Posts Tagged ‘Books’

Glory, Hallelujah! – Black Powder supplement

Posted on May 21st, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

While Black Powder allows for gaming the American Civil War (ACW for short), this nearly 200 page expansion adds far more detail into it.With the ACW always having been my main “historical gaming intrest”, this was a tome I just needed to have for the …

Haul Report 82: mostly about books

Posted on May 21st, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Welcome to another Haul Report, and what a week it has been as my library pile was extended by no less then 28 new additions.But that isn`t everything I obtained, so bear with me…The main haul this week came of course from the Boekenfestijn event pas…

Coming Soon: Grinning Skull’s first adventure module, The Witch’s Daughter!

Posted on May 19th, 2017 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Posted by

Well, almost ready for release is the first Grinning Skull Adventure module, “The Witch’s Daughter”, Other than these few images, I’m not telling you too much, other than a little tease of a few pages. It’ll be on sale in a few days, and I’ll tell you more then!

An Inflexible Link

Posted on May 18th, 2017 under , . Posted by

I was browsing through the Kindle Bookstore yesterday, when I came across this autobiographical account of the naval career of Lt Cdr J.A.Brander, who I had never heard of before.There are a number of reasons why this attracted my interest, not le…

The French & Prussian Armies at War 1805-1806

Posted on May 18th, 2017 under . Posted by

The French & Prussian Armies at War 1805-1806

The war of 1806 has long been accepted as just another example of the ruthless efficiency of Napoleon’s Grande Armée, and while this is true, it is only half the story of that strange campaign. For, while Napoleon’s formations whirred with matchless, lethal efficiency across northern Europe, outwitting and destroying the hapless Prussians, they were being assisted in their endeavors by their enemy themselves. Napoleon was emperor and commander-in-chief of his army, and was a genius in the military field as much as he was in many other spheres. In contrast, his opponents were commanded by a gaggle of geriatrics, jockeying for favor and influence about their well-intentioned, clueless King, Frederick William III. As General Blücher observed: The king is surrounded by a gang of malicious, inferior idlers. Although there was much that needed revision and improvement in the Prussian army of 1806, it would be false to think that all their generals and officers were blind to these multiple, extremely serious defects. Many reforms had been identified and it had been resolved to correct them, but events rolled over the army before they could be implemented. The twin defeats of Jena and Auerstedt on 14 October, 1806, triggered one of the most comprehensively catastrophic military defeats of an entire army in Western military history.

The results were that the performance of the Prussian army in this momentous campaign was often so abysmal that it was as if the entire high command was obsessed with a lemming-like death wish. Indecision, procrastination and subordination were rife throughout the command structure. While the French army outwitted and out-maneuvered the Prussians in every aspect of military operational skill, it was, as if the Prussians were so obsessed with shooting themselves in both left feet that they willfully ignored the presence of their deadly enemies.

This volume exposes the Prussian side of this tragi-comedy to English-speaking students for the first time; it will open many eyes.

The composition of the French army of 1806 is included, so that the reader may make a comparison between the two organizations.

The Airborne Club 2 – Book signing event

Posted on May 15th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

This coming weekend I will be helping out at a book signing event in Hadleigh, near Southend. If you are in the area, or have an interest in meeting some truly inspiring veterans, please pop along between two and four pm. 

An Army Of Brigadiers: British Brigade Commanders At The Battle Of Arras 1917 (Wolverhampton Military Studies)

Posted on May 15th, 2017 under . Posted by

An Army Of Brigadiers: British Brigade Commanders At The Battle Of Arras 1917 (Wolverhampton Military Studies)

There have been two major studies in recent years that have explored the roles and responsibilities of British generals at different levels within the British Expeditionary Force’s command structure. Dr Simon Innes-Robbins has written about the generals at predominantly GHQ and Army levels whilst Dr Andy Simpson has explored the development of the role of corps commanders during the Great War. For the first time Dr Trevor Harvey’s study provides an analysis of command at the level of the infantry brigade. His study is based on a critical period during the Great War, the period from late in the Battle of the Somme to the end of the Battle of Arras in mid-May 1917. Dr Harvey’s analysis is based on the service records of 116 brigadier-generals whose brigades played some part in the Battle of Arras. He explores their roles, responsibilities and backgrounds, both in theory and in practice, in the lead-up to and during the battle to explain and illustrate the range and limitations of their commands.

Based on this analysis, Dr Harvey presents case studies of five brigadier-generals, their staff officers and their battalion commanders. Each brigadier-general has been selected from one of the five corps that participated in the Battle of Arras which provides an operational backdrop to the exploration of their roles. The brigadier-generals exhibit, in different combinations, their different operational experiences, their different career paths and their different personal characteristics. In undertaking his research, Dr Harvey has drawn on a wide variety sources, including diaries, letters and personal papers privately held by descendants of his chosen subjects.

From the evidence drawn from the case studies, Dr Harvey identifies a series of threads about the responsibilities and actions which these brigade commanders share. He argues that the application of these threads enables the orthodox ‘administration and training’ interpretation of the role of brigadier-generals to be successfully challenged as both unnecessarily narrow and unduly limited. Dr Harvey’s study has been praised by his examiners because ‘it provides unique and original insights on British operations on the Western Front in 1916-17 which will be of great interest to scholars interested in British generalship during the First World War’. This ground-breaking study is a significant addition to the historiography of generalship during the Great War.

Haul Report 81

Posted on May 14th, 2017 under , , , , , . Posted by

Welcome y’all to a new week of nice stuffsies obtained :-)The main acquirement this week is the SAGA starter box from Gripping Beast, as I just don`t have the patience to await all the stripping and mix and matching for my older figures.With this box, …

The Coal Scuttle Brigade

Posted on May 10th, 2017 under , . Posted by

I had a dog eared old paperback copy of this book and read it a couple of times but have lost it somewhere in the pile of stuff up in the loft, so I was very pleased to find a digital copy for 99p the other day. It is a cracking read and full of t…

New Release: 100 Strange Magical Items for all fantasy RPGs!

Posted on May 6th, 2017 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Posted by

Yet more PDF goodness from us here at Grinning Skull Design Studios, with the second of today’s releases, 100 Strange Magical Items for all fantasy RPGs, a collection of 100 unusual and sometimes downright bizarre items to throw at your players! Check out this new title by clicking this link or visit our publisher page for […]

Dunmore’s War: The Last Conflict of America’s Colonial Era

Posted on May 5th, 2017 under . Posted by

Dunmore's War: The Last Conflict of America's Colonial Era

Known to history as “Dunmore’s War,” the 1774 campaign against a Shawnee-led Indian confederacy in the Ohio Country marked the final time an American colonial militia took to the field in His Majesty’s service and under royal command.

Led by John Murray, the fourth Earl of Dunmore and royal governor of Virginia, a force of colonials including George Rogers Clark, Daniel Morgan, Michael Cresap, Adam Stephen, and Andrew Lewis successfully enforced the western border established by treaties in parts of present-day West Virginia and Kentucky.

The campaign is often neglected in histories, despite its major influence on the conduct of the Revolutionary War that followed. In Dunmore’s War: The Last Conflict of America’s Colonial Era, award-winning historian Glenn F. Williams describes the course and importance of this campaign. Supported by extensive primary source research, the author corrects much of the folklore concerning the war and frontier fighting in general, demonstrating that the Americans did not adopt Indian tactics for wilderness fighting as is often supposed, but rather used British methods developed for fighting irregulars in the woods of Europe, while incorporating certain techniques learned from the Indians and experience gained from earlier colonial wars.

As an immediate result of Dunmore’s War, the frontier remained quiet for two years, giving the colonies the critical time to debate and declare independence before Britain convinced its Indian allies to resume attacks on American settlements. Ironically, at the same time Virginia militiamen were fighting under command of a king’s officer, the colony was becoming one of the leaders in the move toward American independence. Although he was hailed as a hero at the end of the war, Lord Dunmore’s attempt to maintain royal authority put him in direct opposition to many of the subordinates who followed him on the frontier, and in 1776 he was driven from Virginia and returned to England.

Blitzkrieg: From the Ground Up

Posted on May 4th, 2017 under . Posted by

The successes of the German Blitzkrieg in 1939-41 were as surprising as they were swift. Allied decision-makers wanted to discover the secret to German success quickly, even though only partial, incomplete information was available to them. The false c…

The Killer Angels – Michael Shaara

Posted on May 3rd, 2017 under , , . Posted by

No, I don`t read a whole book in one day, I usually am reading two seperate ones at one go, one on public transportation, and one at home.  So every so often it happens I finish both of them the same day.This book, predating me by half a decennia,…

Phallic Worship – George Ryley Scott

Posted on May 2nd, 2017 under , . Posted by

If you`re looking for some erotic literature, move along, because this has nothing to do with that.Instead, this book details how sex and sexual rituals had influence on people through the ages.From the time of the Egyptians all the way to modern socie…

The Barbary Corsairs: Warfare in the Mediterranean, 1480 – 1580

Posted on April 30th, 2017 under . Posted by

The Barbary Corsairs first appeared to terrorise shipping in the 16th century. These Muslim pirates sailed out of the ports of North Africa, primarily Sal , Rabat, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli. This area was known in Europe as the Barbary Coast, a term …

Burma ’44

Posted on April 28th, 2017 under . Posted by

I’m reading this at the moment, having flicked through a paperback copy on the ferry and then downloaded a copy onto the Kindle. I don’t tend to buy paperbacks anymore, preferring the digital option especially as I now can read books on my phone, thank…

Barry Trotter and the Shameless Parody – Michael Gerber

Posted on April 14th, 2017 under , . Posted by

Not even a minor film!I brought this book along on holidays out of curiosity… and ripped through the 300ish pages in a day.Barry is a good for nothing kid at Hogwash college, where he resides mainly as a PR stunt.  His groupies (with some female…

Empire of the Moghul: Raiders from the North – Alex Rutherford

Posted on April 12th, 2017 under , . Posted by

The first book in a series of 6, this series details the rise and height of the Moghul empire in medieval India.Every book details with another generation, and in this first volume of historical based books we start with Babur.Rising to the throne of F…

Battlefields in Miniature: Making Realistic and Effective Terrain for Wargames

Posted on April 12th, 2017 under . Posted by

Like a good general, a good wargamer should have an eye for the ground. Just as the nature of the battlefield plays a central role in real warfare, so miniature wargames are greatly enhanced by realistic terrain. Besides, when you’ve spent hundreds of …

Book Review: The Knights Hospitaller A Military History of the Knights of Saint John by John Carr

Posted on April 11th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

In an effort to kickstart my hobby work I have just read The Knights Hospitaller A Military History of the Knights of Saint John by John Carr.I have not previously had much interest in the Knightly Orders, especially with their religious connectio…

Into the Jaws of Death

Posted on April 11th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

It’s the Easter holidays so time to catch up on some reading, with this optimistically titled book at the top of the reading list. I have Mike Snook’s book Go Strong into the Desert, which is brilliant, so I’m looking forward to this one, especially as…

Good Read

Posted on April 8th, 2017 under . Posted by

I am well known for always having a book at hand, while travelling offshore in the chopper, taking the boys to their clubs, on the train or wherever. I have been fairly lax though for the last six months or so, not that I have not been reading books, but they were all associated with my new late Roman army, so more research than pleasure, albeit I enjoyed them. Getting the new iPad mini hasn’t helped either as I tend to pick it up rather than a book, although I am weaning myself off this constant checking for what turns out to be nothing, no emails, no posts most of the time.

I do read the Spectator on it though, they send me a paper copy but I don’t really pick that up, the Spectator is important because it has a book review in it, something which always tweaks my interest and the buying of books usually follows, the Sunday Times was bad for this until it dumbed down and I gave up on it. My first buy then has been ‘Praetorian’ by Guy De La Bedoyere, it keeps me in my Roman bubble and it covers the famous or infamous military unit from beginning to end, this no doubt will be the first of many.

While out shopping the other week I also noticed several books on Russia, an interest of mine, especially the period between the Revolution and the fall of Communism, I duly noted the titles and on getting home ordered up ‘Praetorian’ and ‘Last of the Czars’. I also bought one book in the store, ‘Blitzkrieg’, supposedly a new take on the Battle for France, I am really enjoying it but it is far from a new take with nothing new revealed yet.

My fourth book in the ready use locker is one for which I drew the maps and was given by the author as payment for making some corrections once the project was finished, ‘The Mongol Invasions’. The original stuff I was given was pretty bad and although the finished articles look good they need some tweaks, but it is too late now.

I do always feel a little guilty buying books online, but you can get new books for as much as 50% off and it is really difficult to pass that by. I have bought many books at the usual £20 – £25 mark as the contents intrigued me and found them to be rubbish. I also do not go into the local Waterstones now as much as I used to as I find that my military and historical interests must be frowned on at HQ as their selection diminishes with each visit while the section on Angels gathers more shelves.

A Wargamer’s Guide to The Anglo-Zulu War

Posted on March 30th, 2017 under . Posted by

Taking one of the most famous campaigns in British military history, Daniel Mersey gives a wargamer’s perspective of the dramatic events of the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879 and offers advice on how to recreate these on the gaming table.The author discusses f…

100 Fatal Blows (Bladed edition) for all fantasy RPGs, PDF Release today!

Posted on March 23rd, 2017 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Posted by

Well, I waste no time in announcing the latest release in the Grinning Skull Design Studios schedule, our growing range of RPG & wargaming PDF publications. Grinning Skull Design Studios presents: 100 Fatal Blows (Bladed Edition) for all fantasy RPGs. The latest in the “Grim’s Amazing D100 Tables” range of publications, this product is designed to […]

Destroyer Actions

Posted on March 23rd, 2017 under , , . Posted by

Another nautical book for the holidays in a couple of weeks, when I’ll have a bit more time to read all the digital books I’ve downloaded over the last few months. I much prefer a good old fashioned hardback, which make up most of my library acquisitio…