Tuesday 11 April 2017

NEW BOOK - Blitzkrieg - Anatomy of a Legend

When the German armed forces invaded Poland in September 1939 everyone expected the war to last at least six months and for the Germans to sustain heavy casualties. In fact the fighting was over within days. The German army had pulled off one of the most astounding victories in modern times. Urged on by Hitler's ambitions, the following year the German army invaded Denmark, Norway, Belgium and the Netherlands before attacking its most powerful enemy to date: France supported by Britain. Once again the speeding German panzers, screaming Stuka dive bombers and relentless artillery smashed through everything sent against them. The French army was crushed in a matter of days, and the British sent packing from Dunkirk. The world was aghast at the scale of these sweeping victories and at the speed with which they had been achieved. The Germans had unleashed a new form of warfare: Blitzkrieg, or "lightning war". It was new. It was stunning. It was unstoppable. But what actually was it? In this book historian Rupert Matthews explores the origins of Blitzkrieg, explains how it operated and studies its most famous victories before moving on to discuss how the tactic is still with us today.
Buy the paperback HERE
Buy the ebook HERE

Monday 3 April 2017

First Ebook Sale for March 2017

Our first ebook sale for March 2017 was a copy of "Bigfoot in Kansas" by Larry Jaffer, sold at 35 minutes past midnight (UK time) to a purchaser in the USA.

You can buy your copy HERE

The gigantic upright ape known as Bigfoot or Sasquatch is not usually associated with Kansas, but there have been a surprisingly large number of sightings in that prairie state.

Take this example, among many others:
On 10 August 2008 a woman was driving by Big John Creek in Morris County in the early morning dawn. As she passed a corn field he saw what she thought was deer and slowed down. When she got close enough to see clearly the creature revealed itself to be a human figure standing nearly 8 feet tall and covered all over in dark brown fur. The creature was holding an ear of corn in its hand and seemed to have been interrupted in the middle of a meal. The woman stopped her car and was trying to decide whether to get out or not, when the careature stepped out of the field, ran across the rod, clearing the road in two gigantic strides, then sprang down the creek bank and splashed over the creek.
She later described the creature as "very broad and looking like a no-neck football player wearing shoulder pads. The skin was black covered with dark brown to black hair, about two inches long, and neat though full of weeds. It had a human-like face with a heavy brow, dark eyes and narrow lips. The creature had a noticeably large hand grasping an ear of corn and made direct eye contact before running off."

In this book cryptid expert Larry Jaffer reviews the evidence for this mysterious beast and comes to some surprising conclusions.

Cryptids are animals, or plants, which are believed by some people to exist, but which have not been accepted as real by the wider scientific community. These cryptids are animals which have been seen, and sometimes photographed, but for which no definitive evidence has been This series of Cryptid Casebooks explores the world of the cryptids.

About the Author
Larry Jaffer has long had an interest in the fortean mysteries that surround us. He grew up ion the Surrey when the Surrey Puma hit the headlines, and went out in search of that elusive beast - without success. Since then he has researched a myriad of other cryptids, including Sasquatch, the sea serpent, the Beast of Bodmin and others. He has also investigated UFO sightings and tracked down numerous ghosts and poltergeists. He has a voluminous archive of witness interviews, photos and other data to back up his writings on the subjects of the unusual, paranormal and downright odd.

Friday 31 March 2017

Jack the Ripper's London

Our new book and ebook in the "Walks through London" series is now out.

This book guides the reader on a 5 mile walk around Whitechapel and nearby areas of the East End of London linked to Jack the Ripper.
The walk takes in all the key sites associated with Jack the Ripper in chronological order. Unlike other books and guided walks, this guide includes important sites such as the building where the coroner's hearings were held, the police stations and the homes of two of the suspects that the police had their eyes on back in 1888. The text also gives the background to the killings, details of the crimes - and reveals the identity of the man who the author believes was the killer.
This series of books is aimed at those who love London and want to find out more about our wonderful city and its history.  Each walk concentrates on a particular person, theme or period of history with special meaning for London.
We have tried to make these walks as inclusive as possible. We have therefore made sure that each walk covers ground that is suitable for buggies so that parents can take young children along, and for motorised wheelchairs or mobility scooters for those who use these vehicles. We also want to include dog owners, so we include cafes and pubs that welcome our four-legged walking companions. Similarly we mention those which are child-friendly and those with disabled toilets and step-free access.
Oh, and take care as this is central London. Watch out for traffic when crossing roads and always use pedestrian crossings when these are available.
Anyway, that is enough technical guff. Time to get on with the story of one of the London's most sinister and murderous villains: Jack the Ripper.

Thursday 2 February 2017

First Ebook Sale of February - Niall of the Nine Hostages

Niall of the Nine Hostages


The mighty warrior king Niall Noígíallach dominates the twilight world between history and legend. He was one of the greatest of the High Kings of Ireland in prehistoric days, but one of the least known to modern historians. He gave rise to the powerful and widespread O'Neil (Ui Neill) dynasty of rulers, but even the century in which he lived is obscure. He was a pagan, but his reign prepared the way for Christianity.
That Niall of the Nine Hostages did live and did rule at least part of Ireland nobody doubts, but how powerful he really was and how he got his famous sobriquet "of the Nine Hostages" remain utterly obscure.
In this book historian Oliver Hayes goes back to the original legends, old manuscripts and seeks to disentangle fact from legend to reveal the true character and career of Niall of the Nine Hostages.

About the Author
Oliver Hayes has written several books, ebooks and magazine articles about British history. His grandfather was from Ireland, his grandmother from Wales and he himself lives in England - giving him a special overview of the historical nations of Britain.

Wednesday 25 January 2017

NEW BOOK - The Coronations of King Henry VIII by Rupert Matthews

Paperback available HERE
Ebook available HERE

The coronations of Henry VIII tell us a great deal about this extraordinary monarch. They reveal how he saw himself and how he wanted to be seen by others - both his own subjects and foreign rulers.
Henry was never shy about ceremony, display or extravagance. He enjoyed displays of pomp and ceremony as a way of getting across to his subjects messages about himself, his reign and how he saw his role in the world.
Few ceremonies offered as great a canvas on which to paint such images as does a coronation. It was, and remains, the premier ceremony in English royal life. In Henry's time it was an event of supreme political significance as well. Monarchs in Tudor times held real power in a way that they don't today. The coronation was a vital element in the political life of the nation.
Even in Henry's time it was an ancient ceremony with features and elements of ancient importance and ritual significance. But it has never been a static ritual. Henry felt free to change the ceremony of coronation to suit his own purposes - not just once but several times.
The people he invited, the roles he gave them and even the clothes he ordered them to wear were all deeply symbolic. No detail too small for Henry's eye. He was a huge man in more ways than one - larger than life and with a massive sense of his own impression. And he was determined that others would agree with him.
Most monarchs only go through one coronation ceremony. A few manage more than that, but generally only if they happen to be monarch of more than one country. James Stuart, for instance, was crowned King of Scotland in 1567 when he was only 13 months old. He was then crowned King of England in 1603 after inheriting that throne from his cousin Queen Elizabeth I.
This book looks at the coronations of King Henry VIII. It shows us how the coronations reveal so much about this greatest of all English monarchs.

About the Author

Rupert Matthews is a freelance writer of books on a variety of subjects. He has been writing books for some years and has had more than 150 titles published in 30 different languages. Some of those books have been for grown ups, but others have been for children aged 5 upwards. He has also presented TV shows and performed on radio as well.
Rupert Matthews has written more than a hundred history books for adults and for children. His works show a great attention to detail and frequently take a new and refreshing look at the subjects in hand. He is able to provide artwork references and to check artwork for accuracy. He is also able to produce maps and very often photos as well.
Rupert tweets as @HistoryRupert;

Monday 16 January 2017

New paperback book - The Female Pope: The True Story of Pope Joan

The Female Pope: The True Story of Pope Joan

For many centuries it was accepted almost without discussion that the priesthood, and pastoral work more generally, was exclusively a male domain. Women had a role within the Christian Church, as nuns or lay workers, but the giving of the sacraments was seen as a male preserve. And yet for centuries rumours and legends have swirled about that one woman did get to be pope in Rome. The Catholic Church has always denied the stories, but they refuse to go away. It is now time to look anew at these old stories and try to discover the truth that lies behind them. In this book Oliver Hayes looks at the legends of a Female Pope and uncovers the startline truth that lies behind them. 
Chapter 1 - The Legend of the Female Pope 
Chapter 2 - The Legend under Scrutiny 
Chapter 3 - The Real Female Pope
Buy it HERE

Thursday 12 January 2017

NEW BOOK : The History of Buttons

We tend to take buttons rather for granted these days. They are the ubiquitous fastener in all our wardrobes. We do them up in the morning without much thought. But in fact the humble button has been essential to the Western World for centuries. It made possible tailoring and fashion as we know them today. Without the button we would be quite undone.
We use buttons on shirts, jackets, skirts, dresses, suits, overcoats and a host of other clothing. These days they are so cheap that many people give them little regard. When you buy a shirt, blouse or jacket it comes with buttons already on it. When the garment wears out most people chuck out the buttons along with the item of clothing. Only a few of us bother to keep the buttons - mostly on the grounds that they "might come in handy one day". They rarely do, of course, because the next garment we buy also has buttons.
The modern wardrobe would be lost without buttons. It can come as a bit of a shock, therefore, to learn that humans had been coping without buttons perfectly well until fairly recently. Indeed, buttons are a surprisingly modern invention.
Not so very long ago nobody used buttons to do up their clothes. And when buttons did first come in they were not treated as lightly as they are today. Time was when buttons sent out important social messages about status, occupation and wealth.
The button has a long and distinguished history. But to understand just how crucial the button is, we need to start back before it had been invented.

Title:               The History of Buttons
Author:           Rupert Matthews
Format:           196 x 132 mm landscape
Extent:            58pp (10pp colour)
Photos:           60

How to Order:
Send a cheque made payable to "Rupert Matthews" for £5 per book, plus £2.90 postage and packing for up to 7 books, to:
Book Orders
8 Fir Tree Close
KT17 3LD.
The books "The History of Christmas Food" and "Winter God: The Authorised Biography of Father Christmas" are also available at £5 each.