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Books > History > British & Irish history

The Black Door - Spies, Secret Intelligence and British Prime Ministers (Paperback): Richard Aldrich, Rory Cormac The Black Door - Spies, Secret Intelligence and British Prime Ministers (Paperback)
Richard Aldrich, Rory Cormac 1
R268 R192 Discovery Miles 1 920 Save R76 (28%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

The Black Door explores the evolving relationship between successive British prime ministers and the intelligence agencies, from Asquith's Secret Service Bureau to Cameron's National Security Council. Intelligence can do a prime minister's dirty work. For more than a century, secret wars have been waged directly from Number 10. They have staved off conflict, defeats and British decline through fancy footwork, often deceiving friend and foe alike. Yet as the birth of the modern British secret service in 1909, prime ministers were strangers to the secret world - sometimes with disastrous consequences. During the Second World War, Winston Churchill oversaw a remarkable revolution in the exploitation of intelligence, bringing it into the centre of government. Chruchill's wartime regime also formed a school of intelligence for future prime ministers, and its secret legacy has endured. Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair and David Cameron all became great enthusiasts for spies and special forces. Although Britain's political leaders have often feigned ignorance about what one prime minister called this `strange underworld', some of the most daring and controversial intelligence operations can be traced straight back to Number 10.

Scotland from the Sky (Paperback): James Crawford Scotland from the Sky (Paperback)
James Crawford
R457 R400 Discovery Miles 4 000 Save R57 (12%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

`In this book, you will travel in both space and time, starting in the years around the First World War and moving all the way up to the present day. As you go, you will see just what our pioneering aviators saw as they stared out from their cockpits. And, more than that, you will explore what they were trying to find. Because, from above, Scotland can be many different things, depending on what you choose to look at - and who is doing the looking.' Accompanying the BBC documentary series Scotland from the Sky, this lavishly illustrated book draws on the vast collection of aerial photography held in the archives of Historic Environment Scotland. Historian and series presenter James Crawford opens an extraordinary window into our past to tell the remarkable story of a nation from above - taking readers back in time to show how our great cities have dramatically altered with the ebb and flow of history, while whole communities have vanished in the name of progress. The book shows how aerial imagery can reveal treasures from the ancient past, uncovering secrets buried right beneath our feet. And it demonstrates how the view from above has been at the heart of the postwar transformation of both our countryside and our urban landscapes. This is a fascinating - and little known - story of war, innovation, adventure, cities, landscapes and people. This is the story of Scotland, from the sky.

Shakespeare's Library - Unlocking the Greatest Mystery in Literature (Hardcover): Stuart Kells Shakespeare's Library - Unlocking the Greatest Mystery in Literature (Hardcover)
Stuart Kells
R482 R384 Discovery Miles 3 840 Save R98 (20%) Shipped within 7 - 11 working days
A History of the County of Middlesex - Volume XII: Chelsea (Hardcover): Patricia E.C. Croot A History of the County of Middlesex - Volume XII: Chelsea (Hardcover)
Patricia E.C. Croot
R2,167 R1,944 Discovery Miles 19 440 Save R223 (10%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Chelsea was a desirable riverside residence for wealthy merchants, lawyers, and courtiers from the fifteenth century, and a pleasure resort for all ranks of society from the eighteenth; it is now one of the most expensive and desirable places to live in London. This new volume relates all this and more, including a re-examination of the location of Sir Thomas More's house, a reassessment of Henry VIII's relationship with the manor house, the history of a major estate not previously identified, and a survey of the farm-gardening which gave prosperity to some local inhabitants. Facets of Chelsea's more recent history covered include the rebuilding of eastern Chelsea, which removed a large lower middle- and working-class population and replaced their accommodation with houses for the well-off; the artistic community which grew up in the late nineteenth century from which Chelsea derived its bohemian reputation; and the cultural and commercial changes of the Swinging Sixties.

The Victorian Treasury (Hardcover): Lucinda Dickens Hawksley The Victorian Treasury (Hardcover)
Lucinda Dickens Hawksley
R238 R168 Discovery Miles 1 680 Save R70 (29%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

The Victorian age was an era that witnessed enormous changes around Britain and affected vast swathes of the globe. It was a time of great invention, social upheaval, medical breakthroughs, religious fervour, brutal legislation, terrifying crimes and excessive hypocrisy. With intriguing facts and stories, The Victorian Treasury looks at the minutiae of everyday life, as well as the major events that changed the world. It uncovers what it was like to live during the time of Queen Victoria's long reign from 1837 to 1901 and reveals: Urban legends such as Spring Heeled Jack The notorious crimes of Jack the Ripper and Constance Kent; The building of the London; Underground; How a Victorian maid spend her leisure time; and The experience of travelling on a steam train for the first time.

History in Progress: Pupil Book 1 (1066-1603) (Paperback): Rosemary Rees, Martin Collier History in Progress: Pupil Book 1 (1066-1603) (Paperback)
Rosemary Rees, Martin Collier
R506 Discovery Miles 5 060 Shipped within 7 - 11 working days

This book can inspire every pupil to succeed in History at Key Stage 3. "History in Progress" features clearly differentiated tasks that are designed to support and encourage well-structured progression in readers of all ability levels, promoting students to take ownership of their learning. This book targets pupils of all levels with accessible information and stimulating images to motivate them and boost confidence, as well as open ended tasks which offer a greater challenge to more able students. It includes exciting and engaging material that supports key themes from the new Programme of Study. It links past to present, capturing pupils' imagination and brings lessons to life. Key Skills are taught via the Skills Bank, which provides targeted progression across KS3 in preparation of GCSE.This book encourages readers to make connections, reinforcing chronological understanding and enabling pupils to form links between events, countries and time periods. A clear focus is made on chronology and a greater balance of British, European, and World History, to increase the relevance of the subject to the current generation of pupils.

Popes and Feminists - How the Church Frees Women from Feminism (Paperback): Elise Crapuchettes Popes and Feminists - How the Church Frees Women from Feminism (Paperback)
Elise Crapuchettes
R300 R247 Discovery Miles 2 470 Save R53 (18%) Shipped within 7 - 11 working days
Bloody Brilliant Women - The Pioneers, Revolutionaries and Geniuses Your History Teacher Forgot to Mention (Hardcover, Epub... Bloody Brilliant Women - The Pioneers, Revolutionaries and Geniuses Your History Teacher Forgot to Mention (Hardcover, Epub Edition)
Cathy Newman 1
R475 R330 Discovery Miles 3 300 Save R145 (31%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

`A litany of fresh heroes to make the embattled heart sing' Caitlin Moran `Newman is a brilliant writer' Observer A fresh, opinionated history of all the brilliant women you should have learned about in school but didn't. For hundreds of years we have heard about the great men of history, but what about herstory? In this freewheeling history of modern Britain, Cathy Newman writes about the pioneering women who defied the odds to make careers for themselves and alter the course of modern history; women who achieved what they achieved while dismantling hostile, entrenched views about their place in society. Their role in transforming Britain is fundamental, far greater than has generally been acknowledged, and not just in the arts or education but in fields like medicine, politics, law, engineering and the military. While a few of the women in this book are now household names, many have faded into oblivion, their personal and collective achievements mere footnotes in history. We know of Emmeline Pankhurst, Vera Brittain, Marie Stopes and Beatrice Webb. But who remembers engineer and motorbike racer Beatrice Shilling, whose ingenious device for the Spitfires' Rolls-Royce Merlin fixed an often-fatal flaw, allowing the RAF's planes to beat the German in the Battle of Britain? Or Dorothy Lawrence, the journalist who achieved her ambition to become a WW1 correspondent by pretending to be a man? And developmental biologist Anne McLaren, whose work in genetics paved the way for in vitro fertilisation? Blending meticulous research with information gleaned from memoirs, diaries, letters, novels and other secondary sources, Bloody Brilliant Women uses the stories of some extraordinary lives to tell the tale of 20th and 21st century Britain. It is a history for women and men. A history for our times.

Up The British (Paperback): Richard Osborne Up The British (Paperback)
Richard Osborne
R212 R164 Discovery Miles 1 640 Save R48 (23%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Richard Osborne takes a hard look at the mysticism of the great British idea and the recent revival of nostalgic history. From Elizabeth to the Cutty Sark, the history of British self-love is analysed in a readable and critical manner.

Viking Britain - A History (Hardcover): Thomas Williams Viking Britain - A History (Hardcover)
Thomas Williams 1
R591 R402 Discovery Miles 4 020 Save R189 (32%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

A new narrative history of the Viking Age, interwoven with exploration of the physical remains and landscapes that the Vikings fashioned and walked: their rune-stones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields. To many, the word `Viking' brings to mind red scenes of rape and pillage, of marauders from beyond the sea rampaging around the British coastline in the last gloomy centuries before the Norman Conquest. It is true that Britain in the Viking Age was a turbulent, violent place. The kings and warlords who have impressed their memories on the period revel in names that fire the blood and stir the imagination: Svein Forkbeard and Edmund Ironside, Ivar the Boneless and Alfred the Great, Erik Bloodaxe and Edgar the Pacifier amongst many others. Evidence for their brutality, their dominance, their avarice and their pride is still unearthed from British soil with stunning regularity. But this is not the whole story. In Viking Britain, Thomas Williams has drawn on his experience as project curator of the British Museum exhibition of Vikings: Life and Legend to show how the people we call Vikings came not just to raid and plunder, but to settle, to colonize and to rule. The impact on these islands was profound and enduring, shaping British social, cultural and political development for hundreds of years. Indeed, in language, literature, place-names and folklore, the presence of Scandinavian settlers can still be felt, and their memory - filtered and refashioned through the writings of people like J.R.R. Tolkien, William Morris and G.K.Chesterton - has transformed the western imagination. This remarkable book makes use of new academic research and first-hand experience, drawing deeply from the relics and landscapes that the Vikings and their contemporaries fashioned and walked: their runestones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields, poems and chronicles. The book offers a vital evocation of a forgotten world, its echoes in later history and its implications for the present.

Operation Sealion - How Britain Crushed the German War Machine's Dreams of Invasion in 1940 (Paperback): Leo McKinstry Operation Sealion - How Britain Crushed the German War Machine's Dreams of Invasion in 1940 (Paperback)
Leo McKinstry 1
R240 R203 Discovery Miles 2 030 Save R37 (15%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

'Superbly written and gripping' Daily Express The 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.

First Light - The Centenary Collection (Paperback): Geoffrey Wellum First Light - The Centenary Collection (Paperback)
Geoffrey Wellum
R232 R158 Discovery Miles 1 580 Save R74 (32%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

In 1918, the RAF was established as the world's first independent air force. To mark the 100th anniversary of its creation, Penguin are publishing the Centenary Collection, a series of six classic books highlighting the skill, heroism esprit de corps that have characterised the Royal Air Force throughout its first century. Two months before the outbreak of the Second World War, eighteen-year-old Geoffrey Wellum becomes a fighter pilot with the RAF... Desperate to get in the air, he makes it through basic training to become the youngest Spitfire pilot in the prestigious 92 Squadron. Thrust into combat almost immediately, Wellum finds himself flying several sorties a day, caught up in terrifying dogfights with German Me 109s. Over the coming months he and his fellow pilots play a crucial role in the Battle of Britain. But of the friends that take to the air alongside Wellum many never return. The Centenary Collection: 1. The Last Enemy by Richard Hillary 2. Tumult in the Clouds by James Goodson 3. Going Solo by Roald Dahl 4. First Light by Geoffrey Wellum 5. Tornado Down by John Peters & John Nichol 6. Immediate Response by Mark Hammond

Henry - Virtuous Prince (Paperback): David Starkey Henry - Virtuous Prince (Paperback)
David Starkey 1
R305 R214 Discovery Miles 2 140 Save R91 (30%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Bestselling royal historian David Starkey's captivating biography is a radical re-evaluation of Henry VIII, the British monarchy's most enduring icon. Larger than life in every sense, Henry VIII was Britain's most absolute monarch - but he was not born to rule. In this brilliantly readable history, David Starkey follows the promising young prince - a Renaissance man of exceptional musical and athletic talent - as he is thrust into the limelight after the death of his elder brother. His subsequent quest for fame was as obsessive as that of any modern celebrity, and his yearning for a male heir drove him into dangerous territory. The culmination of a lifetime's research, David Starkey's biography is an unforgettable portrait of the man behind the controversies, the prince turned tyrant who continues to tower over history.

Dublin Then and Now (Hardcover): Lisa-Marie Griffith Dublin Then and Now (Hardcover)
Lisa-Marie Griffith
R384 R282 Discovery Miles 2 820 Save R102 (27%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Dublin Then and Now matches archival images with contemporary views to reveal the past and present of this fascinating city. Dublin's rich architectural heritage ranges from medieval castles and cathedrals to a wealth of elegant Georgian townhouses. Capturing its famous streets, bridges, markets, parks and pubs, this book reveals the past and present of a city steeped in literary history, blessed with architectural beauty and full of character. Sites include: Trinity College, Dublin Castle, Guinness Brewery, Christ Church Cathedral, Brazen Head, Grattan Bridge, O'Connell Street, Abbey Theatre, Custom House, Liberty Hall, Four Courts, Smithfield Square, Phoenix Park, Dublin Zoo, Ha'Penny Bridge, Grafton Street, Davy Byrnes, Bewley's, St. Stephen's Green, The Long Hall, National Library of Ireland, Merrion Square, Fitzwilliam Square, Kilmainham Gaol.

Majesty: Elizabeth II and the Royal House of Windsor (Hardcover): Rod Green Majesty: Elizabeth II and the Royal House of Windsor (Hardcover)
Rod Green
R617 R429 Discovery Miles 4 290 Save R188 (30%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Majesty is the enthralling story of the House of Windsor, focussing on the personal and political intrigues that have characterized the reign of Elizabeth II. Fully illustrated with contemporary photographs, it describes the fluctuating fortunes of the Windsors, from the dramatic abdication of the Queen's uncle, Edward VIII, to the tumultuous relationship between Prince Charles and Princess Diana. Set against the colourful backdrop of key events - such as the "Great Smog" that brought London to a halt in 1952; the IRA murder of Lord Mountbatten during the Northern Ireland "Troubles"; the crisis triggered by the death of Princess Diana; the wedding of Prince William to "commoner" Kate Middleton; and the changing face of world politics - this is the story not only of a family, but also a history of our times.

Churchill - Walking with Destiny (Hardcover): Andrew Roberts Churchill - Walking with Destiny (Hardcover)
Andrew Roberts
R792 R628 Discovery Miles 6 280 Save R164 (21%) Shipped within 7 - 11 working days
Slavery in Yorkshire - Richard Oastler and the campaign against child labour in the Industrial revolution (Paperback, First):... Slavery in Yorkshire - Richard Oastler and the campaign against child labour in the Industrial revolution (Paperback, First)
John Hargreaves, Hilary Haigh
R479 R393 Discovery Miles 3 930 Save R86 (18%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days
Orphans of Empire - The Fate of London's Foundlings (Hardcover): Helen Berry Orphans of Empire - The Fate of London's Foundlings (Hardcover)
Helen Berry 1
R468 R364 Discovery Miles 3 640 Save R104 (22%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Eighteenth-century London was teeming with humanity, and poverty was never far from politeness. Legend has it that, on his daily commute through this thronging metropolis, Captain Thomas Coram witnessed one of the city's most shocking sights-the widespread abandonment of infant corpses by the roadside. He could have just passed by. Instead, he devised a plan to create a charity that would care for these infants; one that was to have enormous consequences for children born into poverty in Britain over the next two hundred years. Orphans of Empire tells the story of what happened to the thousands of children who were raised at the London Foundling Hospital, Coram's brainchild, which opened in 1741 and grew to become the most famous charity in Georgian England. It provides vivid insights into the lives and fortunes of London's poorest children, from the earliest days of the Foundling Hospital to the mid-Victorian era, when Charles Dickens was moved by his observations of the charity's work to campaign on behalf of orphans. Through the lives of London's foundlings, this book provides readers with a street-level insight into the wider global history of a period of monumental change in British history as the nation grew into the world's leading superpower. Some foundling children were destined for Britain's 'outer Empire' overseas, but many more toiled in the 'inner Empire', labouring in the cotton mills and factories of northern England at the dawn of the new industrial age. Through extensive archival research, Helen Berry uncovers previously untold stories of what happened to former foundlings, including the suffering and small triumphs they experienced as child workers during the upheavals of the Industrial Revolution. Sometimes, using many different fragments of evidence, the voices of the children themselves emerge. Extracts from George King's autobiography, the only surviving first-hand account written by a Foundling Hospital child born in the eighteenth century, published here for the first time, provide touching insights into how he came to terms with his upbringing. Remarkably he played a part in Trafalgar, one of the most iconic battles in British Naval history. His personal courage and resilience in overcoming the disadvantages of his birth form a lasting testimony to the strength of the human spirit.

Protest - Britain on the March (Hardcover): Mirrorpix Protest - Britain on the March (Hardcover)
Mirrorpix
R298 R227 Discovery Miles 2 270 Save R71 (24%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Throughout history in free and democratic societies freedom of speech has been highly held as a vital right for all, regardless of background or stance. Time and again, a community has banded together to make a stand for their beliefs by demonstrating, rioting and otherwise doing whatever it takes to make the authorities pay attention. From the Gay Liberation Front marches that helped gain the LGBTQ community more rights and anti-nuclear campaigns like that at Greenham Common, to the chaos of the London riots following the murder of Mark Duggan and more recently the protests of 2017's Day of Rage in London, to follow the history of protest is to create a vivid history of the concerns and downright outrage of the British people. Here, using Mirrorpix's formidable image archive, photographs of some of the most important protests in British history create a complex tapestry of public outrage and demands over more than a century. Often overlooked by historians in favour of the Establishment's view of an issue, the images herein give a stark, true portrayal of the lengths the common person would go to in order to make sure their voice was heard.

The Pirate Queen - Queen Elizabeth I, Her Pirate Adventurers, and the Dawn of Empire (Paperback): Susan Ronald The Pirate Queen - Queen Elizabeth I, Her Pirate Adventurers, and the Dawn of Empire (Paperback)
Susan Ronald 1
R320 R264 Discovery Miles 2 640 Save R56 (18%) Shipped within 7 - 11 working days

Extravagant, whimsical, and hot-tempered, Elizabeth was the epitome of power, both feared and admired by her enemies. Dubbed the "pirate queen" by the Vatican and Spain's Philip II, she employed a network of daring merchants, brazen adventurers, astronomer philosophers, and her stalwart Privy Council to anchor her throne-and in doing so, planted the seedlings of an empire that would ultimately cover two-fifths of the world. In The Pirate Queen, historian Susan Ronald offers a fresh look at Elizabeth I, relying on a wealth of historical sources and thousands of the queen's personal letters to tell the thrilling story of a visionary monarch and the swashbuckling mariners who terrorized the seas to amass great wealth for themselves and the Crown.

The Fens - Discovering England's Ancient Depths (Hardcover): Francis Pryor The Fens - Discovering England's Ancient Depths (Hardcover)
Francis Pryor 1
R590 R410 Discovery Miles 4 100 Save R180 (31%) Shipped within 7 - 11 working days

The Fens is Britain's most distinctive, complex, man-made and least understood landscape. Francis Pryor has lived in, excavated, farmed, walked and loved the Fen Country for more than forty years: its levels and drains, its soaring churches and magnificent medieval buildings.

In The Fens, he counterpoints the history of the Fenland landscape and its transformation the great drainage projects that created the Old and New Bedford Rivers, the Ouse Washes and Bedford Levels, the rise of prosperous towns and cities, such as King's Lynn, Cambridge, Peterborough, Boston and Lincoln with the story of his own discovery of it as an archaeologist.

'Whenever I travel somewhere else, in upland Britain, I find the hills and the horizon are leaning towards me, as if trying to cover me over; to blinker my gaze and stifle my imagination. It's always a huge relief to get back to the its infinite vistas of the Fens.'

Singled Out - How Two Million British Women Survived Without Men After the First World War (Paperback): Virginia Nicholson Singled Out - How Two Million British Women Survived Without Men After the First World War (Paperback)
Virginia Nicholson
R427 Discovery Miles 4 270 Shipped within 7 - 11 working days

Almost three-quarters of a million British soldiers lost their lives during the First World War, and many more were incapacitated by their wounds, leaving behind a generation of women who, raised to see marriage as "the crown and joy of woman's life," suddenly discovered that they were left without an escort to life's great feast.
Drawing upon a wealth of moving memoirs, Singled Out tells the inspiring stories of these women: the student weeping for a lost world as the Armistice bells pealed, the socialite who dedicated her life to resurrecting the ancient past after her soldier love was killed, the Bradford mill girl whose campaign to better the lot of the "War spinsters" was to make her a public figure--and many others who, deprived of their traditional roles, reinvented themselves into something better. Tracing their fates, Nicholson shows that these women did indeed harbor secret sadness, and many of them yearned for the comforts forever denied them--physical intimacy, the closeness of a loving relationship, and children. Some just endured, but others challenged the conventions, fought the system, and found fulfillment outside of marriage. From the mill-girl turned activist to the debutante turned archeologist, from the first woman stockbroker to the "business girls" and the Miss Jean Brodies, this book memorializes a generation of young women who were forced, by four of the bloodiest years in human history, to stop depending on men for their income, their identity, and their future happiness. Indeed, Singled Out pays homage to this remarkable generation of women who, changed by war, in turn would change society.

My Revision Notes: OCR AS/A-level History: England 1485-1558: The Early Tudors (Paperback): Nicholas Fellows My Revision Notes: OCR AS/A-level History: England 1485-1558: The Early Tudors (Paperback)
Nicholas Fellows
R244 R226 Discovery Miles 2 260 Save R18 (7%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

Exam Board: OCR Level: AS/A-level Subject: History First Teaching: September 2015 First Exam: Summer 2016 Target success in OCR AS/A-level History with this proven formula for effective, structured revision; key content coverage is combined with exam preparation activities and exam-style questions to create a revision guide that students can rely on to review, strengthen and test their knowledge. - Enables students to plan and manage a successful revision programme using the topic-by-topic planner - Consolidates knowledge with clear and focused content coverage, organised into easy-to-revise chunks - Encourages active revision by closely combining historical content with related activities - Helps students build, practise and enhance their exam skills as they progress through activities set at three different levels - Improves exam technique through exam-style questions with sample answers and commentary from expert authors and teachers - Boosts historical knowledge with a useful glossary and timeline

Oscar - A Life (Paperback): Matthew Sturgis Oscar - A Life (Paperback)
Matthew Sturgis 1
R406 R340 Discovery Miles 3 400 Save R66 (16%) Shipped within 7 - 11 working days

'The Book of the Year, perhaps of the decade, has to be Matthew Sturgis's Oscar' TLS, Books of the Year. A SUNDAY TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR. 'Simply the best modern biography of Wilde ... A terrific achievement' Evening Standard. 'Page-turning ... Vivid and desperately moving. However much you think you know Wilde, this book will absorb and entertain you' Sunday Times. 'Wonderfully exciting ... Sturgis's great achievement is to take on board his great flurry of contradictions' Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday. '[Sturgis] is a tremendous orchestrator of material, fastidious, unhurried, indefatigable' Observer. 'Oscar Wilde is more fashionable than ever ... Sturgis's account of the hearing at the Old Bailey is as gripping as it is grim' Guardian. 'The Book of the Year, perhaps of the decade, has to be Matthew Sturgis's Oscar which captures the wit, the love-ability, the dramatic genius, the insane self-destructiveness, the originality of Wilde ... [Sturgis] is the greatest chronicler of the 1890s we have ever had' TLS, Books of the Year. Oscar Wilde's life - like his wit - was alive with paradox. He was both an early exponent and a victim of 'celebrity culture': famous for being famous, he was lauded and ridiculed in equal measure. His achievements were frequently downplayed, his successes resented. He had a genius for comedy but strove to write tragedies. He was an unabashed snob who nevertheless delighted in exposing the faults of society. He affected a dandified disdain but was prone to great acts of kindness. Although happily married, he became a passionate lover of men and - at the very peak of his success - brought disaster upon himself. He disparaged authority, yet went to the law to defend his love for Lord Alfred Douglas. Having delighted in fashionable throngs, Wilde died almost alone: barely a dozen people were at his graveside. Yet despite this ruinous end, Wilde's star continues to shine brightly. His was a life of quite extraordinary drama. Above all, his flamboyant refusal to conform to the social and sexual orthodoxies of his day make him a hero and an inspiration to all who seek to challenge convention. In the first major biography of Oscar Wilde in thirty years, Matthew Sturgis draws on a wealth of new material and fresh research to place the man firmly in the context of his times. He brings alive the distinctive mood and characters of the fin de siecle in the richest and most compelling portrait of Wilde to date.

The Shop Girls - A True Story of Hard Work, Friendship and Fashion in an Exclusive 1950s Department Store (Paperback, Digital... The Shop Girls - A True Story of Hard Work, Friendship and Fashion in an Exclusive 1950s Department Store (Paperback, Digital original)
Ellee Seymour 1
R215 R182 Discovery Miles 1 820 Save R33 (15%) Shipped within 7 - 12 working days

For Rosemary, Eve, Betty, Jean and Irene, working in Heyworth's department store in Cambridge is a dream come true. Once the girls step inside the elegant building - surrounded by beautiful dresses, sumptuous fabrics and glamorous accessories - the hardships and struggles of their own lives are temporarily forgotten. Heyworth's is a magical place, where the shop girls - in their smart, simple black dresses - serve the fashionable elite of Cambridge, and glimpse lives of style and ease far beyond anything they had ever imagined. It is also a place where hard work and talent are valued, and where these young women can forge a successful career. Set against the backdrop of the closing years of the Second World War, and moving into the 1950s, The Shop Girls perfectly captures the camaraderie and friendship of five ambitious young women working together in a store that offered them an escape from the drudgery of their wartime childhoods. Each of the girls' stories will be individually published from July 2014 in fortnightly serialised ebooks, leading up to the release of the complete edition (with bonus material) in September.

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