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The Life to Come and Other Stories by E.M. Forster. . .

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange.

The fourteen stories in this book span six decades, from 1903 to 1957 or even later and represent every phase of Forster's career as a writer.

Only two have ever been published, and those only in magazines to which few people have easy access. Two very different reasons caused the other twelve to remain unpublished in Forster's lifetime.

One was his diffidence, which in his earlier years led him to belittle work that had failed to find immediate acceptance. There are four such stories in this volume, and it is hard, today, to understand why they were rejected by the same editors who were publishing his other early work. The remaining stories were disbarred from publication by their overtly homosexual themes; instead they were shown to an appreciative circle of friends and fellow writers, including Christopher Isherwood, Siegfried Sassoon, Lytton Strachey, and T. E. Lawrence, who considered one story "the most powerful thing I have ever read."

The stories differ widely.

One is a cheerful political satire; another has, most unusually for Forster, a historical setting; a third is the fictional equivalent of one of those comic picture-postcards that so delighted George Orwell. Others give serious and powerful expression to some of Forster's profoundest concerns. The significance of these stories in relation to Forster's famous abandonment of the novel is discussed by Oliver Stallybrass in his introduction. "These stories are often brilliant, aware both of the strictly contemporary...the contrast between Greek and Christian; between 'Goth' and Christian; between spontaneity and duty in matters sensual and instinctive.

In short, they bring up all Forster's usual preoccupations and at the same time orchestrate the new song and play it loud and clear.

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G/day Dave We have added the large sofa in the lounge and large armchair and recliner in the bedroom although the recliner can be moved anywhere, also a large Smart TV, its had a paint job a

I think the book reviews, lodging and restaurant posts are a welcome part of this forum.  Appreciation to Daveo for posting them. 

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Killing Rommel by Steven Pressfield. . . .

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Steven Pressfield’s quintet of acclaimed, bestselling novels of ancient warfare— Gates of Fire, Tides of War, Last of the Amazons, The Virtues of War, and The Afghan Campaign— have earned him a reputation as a master chronicler of military history, a supremely literate and engaging storyteller, and an author with acute insight into the minds of men in battle. In Killing Rommel Pressfield extends his talents to the modern world with a WWII tale based on the real-life exploits of the Long Range Desert Group, an elite British special forces unit that took on the German Afrika Korps and its legendary commander, Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, "the Desert Fox."

Autumn 1942.

Hitler’s legions have swept across Europe; France has fallen; Churchill and the English are isolated on their island. In North Africa, Rommel and his Panzers have routed the British Eighth Army and stand poised to overrun Egypt, Suez, and the oilfields of the Middle East.

With the outcome of the war hanging in the balance, the British hatch a desperate plan, send a small, highly mobile, and heavily armed force behind German lines to strike the blow that will stop the Afrika Korps in its tracks.

Narrated from the point of view of a young lieutenant, Killing Rommel brings to life the flair, agility, and daring of this extraordinary secret unit, the Long Range Desert Group.

Stealthy and lethal as the scorpion that serves as their insignia, they live by their motto: Non Vi Sed Arte—Not by Strength, by Guile as they gather intelligence, set up ambushes, and execute raids.

Killing Rommel chronicles the tactics, weaponry, and specialized skills needed for combat, under extreme desert conditions.

And it captures the camaraderie of this “band of brothers” as they perform the acts of courage and cunning crucial to the Allies’ victory in North Africa.

As in all of his previous novels, Pressfield powerfully renders the drama and intensity of warfare, the bonds of men in close combat, and the surprising human emotions and frailties that come into play on the battlefield.

A vivid and authoritative depiction of the desert war, Killing Rommel brilliantly dramatizes an aspect of World War II that hasn’t been in the limelight since Patton.

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The End of the Affair by Graham Greene,

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"A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses a moment of experience from which to look ahead..." "This is a record of hate far more than of love," writes Maurice Bendrix in the opening passages of The End of the Affair, and it is a strange hate indeed that compels him to set down the retrospective account of his adulterous affair with Sarah Miles. Now, a year after Sarah's death, Bendrix seeks to exorcise the persistence of his passion by retracing its course from obsessive love to love-hate.

At first, he believes he hates Sarah and her husband, Henry.

Yet as he delves deeper into his emotional outlook, Bendrix's hatred shifts to the God he feels has broken his life, but whose existence at last comes to recognize.

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The Facts of Life & Facing the Tank by Patrick Gale. . .

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange.

In the Roundel, an odd, secluded, eight-sided house in the English countryside, Edward Pepper and Sally Banks build a life. Hoping they’ve left hardship behind, they met when Sally, a doctor, treated Edward for tuberculosis after he escaped from Nazi Germany to England, they raise a family together. The German-Jewish composer has his devoted wife’s support - though he is sidetracked by the temptations of the movie industry. But for Edward and Sally, their children, and their children’s children, tragedy and joy will always go hand-in-hand, as they maneuver through a world of often bitter and brutal realities.

And as the decades pass, a family shaped in equal measure by love and human failing will find itself sorely tested by mistrust, tyranny, misunderstanding, and an AIDS diagnosis.

It will take more than the strength they found in their wartime romance to fight the battles of everyday life. The critically acclaimed novels of Patrick Gale have been compared to the writings of literary giants from Iris Murdoch to Gabriel García Márquez.

Powerful, moving, and magnificent, this multigenerational family saga is one of Gale’s most compassionate and memorable works, a truly masterful fiction that Armistead Maupin, author of Tales of the City, calls “achingly true and beautiful.”

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QB VII by Leon Uris. . .

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In Queen’s Bench Courtroom Number Seven, famous author Abraham Cady stands trial.

In his book The Holocaust - born of the terrible revelation that the Jadwiga Concentration Camp was the site of his family’s extermination, Cady shook the consciousness of the human race.

He also  named eminent surgeon Sir Adam Kelno as one of Jadwiga’s most sadistic inmate/doctors.

Kelno has denied this and brought furious charges. Now unfolds Leon Uris’s riveting courtroom drama, one of the great fictional trials of the century.

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The Fox in the Attic (The Human Predicament #1) by Richard Hughes...

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A tale of enormous suspense and growing horror, The Fox in the Attic is the widely acclaimed first part of Richard Hughes monumental historical fiction, "The Human Predicament." Set in the early 1920's, the book centers on Augustine, a young man from an aristocratic Welsh family who has come of age in the aftermath of World War I. Unjustly suspected of having had a hand in the murder of a young girl, Augustine takes refuge in the remote castle of Bavarian relatives.

There his hopeless love for his devout cousin Mitzi blinds him to the hate that will lead to the rise of German fascism. The book reaches a climax with a brilliant description of the Munich putsch and a disturbingly intimate portrait of Adolf Hitler. The Fox in the Attic, like its no less remarkable sequel The Wooden Shepherdess, offers a richly detailed, Tolstoyan overview of the modern world in upheaval.

At once a novel of ideas and an exploration of the dark spaces of the heart, it is a book in which the past returns in all its original uncertainty and strangeness.

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Sittang: The Last Battle by Louis Allen. . .

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The author Louis Allen (1922-1991) has written a terrific book on The Battle of the Sittang which was the last Battle of the Burma Campaign from 2 July – 7 August 1945 - Surviving elements of the Imperial Japanese Army had been driven into the Pegu Yoma ( a range of low mountains or hills between the Irrawaddy and the Sittang River )

The break-out was the objective of the Japanese 28th Army with support at first from the 33rd Army and later the Japanese 15th Army. The British had been alerted to the break-out attempt and it ended calamitously, with many losses and some formations being wiped out. Around 14,000 Japanese were lost, with well over half being killed, while British forces suffered only 95 killed and 322 wounded. The break-out attempt and the ensuing battle became the last significant land battle of the Western powers in the Second World War.

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Sellevision by Augusten Burroughs. . .

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Darkly funny and gleefully mean-spirited, Sellevision explores greed, obsession and third tier celebrity, in the world of a fictional home shopping network. Welcome to the troubled world of Sellevision, America's premier retail broadcasting network.

When Max Andrews, the much-loved and handsome (lonely and gay) host of "Slumber Sunday Sundown" accidentally exposes himself in front of twenty million kids and their parents during a "Toys for Tots" segment, Sellevision faces its first big scandal.

As Max fails to find a job in television, another host, the popular and perky Peggy Jean Smythe is receiving sinister emails about her appearance from a stalker.

Popping pills and drinking heavily, she fails to notice that her husband is spending a lot of time with the very young babysitter who lives next door.

Then there's Leigh, whose affair with Sellevision boss Howard Toast is going nowhere, until she exposes him on air; and Bebe, Sellevision star host, who finds Mr. Right through the Internet - if she can just stop her shopping addiction from taking over.

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LaBrava by Elmore Leonard

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Photographer Joe LaBrava specialises in capturing the soul of Miami's street life & since he used to do dirty jobs for the government, he understands his subject very well. So when his friend Maury enlists his help to sort out a problem with an ex-film star, Joe is more than happy to help.

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Wheels of Terror by Sven Hassel. . .

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The best-selling military writer returns to his comrades in 27th penal battalion, offering another gritty, realistic view of the ordinary soldier in wartime.

Now stationed at the Russian Front, and equipped with armored vehicles, Sven Hassel's band of warriors from the German army gird for the next battles.

Caught between the insane orders of the Nazi high command and the overwhelming numbers of Russian soldiers, they prepare to fight on nonetheless and will do anything to survive the inferno.

A remorseless ride through a man-made hell.

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Confessions of an Irish Rebel by Brendan Behan.....

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange. .

The immigration man read my deportation order, looked at it and handed it back to me. 'Are you Irish?' he asked me. 'No' I said 'as a matter of fact, I'm Yemenite Arab.' Two detectives came forward who were evidently there to meet me. 'Apparently he is Brendan Behan,' they said. The immigration officer shook my hand and his hard face softened. 'Cead mile failte romhat abhaile.' (A hundred thousand welcomes home to you.)

I could not answer. There are no words and it would be impertinence to try. I walked down the gangway. I was free. First published after Brendan Behan's tragic death, Confessions of an Irish Rebel picks up where Borstal Boy left off. Not only is it the last instalment of a unique and unorthodox autobiography, but of a unique and unorthodox life that was as touched with genius as it was with doom.

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Portrait of a Marriage: Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson by Nigel Nicolson....

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Vita Sackville-West, novelist, poet, and biographer, is best known as the friend of Virginia Woolf, who transformed her into an androgynous time-traveler in Orlando.

The story of Sackville-West's marriage to Harold Nicolson is one of intrigue and bewilderment.

In Portrait of a Marriage, their son Nigel combines his mother's memoir with his own explanations and what he learned from their many letters.

Even during her various love affairs with women, Vita maintained a loving marriage with Harold.

Portrait of a Marriage presents an often misunderstood but always fascinating couple.

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The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky. . .

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The Brothers Karamazov is a murder mystery, a courtroom drama, and an exploration of erotic rivalry in a series of triangular love affairs involving the “wicked and sentimental” Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov and his three sons - the impulsive and sensual Dmitri; the coldly rational Ivan; and the healthy, red-cheeked young novice Alyosha. Through the gripping events of their story, Dostoevsky portrays the whole of Russian life, is social and spiritual striving, in what was both the golden age and a tragic turning point in Russian culture.

This award-winning translation by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky remains true to the verbal inventiveness of Dostoevsky’s prose, preserving the multiple voices, the humor, and the surprising modernity of the original.

It is an achievement worthy of Dostoevsky’s last and greatest novel.

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Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. .

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"A detective novel, an indictment of urban social conditions in nineteenth-century Russia, a religious epic, a study in criminal psychopathology, and a proto-Nietzschean analysis of the 'will to power' . . . Crime and Punishment is all these things, but it is more"

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The Kingdom of the Wicked by Anthony Burgess. . .

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A Roman saga, taking in the excesses of Tiberius, Caligula and Nero and an irreverent account of the early days of Christianity.

Sadoc, a dying shipping clerk, sets down for future generations a tale of epic proportions: he is charged with recounting no less an event than the birth of Christianity.

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Under the Eagle (Eagle #1) by Simon Scarrow. . . .

UK price 6.99 - our price 120 baht plus 50% trade in for credit when finished with it @ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange.

Simon Scarrow's brilliant adventure novels about the Roman army appear with stunning new covers. It is 42 AD, and Quintus Licinius Cato has just arrived in Germany as a new recruit to the Second Legion, the toughest in the Roman army.

If adjusting to the rigours of military life isn’t difficult enough for the bookish young man, he also has to contend with the disgust of his colleagues when, because of his imperial connections, he is appointed a rank above them.

As second-in-command to Macro, the fearless, battle-scarred centurion who leads them, Cato will have more to prove than most in the adventures that lie ahead.

Then the men discover that the army’s next campaign will take them to a land of unparalleled barbarity - Britain.

After the long march west, Cato and Macro undertake a special mission that will thrust them headlong into a conspiracy that threatens to topple the Emperor himself...

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Vanished by Tim Weaver. .

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange.

For millions of Londoners, the morning of 16 December is just like any other. But not for Sam Wren.

An hour after leaving home, he gets on a Tube train - and never gets off again. No witnesses.

No trace of him on security cameras. Six months later, he's still missing. Out of options and desperate for answers, Sam's wife Julia hires David Raker to track him down.

Raker has made a career out of finding the lost. He knows how they think. And in missing person cases, the only certainty is that everyone has something to hide. But in this case the Secrets go deeper than anyone imagined. For, as Raker starts to suspect that even the police are lying to him, someone is watching. Someone who knows what happened on the Tube that day. And with Raker in his sights, he'll do anything to keep Sam's Secrets to himself.

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Burt Lancaster by Robyn Karney.....

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange.

This work traces the rise of one of the most enduring figures in cinema.

According to cinema legend, Burt Lancaster was discovered in an elevator by a stage producer who mistook him for an actor and gave him a part on Broadway.

Though the play only lasted for 23 performances it was enough to attract the movie scouts, and a year later he made his screen debut in "The Killers".

Lancaster's arrival coincided with the rise of "film noir", to which his physique and personality were eminently suited. He rapidly established himself as one of Hollywood's star performers, and showed a determination to have things his own way - as many directors learned to their cost. Combining box-office success with a Desire to make less popular but more worthy films, he refused to conform to type.

The range of screen roles he appeared in encompassed movies as diverse as "From Here to Eternity", "Gunfight at the OK Corral", "Sweet Smell of Success", "The Leopard", "Atlantic City" and "Local Hero".

When he died in October 1994, shortly before his 81st birthday, he left a legacy of some 70 films spanning over 40 years, and an indelible imprint on the history of the cinema industry.

This biography follows Lancaster through every stage of his ever-shifting career, and the photographs depict this in his many guises.

The author is editor of "Who's Who in Hollywood" and "Chronicle of the Cinema" and has written a biography of Audrey Hepburn, "A Star Dance: The Life of Audrey Hepburn".

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Frankie Howerd: The Illustrated Biography by Mick Middles..

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange.

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The Life and Times of William IV (Kings and Queens of England) by Anne Somerset. .

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William IV reigned during one of the most important periods in English history.

Peel, Grey and Melbourne were political giants of the day and the Reform of Parliament was the main and lasting achievement.

Here, the author reveals his adherence to duty and his role in the conflicts of his time.

Ann Somerset's historical biographies include "Ladies-in-Waiting: From the Tudors to the Present Day" and "Elizabeth I".

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Medieval Pageant by Bryan Holme & Timothy Husband. .

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange / Cafe / Guesthouse - Pattaya.

A celebration of medieval life, recreating the richness of existence in the banqueting halls, royal chapels and at the hunt.

Nor have the peasants been forgotten, as we see their way of life that supported the royalty.

75 full-color illustrations.

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Lawrence of Arabia: The Life, The Legend Malcolm Brown..

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A captivating visual biography of the first modern celebrity, told through his own photographs, desert paintings, drawings and ephemera, all supported by quotations from his own mesmerizing first-hand account of his experiences. Published to accompany a major exhibition at London's Imperial War Museum opening in October 2005, this lavishly illustrated book takes us inside the mind of a man of extraordinary energy, ability and charisma.

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Concise Atlas of World History by Geoffrey Barraclough ...

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The Times Concise Atlas of World History, first published in 1982, has become a classic of reference publishing around the globe.

It combines original maps and insightful narrative to provide a global and comprehensive view of the story of humanity.

This fourth edition has been completely revised to include all of the latest historical, political, and economic developments around the world.

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Frederick the Great by Nancy Mitford..

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In this biography of Frederick the Great, Nancy Mitford carefully unravels the complex character of one of Europe's brilliant rulers.

She re-creates his unhappy youth; his reforming zeal, which paved the way for a united Germany; and his spectacular wars.

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The Complete Roman Army by Adrian Goldsworthy. . .

@ Canterbury Tales Bookshop / Book exchange. .

The Roman army was one of the most successful fighting forces in history.

Its organization and tactics were highly advanced and were unequaled until the modern era.

Spectacular monuments to its perseverance and engineering skill are still visible today, most notably Hadrian’s Wall and the siegeworks around the fortress of Masada. This book is the first to examine in detail not just the early imperial army but also the citizens’ militia of the Republic and the army of the later Empire.

The unprecedented scope and longevity of Roman military success is placed in the context of ordinary soldiers’ daily lives, whether spent in the quiet routine of a peaceful garrison or in arduous campaign and violent combat.

Key battles and tactics are described, and there are brief biographies of the great commanders. Drawing on archaeology, ancient art, and original documentary sources, this book presents the most convincing history ever published of the Roman army.

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