No announcement yet.

Book reviews

This is a sticky topic.
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Shot at Dawn by Robert King

    "15 Welshmen executed during the First World War - by their own side

    In 2006 a blanket pardon was issued for the 306 men who died this way following a petition in the years after the First World War.

    ... a new book by Neath author Robert King, who campaigned and supported the petition, portrays the brutality faced by the 15 Welshmen who all faced this terrifying end.

    Shot at Dawn looks at how during the First World War the concept of ‘shell shock’ – now known as PTSD – was not known and was not accepted as an excuse for desertion or any of the other offences which resulted in men being shot."

    I haven't read this book - information about it can be found at

    Last edited by LeicestershireLass; 09-10-14, 07:57.
    Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today ~ follow your dream!


      One person's family history:

      "In defence of family history

      After shopping and porn, family history is the most popular activity on the web. Alison Light, who has spent years tracing her ancestors, defends it against scholarly condescension."

      Common People: The History of An English Family by Alison Light
      Caroline's Family History Pages
      Do not do to others what angers you if done to you by others. Socrates


        An interesting article about using (well researched) historical novels to put your ancestors into the context of their times. Some of my favourites and some new ones to try.

        Using Historical Novels for Family History
        - it includes an "Advent Calender" of 24 reviews.The main link takes you to Over 5000 Historical Novels Listed by Time and Place
        Caroline's Family History Pages
        Do not do to others what angers you if done to you by others. Socrates


          Historical Fiction.

          The Morland Dynasty by Cynthia Harrod Eagles.

          A series of 36 novels spanning the 1400s to the first world war, about the fictional Morland family of Yorkshire. Well written and historically accurate, they have been described as "history without tears". The Morlands are wealthy landowners, so their fortunes are closely tangled with the Crown. Each book is a stand alone novel but you will always want to read the next one to find out what happened next! She has a light style and a wonderful way with words.

          I thoroughly recommend this saga.



            I agree with you OC, a really good series which I first started reading many years ago. I'll have to have another look at it as I don't think I read the last two or three.


              I also agree about the Morland Dynasty. It's many years since I read them, and I'm sure that I haven't read the later ones!

              In fact, I think I only read about a dozen of them!!
              My grandmother, on the beach, South Bay, Scarborough, undated photo (poss. 1929 or 1930)

              Researching Cadd, Schofield, Cottrell in Lancashire, Buckinghamshire; Taylor, Park in Westmorland; Hayhurst in Yorkshire, Westmorland, Lancashire; Hughes, Roberts in Wales.


                Originally posted by Elaine ..Spain View Post
                We are looking to develop the Family History Books section in the Reference Library with the addition of more book reviews which can be found on the following pages:
                Originally posted by Elaine ..Spain View Post

                I am sure many of us have a collection of history or family history related books on our bookshelves, or have borrowed some from family, friends on the local library.
                Would you like to write a short review of a book you have read?
                Did you enjoy it?
                Would you recommend it?

                Please post your book reviews on this thread and we will transfer it to the relevant page in the Reference Library.


                Hi Elaine,

                It's been awhile since being on the forum and re going through the forum pages I saw this post and wanted to share information on a book that got me started in online research, after years of pen and paper.

                The book is called Family History for the Older and Wiser by Susan Fifer and published by John Wiley and Sons Ltd. The edition I have is the second edition i think Nov 2010.

                This is an easy-to-follow book thats guide you through all the different stages of researching the family history online and how to record the information. The book uses a case study approach, using pictures of certificates - and highlights what information is recorded on them and helps for the basis for online research. Teaches how to: access and investigate online records, using spreadsheets to record information and incorporate into a family tree program and much more...

                This book helped me in getting me started with online documents and genealogy websites and started my own spreadsheets. Coming from a background of admin I was very knowledgeable with spreedshets already and used the book to learn a lot of things and to enter all the data I had on pen and paper and from the oldest family members who were living at the time. From there I created a tree in 2010 on Genes Reunited and some years later I exported that over to Ancestry to develop further as they had a lot of London resources to further my tree as I have strong London roots.

                Although the book is now quite outdated (and probably are better more recent books available) it is still good for beginners who are starting from scratch with good information on how to start up, what things you'd need and how to search online records. The book also has a chapter on using ancestry and also familysearch with the old IGI. All have since been updated of course and a vast new amount of records have come online or updated since then.

                It looks like the book is still available via amazon.



                  Originally posted by Liz from Lancs View Post
                  The History and Traditions of Islington
                  The History and Traditions of St Pancras
                  by Thomas Coull
                  Originally published in 1861, now republished by the British Lib. Available on Amazon.

                  Gives detailed history of places, stories and people in the area. Has been reprinted in the original format so resembles the print seen on old newspapers. Recommend for anyone with ancestors in those areas of London.
                  Thank you Liz from Lancs on the books about Islington (and St. Pancras). My maternal side are from there as my mother was born there and her mother was born in St. Pancras so will be a fascinating read and to see the pictures of old Islington.

                  I see both on are Amazon....



                    Just found another book on the shelf regarding WW1. The Somme by Gary Sheffield. Many of us have lost ancestors to this battle I thought it would give me an incite about this battle.

                    Amazon UK's write up of it..

                    On 1 July 1916, after a stupendous seven-day artillery preparation, the British Army finally launched its attack on the German line around the River Somme. Over the next four and half months they continued to attack, with little or no gain, and with horrendous losses to both sides.

                    This book, written by the world's foremost expert in the subject, describes in chilling detail everything from the grand strategy to the experience of the men on the ground. Illustrated throughout, it is a stunning and absorbing depiction of the horror that was the Somme in 1916.

                    With maps and pictures all through the book from what started the battle through to the aftermath.