James Remmer: Out Of Mecklenburg
Published by Matador 28th August 2017
With Hitler at the height of his power, Carl von Menen, suave, wealthy and
aristocratic, a high flying servant of the German Foreign Office, lives a
duplicitous and dangerous life – he abhors the Nazis and wants to kill Hitler!
But his vision of seeing a Nazi-free Germany shrinks to despair, when he is
unexpectedly assigned to Argentina to keep a watchful eye on the emerging United
Officers Group (GOU), a pro-Nazi/Fascist faction of military officers led by the
aspiring Juan Domingo Peron.
In Buenos Aires, von Menen is sucked into a
cauldron of treachery, deceit and revolution, heightened by his secret ideology,
the far-reaching threat of the Gestapo and his clandestine dealings with the
seemingly obliging Colonel Filipe Vidal, a man who emerges with a devious and
sinister agenda: a plot to side-line Peron and seize power for himself. But
Vidal needs arms and his coercive key to getting them is the life of the woman
von Menen loves, the dazzling Maria Gomez.
Scheming his way back to
Europe, von Menen finds Berlin in ruins, the Gestapo in overdrive, and a
merciless Red Army charging towards Germany with only one thing in mind –
vengeance! Gambling his own survival against certain execution, he contrives to
convince a desperate and weakening Nazi hierarchy that Vidal has a pro-Nazi deal
on offer that not even Peron can equal. Hitler finally gives his approval, but
the scent of treachery is in the air and the Gestapo is watching. What follows
is a bold and daring plan to rob the Reichsbank, a perilous journey by U-boat to
the South Atlantic and a maelstrom of heart-stopping events back in Buenos
James Remmer explores the covert operations of WWII with
reference to the early years of Peron and to real events of the war years. The
book offers a unique perspective into WWII and will appeal to fans of historical
fiction, especially those interested in undercover operations during the Second
Adult Book of the Month: Jerome Eho & Alain Paillou: Joan of Arc
Published by Orep April 30th 2017
The kingdom of France was plunged into darkness. Weakened by war and famine,
the country risked falling into English hands. As the dauphin Charles
desperately aspired to one day become king, a young girl from Domremy, guided by
mysterious voices, emerged from the shadows, swearing she would have him crowned
Driven by her fervour and her boundless will, she who would bear
the epitaph of Maid of Orleans, led her small troop to raise the siege in the
eponymous city. Behind her, the people of France took up arms with newfound
courage, to plunge headlong into one of the greatest epics of all time.
For me, comic book adaptations of great stories has always been a tried and tested method of retelling the story, and this magnificent version of the story of Joan of Arc is a surefire winner. The artwork is astoundingly good, and the story is told superbly well. A faultless production...
Jalal al-Din Rumi: The Masnavi Book Four
Published by Oxford University Press 14th September 2017
Rumi is the greatest mystic poet to have written in Persian, and the
Masnavi is his masterpiece. Divided into six books and consisting of
some 26,000 verses, the poem was designed to convey a message of divine love and
unity to the disciples of Rumi's Sufi order, known today as the Whirling
Dervishes. Like the earlier books, Book Four interweaves amusing stories with
homilies to instruct pupils in understanding of God's meaning. It has a special
focus on the mystical knowledge of the spiritual guide, elaborated through
stories such as Solomon's inspiration to the Queen of Sheba, and animal fables.
This is the first ever verse translation of Book Four of the Masnavi. It
follows the original by presenting Rumi's most mature mystical teachings in
simple and attractive rhyming couplets.
A handsome book, but this one is for scholars and students.
Fred Smith; No Turning Back
Published by The Book Guild 28th July 2017
No Turning Back’s protagonist is James Williams, the son of Robert Williams,
a bailiff who we first met in Fred Smith’s previous book – The Devil Returns
Twice As Deadly. Fred’s first book explains how Robert acquires his fortune by
In this novel, Robert’s son James pursues his love of
engineering, building a successful Engineering Company and Iron Foundry. He
joined the many entrepreneurs who made their fortunes with the onset of the
railways. The story covers the Rainhill steam trials in 1829, as Stephenson
unveils his famous Rocket.
This is a tale of heartbreak and sorrow, as we
follow James building his empire – a journey full of trials and tribulations.
There are stories of mystery and suspense, as the reader travels through his
fascinating journey, often finding an unexpected twist.
David Fletcher: Absolutely Galapagos
Published by Matador 28th May 2017
Absolutely Galapagos provides an insight into every feature of that famous
archipelago - warts and all - and a further insight into the unique and confused
mind of Brian. And, of course, he is more 'at sea' in this book than in any of
those that have gone before...It has to be admitted that Brian's interest in the
place that inspired Charles Darwin's ground-breaking On the Origin of Species
was first inspired not by the islands themselves but by the image of a boat. He
was simply enthralled at the prospect of sharing a two-week voyage at sea with
fourteen other like-minded souls - and with Sandra, of course. So, off they both
went - to discover that not only was the boat all they'd hoped it would be but
also that the Galapagos Archipelago really was like nowhere else on Earth. His
fourteen new companions hadn't, of course, expected Brian - and his thoughts on
matters as diverse as the mystery of how classic literature was produced before
the days of creative writing courses. Oh, and Sandra hadn't expected a daily
Brian lecture on some of the more interesting aspects of every single country in
Chris Leicester: Hurricane Hill
Published by Matador 28th August 2017
Focussing on the political unrest of the 21st century, Hurricane Hill is a
fast-paced novel, which examines the bond between soldiers on the battlefield
and the effects that going to war has on an individual's mentality. Hurricane
Hill centres on the moral dilemma: Which life is more valuable; that of a child
or a brother-in-arms? Out in Helmand, the Insurgents are using children as young
as 7 as decoys in fire fights. Paul Glover, a young soldier, has to decide
whether to follow his training and treat the children as normal soliders, and
shoot to kill, or be killed. Having become a new father himself, Paul's actions
come back to haunt him and left asking himself whether he's done the right
thing. When Paul arrives at the isolated house of a famous recluse his past is
finally faced. Hurricane Hill shows us past lives, events and reasons for the
extraordinary predicaments that the characters find themselves in. As the storm
advances and threatens to destroy each of them, the young soldier's question is
examined, challenged and ultimately answered.
The small print: Books Monthly, now well into its sixteenth year on the web, is published on or slightly before the first day of each month by Paul Norman. You can contact me here. If you wish to submit something for publication in the magazine, let me remind you there is no payment as I don't make any money from this publication. If you want to send me something to review, contact me via email and I'll let you know where to send it.