British History Books

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Take a journey into the past with our collection of English and British history books. We have a wide range of books perfect for the history buff in your life, covering everything from the monarchy to both World Wars. Just use the filters below and delve into the history of the British Isles.

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The ideal gift for royal fans. This is the story of a life dedicated to public service, reported by The Times as it unfolded. From her time as a young princess to that as an internationally admired head of state, Queen Elizabeth has always fascinated and intrigued. Discover insights and memories, and see a changing society reflected in reporting from throughout the 70-year reign of Britain’s longest serving monarch. Published to commemorate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, this detailed profile features essays, articles and full-colour images drawn from The Times archives. Writers from The Times and leading royal historians – among them Ben Macintyre, Kate Williams and Hugo Vickers – salute her achievements and offer insights into what lies behind the public façade of the Crown. Product Information: • ISBN: 9780008485207 • Author: James Owen and Times Books  • Publisher: Times Books • Format: Hardback • Pages: 272 • Dimensions: 23.6 x 19.51 x 2.54cm

4.3 ({1})
£14.00 RRP £20.00 Save £6.00 (30% Off RRP)

A magnificent tribute to the life and reign of Queen Elizabeth II, and a celebration of the British royal family. A stunning pictorial biography of Queen Elizabeth II, recounting her childhood, succession to the throne, and her dutiful service as the reigning monarch of Britain. This biography of the Queen also includes the history of the Royal family and the house of Windsor. Queen Elizabeth II and the Royal Family 3rd Edition features accounts of most of the royal household including the Queen and Prince Philip's children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren! Inside the pages of this biography you'll find: - The complete history of the kings and queens of England and Scotland, explaining the story of succession to the throne over more than 1,000 years - Special features profile royal residences, including Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle - Dazzling photographic galleries showcasing royal regalia, artefacts as well as rare, restricted and exclusive photographs - Visual timelines at the start of each chapter highlight the key milestones in the history of the monarchy For almost 70 years the Queen has been beloved and admired by the British public, the commonwealth, heads of states and many others. Following her ascent to the throne at the age of 27, she's spent her entire life in service of the public and state. This biography celebrates her life through photographs and profiles and provides the reader with insight into the world's most famous royal family members. Teaming with dazzling galleries of royal artefacts, photographic tours, royal residences, and the Royals up close makes this the perfect book for fans of the royal family or anyone interested in the history of the British monarchy. Product Information: • ISBN: 9780241487433 • Author: DK • Publisher: DK • Format: Hardback • Pages: 328 • Dimensions: 29 x 24.4 x 2.6cm

3.5 ({1})
£15.00 RRP £25.00 Save £10.00 (40% Off RRP)

When thinking of the Queen, our first image is one of dignity and authority. She is the very definition of majesty: the British monarch, the Supreme Governor of the Church of England and the head of the Commonwealth. But as anyone who knows her will tell you, in person she has a wicked sense of humour. Occasionally unintentional (when meeting guitar legend Eric Clapton she enquired 'Have you been playing a long time?'), sometimes cannily astute ('I have to be seen to be believed') and at times downright silly (nicely demonstrated when staff at Balmoral discovered the Queen jumping up and down with glee exclaiming 'I've won, I've won!' after hearing that England had beaten Australia in the cricket), her sense of humour is like no other. Revealing a side of the Queen's personality that the public rarely see, this joyous little book is a timely celebration of royal humour as Elizabeth II succeeds Victoria as Britain's longest-serving monarch. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781782433651 • Author: Karen Dolby • Publisher: Michael O'Mara • Format: Hardback • Pages: 158 • Dimensions: 20.5 x 13.5 x 1.5cm

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£3.00 RRP £9.99 Save £6.99 (70% Off RRP)

Queen Elizabeth II is the longest-serving monarch in British history. She has been a towering presence in British national life and throughout the world for almost 70 years and it is this extraodinary life that former BBC correspondent Jennie Bond explores and celebrates. On February 6, 1952, Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh, became Queen on the death of her father, King George VI. The reign that was to see major changes both in the country and Commonwealth and in the role of the monarchy began far away from Britain in a game reserve in Kenya. Elizabeth: A Celebration in Photographs, looks at this remarkable period in the history of Britain's monarchy in lavish and fascinating detail, featuring over 240 photographs. Constantly under scrutiny ever since she took the throne, this book presents a balanced and absorbing account of the Queen's life and of her role as the head of state in a country and a world that have changed almost beyond recognition in the seventy years since she inherited the throne. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781787394803 • Author: Jennie Bond • Publisher: Welbeck Publishing • Format: Hardback • Pages: 224 • Dimensions: 27.94 x 23.5 x 1.91 cm

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£12.00 RRP £20.00 Save £8.00 (40% Off RRP)

In 1922, three men - only one of whom had previously heard of 'broadcasting' - founded the BBC. In doing so, Arthur Burrows, Cecil Lewis, and John Reith set out to accomplish something utterly bold: using what had been a weapon of war - Marconi's wireless - to remake culture for the good of humanity. In The BBC: A People's History, professor and historian David Hendy traces the BBC from its maverick beginnings through war, the creation of television, changing public taste, austerity and massive cultural change. The BBC has constantly evolved, developing from one radio station, to television, then multiple channels and now the competition with the internet and streaming services. This is a history of a now global institution that defines Britain and created modern broadcasting; it is also a reflection of 100 years of British history. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781781255254 • Author: David Hendy • Publisher: Profile Books • Format: Hardback • Pages: 656 • Dimensions: 23.8 x 15.8 x 5.2 cm

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£12.00 Was £17.00 RRP £25.00 Save £13.00 (52% Off RRP)

A sparkling celebration of our much-loved Queen Elizabeth II for her Platinum Jubilee including special writings and illuminating insights around key moments in her 70-year reign, introduced and edited by her biggest fan Joanna Lumley. In 2022 Queen Elizabeth II celebrates seventy years as Queen and Head of the Commonwealth. She is Britain's longest reigning monarch and the very first to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee. A Queen For All Seasons, edited and introduced by Joanna Lumley, is a perceptive, touching and engaging tribute to this unique woman. A treasure chest of first-hand writings, insights and snapshots of the Queen during key moments of her reign to form a vibrant portrait of the woman herself and the extraordinary role she plays. Joanna Lumley guides us as we meet Princess Elizabeth in 1952, aged just twenty-five, and about to become Queen, and brings us through to the present day when, as our matriarch, the Queen keeps the national ship steady, including in moments of crisis and suffering. Here are unique perspectives into some of the most fascinating aspects of the Queen's life - her role as head of state at home and abroad, her private passions and public interests and a bird's-eye look at key events that have held the nation together and the Queen in our affection throughout Britain and beyond. This book is a special and unique portrait of our constant Queen in an ever-changing world. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781529375923 • Author: Joanna Lumley • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton • Format: Hardback • Pages: 320 • Dimensions: 23.6 x 16 x 3.2 cm

4.5 ({1})
£12.00 RRP £20.00 Save £8.00 (40% Off RRP)

September 1613. In Belvoir Castle, the heir of one of England’s great noble families falls suddenly and dangerously ill. His body is ‘tormented’ with violent convulsions. Within a few short weeks he will suffer an excruciating death. Soon the whole family will be stricken with the same terrifying symptoms. The second son, the last male of the line, will not survive. It is said witches are to blame. And so the Earl of Rutland’s sons will not be the last to die. Witches traces the dramatic events which unfolded at one of England’s oldest and most spectacular castles four hundred years ago. The case is among those which constitute the European witch craze of the 15th-18th centuries, when suspected witches were burned, hanged, or tortured by the thousand. But as Tracy Borman reveals here, it is not quite typical. The most powerful and Machiavellian figure of the Jacobean court had a vested interest in events at Belvoir.He would mastermind a conspiracy that has remained hidden for centuries. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781529195323 • Author: Tracy Borman • Publisher: Vintage • Format: Paperback • Pages: 320 • Dimensions: 19.8 x 12.9 x 2.1 cm

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£3.00 RRP £11.99 Save £8.99 (75% Off RRP)

Soldiers is a very personal gathering of sparkling, gripping tales by many writers, about men and women who have borne arms. The nearly 350 stories illustrate what it is like to fight in wars, to live and die as a warrior, from Greek and Roman times through to recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Here you will meet Jewish heroes of the Bible, Rome’s captain of the gate, Queen Boudicca, Joan of Arc, Cromwell, Wellington, Napoleon’s marshals and the modern SAS. There are tales of great writers who served in uniform including Cobbett and Tolstoy, Edward Gibbon and Siegfried Sassoon, Marcel Proust and Evelyn Waugh, George Orwell and George MacDonald Fraser. Here are also stories of the female ‘abosi’ fighters of Dahomey and heroic ambulance drivers of World War I, together with the new-age women soldiers who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is a book to inspire in turn fascination, excitement, horror, amazement, occasionally laughter. Max Hastings mingles respect for the courage of those who fight with compassion for those who become their victims, above all civilians, and especially in the twenty-first century, which some are already calling ‘the Post-Heroic Age’. Product Information: • ISBN: 9780008454227 • Author: Max Hastings • Publisher: William Collins • Format: Hardback • Pages: 496 • Dimensions: 24 x 15.9 x 3.8 cm

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£12.00 Was £20.00 RRP £30.00 Save £18.00 (60% Off RRP)

It took a certain type of courage to serve in a tank in World War Two. Encased in steel, surrounded by highly explosive shells, a big and slow-moving target, every crew member was utterly vulnerable to enemy attack from all sides. Living - and dying - in a tank was a brutal way to fight a war. The Sherwood Rangers were one of the great tank regiments. They had learned their trade on the battlefields of El Alamein and Alam el Halfa. By the time they landed on Gold Beach on D-Day, they were toughened by experience and ready for combat. From that moment on, the Sherwood Rangers and their Sherman tanks covered thousands of miles and endured some of the fiercest fighting in Western Europe. The first British unit to cross into Germany, their engagements stretch from the Normandy beaches, to the bridges at Eindhoven, and the grinding crossing of the Siegfried Line and on into the Nazi heartland. Through compelling eye-witness testimony and James Holland's expert analysis of the war in the West, Brothers In Arms gives the most powerful account to date of what it was really like to fight in the dying days of World War Two. Product Information: • ISBN: 9780552177917 • Author: James Holland • Publisher: Penguin • Format: Paperback • Pages: 400 • Dimensions: 19.7 x 12.9 x 3.5 cm

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£6.00 RRP £9.99 Save £3.99 (40% Off RRP)

By the spring of 1645, civil war had exacted a terrible toll upon England. Disease was rife, apocalyptic omens appeared in the skies, and idolators detected in every shire. In a remote corner of Essex, two obscure gentlemen began interrogating women suspected of witchcraft, triggering the most brutal witch-hunt in English history. Witchfinders is a spellbinding study of how Matthew Hopkins, 'the Witchfinder General', and John Stearne extended their campaign across East Anglia, driven by godly zeal. Exploiting the anxiety and lawlessness of the times, and cheered on by ordinary folk, they extracted confessions of satanic pacts resulting in scores of executions. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781473688056 • Author: Malcolm Gaskill • Publisher: John Murray • Format: Paperback • Pages: 364 • Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 2.5cm

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£3.00 RRP £10.99 Save £7.99 (73% Off RRP)

We often think of Britain springing from nowhere with the arrival of the Romans. But in Ancestors, pre-eminent archaeologist, broadcaster and academic Professor Alice Roberts explores what we can learn about the very earliest Britons, from burial sites and by using new technology to analyse ancient DNA. Told through seven fascinating burial sites, this ground breaking prehistory of Britain teaches us more about ourselves and our history: how people came and went and how we came to be on this island. It explores forgotten journeys and memories of migrations long ago, written into genes and preserved in the ground for thousands of years. This is a book about belonging: about walking in ancient places, in the footsteps of the ancestors. It explores our interconnected global ancestry, and the human experience that binds us all together. It’s about reaching back in time, to find ourselves, and our place in the world. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781471188046 • Author: Alice Roberts • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK • Format: Paperback • Pages: 448 • Dimensions: 20.6 x 14.9 x 2.8cm

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£7.00 RRP £9.99 Save £2.99 (30% Off RRP)

From much-loved historian Neil Oliver, comes this beautifully written, kaleidoscopic history of a place with a story like no other. The British Isles, this archipelago of islands, is to Neil Oliver the best place in the world. From north to south, east to west it cradles astonishing beauty. The human story here is a million years old, and counting. But the tolerant, easygoing peace we enjoy has been hard won. We have made and known the best and worst of times. We have been hero and villain and all else in between, and we have learned some lessons. The Story of the British Isles in 100 Places is Neil's very personal account of what makes these islands so special, told through the places that have witnessed the unfolding of our history. Beginning with footprints made in the sand by humankind's earliest ancestors, he takes us via Romans and Vikings, the flowering of religion, through civil war, industrial revolution and two world wars. From windswept headlands to battlefields, ancient trees to magnificent cathedrals, each of his destinations is a place where, somehow, the spirit of the past seems to linger. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781784165352 • Author: Neil Oliver • Publisher: Transworld  • Format: Paperback • Pages: 448 • Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.9 x 4.7 cm

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£4.00 RRP £9.99 Save £5.99 (60% Off RRP)

On the 18th June 1815 the armies of France, Britain and Prussia descended upon a quiet valley south of Brussels. In the previous three days the French army had beaten the British at Quatre-Bras and the Prussians at Ligny. The Allies were in retreat. The blood-soaked battle of Waterloo would become a landmark in European history, to be examined over and again, not least because until the evening of the 18th, the French army was close to prevailing on the battlefield. Product Information: • ISBN: 9780007539406 • Author: Bernard Cornwell • Publisher: Harper Collins • Format: Paperback • Pages: 352 • Dimensions: 19.8 x 12.9 x 2.7cm

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£8.00

When a close colleague is brutally attacked, DI Rebus is drawn into a case involving a hotel fire, an unidentified body and a long-forgotten night of terror and murder. Pursued by dangerous ghosts and tormented by the coded secrets of his colleague's notebook, Rebus must piece together a jigsaw no one - perhaps not even he - wants completed. Product Information:• ISBN: 9780752883571• Author: Ian Rankin• Publisher: Orion Books• Format: Paperback• Pages: 340• Dimensions: 19.7 x 12.8 x 2cm

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£6.00 RRP £8.99 Save £2.99 (33% Off RRP)

Bestselling author James Morton tracks the changing face of the East End from the 1870s to now, through opium dens and racecourse gangs, crime on the docks and organised prostitution to the major players of today. The East End has always held a malign fascination for the general public. East End Gangland looks at this phenomenon from the days of the unsolved murders committed by Jack the Ripper to the 1960s when the Kray Twins held the reins of the Underworld, to the present and how the structure of crimes and criminal gangs has changed. Product Information: • ISBN: 9780751584486 • Author: James Morton • Publisher: Sphere • Format: Paperback • Pages: 512 • Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.7 x 3.8 cm

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£3.00 RRP £10.99 Save £7.99 (73% Off RRP)

The prison break from Stalag Luft III in eastern Germany was the largest of its kind in World War II. It shows the variety and depth of the men sent into harms way during World War II, something emphasised by the population of Stalag Luft III. Most of the Allied POWs were flyers, with all the technical, tactical and planning skills that profession requires. Such men are independent thinkers, craving open air and wide-open spaces, which meant than an obsession with escape was almost inevitable'- John D Gresham Between dusk and dawn on the night of March 24th-25th 1944, a small army of Allied soldiers crawled through tunnels in Germany in a covert operation the likes of which the Third Reich had never seen before. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781784384388 • Author: Jonathan F. Vance • Publisher: Greenhill Books • Format: Paperback • Pages: 368 • Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 3cm

3.3 ({1})
£4.00 RRP £9.99 Save £5.99 (60% Off RRP)

The riveting exploits of a fighter aircraft - and an underrated aerial hero of the Second World War. The Hawker Hurricane was flying on the outbreak of war in 1939. Six years later, having saved Britain, it was still playing a major part in the war effort. Widely remembered in its fighter role and unjustly left in the shade of the Spitfire, the Hurricane's role was varied and pivotal: as a fighter, fighter-bomber, anti-tank aircraft and used at sea. Nor was its theatre of operations any less wide: it saw action in France from the beginning of the Phoney War to the outbreak of the Blitzkrieg, in the Battle of Britain, and then as far afield as Russia, Sumatra and Madagascar. In this intensely readable, spirited and classic account, Adrian Stewart describes all the Hurricane's roles, adventures and achievements. He recounts the exploits of the aircraft's outstanding pilots who contributed so much towards mastery of the skies and eventual victory. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781800325326 • Author: Adrian Stewart • Publisher: Canelo  • Format: Paperback • Pages: 400 • Dimensions: 19.8 x 12.9 x 2.4cm

3.9 ({1})
£3.00 RRP £10.99 Save £7.99 (73% Off RRP)

This is a unique collection of strange laws, heroic deeds, surprising revelations and other quirky stories that have shaped the unique history of Scotland. Scotland's long history is an extraordinarily rich source of amazing facts, whether your interest is political, social, architectural or historical. Product Information:• ISBN: 9781910821145• Author: Douglas Skelton• Publisher: Rydon Publishing• Format: Hardback• Pages: 144• Dimensions: 18 x 14 x 1.5cm

5 ({1})
£1.00 Was £4.00 RRP £9.99 Save £8.99 (90% Off RRP)

For over 150 years, Broadmoor has contained the UK's most violent, notoriously psychopathic criminals known. Since 1863, Broadmoor opened as an asylum and has housed perpetrators of some of the most dangerous and outrageous crimes in history - from Jack the Ripper suspect James Kelly , armed robber Charles Bronson, gangster Ronnie Kray and cannibal Peter Bryan. The mysterious happenings behind these walls has been unknown until now. Jonathon Levi and cultural historian Emma French paint the scene at Broadmoor after spending nearly a decade speaking and observing those inside. With various exclusive interviews, Inside Broadmoor is the full story into the minds of Britain's most violent and how they are treated. Product Information: ISBN: 9781788700948 Author: Jonathon Levi & Emma French Publisher: Blink Publishing Format: Blink Publishing Pages: 294 Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 2cm

4.1 ({1})
£3.00 RRP £8.99 Save £5.99 (67% Off RRP)

As Britain emerges into the mid-twentieth century, change is afoot. Cities are beginning to shift from smog-filled industrial hubs to more efficient metropolitan centres of commerce and, despite the country once again being blighted by war, society is beginning to shift towards a more modern, forward-thinking era. But change is not only limited to regular men and women; under the shifting tides of development, the criminal underbelly, too, is evolving, anxious for new avenues of exploitation and expansion . . . And so, in the third instalment, historian Carl Chinn examines this new era in the landscape of Britain's gangs. After the violent reign of the Peaky Blinders, the intimidation of the Birmingham gang and frequent gang wars up and down the country, from the wreckage new groups are emerging with new ways of making money and causing trouble, and, like those who came before them, they leave havoc and destruction in their wake. Product Information: • ISBN: 9781789464511 • Author: Carl Chinn • Publisher: John Blake • Format: Paperback • Pages: 336 • Dimensions: 19.69 x 12.7 x 2.03cm

4.5 ({1})
£4.00 RRP £8.99 Save £4.99 (56% Off RRP)