Hampshire at War Through Time

Hampshire at War Through Time

Exploring in full colour the history of Hampshire in the Second World War and what remains today. Explores the county's part in Operation Overlord and the Battle of Britain and its involvement in the manufacture of the Spitfire.

The Somerset & Dorset Railway Through Time

The Somerset & Dorset Railway Through Time

A wonderful collection of photographs showing the Somerset & Dorset Railway in operation, after abandonment and during the present day.

The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham

A Biography

The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham

He was a brilliant teller of tales, one of the most widely read authors of the twentieth century, and at one time the most famous writer in the world, yet W. Somerset Maugham’s own true story has never been fully told. At last, the fascinating truth is revealed in a landmark biography by the award-winning writer Selina Hastings. Granted unprecedented access to Maugham’s personal correspondence and to newly uncovered interviews with his only child, Hastings portrays the secret loves, betrayals, integrity, and passion that inspired Maugham to create such classics as The Razor’s Edge and Of Human Bondage. Hastings vividly presents Maugham’s lonely childhood spent with unloving relatives after the death of his parents, a trauma that resulted in shyness, a stammer, and for the rest of his life an urgent need for physical tenderness. Here, too, are his adult triumphs on the stage and page, works that allowed him a glittering social life in which he befriended and sometimes fell out with such luminaries as Dorothy Parker, Charlie Chaplin, D. H. Lawrence, and Winston Churchill. The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham portrays in full for the first time Maugham’s disastrous marriage to Syrie Wellcome, a manipulative society woman of dubious morality who trapped Maugham with a pregnancy and an attempted suicide. Hastings also explores Maugham’s many affairs with men, including his great love, Gerald Haxton, an alcoholic charmer and a cad. Maugham’s courageous work in secret intelligence during two world wars is described in fascinating detail—experiences that provided the inspiration for the groundbreaking Ashenden stories. From the West End to Broadway, from China to the South Pacific, Maugham’s restless and remarkably productive life is thrillingly recounted as Hastings uncovers the real stories behind such classics as “Rain,” The Painted Veil, Cakes & Ale, and other well-known tales. An epic biography of a hugely talented and hugely conflicted man, The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham is the definitive account of Maugham’s extraordinary life. From the Hardcover edition.

Somerset Through Time

Somerset Through Time

Somerset is justly renowned for its varied landscapes from the wild uplands of Exmoor to the expanses of the Levels. It is also a vibrant county where things have changed regularly. In keeping up with the times, though, it has kept a great deal of what is best about its past, and much of the county's charm comes from features that can seem changeless.

Queen Anne

The Politics of Passion

Queen Anne

She ascended the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland in 1702, at age thirty-seven, Britain’s last Stuart monarch, and five years later united two of her realms, England and Scotland, as a sovereign state, creating the Kingdom of Great Britain. She had a history of personal misfortune, overcoming ill health (she suffered from crippling arthritis; by the time she became Queen she was a virtual invalid) and living through seventeen miscarriages, stillbirths, and premature births in seventeen years. By the end of her comparatively short twelve-year reign, Britain had emerged as a great power; the succession of outstanding victories won by her general, John Churchill, the Duke of Marlborough, had humbled France and laid the foundations for Britain’s future naval and colonial supremacy. While the Queen’s military was performing dazzling exploits on the continent, her own attention—indeed her realm—rested on a more intimate conflict: the female friendship on which her happiness had for decades depended and which became for her a source of utter torment. At the core of Anne Somerset’s riveting new biography, published to great acclaim in England (“Definitive”—London Evening Standard; “Wonderfully pacy and absorbing”—Daily Mail), is a portrait of this deeply emotional, complex bond between two very different women: Queen Anne—reserved, stolid, shrewd; and Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, wife of the Queen’s great general—beautiful, willful, outspoken, whose acerbic wit was equally matched by her fearsome temper. Against a fraught background—the revolution that deposed Anne’s father, James II, and brought her to power . . . religious differences (she was born Protestant—her parents’ conversion to Catholicism had grave implications—and she grew up so suspicious of the Roman church that she considered its doctrines “wicked and dangerous”) . . . violently partisan politics (Whigs versus Tories) . . . a war with France that lasted for almost her entire reign . . . the constant threat of foreign invasion and civil war—the much-admired historian, author of Elizabeth I (“Exhilarating”—The Spectator; “Ample, stylish, eloquent”—The Washington Post Book World), tells the extraordinary story of how Sarah goaded and provoked the Queen beyond endurance, and, after the withdrawal of Anne’s favor, how her replacement, Sarah’s cousin, the feline Abigail Masham, became the ubiquitous royal confidante and, so Sarah whispered to growing scandal, the object of the Queen's sexual infatuation. To write this remarkably rich and passionate biography, Somerset, winner of the Elizabeth Longford Prize for Historical Biography, has made use of royal archives, parliamentary records, personal correspondence and previously unpublished material. Queen Anne is history on a large scale—a revelation of a centuries-overlooked monarch.

An Appointment with Somerset Maugham

And Other Literary Encounters

An Appointment with Somerset Maugham

Pleasure has not ruled all aspects of Richard Costa's world, but books and their writers have brought innumerable hours of it to his thought-filled years. In this insightful journey through a life suffused with literature, he introduces readers to the literary figures whose paths crossed his: Somerset Maugham, H. G. Wells, Conrad Aiken, Edmund Wilson, Kingsley Amis, Dorothy Parker, Edith Wharton, and others. In these pages lie answers to questions, and questions for many answers. What did Wells fear more than the bombs during the London Blitz? What is Edmund Wilson's favorite of all his books? What writer, after declaring his walking-stick unbreakable, watched as Ernest Hemingway broke the stick over his own head? Why is it impossible to "discover" a new book today? Readers who accompany Costa on his journey of the mind and heart will have the opportunity to experience the vicarious pleasures of a tea, a chat, and a good read in the light of literary stars.

Prisoners of War at Dartmoor

American and French Soldiers and Sailors in an English Prison During the Napoleonic Wars and the War of 1812

Prisoners of War at Dartmoor

"Covers the incarceration of French and American prisoners of war in Dartmoor Prison, where acts of cruelty and degradation by their guardians were countered by defiance and a spirited loyalty by the prisoners to their respective countries. Much of the story is told first-Æhand by those who were there. "--

States at War, Volume 4

A Reference Guide for Delaware, Maryland, and New Jersey in the Civil War

States at War, Volume 4

While many Civil War reference books exist, there is no single compendium that contains important details about the combatant states (and territories) that Civil War researchers can readily access for their work. People looking for information about the organizations, activities, economies, demographics, and prominent personalities of Civil War States and state governments must assemble data from a variety of sources, with many key sources remaining unavailable online. This crucial reference book, the fourth in the States at War series, provides vital information on the organization, activities, economies, demographics, and prominent personalities of Delaware, Maryland, and New Jersey during the Civil War. Its principal sources include the Official Records, state adjutant-general reports, legislative journals, state and federal legislation, federal and state executive speeches and proclamations, and the general and special orders issued by the military authorities of both governments, North and South. Designed and organized for easy use by professional historians and amateurs, this book can be read in two ways: by individual state, with each chapter offering a stand-alone history of an individual stateÕs war years; or across states, comparing reactions to the same event or solutions to the same problems.

Huddersfield at War

Huddersfield at War

Huddersfield at War takes us through the years between the announcement on 3 September 1939 that England was at War with Germany, to the VE celebrations on 8 May 1945.