Annual Booklist 2020-2021 : Contributors
It's that time of year again when we launch our annual booklist recommendations. It's normally timed for the run-up to Christmas so that you can plan your present requests, but with people having a lot more time for reading just now, you could always be inspired to give yourself a lockdown treat instead. As ever, a variety of figures from the world of military history offer their five favourite books on the British Army, plus one suggestion for a book that deserves to be written.
Lieutenant General Sir Cedric Delves, KBE, DSO
Cedric Delves was commissioned into the Devonshire and Dorset Regiment in 1968, passing SAS Selection in 1973. He spent most of his career at either regimental duty or in command appointments and retired from the Army in 2005.His book, Across an Angry Sea: The SAS in the Falklands War, was a runner-up in the 2018 SAHR Templer Best First Book Prize.
Dr Frances Houghton
Dr Frances Houghton is a researcher at the University of Manchester, where she is currently working on a project about medical care and masculine culture in the Royal Navy between 1939-45. Frances is interested in histories of combat, gender, sexuality, captivity, medicine, emotions, race, and memory in relation to the Second World War. Her first monograph, The Veterans' Tale: British Military Memoirs of the Second World War (CUP, 2019) won the SAHR Templer First Book Prize in 2020.
Joshua Provan is the administrator of the blog Adventures in Historyland (https://adventuresinhistoryland.com/) and the author of Wild East: The British in Japan: 1854-1868, his second book; Bullocks, Grain and Good Madeira: The Maratha and Jat Campaigns 1803-1806, will be published in 2021.
Richard Hopton is a historian and author whose non-fiction works include a history of duelling and a study of the Battle of Maida. His first novel, The Straits of Treachery, won the 2019-2020 SAHR Prize for Militray Fiction.
Being taught by the late historian, Professor David Loades at the University College of North Wales and studying at the Sorbonne led to William Heap writing Elizabeth’s French Wars, 1562-1598 (London: Unicorn, 2019). This reveals the extent of English intervention in the French Wars of Religion. Supported by an SAHR Independent Research Grant, it was a runner-up for SAHR Templer Best First Book 2019 and was also shortlisted for the Duke of Wellington Medal for Military History 2020.
Tom Greenshields retired from the Civil Service in 2008 in order to devote himself to his twin interests of military historical research and living history. He has a degree in geography from the University of Oxford and a PhD in the same from Durham, on the settlement of Armenian refugees in Syria and Lebanon after the First World War. After completing his doctorate, Tom spent the bulk of his career involved in mapping and geographic support to the Armed Forces within the Military Survey organisation. In his last eight years, he worked in MOD HQ, working on support to developing capability. In addition, from 1980 he spent eight years in the Territorial Army (Royal Engineers), and retired as a captain in 1988. He took early retirement from MOD at the end of March 2008. After years of research in the records of the IWM, the Liddle Collection and the various regimental archives, his first book, Those Bloody Kilts: The Highland Soldier in the Great War, was published by Helion in 2019 and was a prizewinner in that year’s SAHR Templer Best First Book awards.
He continues to pursue his interest in both the Highland soldier and the Great War. Currently he is pursuing research into the arguments for and against the kilt, and its significance, from the formation of the Highland regiments to its final triumph as the national dress of Scotland with the formation of the Royal Regiment of Scotland in 2006. With regard to the Great War, he has a keen interest in the experience and effectiveness of the NCO, much less studied or understood than that of the officer, and in developing a satisfactory model of the way in which morale operated on the individual soldier, which may have wider application.