Review By Michael D Booker (May 2007)
in May 2007
UK Price:£ 29.95
The History of the Commonwealth Wargraves Commission
historians and family history researchers along with the many of
the thousands who regularly visit the battlefields and Commonwealth
War cemeteries around the globe each year, will be delighted with
this superb large format colourful volume, which in a mixture of
words and beautiful photographs chronicles the history of the multi-national
organization that is tasked with caring for the final resting places
of over 1.7 million Commonwealth war dead of both the Great and
Second World Wars.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission who’s work is funded
by the Australian, British, Canadian, Indian, New Zealand and South
African Governments, skilfully and caringly maintains cemeteries
in no less than 23,000 cemeteries in locations spanning 170 countries
worldwide, was founded 90 years ago with the aim of recording the
exact burial places of servicemen killed in battle and providing
them with a grave, where without distinction in rank, race or creed,
but with uniformity would be remembered in perpetuity.
Writing this book would not have been an easy task, however the
author has succeeded, in not only covering the history of the Commission,
but has also cleverly “woven in” many fascinating stories
behind the headstones adding a human and sensitive perspective to
the history too. This factor alone makes fascinating reading however,
when the text is coupled together with Brian Harris’s brilliant
and very often artistic photographs taken in Europe, Canada, the
Middle and Far East, the volume becomes more valuable to both the
researcher and casual reader.
As all royalties from the sale of this excellent volume are being
donated towards the work of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission,
I would therefore urge anyone with an interest is this fascinating
subject to purchase this volume to assist them in keeping up their
Review By Michael D Booker (June 2007)
General Sir Frank Kitson
in February 2007
UK Price:£ 8.99
The Military Biography of Oliver Cromwell
excellent volume represents superb value for money and it is therefore
a must for Civil War enthusiasts.
author- a former Commander in Chief of UK Land Forces with 40 years
military service under his belt has carried out extensive research
and as a result, with skilful penmanship, he has cleverly and successfully
achieved a great deal in this short but comprehensive, handy sized
volume which is in my opinion a potted history of the English Civil
purchasing the publication will find the author's very readable
narrative revealing and most useful in helping them understand why
Cromwell proved so successful. It covers Cromwell’s actions
at Marston Moor, 2nd Newbury, the advance to and Battle of Naseby
plus the Preston Campaign, together with exploits in Scotland and
Ireland and of course Dunbar!
useful black and white photographs of key personalities add to the
interesting text. The author’s epilogue and assessment are
useful and therefore for those seeking a general overview and this
famous character in British history, this volume is invaluable.
Review By Michael D Booker (June 2007)
Ian F W Beckett
978 0 297 7478 2
in maY 2007
UK Price:£ 9.99 (paperback)
BRITISH REGIMENTAL TRADITIONS
very useful, handy sized and splendid value for money volume from
Shire, which I am sure will appeal to a wide range of readers with
an interest in matters military.
The British Army is justly proud
of its Regimental traditions and although some, such as the Trooping
the Colour are famous worldwide, the majority will probably be unfamiliar
to the outsider and may even seem strange and confusing at times,
to even the serving soldier, especially those new to a particular
Regiment or corps.
The author – no stranger to
Shire Books, has cleverly covered the period from the emergence
of the British Army in the days of Charles II, through its subsequent
expansion over the past three hundred plus years, to the most recent
amalgamations and in 2007. A mamouth task one might think, however
in the short space of this compact volume, he provides the reader
with a fascinating insight into the cavalry, the infantry and corps
of the regular army, as well as the militia and territorial army.
Regimental customs and ranks, together with the uniforms and badges
they wear and the weapons and equipment they use are featured in
chapters that also include ceremonials and bands, mascots and nicknames,
along with medals and memorials too.
In common with other publications
from Shire, this volume also includes many excellent high quality
black and white and colour photographs, together with suggestions
for further reading and a detailed index. Researchers and enthusiasts
will also find the comprehensive list of military museums useful
and therefore a must for days out.
bought a first edition copy of this excellent title over thirty
years ago and have found it an invaluable source of reference on
many occasions. I therefore have no hesitation in recommending this
much updated and improved edition to any researcher or militaria
collector. I would stick my neck out and advise any new recruits
entering the army to purchase a copy too.
17 February, 2009