By Colour-Sergeant Kailash Limbu
In this Sunday Times Top Ten bestselling memoir that 'reads like a thriller', (Joanna Lumley) Colour-Sargent Kailash Limbu shares a riveting account of his life as a Gurkha soldier-marking the first time in its two-hundred-year history that a soldier of the Brigade of Gurkhas has been given permission to tell his story in his own words.In the summer of 2006, Colour-Sargeant Kailash Limbu's platoon was sent to relieve and occupy a police compound in the town of Now Zad in Helmand. He was told to prepare for a forty-eight hour operation. In the end, he and his men were under siege for thirty-one days - one of the longest such sieges in the whole of the Afghan campaign.Kailash Limbu recalls the terrifying and exciting details of those thirty-one days - in which they killed an estimated one hundred Taliban fighters - and intersperses them with the story of his own life as a villager from the Himalayas. He grew up in a place without roads or electricity and didn't see a car until he was fifteen.Kailash's descriptions of Gurkha training and rituals - including how to use the lethal Kukri knife - are eye-opening and fascinating. They combine with the story of his time in Helmand to create a unique account of one man's life as a Gurkha. 'I was completely bowled over by Kailash's book and read it with a beating heart and dry mouth. I felt as though I was at his side, hearing the shells and bullets, enjoying the jokes and listening in the scary dead of night. The skill with which he has included his childhood and training is immense, always discovered with ease in the narrative: it actually felt as though I was watching, was IN a film with him. It brought me nearer than I have ever been not only to the mind of the universal soldier but to a hill boy of Nepal and a hugely impressive Gurkha. I raced through it and couldn't put it down: it reads like a thriller. If you want to know anything about the Gurkhas, read this book, and be prepared for a thrilling and dangerous trip' Joanna Lumley
The Guns at Last Light
By Rick Atkinson
In the first two volumes of his bestselling Liberation Trilogy, Rick Atkinson recounted how the American-led coalition fought through North Africa and Italy to the threshold of victory. Now he tells the most dramatic story of all - the titanic battle for Western Europe. D-Day marked the commencement of the European war's final campaign, and Atkinson's riveting account of that bold gamble sets the pace for the masterly narrative that follows. The brutal fight in Normandy, the liberation of Paris, the disaster that was Market Garden, the horrific Battle of the Bulge, and finally the thrust to the heart of the Third Reich - all these historic events and more come alive with a wealth of new material and a mesmerizing cast of characters. With the stirring final volume of this monumental trilogy, Rick Atkinson's remarkable accomplishment is manifest. He has produced the definitive chronicle of the war that unshackled a continent and preserved freedom in the West.
By Jon Lee Anderson
Prior to gaining international renown for his definitive biography of Che Guevara and his firsthand reports on the war in Iraq in the acclaimed THE FALL OF BAGHDAD, Jon Lee Anderson wrote GUERRILLAS, a daring on-the-ground account of five diverse insurgent movements around the world: the mujahedin of Afghanistan, the FMLN of El Salvador, the Karen of Burma, the Polisario of Western Sahara, and a group of young Palestines fighting against Israel in the Gaza Strip. Making the most of unprecedented, direct access to his subjects, Anderson combines powerful storytelling with a balanced, penetrating analysis of each situation. A work of phenomenal range, analytical acuity, and human empathy, GUERRILLAS amply demonstrates why Jon Lee Anderson is one of our most important chroniclers of societies in crisis.
By Charles Jennings
There is probably not a London suburb with more intense historical connections, more diversity and more astonishing buildings and artefacts than Greenwich. There are sections on MARITIME GREENWICH - home of the Maritime museum and the CUTTY SARK; ROYAL GREENWICH - Greenwich Park was Henry VIII's favourite residence and where he met Anne Boelyn; SCIENTIFIC GREENWICH - home of the Royal Observatory and GMT and of course The Dome itself...What's it going to be like compared to similar vast jamborees - the Great Exhibition of 1851 and the Festival Britain of 1951, what is that strange fabric stretched over those yellow spikes and WHO is going to settle in the 1400-home Millennium Village, to be opened in 2000, with the remains of the old gasworks lying a couple of feet below?
Green Was The Earth On The Seventh Day
By Thor Heyerdahl
In the late 1930s, Thor Heyerdahl left his home in Norway and set off with his new wife for paradise. Fulfilling a long-held ambition to return to nature, the couple sought, and to a degree found, a natural and unspoiled world on the remote island of Fatu-Hiva in the South Pacific. Based on his original journals, Heyerdahl's documentary account charts how the dreams of a lifetime were transformed into a magical year of hope, excitement and unexpected danger. A timeless story of love and adventure, GREEN WAS THE EARTH... is also an impassioned plea for the preservation of the cities and the seas against the tide of pollution and the pursuit of profit, ideas and beliefs, a cry which would shape one man's life and the environmental concerns of successive generations. Powerful and poignant, GREEN WAS THE EARTH ON THE SEVENTH DAY is a very special kind of autobiography.
Great Tales From English History
By Robert Lacey
From ancient times to the present day, the story of England has been laced with drama, intrigue, courage and passion - a rich and vibrant narrative of heroes and villains, kings and rebels, artists and highwaymen, bishops and scientists. Now, in Great Tales of English History, Robert Lacey captures one hundred of the most pivotal moments: the stories and extraordinary characters who helped shape a nation. This first volume begins in 7150 BC with the life and death of Cheddar Man and ends in 1381with Wat Tyler and the Peasants' Revolt. We meet the Greek navigator Pytheus, whose description of the Celts as prettanike (the 'painted people') yielded the Latin word Britannici. We witness the Roman victory celebrations of AD 43, where a squadron of elephants were paraded through Colchester. And we visit the New Forest, in 1100, and the mysterious shooting of King William Rufus. Packed with insight, humour and fascinating detail, Robert Lacey brings the stories that made England brilliantly to life. From Ethelred the Unready to Richard the Lionheart, the Venerable Bede to the Black Prince, this is, quite simply, history as history should be told.
The Great Race
By David Hill
On the afternoon of 8 April 1802, in the remote southern ocean, two explorers had a remarkable chance encounter. Englishman Matthew Flinders and Frenchman Nicolas Baudin had been sent by their governments on the same quest: to explore the uncharted coast of the great south land and find out whether the west and east coasts, four thousand kilometres apart, were part of the same island. And so began the race to compile the definitive map of Australia. These men's journeys were the culmination of two hundred years of exploration of the region by the Dutch - most famously Abel Tasman - the Portuguese, the Spanish and by Englishmen such as the colourful pirate William Dampier and, of course, James Cook. The three-year voyages of Baudin and Flinders would see them endure terrible hardships in the spirit of discovery. They suffered scurvy and heat exhaustion, and Flinders was shipwrecked and imprisoned - always knowing he was competing with the French to produce the first map of this mysterious continent. Written from diaries and other first-hand accounts, this is the thrilling story of men whose drawings recorded countless previously unknown species and turned mythical creatures into real ones, and whose skill and determination enabled Terra Australis Incognita to become Australia.
Graham Greene: A Life In Letters
By Richard Greene
One of the undisputed masters of English prose in the twentieth century, Graham Greene (1904-91) wrote tens of thousands of personal letters. This substantial volume presents a new and engrossing account of his life constructed out of his own words. Meticulously chosen and engagingly annotated, this selection of Greene's letters - including many to his family and close friends that were unavailable even to his official biographer - gives an entirely new perspective on a life that combined literary achievement, political action, espionage, travel, and romantic entanglement. The letters describe his travels in Mexico, Africa, Malaya, Vietnam, Haiti, Cuba and other trouble spots, where he observed the struggles of victims and victors with a compassionate and truthful eye. The book includes a vast number of unpublished letters to Evelyn Waugh, Auberon Waugh, Anthony Powell, Edith Sitwell, R. K. Narayan, Muriel Spark and other leading writers of the time. Some letters reveal the agonies of his romantic life, especially his relations with his wife, Vivien Greene, and with his mistress Catherine Walston. The sheer range of experience contained in Greene's correspondence defies comparison.
The Gospel Of Judas
By Simon Mawer
Amongst the ancient papyri of the Dead Sea, a remarkable scroll is discovered. Written in the first century AD, it purports to be the true account of the life of Jesus, as told by Youdas the sicarios - Judas Iscariot: the missing Gospel of Judas. If authentic, it will be one of the most incendiary documents in the history of humankind. The task of proving - or disproving - its validity falls to Father Leo Newman, one of the world's leading experts in Koine, the demotic Greek of the Roman Empire, and a man the newspapers like to call a 'renegade priest'. But as Leo absorbs himself in Judas' testimony, the stories of his own life haunt him. The story of his forbidden yet irresistible love for a married woman. The story of his mother's passionate and tragic affair amidst the war-time ruins of Rome. They are stories of love and betrayal that may threaten his faith just as deeply as the Gospel of Judas...With a dramatic narrative that spans from the Europe of the Second World War to Jerusalem two thousand years after Jesus' birth, THE GOSPEL OF JUDAS is a compelling and erudite thriller.
The Gospel According To The Son
By Norman Mailer
For 2,000 years, the brief ministry of a young Nazarene preacher has remained the largest single determinant of Western civilisation's triumphs and disasters. In THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO THE SON, Norman Mailer gives the protagonist of one of the greatest tragedies of all time a chance to tell the story of his life in his own words. 'Is God speaking to me?' Jesus asks, 'or am I hearing voices? If the voices are from God, why has he chosen me as His son? and if they are not from God, then who gave me the power to perform these miracles?' This is a gripping account of a man thrust forward by the visions he receives and the miracles he enacts until he has come to the very limit of human possibilities. In THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO THE SON, one of the world's greatest living writers has brought us a remarkable book - by turns poetic and tragic and, to our surprise and pleasure, suspenseful.
The Gorse Trilogy
By Patrick Hamilton
'I recommend Hamilton at every opportunity, because he was such a wonderful writer and yet is rather under-read today. All his novels are terrific' Sarah Waters'If you were looking to fly from Dickens to Martin Amis with just one overnight stop, then Hamilton is your man' Nick HornbyErnest Ralph Gorse's heartlessness and lack of scruple are matched only by the inventiveness and panache with which he swindles his victims. With great deftness and precision Hamilton exposes how his dupes' own naivete, snobbery or greed make them perfect targets. These three novels are shot through with the brooding menace and sense of bleak inevitability so characteristic of the author. There is also vivid satire and caustic humour. Gorse is thought to be based on the real-life murderer Neville Heath, hanged in 1946.
The Good Psychologist
By Noam Shpancer
The good psychologist teaches the principles of control and objectivity, strategies by which we evade pain, memory and lies. Meanwhile in the Center for Anxiety Disorders he dispenses wisdom, and coaxes truth from one patient in particular: a vulnerable, frightened nightclub dancer whose life is haunted by secrets. But as he treats and guides and teaches, the good psychologist becomes increasingly disturbed by his own private torments: unrequited love, an unacknowledged child, growing loneliness and despair. Soon he is adrift as, softly, he leads the reader into the dangerous yet seductive territory of the human heart.
A Good Likeness
By Paul Arnott
Paul Arnott has two very early memories. One is as a two-year-old having a bath in a hotel sink in Tenby; the other, a Bromley afternoon, when Mr and Mrs Arnott told Paul that 'his real Mummy and Daddy couldn't keep him' - & that they had adopted him. Then, for 30 years, he barely gave his adoption a moment's thought - until the observation of the likeness between his son & himself provoked a quest to find his own biological parents ... What he discovered was a near-complete family in Ireland - his parents had later married & had four other children, lighting a candle in his name every day for 33 years.A GOOD LIKENESS weaves historical, political, religious & psychological thought into a personal narrative of the hopes, 'what-ifs' & discoveries of the author's quest. He talks to those of his parent's generation who did not yield to the pressure to abandon the illegitimate & to the children with very different stories to tell, as well as priests & politicians, newfound families & the supportive or unreconciled adoptive relatives.
The Good Husband Of Zebra Drive
By Alexander McCall Smith
As winter turns to spring across the red earth, acacia trees and slow green rivers of Botswana, all is not quite as it should be on Zebra Drive, home to Mma Ramotswe and her beloved husband Mr J. L. B. Matekoni. At the No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency there are the usual number of cases to be pursued, from persistent theft at Teenie Magama's printing works to the rather more serious case of three suspicious deaths at the Mochudi hospital, but there is discontent among the ranks. It is bad enough that Mr Matekoni's apprentice Charlie is off on another escapade and Mma Makutsi's impending marriage threatens her happy working relationship with Mma Ramotswe. And when - in trying to prove himself a worthy husband - Mr J. L. B. Matekoni himself decides to try a little detective work, disaster looms . . .Tender, witty and wise, the latest instalment in the lives of Alexander McCall's Smith's extended Botswana family instructs us with familiar modesty in the importance of trust, love, not judging by appearances and what really makes a good husband.
The Good German Of Nanking
By John Rabe
In 1937, as the invading Japanese Army closed on Nanking, then the capital of China, all foreigners were ordered to evacuate. One man, a mild 55-year-old German named John Rabe who ran the local Siemens factory, refused on the grounds that it would show a bad example to his Chinese workers. Sending his wife and family to safety, he watched in horror as the Japanese began to wipe out the population. Hastily contacting the tiny remaining community of foreigners, and using the flimsy authority of a pact Hitler had made with the Japanese, Rabe spent months safeguarding and providing refuge for thousands of Chinese, often interposing himself physically between the executioners and their victims. It is estimated that he saved between 250,000 and 300,000 lives by his efforts. And every night, he would write up his diary of these extraordinary events.THE GOOD GERMAN OF NANKING is Rabe's story, in his own words: the amazing testament to one of the hitherto unsung heroes of the twentieth century.
A Good Face for Radio
By Eddie Mair
Eddie Mair is, by his own account, one of Britain's most beloved broadcasters.Born in Dundee, Scotland, he has worked in radio all his adult life. From the foothills of commercial radio in his hometown, through the sunlit uplands of the BBC in Scotland, he has reached the peaks of his profession, with BBC network radio in London. And he's never afraid to work a metaphor beyond endurance.In addition he's appeared on most of the BBC's TV channels, including ones that are no longer on TV. He witnessed the handover of Hong Kong and once asked Arnold Schwarzenegger a question - though he takes no responsibility for either.For nearly twenty years he has been at the helm of Radio 4's PM: a nightly news round up that means Eddie works for just one hour a day, giving him plenty time to knock together these diaries.Whether he's interviewing politicians, getting people to share their personal experiences, or just imparting his favourite zesty chicken recipes, Eddie is never happier than when he is at the microphone. Except when he is at the microphone with a large martini.In truth, his neediness is an irritation to everyone who knows him and if you buy this book he might get out of their hair.Eddie's other work, as a humanitarian and tireless, secret worker for charity is not mentioned in these pages.
Gone, Baby, Gone
By Dennis Lehane
Boston private investigators Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro are hired to find four-year-old Amanda McCready.Despite extensive news coverage and dogged investigation into her abduction, the police have uncovered nothing. The case is rife with oddities: Amanda's indifferent mother, a couple with a history of paedophilia and a shadowy police unit. As the Indian summer fades, Amanda McCready stays gone - vanished so completely that she seems never to have existed. When a second child disappears, Kenzie and Gennaro face a local media more interested in sensationalizing the abductions than helping to solve them, a local police force seething with lethal secrets, and a faceless power determined to obstruct their efforts. Caught in a deadly tangle of lies, and determined to unravel the riddle that is anything but child's play, they soon discover that those who go looking for the missing may not come back alive.
By Donna Tartt
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2014Aged thirteen, Theo Decker, son of a devoted mother and a reckless, largely absent father, survives an accident that otherwise tears his life apart. Alone and rudderless in New York, he is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. He is tormented by an unbearable longing for his mother, and down the years clings to the thing that most reminds him of her: a small, strangely captivating painting that ultimately draws him into the criminal underworld. As he grows up, Theo learns to glide between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love - and his talisman, the painting, places him at the centre of a narrowing, ever more dangerous circle. The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling power. Combining unforgettably vivid characters and thrilling suspense, it is a beautiful, addictive triumph - a sweeping story of loss and obsession, of survival and self-invention, of the deepest mysteries of love, identity and fate.
The Golden Warrior
By Lawrence James
'The best study of Lawrence of Arabia' Sunday TimesControversial and provocative, revised and updated, this edition of Lawrence James' acclaimed biography penetrates and overturns the mythology which surrounds T. E. Lawrence, yet remains dispassionate and generous in spirit throughout. It presents a fascinating study of one of the twentieth century's most remarkable figures.
The Golden Age
By Gore Vidal
THE GOLDEN AGE is the final, eponymous novel that brings to an end what Gabriel García Márquez has called 'Gore Vidal's magnificent series of historical novels or novelised histories', NARRATIVES OF EMPIRE. Like a latter day Anthony Trollope, Vidal masterfully balances the personal with the political, the invented with the historical fact. His heroine from Hollywood, Caroline Sanford, reappears in Washington as President Roosevelt schemes to get the USA into the war by provoking the Japanese. In the novel's ten year span America is master of the globe, with Japan and Europe as colony and dependency under her empire. Against this backdrop there is a glittering explosion in the arts (we see the likes of Lowell, Bernstein and Tennessee Williams and witness the opening night of A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE). But by 1950 and the coming of the Korean War, the Golden Age is over. For the reader who wants to be informed as well as vastly entertained about the last two hundred years of American history there could be no better place to start than with Vidal's NARRATIVES.