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A Fortune to India

by Tony Foot

book social history film studies publishers 1857: Jack Finch has always regarded himself as the boy from the poorer part of the village, lucky to have been the friend of James Fortune from 'the big house' and to have fought alongside him in the Crimea. But when James dies in combat, Jack has to return his effects back to his family: and that's where he falls in love with James's former fiancée, Lady Eleanor, and learns a secret that will change his life. Before he can pursue his heart's desire, Jack is sent with his regiment, the Rifle Brigade, to India to quell a sepoy munity. Cawnpore and Lucknow have fallen into rebel hands and Jack plays a cat-and-mouse game with the rebel leaders, disguising himself as an Indian and entering enemy territory at great risk to his life. Mutineers are not the only hazard: the intriguing and bejewelled Rani Laksmi Bai and her alluring maidservant represent a very different kind of threat. Will he ever see Eleanor again? In this gripping sequel to The Fortunes at War, Tony Foot vividly captures the sights and sounds of nineteenth-century India and the fighting life of a member of the Rifle Brigade.

Paperback, 220 pages, £8.99
ISBN 978-1-911105-29-9

800 Days in Doha

by Penelope Gordon

book social history film studies publishers When Penelope Gordon was headhunted to go and work in Doha, Qatar, her sole experience of the Middle East had been a brief luxury break in Dubai. Her husband Lionel, a much-travelled naval officer, was more blasé about the move, but neither was quite prepared for the experience that followed. Penelope left her NHS job at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth to head up medical leadership and education in a state-of-the-art set of hospitals in Qatar - a country, she discovered, where there were no maps, where everyone drove their cars rather like they'd drive camels (fast and wildly), where many of her female staff were completely swathed in black with only their eyes visible, and where no-one expected to have to do something when there was a servant to do it for them, even if it was only pressing the 'start' button on the coffee machine. In this captivating and amusing memoir, Penelope shows how she managed to find the humour in dealing with a culture that was often baffling and opaque - and how she not only survived 800 days in Doha, but turned it into an adventure.

Paperback, 193 pages, £9.99
ISBN 978-1-911105-32-9

See a video of Penelope Gordon reading from 800 Days in Doha:

Memories of Haslar:
Staff and Patients Write About Britain's
Best-Loved Hospital

compiled by Eric Birbeck and David Gary

book social history film studies publishers Memories of Haslar is packed with stories and anecdotes from patients and staff, plus over 100 photographs, many from the hospital's own archives. The stories told here span seven decades, from World War II to the day Haslar closed its doors for the last time in 2009. Some will make you laugh, and some undoubtedly will bring a tear to your eye. All will make you realise just what a special place Haslar occupies in so many people's hearts.

Illustrated paperback, £9.99, 160 pages
Available exclusively from the publisher: not available in bookshops.

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Felix Wild
A Foundling on Board HMS Warrior

by Peter Broadbent

book social history film studies publishers Gosport, 1860. Felix Wild has lived on the streets and on his wits for all his young life. He's been a mudlark at The Hard, eaten tallow when there was nothing else to be had, picked oakum in Forton Gaol, and acquired a skill for 'tup-tup-tupping' from the women of Haslar. He has no family, no idea of how old he might be, and has never heard of Christmas. But he has one remarkable talent: he can make a perfect drawing, from memory, of anything that he has seen. Saved from a further spell in prison by the wealthy William Kettle, Felix joins the Kettle household in East London and is employed to make drawings of the building of a magnificent new iron-clad vessel, HMS Warrior. His eagerness to learn new things knows no bounds: from working out how to use a knife and fork, and reading a dictionary from cover to cover, to being given the 'tipsy key' for the chronometers during his first voyage on board Warrior as she conducts sea-trials. While the men he meets are in awe of his drawing skills, the young women are absorbed in rather less cerebral matters, namely the fit of his fashionably tight 'gas-pipe' trousers and his distinctive looks - one eye is blue, the other green. Felix Wild is a captivating novel that has all the affectionate humour and vivid sense of place that has made Peter Broadbent's naval memoirs so popular.

Hardback, 342 pages, cover price £18, our price £15
ISBN 978-1-911105-21-3

Paperback, 342 pages, £10.99
ISBN 978-1-911105-22-0

Sebastian - A Travelling Bear

by Alan Field

book social history film studies publishers When Sebastian says he wants to travel, the other toys suggest a trip to the North Pole or the Equator. But Sebastian is just a teddy-bear: how could he possibly go around the world on his own? Fate steps in, and soon he is on an adventure that takes him first to Paris and then on a train bound for Russia. Along the way, he has his portrait painted, joins a circus, becomes a magician's assistant, and is mistaken for the Abominable Snowman.

Paperback, 118 pages, £5.99
ISBN 978-1-911105-11-4
Read an extract from Sebastian - A Travelling Bear in Issue 9 of Inside Story

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The Legend of John Macnab

by James Christie

book social history film studies publishers John Sandiman is a librarian at a run-down Glasgow college full of feckless students and overseen by hopeless jobsworths. Fed up with his job, still mourning the cowardly way that Jessica, his ex-girlfriend, dumped him and bemoaning the apathy of the Scots, Sandiman dreams of the time when Caledonia was led by kings. So when Natalie, his colleague and drinking buddy, mentions something called The Book of Deer, he takes no notice. After all, there's little a librarian can do to change the world. Or is there? What Sandiman did not anticipate was that a fictional character from Scotland's past would come vibrantly to life, hurling him into a quest to face his own past and change his country's future. Spanning two millennia from the sea kingdom of Dalriada to the Scottish referendum of 1997, The Legend of John Macnab takes readers behind events they thought they knew and brings them face-to-face with a forgotten icon more splendid than the Stone of Destiny.

Paperback, 250 pages, £9.99
ISBN 978-1-909183-96-4
Read an extract from The Legend of John Macnab in Issue 8 of Inside Story

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Going Over the Water: Memories of the Gosport Ferry

compiled by David Gary

book social history film studies publishers The Gosport Ferry occupies a special place in people's lives. Day in, day out, it calmly plies back and forth across Portsmouth Harbour, and though the ferries themselves may have changed over the years - from steam-boats with open decks, where passengers were exposed to the elements, to the comfortable diesel craft of today with their heated saloons - they are still the source of familiar stories, handed down through the generations. This fascinating book contains dozens of those stories: of the ferry that got lost in the fog, of the man who misjudged the leap from the pontoon and ended up in the water, of the pile of bicycles on the bow, of the Dockyard matey who met the girl of his dreams on board, of seeing down into the engine-room below, and even of the dog that travelled on the first ferry every morning - on his own - to go to Portsmouth Meat Market for a bone. Many recall the 'Floating Bridge' too, and although no-one is alive today who remembers the days of the 'wherrymen' who used to row customers across the Harbour, their names and their legacy live on.

Illustrated paperback, £9.99
Available exclusively from the publisher: not available in bookshops.
Read an extract from Going Over the Water: Memories of the Gosport Ferry in Issue 10 of Inside Story

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The Happiest Days of Their Lives?

Nineteenth-century education
through the eyes of those who were there

by Marion Aldis and Pam Inder

book social history film studies publishers What do you think of when you hear the phrase 'nineteenth-century schooling'? The bullies of Tom Brown's Schooldays? The cane-wielding headmaster of Dotheboys Hall in Nicholas Nickleby? Or Latin lessons, writing slates, learning-by-rote and the smell of ink? In this lively and engrossing book, Marion Aldis and Pam Inder separate the truth from the fiction by examining the diaries, letters and drawings of children and teachers from schools across the United Kingdom. The result is a vivid picture of what it was really like to be at school in the nineteenth century. Among the characters in this book are Ralphy, hopelessly unteachable but an avid collector of 'curiosities'; Miss Paraman, sadistic teacher in a Dame School; Ann, who became a bluestocking in spite of chaotic home-schooling; Gerald, who spent too much time at Harrow School on cricket and socialising; the Quaker school where both girls and boys studied algebra, chemistry and shorthand; Sarah Jane, enrolled in a lace school at the age of six; and the National Schools where children were absent during the harvest.

Illustrated paperback, 318 pages, £10.99
ISBN 978-1-911105-01-5

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