tears, and who - ' after succumbing to AIDS, as so many of his fellow artists and friends did - ' died of a heart attack aged just 44.
Most of us never realise how many words and expressions used in everyday English have a nautical origin. This fascinating and charming pocket book explains the seafaring beginnings of over 200 such phrases - colourful, bizarre and surprising - and how they came ashore. Just a few examples are: Chock-a-block Chance your arm Money for old rope Spic and span Push the boat out At close quartersThis entertaining book has been a popular title for boaters and landlubbers alike, ever since first publication in 1983. 'Good fun' Yachts and Yachting 'Entertaining, informative, educational and lots of fun' Multihull International 'An entertaining and informative little book' Motor Boats Monthly
The German offensives which crushed Poland in 1939 and swallowed most of Western Europe in less than two months in 1940 have been well documented and heavily studied, however, the overall picture of the remarkable Japanese offensive land campaign in 1941-42 has received less attention. In this fascinating new book, Bill Yenne documents the years when the Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) was conducting its equally unstoppable ground campaign in the Far East, and unlike other books on this subject, he studies the campaign from the Japanese point of view. He reveals how the IJA were able to conquer huge swathes of Southeast Asia in a little over eight weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Using first-hand accounts from Japanese sources, Yenne reveals the tactics and mindset of the IJA during their offensive, detailing the capturing of Manila, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Singapore, Burma, and the Dutch East Indies. Exploring the infrastructure and technical challenges of waging war across such a huge area, Yenne delves into the hardships that faced individual Japanese soldiers in theatre and explains how the Japanese were able to remain undefeated and establish the aura of invincibility that marked their campaign between 1941-42.
Of all the major air forces that were engaged in the war, only the Red Air Force had units comprised specifically of women. Initially the Red Air Force maintained an all-male policy among its combat pilots. However, as the apparently invincible German juggernaut sliced through Soviet defenses, the Red Air Force began to rethink its ban on women. By October 1941, authorization was forthcoming for three ground attack regiments of women pilots. Among these women, Lidiya Vladimirovna "Lilya†? Litvyak soon emerged as a rising star. She shot down five German aircraft over the Stalingrad Front, and thus become history's first female ace. She scored 12 documented victories over German aircraft between September 1942 and July 1943. She also had many victories shared with other pilots, bringing her possible total to around 20. The fact that she was a 21-year-old woman ace was not lost on the hero-hungry Soviet media, and soon this colourful character, whom the Germans dubbed "The White Rose of Stalingrad,†? became both folk heroine and martyr.
The great arched train sheds of Victorian Britain are often seen as the nineteenth-century equivalent of medieval cathedrals: once specific railway buildings became necessary around 1830 British architects seized the opportunity with both hands, designing some of the great buildings of their age. However, these grand buildings are only part of the story - not only was the country peppered with humbler individually styled station buildings, but also with bridges, signal boxes, engine sheds and other structures specific to the railways. In this illustrated introduction, Bill Fawcett tells the story of railway architecture from the age of George Stephenson to modern times, including such influential architects as Sir George Gilbert Scott and Charles Holden.
The Mosin-Nagant is the world's longest-surviving and most widely distributed military rifle, having armed the forces of Russia and many other countries for more than five decades. It has seen action from World War I to the present day, but is most famous for its role during World War II when it proved to be an excellent sniping weapon in the hands of marksmen such as Vasily Zaitsev and Simo Häyhä. This study covers the rifle's entire combat history, from its early development through to its service in combat and the impact it has had on modern firearms. Dramatic battle reports and specially commissioned artwork complement the meticulously researched examination of the Mosin-Nagant provided by author Bill Harriman as he delves into the history of one of the most iconic rifles of World War II.
A revelatory narrative charting the lives and works of legendary authors Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, E. M. Forster and D. H. Lawrence during 1922, the birth year of modernism
'The world broke in two in 1922 or thereabouts,' the American author Willa Cather once wrote. Yet for Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, E. M. Forster and D. H. Lawrence, 1922 began with a frighteningly blank page. Eliot was in Switzerland recovering from a nervous breakdown. Forster was grappling with unrequited love. Woolf and Lawrence, meanwhile, were both in bed with the flu. Confronting illness, personal problems and the spectral ghost of World War I, all four felt literally at a loss for words.
As dismal as things seemed, 1922 turned out to be a year of outstanding creative renaissance for them all. By the end of the year Woolf had started Mrs Dalloway, Forster had returned to work on A Passage to India, Lawrence had written his heavily autobiographical novel Kangaroo, and Eliot had finished - and published to great acclaim - 'The Waste Land'.
Full of surprising insights and original research, Bill Goldstein's The World Broke in Two chronicles the intertwined lives and works of these four writers in a crucial year of change.