Books

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Killing Time, by Nicolas J Saunders

Killing Time: Archaeology and the First World War In the new, revised (paperback) edition of Killing Time, Nicholas J Saunders has updated his groundbreaking book on archaeology and the First World War. The original chapters remain, and it is pleasing to see the addition of a new chapter on the very recent excavations taking place […]

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Forgotten Voices of the Victoria Cross, by Roderick Bailey

Compiled from the sound archives of the Imperial War Museum, this oral history recounts the deeds of those – as recounted by the men and their admiring comrades – who were awarded the highest decoration in Britain’s gift for acts of valour. Covering VCs won in conflicts from the award’s inauguration during the Crimean War […]

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Six Weeks, by Jonathan Lewis-Stempel

Six Weeks: the short and gallant life of the British officer in the First World War The stiff upper-lip spirit of the public schools that provided the bulk of the subalterns who died in such droves in the Great War’s trenches is much mocked today. But Jonathan Lewis-Stempel’s superb study of them and their antique […]

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Road of Bones: The Siege of Kohima, 1944, by Fergal Keane

The Battle of Kohima, though fought on a smaller scale than its Russian equivalent, is rightly remembered as the ‘Stalingrad of the East’. It was a vital turning-point in the Second World War. An Anglo-Indian force – initially totalling just 1,500 men – endured a gruelling siege by a Japanese army ten times the size, […]

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The Life and Times of Frank Thornton Birkinshaw, by Barbara Isabel Rudoe

The Life and Times of Frank Thornton Birkinshaw is exactly that, devoting two of its chapters to Frank’s enlistment in the 8th Royal Warwicks and his later transfer to the RFC. Frank celebrated his 17th birthday in the trenches of Ploegsteert, on the Western Front, and his letters home tell the familiar grim story of […]

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Wellington's Highland Warriors, by Stuart Reid

Wellington’s Highland Warriors: from the Black Watch Mutiny to the Battle of Waterloo. The amalgamation of the Scottish regiments into one ‘super-regiment’, the Royal Regiment of Scotland, in 2004 left many lamenting the demise of the long tradition of some of the British Army’s most famous regiments. Since the shift from the traditional system, the […]

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The Battle of Britain, by James Holland

The Battle of Britain: five months that changed history, May-October 1940 Those with a special interest in the Battle of Britain or air war more generally will enjoy this book. It is a lively, detailed, not to say exhaustive narrative of the entire battle. Careful attention is given to both sides. The story is told […]

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The Art of War by Sun Tzu : a Military Times Classic

A classic text on the conduct of warfare, and one of the oldest and most successful of all military treatises. Is war profoundly varied and changeable, or are its basic principles eternal? The answer, as any reading of Sun-Tzu’s The Art of War makes clear, is both. No general today need concern himself with the […]

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The Last of the Few, by Max Arthur

The Battle of Britain, was the first major campaign to be fought entirely by air forces, and marked the first defeat of Hitler’s military forces. It was a long, vigorously fought battle, in which 2,500 RAF pilots were pitted against the larger and more experienced forces of the German Luftwaffe. Despite their apparent disadvantages, the […]

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Berlin at War, by Roger Moorhouse

Berlin at War: life and death in Hitler’s capital, 1939-45 Remarkably, although there have been many studies in English of how London stood up to the Blitz, Roger Moorhouse’s is the first on the German capital at war. Much of Berlin’s experience mirrors that of London. There is, for example, a familiar sounding chapter on […]

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