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Gift Books: General

The Air Ministry Survival Guide (Hardback) ISBN: 9780241361337

The Air Ministry Survival Guide (Hardback) ISBN: 9780241361337

First issued to British airmen in the 1950s the beautifully illustrated Air Ministry Survival Guide provides invaluable practical tips and instruction on how to keep calm and carry on in any hostile environment.

Whether you're lost in the desert, arctic, jungle, or adrift on the open ocean, you'll be better off armed with sensible advice on how to:

- Build a structurally sound igloo
- Pull faces to prevent frostbite (and when to expect bits to fall off should you fail)
- Fashion a mask to prevent snowblindness
- Make a hat out of seat cushions
- Behave in the event of meeting hostile locals
- Stay safe from poisonous reptiles and insects
- Use a 'fire thong'
- Punch man-eating sharks (which are cowards)


Price: 9.99

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All That Glisters - And Other Quotations You Should Know by Caroline Taggart (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439974

All That Glisters - And Other Quotations You Should Know by Caroline Taggart (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439974

Quotations - or snippets from them - are commonly used in everyday speech, most often without the speaker knowing where they came from. From words of comfort to advice for the lovelorn, you can bet that someone, somewhere has come up with phraseology that perfectly sums up whatever situation you find yourself in - and put it more succinctly than you could ever dream of.

In All That Glisters . Caroline Taggart presents some of the pithiest, wisest and most fascinating quotations we should all know, detailing where the quotation has come from and why it may be useful when searching for an elegant or informed line to illustrate a point, spice up conversation or impress one's friends.

Part of the pleasure of this book is to reveal the provenance of the well-worn quote (or misquote) - my cup runneth over, ay, there's the rub, to err is human, the spice of life - but also to introduce some less familiar ones. Most of the quotations included are from classic sources - from the Bible, the works of Shakespeare, other poets, classical authors, Dickens (God bless us everyone, waiting for something to turn up, very humble), Charlotte Bronte (Reader, I married him) and George Bernard Shaw (who didn't actually say Youth is wasted on the young, but may have said something like it. Somewhere. No one seems to know for sure).

This entertaining and informed - but not too serious - take on the wit and wisdom of the last 2000 years is ideal for modern readers who like their knowledge in tweet-sized chunks.


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Dog Personalities by Jono Yates (Hardback) ISBN: 9780593080382

Dog Personalities by Jono Yates (Hardback) ISBN: 9780593080382

We all know that dogs have personalities as colourful and unique as any human. They can be confident and dominant – born leaders – or shy and timid. They can be obedient, laid back, cheeky or stubborn. They can be prima donnas, stroppy so-and-sos or lazy sods – just like us.

With so many characters you’ll recognise, and based on the Instagram account with hundreds of thousands of followers, Dog Personalities reveals ours canine counterparts, all with imaginative backstories and photographs guaranteed to make you smile.


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I Should Know That About Great Britain by Emma Marriott (Paperback) ISBN: 9781782434313

I Should Know That About Great Britain by Emma Marriott (Paperback) ISBN: 9781782434313

From icons of British history to geography, and the economy to the legal system, I Should Know That: Great Britain covers a wide range of topics, filling in all those embarrassing gaps in your knowledge of this fair isle.

Inspired by the UK citizenship test, this useful and interesting guide includes sections such as essential British history, the current political and legal system, migration to Britain, women's rights, geography and culture. Learn all about the Magna Carta, the House of Lords, the Old Bailey and the Commonwealth, and more light-hearted topics such as allotments, pets, haggis and marmite, while scoffing at the unfortunate but hilarious gaffes made by our politicians.

Packed full of information, this entertaining and fact-filled guide to Great Britain is perfect for anyone who wishes that they were a more informed citizen.


Price: 7.99

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Le Mot Juste by Imogen Fortes (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439868

Le Mot Juste by Imogen Fortes (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439868

'Charming, witty and cheerful, this is a delectable feast of the French language. Allez le Bleus!' Raymond Blanc

Celebrating the art of the French language with a charming collection of words and phrases to bring into everyday conversation. C'est parti!

Have you ever wondered exactly what déjà vu is? Have you made a faux pas? Eaten an hors d'oeuvre? Voulez-vous an explanation of the above? Then voilà, here is a collection of les bons mots so you can start to learn that certain je ne sais quoi of the French language.

Le Mot Juste contains 150 beautiful words and phrases that you'll love to say every day.


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Live Green by Jen Chillingsworth (Hardback) ISBN: 9781787133198

Live Green by Jen Chillingsworth (Hardback) ISBN: 9781787133198

Many of us are already doing what we can to adopt a greener lifestyle. We recycle, try to reduce our waste and plastics, choose organic food when shopping, eat less meat and opt for environmentally friendly cleaning products. Yet we often wish we were doing more and it can be overwhelming to know where to start.

Live Green is a practical guide of 52 changes - one for each week of the year - you can make to your home and lifestyle to reduce your impact on the environment. Tackling all areas of your life from your cleaning routine, home furnishings, food shopping, fashion choices, natural beauty and Christmas, this book has all the ingredients to help you achieve a more sustainable year.

From making your own eco-friendly cleaning products, buying vintage furniture, making your own moth repellent and improving your natural beauty regime to creating a capsule wardrobe and creating your own ethical Christmas decorations - discover how to get the most out of life by living with intention.

Live simply. Live Green.


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Never Eat Shredded Wheat-Weird Ways To Remember Things by James M. Russell (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439899

Never Eat Shredded Wheat-Weird Ways To Remember Things by James M. Russell (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439899

Our memories are mysterious things. One moment we might remember a lengthy poem or the exact street address of a restaurant from our childhood. But the next moment we can struggle to recall where we've put our keys down or the name of the person we have just been introduced to. The human mind is not terribly good at remembering abstract data - but we can do it much more successfully if we create associations with more relatable bits of information, such as familiar people, places, colours, poems or jokes.

The mnemonics that many of us learned as children are simply a shortcut to help locate information within your memory. For instance, rather than remember that the clockwise order of the points of the compass is North, East, South, West, we remember the mnemonic 'Never Eat Shredded Wheat', and the combination of humour and a visual reference provides an instant cue for our brains.

This book is a cornucopia of mnemonics. Amusing as well as informative, it includes well-known examples that you might remember from school, some of which have been in use for centuries, as well as more recent ones and alternatives to the traditional versions. Ranging across history, science, language, numbers, business, art and much, much more, the mnemonics included here provide quick easy access to a vast amount of fascinating and useful information. In addition, there are sections on working out your own methods and systems to augment the existing mnemonics with your own aides-mémoire, which can help you with everyday tasks such as avoiding common misspellings, or remembering names, faces and numbers.


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Plato's Alarm Clock by James M. Russell (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439349

Plato's Alarm Clock by James M. Russell (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439349

We all like to think we are pretty smart. New medical advances seem to come along every day; space travel suddenly doesn't seem so difficult; self-driving cars are no longer a thing of the future . but if we were stranded on a desert island tomorrow, most of us wouldn't know how to catch a fish or start a fire, let alone rebuild all that extraordinary technology we now rely on.

The truth is that we're not necessarily more clever than our ancestors, we just have an accumulation of centuries of technological progress on which we can rely. As this book shows, many of the ancients were much more advanced that we realize - indeed there are recent inventions that had actually been discovered centuries earlier and then forgotten. And what about all those modern day devices and machines that rely on ancient inventions such as paper, levers and gears?

From brain surgery in the Stone Age to Chinese whisky from the 7th century BC, to Damascus steel - once the hardest metal in the world, which we no longer know how to make - this insightful book collects together the stories of hundreds of ancient devices, inventions and breakthroughs from around the world and across the centuries, giving us a fascinating glimpse into past eras that were far more technologically advanced than we sometimes realize.


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Ring a Ring O'Roses - The Origins and Meanings of Old Rhymes by Diana Ferguson (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439882

Ring a Ring O'Roses - The Origins and Meanings of Old Rhymes by Diana Ferguson (Hardback) ISBN: 9781782439882

This delightful book takes the reader on a journey into the weird and wonderful world of nursery rhymes. Offering a selection of more than 100 of our best-loved and widely known rhymes, it delves beneath the surface of the verses to interpret their meaning and reveal their historical origins.

The rhymes you'll find here are instantly recognizable and provide a comforting link to our past, however the stories behind them are often unknown and always fascinating - frequently telling the stories of true historical events from a time when the printing press was still a thing of the future and news was passed around verbally.

With rhymes on topics ranging from the weather to the stars, journeys to sums and food and drink to wise ways, each chapter presents the full and best-known version of the rhyme, followed by an explanation of its meaning and origins, along with the wider references the rhymes make to such topics as foods and culinary customs, historical events or archetypes of folk and fairy tales.

Whether you're a lover of nursery rhymes or more of a history buff, there is lots in this book for all to enjoy.


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