Friday, 15 November 2019

An Adventure in Education

An Adventure in Education Derek Esp MBE never expected or intended to have a career in education. But he did and he had an adventurous career, too!

Whilst at university he enrolled on an Education course and he discovered that not only did he have passion for learning he also had a love for passing on knowledge by being a teacher.

In 1959 he was appointed to the role of Youth Officer for Central Shropshire, England's largest inland county.

Not only did he have a passion for imparting knowledge, he also found that he had a natural gift for leadership.

After his start in central Shropshire, he worked in three counties as an education officer. Eventually he moved on to other roles where he was responsible for leading a number of educational initiative and was also responsible for helping to develop some new schools.

His last role was that of Director of Education for the county of Lincolnshire.

After taking early retirement  from working in local government he became an educational consultant, taking leading roles in a number of national projects.

He decided to take an active role in local politics, becoming a county council member and he became the chairman of a county educational committee.

In his entertaining and thoughtful book he records how educational was subject to a wide range of reforms between 1960 to 1990.

He was involved in a number of initiatives including County Youth Drama competitions, working with youth workers, the development of many different educational programmes and new schools.

It is an interesting book that should be on the bookshelves of anyone who has an interest in the recent history of education.

It is to be published by Matador on November 28th at £8.99.

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

Hedgehog Christmas

In Hedgehog Christmas David Hills brings you a heartwarming story of a new adventure for a young boy called Alistair and his good friend, Hamish the Hedgehog.

It's set just before Christmas and Alistair returns home one day to discover that there is an unusual and very sparkly box on the table in the family dining room. It was sent to him by Hamish.

In the box, Alistair finds Oscar, who is a small but very fun filled rabbit, called Oscar.

Upon the eventual arrival of Christmas Eve, Oscar insists on taking Alistair out into the snow-bedecked garden to play. Oscar takes Alistair through a hjole in the garden where they are faced with a gigantic door made of ice.

Mr Tilly, Hamish's rat friend and Hamish greet them at the doorway and instantly the friends are all off on an incredible Christmas adventure.

There's a hedgehog sledding race, an absolutely splendid Hedgehog Christmas party and the wonderful opportunity to have an audience with the Queen of the Hedgehogs in her sparkling palace!

Then Alistair wakes up in bed, in his own bedroom. So, it was all as dream, was it? Perhaps not. But to learn what happens next, you'll need to read the book.

It's published by The Book Guild at £6.99 and it has got to be on your Christmas book gift list for Christmas 2019!

The Knobbly, Wobbly, Bobbly Celeriac

The Knobbly, Wobbly, Bobbly Celeriac s a highly entertaining bit very educational book that is aimed at inspiring children and their parents to get into some healthy eating habits.

Children will learn about the vegetables that are available, but in a fresh and very fun-filled way.

There are rhymes to help the vegetables come alive to the children and a whole load of fantastic, yet fairly simple, recipes for Mums, dads and Children (under guidance from adults, of course!) to try out for themselves.

Read along whilst Alex and Morgan and their mum learn all about different and new vegetables, how to select them, how to prepare them and how to cook them.

The illustrations in the book are bright and colourful and the book was written by Alexandra Campbell in cooperation with Purely Nutrition Ltd.

It is published by Matador at £9.99 and really should be under every Christmas tree this year.

It's Complicated

It's Complicated is a book about the searching for true love. How complicated, exactly, could it be? How difficult? Well, it turns out that for Michelle, a woman with two children and who is in her middle years, it is both complicated and difficult.

Michelle's life has been destroyed when she discovers that the love of her life, her partner is actually a cheating rat.

So, Michele decides that she'd like to dip her toes back into the dating pool.

But now, years after she last dated, the situation is vastly different. And she decides to surf the online dating websites in her searches for companionship and, hopefully, love.

She meets, or communicates, with many different men. There are men who are tedious, who are overly committed to their jobs to the exclusion of everything else in their lives, including love. No wonder they are on a dating site.

There are sports fanatics, the mentally deluded, men who are trying to operate a scam on the hapless women they try to get their claws into on the dating sites.

Michelle was horrified to discover a sub-set of the men on the dating sites who were leading a double life, pretending to be single on the dating sites, whilst pretending to be a loving, dutiful husband to the wife back at home.

And when questioned about their marital status, would come out with the old cliche: "It's complicated."

It's a book that veers from being utterly hilarious to quite moving. Michele Paul has written a very entertaining book that is all the more interesting because it's not fiction, it's actually a memoir!

It's published by The Book Guild at £8.99.

Monday, 28 October 2019

Brexit - The Benefit of Hindsight

In Brexit - The Benefit of Hindsight Industry expert Peace E.  Ani presents readers with an illuminating analysis of the likely economic impact of Brexit.

It's three years on from the most important referendum vote in a generation (the last such an important referendum vote was the first European Referendum in 1974) there have been many different Brexit Secretaries, several rejected deals, much debate that has generated more heat than light, yet the fundamental question remain, according to the author, what, exactly, does Britain want from Brexit?

Some people claim that the financial sector in the UK will be most at risk, which would have a knock on impact on the rest of the British economy.

Despite being able to access the Single Market, a substantial proportion of the financial services industry actually voted to leave.

The author points out that, far from being informed by xenophobia or anti-immigration sentiments, recent research indicates hat the leave vote was based on a rational analysis and assessment of the costs and the benefits of continued EU membership for Britain. As for the financial sector this was also influenced by "post-crisis regulatory reform."The industry, points out Peace E.  Ani, was disproportionately impacted by Brexit due the "divergence of business models within the industry, based on the relative reliance on domestic, international or European trade."

As a financial services professional with in excess of 15 years' experience in the industry, Peace E. Ani is well placed to ask these very important questions and posit some answers to them.

Questions such as: What does the UK want from Brexit? will our economy suffer? Or could there be some benefits for Britain in a post-Brexit world?

The book is published by Matador and should be required reading for everyone be they pro-Brexit or anti-Brexit.

It is published by Matador at £8.99.


In Triton we go on a journey of sex, booze and rock 'n' roll, in the Devonshire countryside of the 1950s.

Johnny, Len and Danny are three typical teen lads of their era. Well, of any era, to an extent. Their lives revolve around sex, their motorbikes and rock 'n' roll music.

Johnny is a mechanic who is very keen to leave home, but he know that, twelve months down the line, National Service will come knocking on whatever door he is living behind.

However, he has his treasured Triton motorbike on which he lavishes his attention to take his mind off the stuff he cannot do anything about.

Then there is Len. Len is a bit different from his mates. He is an ex-public schoolboy, who has found himself sent off the the Royal Navy, (not a usual national Service posting, it must be said) and as for Danny? He is working as a farm labourer without, it appears, a care in the whole world.

The three lads enjoy their lives to the full, with bikes, booze and birds.

But what if there was a dark secret that lurked beneath the surface, a dark secret that was unspeakable and which could blow their cosy existence apart?

This is a very moving an thoughtful book that looks at some difficult yet important themes.

It is written by Morgan Smith who is an award-winning author. She has enjoyed writing since her childhood.

The book is published by The Book Guild at £

Son of a Jacobite

In Son of a Jacobite author Professor T. J. Lovat employs research into his own family's history to write this historical work of fiction.

It's April, 1746. Thomas Lovat was born on the last day of the Jacobite Rebellion that took place at Culloden.

As he was being born, his father was breathing his last, killed on the field of battle.

The rest of Thomas' life is coloured and deeply affected by the loss of his father and also by the impact of the subsequent Highland Clearances.

Thomas grew up aware of his heritage and also of the hurt and anger that the events had engendered. He was a somewhat confused young man, as he grew into his adulthood.

He leaves Britain and travels to the Middle East, where he meets and weds the first love of his life, who bears him a child.

Upon returning the Britain, Thomas joins the British Army and leaves for America, in the time prior to the American War of Independence. When the revolution flares up, Thomas finds himself conflicted as he struggles to come to terms with his oen Jacobite heritage and his sworn duties as an officer in the British Army.

It is a moving account with historical fact interwoven with intelligent and well thought out speculation to fill in the gaps of the historical narrative.

It is published by Matador on 28th November at £12.00.