The Danes are the happiest people in the world, and pay the highest taxes.
‘Neutral’ Sweden is one of the biggest arms manufacturers in the world.
Finns have the largest per capita gun ownership after the US and Yemen.
54 per cent of Icelanders believe in elves.
Norway is the richest country on earth.
5 per cent of Danish men have had sex with an animal.
Michael Booth has lived among the Scandinavians, on and off, for over ten years, perplexed by their many strange paradoxes and character traits and equally bemused by the unquestioning enthusiasm for all things Nordic and hygge that has engulfed the rest of the world.
He leaves his adopted home of Denmark and embarks on a journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover who these curious tribes are, the secrets of their success and, most intriguing of all, what they think of each other. Along the way a more nuanced, often darker picture emerges of a region plagued by taboos, characterised by suffocating parochialism and populated by extremists of various shades.
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All leaders are constrained by geography. Their choices are limited by mountains, rivers, seas and concrete. Yes, to follow world events you need to understand people, ideas and movements – but if you don’t know geography, you’ll never have the full picture.
If you’ve ever wondered why Putin is so obsessed with Crimea, why the USA was destined to become a global superpower, or why China’s power base continues to expand ever outwards, the answers are all here.
In ten chapters (covering Russia; China; the USA; Latin America; the Middle East; Africa; India and Pakistan; Europe; Japan and Korea; and the Arctic), using maps, essays and occasionally the personal experiences of the widely travelled author, Prisoners of Geography looks at the past, present and future to offer an essential insight into one of the major factors that determines world history.
It’s time to put the ‘geo’ back into geopolitics. Buy this book today for £1.39.
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‘I am most grateful for two things: that I was born in North Korea, and that I escaped from North Korea.’
Yeonmi Park was not dreaming of freedom when she escaped from North Korea. She didn’t even know what it meant to be free. All she knew was that she was running for her life, that if she and her family stayed behind they would die – from starvation, or disease, or even execution.
This book is the story of Park’s struggle to survive in the darkest, most repressive country on earth; her harrowing escape through China’s underworld of smugglers and human traffickers; and then her escape from China across the Gobi desert to Mongolia, with only the stars to guide her way, and from there to South Korea and at last to freedom; and finally her emergence as a leading human rights activist – all before her 21st birthday.
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Click here to purchase In Order To Live
War correspondent Anna Badkhen returns to Northern Afghanistan in search of the friends she made in the early days of the occupation, back when it was the safest part of an unsafe land. Blighted, hopeless, still unspeakably beautiful but now overrun by the Taliban, the region is a different place entirely than the one she first encountered.
Traveling from village to village, she comes to understand what went so terribly wrong in the North—and, by extension, what is going so terribly wrong in Afghanistan in general. In her dispatches, which she calls “part diary entries, part love letters from a land that stole my heart,” she offers one of the most heartbreaking, lyrical portrayals ever of Afghanistan—and a powerful warning to those seeking to force the country into a bright new future.
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In 1997, Tony Blair won the biggest Labour victory in history to sweep the party to power and end eighteen years of Conservative government. He has been one of the most dynamic leaders of modern times; few British prime ministers have shaped the nation’s course as profoundly as Blair during his ten years in power, and his achievements and his legacy will be debated for years to come.
Now his memoirs reveal in intimate detail this unique political and personal journey, providing an insight into the man, the politician and the statesman, and charting successes, controversies and disappointments with an extraordinary candour.
A Journey will prove essential and compulsive reading for anyone who wants to understand the complexities of our global world. As an account of the nature and uses of power, it will also have a readership that extends well beyond politics, to all those who want to understand the challenges of leadership today. Buy this book for only 99p today.
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A key player in the worst prison riot in British history at Strangeways Prison in April 1990, Alan Lord was always in the wrong place at the wrong time. He was drawn to trouble like water to a sponge.
After experiencing a troubled childhood during which Alan was in and out of children’s homes – after being put into care at the tender age of eighteen months old – Alan was a teenager in 1981 when he was sentenced to life in prison for murder during a robbery that had gone badly wrong. He served thirty-two years in various prisons throughout the United Kingdom. This book tells the truth of what goes on behind prison walls and exposes the level of inhumane treatment and brutality that Alan had to endure throughout his thirty-two year journey, during which he never stopped standing up for human rights.
Powerfully detailing the way prisoners are treated on a daily basis, Life in Strangeways is a gripping tale that will change the perception of Alan Lord: convicted murderer and riot leader. Buy the book today for £2.39.
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From the admiralty to the miner’s strike, from the Battle of Britain to the Nobel Prize, Churchill oversaw some of the most important events the World has ever seen. Roy Jenkins faithfully presents these events, while also managing to convey the contradictions and quirks in Churchill’s character.
In depth analysis and brilliant historical research make this a magnificent one-volume biography of an extraordinary life. In some ways a companion piece to his excellent biography of Gladstone, Churchill is packed with insights that only a fellow politician could convey.
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With a sharp eye for the magnificently absurd, Rod Liddle sets light to modern-day Britain.
What is it that has transformed the British who in living memory were admired for their unassuming, stiff-upper-lipped capacity for `muddling through’ into the feckless,
obese, self-deluding, avaricious and self-obsessed whingers we have become? Savagely funny and relentlessly contrary, yet with a poignant sense of all that we have lost, Rod Liddle mercilessly exposes the absurdity, cant and humbuggery of the way we live now.
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Click here to purchase Selfish Whining Monkeys