John Bishop was born in Heswall on the Wirral and now lives in Codsall near Wolverhampton.A great-uncle who won the Military Cross in WW1 but never really recovered from his experiences aroused an interest in this ‘war to end all wars’. John’s previous novel, Love, Freedom or Death, a love story set against the resistance struggle in Crete during World War 2, was also published by Matador.
In June 1815, Napoleon has just escaped from Elba, the Bourbon kings were on the run, France rose to their emperor, and the Allied forces were in disarray. The British has disbanded their armies after their victory the previous year and had now cobbled together an uneasy alliance of the Prussians, the Dutch and an untrained army, stiffened by a few veterans.
The five characters are: General Zeithen of the Prussian army, concerned both about the French and about his and his men's exposed position, unsupported he fears by his reluctant chief and by the British: De Lancey, Wellington's quartermaster-general, accompanied by his new young wife, and desperately juggling his new role, the movements of men and supplies in face of the rapid French advance, Wellington's incessant demands and communications with the allies: Colonel MacDonnell, originally from the Black Watch but promoted to command one of the Guards companies, a veteran and now pushed into the frontline to stiffen the untried troops: Napoleon himself, a great warrior but can he make a comeback after his humiliation before: and Marshal Ney, only recently returned from the Royalist cause, and thus distrusted by Napoleon but revered and beloved by French soldiers.
What is so remarkable about Iain Gale's writing and storytelling gifts is that although we may know the outcome, the reader is completely absorbed by the unfolding drama: the tensions from mistakes made, how characters react under such stress, the interaction of one character with another; how memories of the past affect decisions now; the courage, the fear, the responsibility of command; the whole feel of battle.
But when her brother joins the Resistance, he asks Giovanna to hide a badly wounded fighter who is Jewish. As she nurses him back to health, she falls helplessly in love with the brave and humble Marco, who comes from as ancient and noble an Italian family as she does. They pledge their love, and then must fight a real battle against the Nazis who become more desperate and cruel as the Allies close in on them...
NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY BESTSELLER
#1 GLOBE AND MAIL HISTORICAL FICTION BESTSELLER
One of NPR's Best Books of the Year!
One of Bookbub's Biggest Historical Fiction Books of the Year!
Reese Witherspoon Book Club Summer Reading Pick!
The Girly Book Club Book of the Year!
A Summer Book Pick from Good Housekeeping, Parade, Library Journal, Goodreads, Liz and Lisa, and BookBub
In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women—a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947—are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption.
1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie's parents banish her to Europe to have her "little problem" taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.
1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she's recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she's trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the "Queen of Spies", who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy's nose.
Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn't heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth...no matter where it leads.
“Both funny and heartbreaking, this epic journey of two courageous women is an unforgettable tale of little-known wartime glory and sacrifice. Quinn knocks it out of the park with this spectacular book!”—Stephanie Dray, New York Times bestselling author of America's First Daughter
With a good job in sales and marketing and a nice house in Manchester that he shared with his wife and kids, John Bishop was no different when he turned the dreaded 4-0. But instead of spanking a load of cash on a car that would have made him look like a senior stylist at Vidal Sassoon, he stumbled onto a pathway that ultimately lead him to become one of the nation’s best loved comedians. It was a gamble, but boy, did it pay off.
How Did All This Happen? is the story of how a boy who, growing up on a council estate dreaming of ousting Kenny Dalglish from Liverpool FC’s starting line-up, suddenly found himself on stage in front of thousands of people nationwide, at an age when he should have known better.
In his own inimitable style, John guides us through his life from leaving the estate and travelling the globe on a shoe string, to marriage, kids and the split that led him to being on a stage complaining to strangers one night – the night that changed his life and started his journey to stardom.
Wonderfully entertaining and packed with colourful reminiscences and comical anecdotes, this is a heart-warming, life-affirming and ultimately very, very funny memoir from one of the nation’s greatest comedians.