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Buy My Wares – The Great British Bake Off Week Eight

Posted on: 24/09/2014 with tags: An Appetite for Violets, author blog, baking, cakes, historical fiction, history, Martine Bailey, The Great British Bake Off, The Penny Heart

The fruited breads and doughnut challenges on this week’s episode of The Great British Bake Off recall the great British tradition of street food. For centuries fruited bready buns were the staple of street hawkers, crying their wares or singing early advertising jingles like the ‘Sally Lunn bun’ song of Bath: ‘No more I heed the muffin zest, The Yorkshire cake or bun,  Sweet Muse of Pastry teach me how,To make a Sally Lunn.’ Doughnuts too, have a history of being outdoor food long before Krispy…

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The Battle of Britain Memorial Service – by Claire Lorrimer

Posted on: 26/08/2014 with tags: author blog, Battle of Britain, Claire Lorrimer, history, memorial, world war II

Eight weeks ago, I was asked to lay a wreath at the Battle of Britain Memorial on the cliffs above Folkestone at Capel-Le-Ferne. It was an emotional day as I had served in the WAAF – the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force – during the war. Not only had I lost two young cousins in those desperate air battles when we were on the brink  of invasion, but in 1944 the Lancaster bomber pilot I was hoping to marry when the war was over, did not return from one of the dangerous bombing raids when one in five pl…

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Wharram Percy… The most deserted medieval village of them all.

Posted on: 23/07/2014 with tags: author blog, Black Death, debut author, debut novel, English History, historical fiction, historical novel, history, medieval england, medieval history, Medieval Period, plague, plague land, s d sykes, Wharram Percy, Yorkshire

There are over three thousand deserted medieval villages in the English landscape. Lost under fields of wheat and barley, or somewhere in the midst of ancient woodland – and yet it is Wharram Percy in the Yorkshire Wolds that is the most famous of them all. So, having been at the Harrogate crime festival last weekend, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to visit – though I should admit straight away that my first impressions of the place were not entirely overwhelming. Some historic sights really di…

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A guest blog from author Julian Stockwin

Posted on: 03/04/2014 with tags: Britain, British History, eBooks, historical fiction, history, Julian Stockwin, Napoleon, Napoleonic wars, seafaring, Thomas Kydd

I’m really delighted that Hodder is launching the first of four special 3-ebook bundles of the Kydd series today. Looking back over the past thirteen years that I have been writing these books one of the aspects that gives me special pleasure is the bond that has developed between my two main characters, Thomas Kydd and Nicholas Renzi. Kydd is a young wigmaker having a quiet ale with his friends in the local pub in Guildford when his life is about to change forever. He is taken by the pres…

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