BOOK BRIEFS

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Any­one in­ter­ested in an­cient

manuscripts will en­joy The Art and His­tory of Cal­lig­ra­phy by Pa­tri­cia Lovett. (Bri­tish Li­brary, 224pp, hard­back, £25) ISBN 9780-7123-56888

Few peo­ple en­joy un­bro­ken sunshine around their home and, with the aid of many fine colour pho­tos, Beth Chatto’s Shade Gar­den ex­plains how to make the best of things all year round. (Pim­per­nel, 234pp, hard­back, £12.99) ISBN 9780-9102-58224

In River Ouse Barge­man, David Lewis re­lates his time up and down the River Ouse in York­shire. (Pen & Sword, 192pp, hard­back, £25) ISBN 9781-4738-80696

He’s back and Fer­gus, a Horse to be reck­oned with by Jean Aber­nethy, will be ap­pre­ci­ated by chil­dren and adults alike. His varied equine an­tics (right) are highly en­ter­tain­ing. (Quiller, 40pp, hard­back, £12.95) ISBN 9781-5707-67906

Prospec­tive dog own­ers will wel­come Choos­ing the Per­fect Puppy by Pippa Mat­tin­son, in which she analy­ses dif­fer­ent breeds and what to look out for. (Ebury, 224pp, pa­per­back, £25) ISBN 9781-7850-34374

Bus en­thu­si­asts will be de­lighted with The Lon­don DMS by Matthew Wharmby, the his­tory of a con­tro­ver­sial ve­hi­cle which turned the ta­bles on Lon­don Trans­port af­ter be­ing sold off. (Pen & Sword, 272pp, hard­back, £30) ISBN 9781-7838-31739

The Strange Death of Europe, Im­mi­gra­tion, Identity and Is­lam by Dou­glas Mur­ray should not be ig­nored. The au­thor, who is As­so­ciate Edi­tor of The Spec­ta­tor, says it is “A con­tro­ver­sial and dev­as­tat­ingly hon­est de­pic­tion of the demise of Europe”. (Blooms­bury, 334pp, hard­back, £18.99) ISBN 9781-4729-42241

One Man and a Mule is Hugh Thom­son’s fas­ci­nat­ing ac­count of how he and Jethro the mule walked from St. Bees in Cum­ber­land to Robin Hood’s Bay in York­shire, mostly via old drovers’ roads across the hills. (Pen­guin, 291pp, hard­back, £20) ISBN 9781-8480-94697

All in­ter­ested in al­ter­na­tive health cures will wel­come Way­side Medicine: For­got­ten plants and how to use them, a won­der­fully colour­ful and well-pre­sented vol­ume by Julie Bru­ton-seal and Matthew Seal. A wor­thy se­quel to Hedgerow Medicine it will also ap­peal to those who know lit­tle or noth­ing about herbal reme­dies. (Mer­lin Un­win, 224pp, hard­back, £16.99) ISBN 9781-9107-23357

Wil­liam Miller is well-known in pas­sen­ger ship cir­cles and in Mar­itime Roy­alty he paints pic­to­rial and ver­bal por­traits of the many Cu­nard lin­ers named af­ter a queen. He also cov­ers a few other fa­mous Cu­nard lin­ers. The pho­tos are ap­peal­ing and the orig­i­nal text is a a de­light.

Don’t be put off by the Amer­i­can spellings be­cause this book is su­perb. (Fonthill, 128pp, pa­per­back, £19.99) ISBN 9781-7815-55675

Gary Bunt did not at­tend art col­lege and yet has de­vel­oped a unique style which will please many of the Chris­tian faith. In By the Grace of God he por­trays var­i­ous Bi­ble sto­ries, to­gether with many other poignant pic­tures, each of which is sup­ported by sim­ple com­pelling deep po­etry. Un­usual but def­i­nitely pleas­ing. (Uni­corn, 124pp, hard­back, £25) ISBN 9781-9107-87656

A Spit­fire Girl by Mary El­lis, is the au­thor’s story of her time in the wartime ATA (Air Trans­port Aux­il­iary), whose fe­male pi­lots fer­ried all kinds of air­craft across the coun­try. (Front­line, 210pp, pa­per­back, £8.99) ISBN 9781-4738-95362

Military and so­cial his­to­ri­ans will wel­come Res­o­lu­tion by David Rutland and Emma El­lis, the story of two grand­sons of the 3rd Duke of Rutland, ex­plain­ing their con­trast­ing for­tunes and trag­i­cally short lives. David Rutland is the 11th Duke of Rutland and lives at Belvoir Cas­tle, the an­ces­tral home. (Head of Zeus, 480pp, hard­back, £30) ISBN 9781-7849-79911

Bud­ding chefs will wel­come a re­print of Mrs. Bee­ton’s Guide to Bak­ing, a col­lec­tion of her best recipes from 1861. See how they com­pare to to­day’s dishes! (Am­ber­ley, 252pp, hard­back, £9.99) ISBN 9781-4456-51064

Lorenz — Break­ing Hitler’s Top Se­cret Code at Bletch­ley Park is about solv­ing a per­sonal code used by the Fuhrer to com­mu­ni­cate with his gen­er­als. The au­thor, Jerry Roberts, was one of those re­spon­si­ble and now, af­ter 75 years, you can read how it was done. (His­tory Press, 240pp, hard­back, £20) ISBN 9780-7509-78859

The Tat­tie Lads by Ian Dear is the pre­vi­ously un­told story of the Res­cue Tug Ser­vice in two world wars, and its bat­tles to save car­goes, ships and lives. Some were a huge suc­cess but oth­ers ended in tragedy. (Blooms­bury, 212pp, hard­back, £25) ISBN 9781-8448-64010

Feed­ing an army is a ma­jor task, with huge ad­min­is­tra­tion and sup­plies needed prior to food reach­ing the pot. In The Trench Cook­book 1917 we find many recipes from bully beef stew to trench tea but why did the lat­ter taste of veg­eta­bles, what were iron ra­tions and why was Ma­conochie the most de­spised food at the front? (Am­ber­ley, 252pp, hard­back, £9.99) ISBN 9781-4456-55499

The Cu­ri­ous Bird Lover’s Hand­book by Niall Ed­wor­thy con­tains more than 1,000 facts, fig­ures and fa­bles, a rev­e­la­tion for those in­ter­ested in our feath­ered friends who fre­quent the skies over­head or visit our gar­den at ground level. (Black Swan, 210pp, pa­per­back, £8.99) ISBN 9781-7841-62719

Ame­lanchiers are grace­ful small trees with beau­ti­ful spring blos­som and red leaves in the au­tumn (see Beth Chatto’s Shade Gar­den).

A quirky paint­ing de­pict­ing Adam al­lo­cat­ing names to all the an­i­mals in the Gar­den of Eden (see By the Grace of God).

A trio of queens! In May 2015, “Queen Vic­to­ria” (top), “Queen Mary 2” (cen­tre) and “Queen El­iz­a­beth” met up at Liver­pool to cel­e­brate Cu­nard’s 175th birthday (see Mar­itime Roy­alty).

Charles Man­ners (left) aged 18, and Robert Man­ners, aged 14, in his mid­ship­man’s uni­form. Both died young (see Res­o­lu­tion).

Why does the tou­can have such an enor­mous beak (see The Cu­ri­ous Bird Lover’s Hand­book).

Sea buck­thorn, one of many plants rec­om­mended for im­prov­ing health (see Way­side Medicine).

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