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Michael Morpurgo

Michael Morpurgo (Author)

Three BBC dramatisations of the novels of award-winning author and former Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo.

This collection includes:

War Horse
Michael Morpurgo's enduringly popular tale of a boy's extraordinary bond with his horse during World War One. Starring Timothy Spall, Brenda Blethyn and Bob Hoskins.

Private Peaceful - a powerful story about a young soldier, set in the First World War. Starring Nicholas Lyndhurst, with a guest appearance by Michael Morpurgo.

Alone on a Wide Wide Sea - a lyrical tale about child migration, narrated by Michael Morpurgo and starring Jason Donovan, Olivia Beardsley and Toby Jones.

Sunfall

Jim Al-Khalili (Author)

2041, and for all the advances science and technology have brought, our world is under attack from rampant climate change, uncontrollable mass migration, cyber-terrorism, fragmenting societies and insidious governmental secrecy and paranoia. And then the unthinkable happens - the Earth, our planet, seems to be turning against itself - it would appear that the magnetic field, which protects life on Earth from deadly radiation from space, is failing . . .

Fearful of the mass hysteria that would follow if the truth were to become known, world governments have concealed this rapidly emerging Armageddon. But a young Iranian computer genius stumbles across what is really going on, the secret is out, and it's a race against time to put in place an outrageous, desperate last ditch plan to save the world: to reactivate the earth's core using beams of dark matter. As a small team of brave and brilliant scientists - each a maverick in his or her own way - battle to find a way of transforming the theory into practice, they face a fanatical group intent on pursuing their own endgame agenda: for they believe mankind to be a plague upon this earth and will do anything, commit any crime, to ensure that the project fails - and so bring about humanity's end...

Set in a brilliantly-imagined near future world of dazzling technologies, AIs and augmented realities, eminent scientist and broadcaster Professor Jim Al-Khalili's thrilling debut novel draws on cutting edge science to tell a nail-biting story of what might be . . .

Journey's End

R C Sherriff (Author), Derek Seaton (Read by), Full Cast (Read by), Garard Green (Read by), Martin Jarvis (Read by)

Journey's End is an unflinching vision of life in the tranches towards the end of the First World War.

The play opens in a dugout in the trenches in France. Raleigh, a new 18-year-old officer fresh out of school, joins the besieged company of his friend and hero Stanhope. But when he arrives in the trenches, he finds Stanhope dramatically changed.

This vintage BBC radio production from 1970 stars Martin Jarvis as Captain Stanhope.

Bonus content: This BBC radio release includes The Man From Esher and his Theatre of War, a 30-minute documentary about R C Sherriff and the story behind Journey’s End.

Journey's End was an instant stage success in 1928 (starring Laurence Olivier) and remains a remarkable anti-war classic, regularly revived in theatres. A film is due in February 2018, starring Sam Claflin (Hunger Games, Me Before You) as Stanhope and Asa Butterfield (Hugo) as Raleigh, along with Paul Bettany, Toby Jones and Tom Sturridge.

Cast:
Captain Stanhope...Martin Jarvis
Osborne...Garard Green
Raleigh...Derek Seaton
Trotter...Kevin Brennan
Hibbert/Private...Michael Harbour
Colonel...Richard Hurndall
Sergeant Major...John Bentley
Mason...Malcolm Hayes
Hardy...John Graham
German soldier...Patrick Tull

Adapted by Peter Watts.
Produced by Christopher Venning.

Old Baggage

Lissa Evans (Author)

'Essential . . . Evans is a brilliant storyteller' Stylist

What do you do next, after you’ve changed the world?

It is 1928. Matilda Simpkin, rooting through a cupboard, comes across a small wooden club – an old possession of hers, unseen for more than a decade.

Mattie is a woman with a thrilling past and a chafingly uneventful present. During the Women’s Suffrage Campaign she was a militant. Jailed five times, she marched, sang, gave speeches, smashed windows and heckled Winston Churchill, and nothing – nothing – since then has had the same depth, the same excitement.

Now in middle age, she is still looking for a fresh mould into which to pour her energies. Giving the wooden club a thoughtful twirl, she is struck by an idea – but what starts as a brilliantly idealistic plan is derailed by a connection with Mattie’s militant past, one which begins to threaten every principle that she stands for.

Old Baggage is a funny and bittersweet portrait of a woman who has never, never given up the fight.

Tom Clancy's Oath of Office

Marc Cameron (Author)

The latest thriller in Tom Clancy's internationally bestselling Jack Ryan series.

Praise for Tom Clancy
'He constantly taps the current world situation for its imminent dangers and spins them into an engrossing tale'
New York Times

'Heart-stopping action ... entertaining and eminently topical'
Washington Post

'Exhilarating. No other novelist is giving so full a picture of modern conflict'
Sunday Times

'A brilliantly constructed thriller that packs a punch like Semtex'
Daily Mail

'A virtuoso display of page-turning talent'
Sunday Express

Siege

Geraint Jones (Author)

The Roman Empire is built on the efficient brutality of its soldiers, all ready to fight and die for her. Most of them live together as brothers, but a German force is slowly working it's way through their ranks.

After losing most of his comrades-in-arms to a devastating onslaught, Legionary Felix and the other unlucky survivors are taken as slaves - they can do nothing to stop the treacherous Arminius's united German tribes from felling legion after legion. Steadily the force slaughter outposts, none saw the attacks coming and with each day they move towards Rome.

Only when a lone fort, Aliso, manages to keep the bloodbath at bay do Felix and his comrades flee, ready to join their fellow soldiers in the fight and protect the Empire from an army capable of tearing it apart.

Reborn

Sarah Lotz (Author) , Gregg Capullo (Author) , Mark Millar (Author)

A BRAND NEW NOVEL BASED ON THE SMASH-HIT COMIC BOOK SERIES CREATED BY MARK MILLAR AND GREG CAPULLO, WRITTEN BY CRITICALLY-ACCLAIMED AUTHOR SARAH LOTZ.

Celtic Empire

Clive Cussler (Author) , Dirk Cussler (Author)

Anancient mystery becomes an all-too-real modern threat for Dirk Pitt and hiscolleagues, in an extraordinary adventure novel in one of suspense fiction'smost beloved series.

The murder of a team of U.N. scientists while investigating mysterious deathsin El Salvador. A deadly collision in the waterways off Detroit. An attack fromtomb raiders on an archeological site along the Nile. Is there a link betweenthese violent events? The answer may lie with the tale of an Egyptian princessforced to flee the armies of her father three thousand years ago.

From the desert sands of Egypt to the rocky isles of Ireland to the deepwaterlochs of Scotland, only Dirk Pitt can unravel the secrets of an ancient enigmathat could change the very future of mankind.

The Naked and the Dead

Norman Mailer (Author)

Based on Mailer's own experience of military service in the Philippines during World War Two, The Naked and the Dead' is a graphically truthful and shattering portrayal of ordinary men in battle. First published in 1949, as America was still basking in the glories of the Allied victory, it altered forever the popular perception of warfare.

Focusing on the experiences of a fourteen-man platoon stationed on a Japanese-held island in the South Pacific during World War II, and written in a journalistic style, it tells the moving story of the soldiers' struggle to retain a sense of dignity amidst the horror of warfare, and to find a source of meaning in their lives amisdst the sounds and fury of battle.

The Armies of the Night

Norman Mailer (Author)

October 21, 1967, Washington, D.C. 20,000 to 200,000 protesters are marching to end the war in Vietnam, while helicopters hover overhead and federal marshals and soldiers with fixed bayonets await them on the Pentagon steps. Among the marchers is Norman Mailer. From his own singular participation in the day's events and his even more extraordinary perceptions comes a classic work that shatters the mould of traditional reportage. Intellectuals and hippies, clergymen and cops, poets and army MPs crowd the pages of a book in which facts are fused with techniques of fiction to create the nerve-end reality of experiential truth.

The Armies of the Night uniquely and unforgettably captures the Sixties' tidal wave of love and rage at its crest and a towering genius at his peak.

Deception Island

Chris Larsson (Author)

A photograph found in the effects of a murdered polar explorer reveals evidence of something that should not be there. A military team from a top-secret unit is dispatched. But the South Atlantic in winter is about the most hostile environment on earth. And before you can fight, first you have to survive . . .

Complex, rocket-paced, and dripping with authenticity, Deception Island is a unique thriller that conveys the details of the intelligence world, survival techniques, combat tactics and military hardware so convincingly that there will be questions asked in the MoD about just who it is that might have written this book . . .

The Pillow Book: Series 1-11

Robert Forrest (Author), Benedict Cumberbatch (Read by), Cal MacAninch (Read by), Full Cast (Read by), Mark Bazeley (Read by), Ruth Gemmell (Read by)

A thriller and love story set in 10th-century Japan.

Lady Shonagon is an imperial courtesan, living at the court of the Japanese Emperor in the 10th century. When a series of disturbing thefts within the palace walls throws the court into confusion and unrest, Shonagon is appointed guide and assistant to Lieutenant Yukinari as he investigates.

Together, Shonagon and Yukinari must solve the mysteries and escalating crimes that plague the Japanese court, and their romance blossoms in the tightly enclosed world behind the high palace walls. But soon Shonagon's lover Tadanobu becomes uncomfortable with how closely they are working together...

The Pillow Book is inspired by the writings of Sei Shonagon, a poet and lady-in-waiting to the Empress of the 10th Century Japanese court. The work of the real-life Sei Shonagon consists of essays, lists, anecdotes, poems, and descriptive passages about her daily life.

This full-cast drama stars Ruth Gemmell as Sei Shonagon, with Yukinari played by Mark Bazeley in Series 1-3 and Cal Macaninch in series 4-11. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Tadanobu is Series 1.
Directed by Lu Kemp.

Dark Age

James Wilde (Author)

Bridging the gap between 'Game of Thrones' and Bernard Cornwell comes the second chapter in James Wilde's epic adventure of betrayal, battle and bloodshed set during the darkest of times - a time when civilisation itself was foundering, when Britain was facing a Dark Age and in desperate need of a hero...

It is AD 367, and Roman Britain has fallen to the vast barbarian horde which has invaded from the north. Towns burn, the land is ravaged and the few survivors flee. The army of Rome - once the most effective fighting force in the world - has been broken, its spirit lost and its remaining troops shattered.

Yet for all the darkness, there is hope. And it rests with one man. His name is Lucanus who they call the Wolf. He is a warrior, and he wears the ancient crown of the great war leader, Pendragon, and he wields a sword bestowed upon him by the druids. With a small band of trusted followers, Lucanus ventures south to Londinium where he hopes to bring together an army and make a defiant stand against the invader.

But within the walls of that great city there are others waiting on his arrival - hidden enemies who want more than anything to possess the great secret that has been entrusted to his care. To seize it would give them power beyond imagining. To protect it will require bravery and sacrifice beyond measure. And to lose it would mean the end of everything worth fighting for.

Before Camelot. Before Excalibur. Before all you know of King Arthur. Here is the beginning of that legend . . .

Stubby: A True Story of Friendship

Michael Foreman (Author)

Stubby was a brave soldier, a loyal friend... and a dog. From an army training camp to the trenches in France, this is the incredible true story of Sergeant Stubby, the dog who served bravely in the First World War, sniffing out gas attacks, catching spies and winning the hearts of his fellow soldiers.

Shadow Tyrants

Clive Cussler (Author) , Boyd Morrison (Author)

Only Juan Cabrillo and the crew of the Oregon stand between two warring moguls and global havoc in this thrilling suspense novel in Clive Cussler's #1 New York Times bestselling series.

Nearly two thousand years ago, an Eastern emperor charged a small group with safeguarding a body of knowledge and secrets powerful enough to change the history of mankind.They went down in legend as the Nine Unknown Men - and now two rival factions of the descendants are fighting a mighty battle.

Both sides think they are saving the world, but one of them is willing to use horrifying means to accomplish its goals. Now it is up to Cabrillo and his team of expert operatives to stop both of them from the destructive path they're on, and save the earth from a dynasty of terror.

Remembrance

Emily Lunn (), Theresa Breslin (Author) , n/a (Illustrator)

Part of a stunning new design partnership between Puffin and the Imperial War Museum, this is an unforgettable novel from a Carnegie Medal-winning author, featuring a special foreword from Elizabeth Wein, author of Code Name Verity.

Scotland, 1915. A group of teenagers from very different backgrounds meet for an idyllic picnic, but the war across the Channel is proving increasingly impossible to ignore, and all too soon they will be engulfed by what is to become known as The Great War.

Determined to forge their own paths during a time of enormous upheaval, the five friends encounter not only the horrors of the trenches, but also the thrum of first love, and the political struggles of pacifism and women's rights. Their lives will be changed forever - and nothing will ever be the same again.

Shiang

C. F. Iggulden (Author)

Conn Iggulden is back with the spellbinding second instalment in the Empire of Salt trilogy. Twelve families spoil for a throne soon to be made vacant - by murder or civil war.

Stay Where You Are And Then Leave

Emily Lunn (), John Boyne (Author) , n/a (Illustrator)

Part of a stunning new design partnership between Puffin and the Imperial War Museum, this is an unforgettable story from the bestselling author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas. This special edition features a foreword from Eoin Colfer.

The day the First World War broke out, Alfie Summerfield's father promised he wouldn't go away to fight - but he broke that promise the following day. Four years later, Alfie doesn't know where his father might be, other than that he's away on a special, secret mission.

Then, while shining shoes at King's Cross Station, Alfie unexpectedly sees his father's name - on a sheaf of papers belonging to a military doctor. Bewildered and confused, Alfie realises his father is in a hospital close by - a hospital treating soldiers with an unusual condition. And Alfie becomes determined to rescue his father from this strange, unnerving place . . .

As the Sun Breaks Through

Ellie Dean (Author)

**************
PRE-ORDER NOW:
THE FIFTEENTH CLIFFEHAVEN NOVEL BY SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR ELLIE DEAN

Cliffehaven, June 1944

As the planes continue to circle over Cliffehaven, Peggy Reilly’s sister Doris must seek refuge after a V-1 blast destroys her home. Rita, Sarah and the other residents at Beach View Boarding House quickly find their peace disturbed and it’s not long before even Peggy loses her patience. But with more bad news to come, will Doris finally be forced to swallow her pride?

Meanwhile Peggy’s father-in-law Ron Reilly is delighted when his sweetheart Rosie returns home. Until a heart-breaking confession suggests things may never be the same between them.

With loved ones scattered far and wide across the globe, and tensions running high, the end of the war feels somehow further than ever. And yet with the long-awaited Allied invasion in sight, a glimmer of light is starting to break through…


A fabulous, heart-warming Second World War novel in Ellie Dean's bestselling Cliffehaven series (previously called the Beach View Boarding House series).

Big Week

James Holland (Author)

'James Holland is a master' BBC History

It was to be the battle to end the air war once and for all . . .

During the third week of February 1944, the combined Allied air forces based in Britain and Italy launched their first-ever round-the-clock bomber offensive against Germany. The aim was to smash the main factories and production centres of the Luftwaffe and at the same time draw the German fighter force up into the air and into battle. Officially called Operation ARGUMENT, this monumental air assault was very quickly became known simply as Big Week.

In the six months up to its launch, for the Allies, the bomber war was not turning out as planned. Raids by the US Eighth Air Force and the RAF deep into Germany were being decimated and falling far short of its purpose. With D-Day was drawing ever-closer, that was a massive problem. The Allies needed clear skies to invade. The clock was ticking inexorably.

Yet the Luftwaffe was also in crisis. Short of resources, of fuel, and on properly trained pilots, the strain on those still flying was immense, their losses severe. And despite the chaos of their leadership, they were achieving far more than should have been reasonably expected against the superior numbers of the Allied planes.

Big Week is the knife-edged story of bomber against flak gun and fighter, but also, crucially, fighter against fighter, as the stakes rose higher and higher. Following the fortunes of pilots, aircrew and civilians from both sides, this is a blistering narrative of one of the most critical periods of the entire war, one that culminated in the largest air battle ever witnessed. It is also one that has been largely forgotten, but which has been brilliantly brought back to life by award-winning historian, James Holland.

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