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C. Bowden
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A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier
A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier
by Ishmael Beah
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Moving and shameful, 10 Oct 2008
War in the west is fought by proxy. Our investments and interests drive conflict in thousands of situations. Sierra Leone was no different. But in Sierra Leone, the west turned it's back for too long. Ishmael Beah's story tells the tale of what happened before any action was taken to end the civil war that crippled one of West Africa's jewels. In honest and straightforward language, Beah narrates the horrors of war, perpetrated by him and by others and forces us to realise that war is not some far off idea we hear of in the news every few days, but a very real and horrific event that affects even the most vulnerable in society. All credit to the author who manages to tell an emotionally very difficult story in such poignant words.


The Hobbit
The Hobbit
by J. R. R. Tolkien
Edition: Mass Market Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A stand-alone classic, 16 Aug 2008
This review is from: The Hobbit (Mass Market Paperback)
A children's classic, but the beginning of a world created by the author. The Hobbit introduces the reader to the mystical land of Middle Earth. A stand-alone classic, The Hobbit is also the prequel to the mighty Lord of the Rings and does not fail to impress...


The Last Kingdom (The Warrior Chronicles, Book 1)
The Last Kingdom (The Warrior Chronicles, Book 1)
by Bernard Cornwell
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.59

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cornwell just gets better and better, 16 Aug 2008
Excellent. Bernard Cornwell at his very best. Discussing the formation of the first Kingdom of England by the future King Alfred the Great, Cornwell adds glamour to an already tumultuous past, showing life from Danish eyes and from Saxon views. Eternally anti-Christian, the book is more enjoyable than his previous warlord series.


Revolution in Zanzibar: An American's Cold War Tale
Revolution in Zanzibar: An American's Cold War Tale
by Donald Petterson
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Cold War narrative..., 16 Aug 2008
A very interesting account of the most tumultuous period in the history of the place nicknamed 'Paradise Island'. With evident anti-Soviet commentary and pro-American rhetoric, the author glosses over the more secret works of the American Embassy in Zanzibar but provides a hugely important eyewitness account of a period of time that shaped the destiny of one of Africa's most popular destinations.


Fighting in Spain (Penguin Great Journeys)
Fighting in Spain (Penguin Great Journeys)
by George Orwell
Edition: Paperback

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny, and incisive., 16 Aug 2008
A humourous, incisive commentary on the actions in the Spanish Civil War. Orwell is again at his best as he delves into the politics between internecine fighting in the leftist stronghold of Barcelona, coming to the harrowing conclusion that the war was not decided on the Aragon Front where he fought, but on the Cabinet tables of Paris, London, Moscow and Berlin.
With scything criticism of the British support for the Fascists, Orwell's account provides a first-hand report on the actual facts of the Spanish Civil War.


Into Africa: A Journey Through The Ancient Empires
Into Africa: A Journey Through The Ancient Empires
by Marq De Villiers
Edition: Hardcover

3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, yet take it with a pinch of salt..., 16 Aug 2008
An interesting account of de Villiers travels around Africa, enticing the reader into the real Africa, the ancient Africa, the Africa that shaped who each and every one of us is today. His vivid stories of travel are however tarnished by his factual incorrectness on a couple of issues and his unsuccessful efforts to turn the book into an academic work. A good read, but take it all with a pinch of salt.


Bomber Boys: Fighting Back 1940-1945
Bomber Boys: Fighting Back 1940-1945
by Patrick Bishop
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.19

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An incisive account of one of the most important sectors of the Allied offensive., 16 Aug 2008
It is very easy to lament the work done by Bomber Command in the mid to end years of the Second World War in Europe. This book does just that. But it also delves into the hearts of those who flew the bombers, the emotions of those who let loose the bomb doors, the feelings of those who shot at night-fighters. And the book's great achievement is in presenting a view that not only helps us understand the great personal sacrifice these men made, but the even greater emotional sacrifice they have suffered since the end of the war.
With some glaring grammatical mistakes, the book's editors should be sacked, but all in all, this is a highly endearing yet incisive account of one of the ugliest aspects of war, yet an aspect that greatly hastened the end of the suffering of Europe.


The Shadow of Kilimanjaro: On Foot Across East Africa
The Shadow of Kilimanjaro: On Foot Across East Africa
by Rick Ridgeway
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars A book I didn't want to end., 16 Aug 2008
An incredibly endearing, intelligent and balanced account of an epic walk across East Africa. With evident love for the country in which he is walking, Ridgeway combines beautiful descriptions of the landscape with excellent historic anecdotes whilst travelling amongst some living legends of Kenya. A wonderful read and a book I truthfully did not want to end.


The Temple of the Golden Pavilion (Twentieth Century Classics)
The Temple of the Golden Pavilion (Twentieth Century Classics)
by Yukio Mishima
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Philosophically Challenging, 16 Aug 2008
A complex and endearing account of a criminal in post-war Japan, Mishima's novel plays on the trial of the crime of the real criminal and shows deeper meaning in his evident love of the nation which was to come out later in his own tumultuous life. Philosophically challenging, a must-read.


Ten Thousand Miles Without a Cloud
Ten Thousand Miles Without a Cloud
by Sun Shuyun
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.01

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring., 16 Aug 2008
Not just a travel book but a spiritual journey following the footsteps of one of China's greatest Buddhist scholars. Delving into the cultural and religious history of her home, Sun Shuyun provides a memorable account of an epic journey, evoking spiritual thought, political discussion and emotional responses. An interesting read for anyone with an inquisitive mind...


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