13 Nov 2009
Many congratulations to Frances Woodsford who celebrated her ninty-sixth birthday on Wednesday - a birthday she shares with her agent though he is a little younger - and whose memoir Dear Mr Bigelow, recently Radio 4 Book of the Week, is selling well.
Frances Woodsford can be seen talking about her book on YouTube: Dear Mr Bigelow/Frances woodsford
Sue Baker’s review at www.lovereading.co.uk is at Dear Mr Bigelow: A Transatlantic Friendship
Peter Burton writes in today’s Daily Express “a vividly observed picture of suburban life in a Britain of more than 60 years ago…Frances Woodsford’s letters were presumed destroyed as had been those of the Commodore. That they survived is astonishing. They are a treat to be savoured.”
The full review can be found at DEAR MR BIGELOW: A TRANSATLANTIC FRIENDSHIP: FRANCES WOODSFORD
13 Nov 2009
Congratulations to Cassie Harte whose first book I Did Tell, I Did has gone to no 1 in the paperback non-fiction bestseller list.
Cathy Glass’s The Saddest Girl in the World , also published by Harper Collins, remains in the same bestseller list at no 5.
Two books continually in the top five over the space of three weeks is not bad for a small agency!
13 Nov 2009
1million people watched Mike Perham’s film about sailing single-handed around the world- not bad for bonfire night.
Mike’s just been nominated for BBC Young Sports Personality of the
13 Nov 2009
Chris Lloyd’s excellent lectures at The Royal Institution based on his books What on Earth Evolved and What on Earth Happened are now available on YouTube
11 Nov 2009
Andrew Lownie will be appearing at Jez Fez, a festival of writing, in York 9th-11th April 2010. More details at http://www.writersworkshop.co.uk/index.html
06 Nov 2009
Jago Lee’s gripping Channel 4 documentary about Mike Perham’s single-handed circumnavigation of the world went out last night.
The film can be seen on 4oD, link here: The Boy Who Sailed the World
Mike’s book, Dangerous Seas, has just been sold to Transworld and will be published next March.
05 Nov 2009
“this compelling history.” Evening Standard
“Wolmar tells these stories well and brings out the drama of the situations…Among the more interesting sections are the discussions of the importance of railways in warfare…The book as a whole is very readable, and one can only admire anyone who undertakes such a huge task.” Literary Review
“…a book both for the historian and the traveller, as it explains the political, social and economic background to many of the great railway journeys of the world, such as the Trans-Siberian. And it fills a gap for, although there are many individual studies of railways in different countries, there is none that examines the railway as a worldwide phenomenon…this rich, rewarding book…” Gavin Stamp, Country Life
05 Nov 2009
An example of the sort of fan mail and loyalty Cathy Glass’s memoirs generate. No wonder each book is a bestseller!
Where do I start? I have read all of your books, Damaged, Hidden, Cut and The Saddest Girl In The World and have been moved by all of them. Not one book has been read with dry eyes. I think you are such an amazing person for doing what you have done over the years for the children you have accepted into your care, your home and your family. Your children Adrian and Paula and later Lucy deserve a big Well Done too for the patience and understanding they have shown to children who are not as lucky as they are to have a wonderful Mum like you.
Everything you do for the children has such an impact on their lives and their futures, you must be so proud. Reading those four book’s is surely just the tip of the iceberg? they are four out of the many you have fostered over the years.
Amazing work and you make it sound so effortless sometimes! I know with some you have encountered real problems but you seem to handle any situation with ease. I am a single Mum of 2 boys and it’s not easy, but you are a true inspiration to me, I do the best I can for them,and provide them with the things so many children don’t have…..love, care and stability.
I have always wanted to do something as rewarding as you, but I don’t think I would be able to cope emotionally with the situations I could be put in. I am a Teaching Assistant in a local Primary School and that is very rewarding. I am looking forward to 2010/2011 and the release of Happy Kids, Girl in the Mirror, Kids in Care and Eclipse of the Heart. It is nice to hear you are writing novels…can’t wait for those. Every time I have finished one of your books, I look forward to the next. Just this time I have to wait a bit longer! I would like to wish you Best Wishes and Good Luck for your future, keep writing please xx you are an inspiration.
04 Nov 2009
“…a detailed and enjoyable political history of the British aristocracy…a readable, chronological account packed with lively and interesting anecdotes…James’s writing is easy and fluent, and (that) his book is written for the general reader, not for the scholar, the historian or the professional genealogist. His chapters on the Irish aristocracy, on American republicanism, on the Whig movement and on aristocratic sporting habits are all first rate, but where he excels is in his frequent and fine descriptions of the shifting balance in relations between the aristocracy and the Crown, and between the aristocracy and the middleclass. He demonstrates considerable skill in marshalling vast amounts of disparate material and forming it all into a coherent and structured whole. There is not a single page without some peculiarly interesting fact upon it…This is atavistic history, to be read aloud at the fireside, a book that returns to the once popular notion that English history is essentially a history of the monarchy and the aristocracy. Does anyone remember Our Island Story? A wonderful book – well, this is the same sort of thing, only for grown-ups.” Alexander Waugh, Literary Review
“Lawrence James’s stylish book is a reminder of the extraordinary staying power of Britain’s aristocracy from 1066 into the 20th century….one of the delights of this book is its attention to noblemen who tend to be overlooked in histories preoccupied with the big political families.” Sunday Express
“James traces the history of the aristocracy at breakneck speed in two dozen short and snappy chapters with few pretensions to scholarship but a keen eye for amusing details…he keeps the anecdotes flowing nicely. “ Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times
“…paints the nobility with all its warts….he has a gift for illustrating points with memorable examples and writing generally pithy prose…” Financial Times
“…an entertaining work…” Noel Malcolm, Spectator
“…this erudite history…He is brilliant at dissecting the changing fashions of architecture as an expression of power…He has an aptitude for the literary flourish and caustic aside…” Times Literary Supplement
“An accessible history of the last 900 years through the perspective of the aristocracy, and of the aristocracy through that of this history, Lawrence James’s well-written book…” Jeremy Black, BBC History Magazine
“…this engaging history.” Bookseller
“Impeccably researched, balanced and brilliantly entertaining, Aristocrats is an enthralling history of power, influence and an extraordinary knack for survival of a class that has always wielded power and exerted influence on culture, sport, politics and much else besides…” Warwick Books
“Lawrence James has written the story of this ruling class and its nine-hundred-year rule with an insight and accuracy that lays bare the infrastructure that supports a much misunderstood function, whilst putting it vividly in context.” The Resident
04 Nov 2009
‘WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW ?’ [Daily Mail, 16 October 2009] BY JEFFREY ARCHER:
I am reading We Danced All Night by Martin Pugh (Vintage £8.99). This excellent book is a social history of Britain which covers the period between the two World Wars. I was born in 1940, so I find it particularly fascinating. I’d quite forgotten the days before television, refigerators, mobile phones, canned Coca Cola, when we had 240 pennies in the pound, no parking meters and a king was still on the throne.’