Related to: 'A Concise History Of The Modern World'

Abacus

The Road To Nab End

William Woodruff
Authors:
William Woodruff

William Woodruff had the sort of childhood satirised in the famous Monty Python Yorkshireman sketch. The son of a weaver, he was born on a pallet of straw at the back of the mill and two days later his mother was back at work. Life was extrememly tough for the family in 1920's Blackburn -- a treat was sheep's head or cow heel soup -- and got worse when his father lost his job when the cotton industry started its terminal decline. Woodruff had to find his childhood fun in the little free time he had available between his delivery job and school, but he never writes self-pityingly, leaving the reader to shed the tears on his behalf. At ten his mother takes him on his one and only holiday -- to Blackpool. He never wonders where they get the money to do so, only where she disappears to with strange men in the afternoons, before taking him to the funfair, pockets jingling an hour or two later. NAB END is certainly not all grime and gloom however, there's a cast of great minor characters from an unfrocked vicar to William's indomitable grandmother Bridget who lend some colour and humour -- and all against the strongly rendered social backdrop of the 1920s and 1930s.

Abacus

Vessel Of Sadness

William Woodruff
Authors:
William Woodruff

Italy, 1944 - this is the setting of one of the most convincing and quietly magnificent stories about man and war that has ever been written. Here, (distilled from the experiences and observations of one who fought with them in the British infantry unit) is the mood of those who fought and died at Anzio. Their task - to seize the Alban Hills and then Rome forty miles away. Instead, for more than four months, they sank into the mud of the Anzio plain and fought for their lives. Nothing has appeared since Erich Maria Remarque's ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT that can compare with this book's ability to penetrate the minds of men at war. There are no heroes, no heroines, no victories. This is a faceless, nameless, fragmented war. Even national differences - Britain, Italian, German, American - merge and are forgotten in this larger story of humanity. This story, in fact, does not need to be Anzio; it could be any battlefield where man has faced death.

Abacus

Beyond Nab End

William Woodruff
Authors:
William Woodruff

The second volume of Woodruff's memoirs starts with him having arrived in Poplar in the early 1930s. On spec he turns up at a steel foundry and luckily gets a job. His digs are with an old couple in Bow where he has to share a single bed (head to toe) with their mentally retarded son.Life in the foundry is grim but William is indomitable. For recreation one day he cycles (then in the days before inflatable tyres) to Berkhamstead to try and track down an old girlfriend. She's not there and he has to return in a snowstorm - it takes him eight hours to get back to Poplar and then he has to get up three hours later to work at the foundry.Eventually he decides to 'get some leernin' and his first white collar job starts for the water board in ... Brettenham House! He continues to pursue his studies, finally winning a place at Ruskin College, Oxford. How the ex-steel worker became an Oxford academic - and William's concluding description of returning from the war to meet the son he's never seen - is deeply moving.

Daniel Jonah Goldhagen

Daniel Jonah Goldhagen is Associate Professor of Government and Social Studies at Harvard University and an Associate of Harvard's Minda de Gunzberg Centre for European Studies. He was awarded Germany's Democracy Prize for HITLER'S WILLING EXECUTIONERS.

David Brin

David Brin is the acclaimed Hugo and Nebula award-winning author of ten novels and two collections of short stories. He has a doctorate in astrophysics, and has been a consultant to NASA and a graduate-level physics professor. He lives in California.

Derek Wilson

DEREK WILSON is a renowned Tudor historian. A graduate of Peterhouse, Cambridge, he has written over 50 critically acclaimed books including A Brief History of the Circumnavigators, and The Uncrowned Kings of England, as well as recent biographies of Charlemagne and Holbein.He is a writer and presenter for radio and television and is also the founder of the Cambridge History festival. He lives in North Devon. Visit his website: www.derekwilson.com

Desmond Seward

Desmond Seward was born in Paris and educated at St Catherine's College, Cambridge. He is the author of numerous studies and biographies.

Dominic Sandbrook

Dominic Sandbrook is set to lead the next generation of narrative historians. Born in Shropshire in 1974 and educated at Oxford, St. Andrews and Cambridge, he is currently Lecturer in History at the University of Sheffield.

Eric Hobsbawm

Eric Hobsbawm was a Fellow of the British Academy and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Before retirement he taught at Birkbeck College, University of London, and after retirement at the New School for Social Research in New York. Previous books include AGE OF EXTREMES, THE AGE OF REVOLUTION and THE AGE OF EMPIRE. He died 1st October 2012

Geoff Tibballs

Geoff Tibballs is the author of numerous bestselling humour titles.

Geoffrey Hindley

Geoffrey Hindley (1935-2014), educated at Kingswood School, Bath and University College Oxford, is a lecturer and writer. He was three times an invited participant at the International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University; was visiting associate professor at the University of Florida, Gainesville; and lectured in Europe and America on European culture,medieval social history and Magna Carta, and the history of music. From 1994 to 2000 he taught English civilization at the University of Le Havre. Right up until his death he was co-president of the Society for the History of Medieval Technology and Science of Oxford and London. His many books include The Shaping of Europe,England in the Age of Caxton, The Book of Magna Carta, A Brief History of the Crusades and A Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons.

Gerard Koeppel

Gerard Koeppel is the author of Bond of Union: Building the Erie Canal and the American Empire and Water for Gotham: A History. He has contributed to numerous other books, including the Encyclopedia of New York City, of which he was an associate editor. Before writing mostly about the past, he wrote, edited, and produced the present at CBS News. He was born on the grid and has lived all over it since.

Helen Nicholson

Helen Nicholson lectures on medieval history at Cardiff University. She has published on the Knights Templar, the Knights Hospitaller, the Crusades and medieval warfare.

Jacqueline Jones

Jacqueline Jones is the Walter Prescott Webb Chair in History and Ideas and the Mastin Gentry White Professor of Southern History at the University of Texas, Austin. Winner of the Bancroft Prize for Labor of Love, Labor of Sorrow, Jones lives in Austin, Texas.

James Le Fanu

James Le Fanu has combined a career as a General Practitioner in South London with writing about medicine and science for the Sunday and Daily Telegraph. He has also contributed articles and reviews to The Times, Spectator, New Statesman, Literary Review, British Medical Journal and Journal of The Royal Society of Medicine. His much acclaimed 'The Rise and Fall of Modern Medicine' won the Los Angeles Times book prize in 2001. His most recent book, 'Why Us?', was published jointly by HarperCollins in the UK and Random House in the US in 2009. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in 2014.

James Morton

James Morton is the author of the hugely successful Gangland series. He has long experience as a solicitor specialising in criminal work and was editor-in-chief of NEW LAW JOURNAL for many years.

Jane Robinson

Jane Robinson is a writer and lecturer. Her popular books on women travellers (Wayward Women, Unsuitable for Ladies, Angels of Albion and Parrot Pie for Breakfast) have won her acclaim as a social historian with an appreciative eye for eccentricity.

Janet Fitch

Janet Fitch's first novel, White Oleander, a #1 bestseller and Oprah's Book Club selection, has been translated into 24 languages and was made into a feature film. Her most recent novel, Paint It Black, hit bestseller lists across the country and has also been made into a film. She lives in Los Angeles.

Jon E. Lewis

Jon E. Lewis is a historian and writer, whose books on history and military historyare sold worldwide. He is also editor of many The Mammoth Book of anthologies, including the bestselling On the Edge and Endurance and Adventure.He holds graduate and postgraduate degrees in history. His work has appeared in New Statesman, the Independent, Time Out and the Guardian. He lives in Herefordshire with his partner and children.Praise for his previous books:England: The Autobiography:'A triumph' Saul David, author of Victoria's ArmyThe British Soldier: The Autobiography:'this thoughtful compilation . . . almost unbearably moving.' Guardian'Compelling tommy's eye view of war.' Daily Telegraph'What a book. Five stars.' Daily Express

Jonathan Neale

Jonathan Neale is the author of two non-fiction books and one novel. He has had ten plays produced in Britain in the last 15 years and has a PhD in social history. He speaks some Nepali and a little Sherpa.